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Sports Features of Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Source: Charles Amofah

RE: 8,000 Tickets Missing

We refer to the story in your esteemed paper The Graphic Sports Friday, 17 – 19, 2013 edition and numbered 3182 with the title Aftermath of Ghana-Sudan qualifier 8,000 tickets missing. We wish to set the records straight and let your readership know the actual truth of the matter.

The National Sports Authority wishes to state categorically that the alleged 8,000 tickets were missing during the World Cup qualifying football match between Ghana and the Sudan played at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium on March 24, 2013 as stated in your paper was false and without any basis.

The Authority also wishes to confirmed put on record that no tickets were issued to any supporters groups during the match.

In view of the huge numbers of supporters that we had to deal with, the National Sports Authority in conjunction with the Ministry of Youth and Sports adopted the method of designating a specific entry point for all supporters groups during Black Stars matches, after several methods failed.
At one point in time, attempts were made to unite all the groups by forming a coalition and tickets for matches issued to the leadership of the coalition. This method failed because some members of the unions either got small quantities of the allocated tickets or got nothing at all.

This prompted the Authority and the Ministry to issue tickets directly to the various groups to facilitate their entry into the stadium during matches. Again, the method failed because there were allegations that some groups sold the tickets and yet managed to enter the stadium without tickets.
This compelled the Authority and the Ministry to allow supporters into the stadium free of charge through a designated gate (This has been ongoing for some time now).

On the day of the Black Stars versus The Crocodiles match, all supporters groups were directed to use a designated gate and to use the Green Zone under the scoreboard as their base.

For your information a total of tickets printed for the match in question was;

DENOMINATION GH¢20 GH¢7 GH¢4
STOCK OF TICKETS 4400 9600 24000
TICKETS SOLD 2966 9363 23181
PROTOCOL TICKETS 420 100 350
UNSOLD TICKETS 1014 137 469
TOTALS 4400 9600 24000

Clearly one can see from the above that there was no tickets of face of GH¢5. Secondly, all the unsold tickets together were not more than 1,620 tickets. Preparation of the Function Statement was prepared by the NSA and Ministry’s Auditors sections. It is therefore not true that the Ministry had put pressure on the NSA to account for 8,000 tickets.

It is therefore not true that 8,000 tickets got missing and could not be accounted for. Thus one wonders what the motives of the publication was. The least the writer could have done was to have sought clarification from both the National Sports Authority and the Ministry of Youth and Sports before publishing the story.

It must be noted that the Ministry and NSA have had cause to complain about the large numbers of supporters groups present at the stadium.
This prompted the two bodies to initiate measures to try to contain the many emerging supporters groups and the huge cost it has on revenue generation.
It is interesting to state clearly that the Ministry and NSA have recognized the existence of twenty- eight (28) registered supporters groups who operate in Accra as the Head Office.

Aside the recognized supports groups mentioned above there are other groups scattered all over the country especially in the Ashanti Region.
Find enclosed the list of registered supporters groups.

The concept of supporters groups started with one person who usually mobilizes fans and is dressed in the national colours to support the national teams. Today, there are several groups of supporters with membership ranging from 200 to 500 supporters each.

This has put a huge strain on stakeholders and the present issue should be opened for debate to discuss the best options to forestall any future problems as regard access to the stadium in time of Black Stars matches.
The Ministry and the NSA appreciates the contribution of these supporters groups particularly at certain times and occasions.
A few examples of the contributions of these supporters groups could get us all informed to enable us all make meaningful contributions to the debate.
Some of the contributions include;

1. Ghana hosted the 2010 Africa Nations Hockey tournament and it was these groups who filled the hockey pitch throughout the period of the event.
2. Over the years, the supporters groups provided support to all the other national teams who often do not attract any patronage by fans.



3. The groups have on several occasions given rousing receptions to our national teams who fail to win competition e.g. the African Nations Cup fiasco in South Africa recently.
4. Some of these groups also undertake social activities such as cleaning of the environment and educational programmes in their communities.
5. The 12th Anniversary of the commemoration of the May 9, 2001 Accra Stadium Disaster was hugely patronized by the various supporters groups.
6. Some groups have also travelled long distances in and outside the country to cheer our national teams to victory. Examples are the 2010 and 2012 World Cups in Germany and South Africa where Ghana was hailed by the whole world and particularly on the African continent.
The National Sports Authority on behalf of the Ministry of Youth and Sports wish to assure all Ghanaians that no tickets were missing as published in Graphic Sports.
The NSA further appeals to the general public and the media to engage in a healthy debate to find solutions to the Supporters Groups issue.
Suggestions can be e-mailed to our address at sportscouncilgh@yahoo.com

ISSUED BY
PUBLIC RELATIONS




LIST OF REGISTERED GROUPS
1. Ghana National Supporters Union
2. National Women Supporters Union
3. Supporters Union of Ghana
4. Nationwide Supporters Union
5. All for One Supporters Union
6. Ladies for All Sports Supporters Union
7. Heroes Supporters Group of Ghana
8. Ghana Great Supporters Group
9. Die-Hard Supporters Union
10. Union Supporters of Ghana
11. The Great Africa Supporters Union
12. Republic Supporters Union
13. Independence Supporters Union of Ghana
14. Golden Age Supporters Union
15. Supporters Union of Ghana
16. Progressive Sports Supporters Union
17. Darsalam Supporters Club of Ghana
18. Global Supporters Union of Ghana
19. Adehyeman Conventional and Amputee Sports Supporters Union of Ghana
20. Dynamic Supporters Union
21. Milennium Supporters Union
22. Survivors Supporters Union
23. Freedom Supporters Union of Ghana
24. National Teams Brass Band Supporters Union
25. Legon Students Supporters Union
26. Universal Supporters Union
27. KNUST Students Supporters Union (Provisional)