Soccer News of Wednesday, 30 October 2002

Source: --

CPP concerned about maltreatment of Kotoko abroad

The Eastern Region branch of the CPP has called on the government to take steps to ensure that Ghanaian football clubs participating in continental tournaments are protected from further "barbaric harassment" by some African host countries.

In a statement signed by the Regional Secretary, Kwabena Apea, and issued at Koforidua on Monday, the party expressed concern that the government did not "find it necessary to react to the inhuman treatment meted out to officials and players of Kumasi Asante Kotoko in some African countries especially, the latest in the Democratic Republic of Congo."

It referred to media reports of harassment of the contingent at the Kinshasa airport, including "the seizure of passports of players and worse of all, the taking of the officials and players captive until they had paid their hotel bills in full."

The statement recalled that out of the four clubs Kotoko played in their African Cup Winners Cup tournament this year, "it was only their South African counterparts, Santos Club, that treated them well."

"In Angola and Egypt they were badly treated, including being stoned during training in Angola." The statement recalled that, "the lofty ideals of Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah and other African Founding Fathers were that the institution of these sports tournaments would foster friendship and continental unity among Africans."

"It is unfortunate that after the death of the Founding Fathers, some African countries have turned the tournaments into war in which Ghanaian clubs are always at the receiving end."

The statement therefore appealed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Parliament and the Ghana Football Association (GFA) to take up the matter seriously with the African Union (AU) and Confederation of African Football (CAF) in order to save our clubs and players from further inhuman treatment by host countries.