Soccer News of Monday, 30 December 2013
Source: Graphic Online
The Minister of Youth and Sports, Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah, has given indication of government’s willingness to compensate ex-Black Stars whose rewards of houses after Africa Nations Cup victories have since been reneged on by the nation.
Afriyie-Ankrah dropped the hint Sunday when he led a delegation of ex-Black Stars Nations Cup winners and FA president, Kwesi Nyantakyi, to the RoyalHouse Chapel (Ahenfie) in Accra to ask for God’s forgiveness on behalf of the nation for failing to honour various promises made to previous winning squads, especially the 1963 team, which gave Ghana her first silverware.
“I know I am standing on the altar of God and, therefore, would not want to say things that I cannot do. The government may not be able to honour the housing promise but I am sure that we will adequately compensate them.
“Some of these players had died as paupers to the extent that some could not even raise money for paracetamol leading to their death,” he told the congregation emotionally.
The delegation, which also included law lecturer and broadcaster, Moses Foh Amoaning, and former inspirational captain of the team, Stephen Appaih, joined faith with hundreds of worshippers to ask for restoration and restitution for the ex-players most of whom were reported to have cursed the senior national team not to win any silverware until their promises had been honoured.
The 1963 squad in particular were promised a house each by Ghana’s first President, Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, but it soon fizzled out after the sudden overthrow of the late President.
Apparently hunted by the reported curse and for fear that it could follow the team as they prepared for the FIFA World Cup in Brazil next year, the minister took a bold decision to end it all, asking God to heal the hearts of the embittered ex-players.
The Apostle-General of the RoyalHouse Chapel International, Rev. Sam Korankye Ankrah, who led the spiritual exercise on behalf of the nation, knelt together with the delegation and pleaded for mercy from God.
A new covenant was entered into with God and it was sealed with Holy Communion (symbolic body and blood of Jesus).
Rev. Ankrah promised to personally lead the delegation to President John Dramani Mahama on how to compensate the squads so that their hearts would ease to bless the current team to succeed.
The delegation also included Willie Klutse, Awuley Quaye (Snr), Samson Lamptey and Peter Akwei McClean.