Sports News of Tuesday, 24 September 2013
About a dozen of Ghanaian referees have been suspended by the Ghana Football Association from all divisions of the league season for the next six months after being found guilty of providing fake documents to the referees’ body of the Ghana FA.
A fortnight ago, Chairman of the Referees Appointment Committee Randy Abbey in an interview with Kumasi-based Angel Fm hinted that his outfit and the Ghana FA were set to hand sanctions to certain match officials for using false documents.
“Over the years, we realized our referees were not being called up for the various international tournaments [ie. U-17, U-20 etc] so the immediate past chairman of the referees’ committee at CAF, Mr. Tarek [Bouchaoui] in one of the issues raised in his meetings with us in Ghana was about the ages of our referees and that they [CAF] were concentrating on younger referees for the age competitions. They won’t go and take a 40-year-old to officiate an U-17 tournament when other countries have competent 23, 24, 25 year-old referees so obviously we needed to do something about it,” Randy Abbey told Angel FM in an interview after the Ghana-Zambia World Cup qualifier in Kumasi.
“We then took a decision to try and do ‘a catch them young’ thing. The referees had an elite course in Prampram where the instructors had wanted to select at least one Ghanaian but looking at the list of those recommended, the youngest was 38 years. We decided that lets try and get them to use their right ages and the decision was that at the time one was writing his or her BECE, there wouldn’t have been the presence of mind to reduce their age. So what we needed to do was to demand they produce their Basic Education Certificate Examination [BECE] slips. After receiving the certificates, we then forwarded them to the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) for them to authenticate for us.
“Unfortunately a number of the referees fetched the Referees Association with fake documents as WAEC had problems with 50 percent of the certificates we sent and have since confiscated them. An appropriate sanction will be handed to the culprits by the Ghana FA soon,” the referees’ appointment boss had revealed.
A couple of weeks later, General Secretary of the Referees Association of Ghana (RAG) Alex Kotey has confirmed that the following match officials Uriah Glah, Daniel Dorgbetor, Amofa Sarkodie, Augustine Akugre, Alex Akugre, Osman Oadragou, Samuel Kyeremeh Yeboah, Prince Tawiah and Fredrick Bediako have been charged with impersonation and providing fake documents and have therefore been taken off the list of officials across all divisions for six months of the league season which began on September 15.