Athletics in Ghana is no stranger to political crisis, and there is a current installment ongoing.
Power play and machinations have been served as two factions in Ghana Athletics Association (GAA) on one hand, and the National Sports Authority (NSA) on the other, tussle over legitimacy for leadership positions.
Joy Sports breaks down, in sequence, how the issues have played out;
1. The GAA Congress had been scheduled to take place in December 2018 but it was halted after former GAA president, George Lutterodt, together with 14 others, filed a court case against the current administration for alleged financial malfeasance as well as constitutional breaches.
2. On July 4, 2019, the plaintiff’s injunction application was dismissed by the court, stating that they didn’t have a compelling case to warrant the injunction, paving the way for Elective Congress.
3. Congress delays and IAAF threatens sanctions against GAA.
4. GAA settle on August 17 for Elective Congress.
5. A day before Congress, NSA release a statement distancing itself from the elections because they do not recognize Bawah Fuseini as General Secretary.
6. NSA prevents GAA from using Aliu Mahama Stadium in Tamale for Congress. GAA holds congress at the Staff Common Room of the Tamale Senior High School.
7. More than 80% percent of the people who initially filed nominations to contest in the December 2018 elections were absent. Lutterodt, who had filed to contest with the Upper East’s Ababu Afielek and Samuel Ayer (Jollof) for the presidency was the most conspicuous absentee.
8. As per the GAA’s constitution, the General Secretary then re-opened nominations on the congress grounds.
9. One of the delegates nominated Prof. Dodoo for the position of president. He insisted he would not contest, but some of the delegates threatened a boycott of the congress if he did not accept their nomination. He contested and won the position.
10. The rest of the positions all had sole candidates, except for the position of Deputy Organizing Secretary, which Salamatu Musa won by 15 votes to 7.
11. Re-elected GAA president Professor Francis Dodoo urges NSA to reconsider their posture towards the association.
12. On Tuesday, the NSA issued a strongly worded statement in which it described the elections as “irresponsible behaviour”, insisting that the GAA had breached “their constitutional requirement of 42 days advance notice” for an election. The NSA, therefore, does not recognize Saturday’s polls and called new elections.