Former Vice President of the Ghana Football Association George Afriyie has shown open opposition to plans by the Ghanaian football governing body to demote 30 clubs from the Division One League to a further lower-tier league at the end of the season.
The 2017 AFCON Organising Committee member believes the move will devalue the investment of clubs and also strongly opines that the move won’t lighten the weight of the financial burden being carried by clubs playing in the Ghanaian leagues.
On October 29, 2021, during an ordinary session of congress, the General Secretary of the Ghana FA took members through a scheduled restructuring of the Division One League which is expected to kick in at the start of the 2022/23 season.
According to the new pyramid communicated by the football governing body, the top 5 clubs (from 2nd to 6th) in each Division One League zone will retain their status as Division One League clubs – making 15 clubs. Three clubs who will be relegated from the Ghana Premier League will join these 15 clubs to generate a list of 18 clubs to play in a proposed National Super League.
The rest of the clubs – comprising 30 (10 from each zone) will then drop down the pecking order to form the Regional Championship League.
The model for promotion and demotion to the various leagues was spelled out by the GFA. But, Afriyie, who contested for the Presidency of the GFA during the 2019 General Elections of the association insists the model doesn’t represent the interest of football in the country.
“The clubs were not informed about the work and recommendations of the committee that worked on these new proposals. The General Secretary of the GFA just took the congressmen through the documents and it wasn’t subject to discussions and deliberations or vote by the members of the congress. The clubs were not given the opportunity to decide on the topic,” he told Benedict Kwadwo Mensah on Asempa FM.
“This is going to alter the destiny of clubs in the country but the sad reality is that the clubs don’t even appreciate it. These 30 clubs who will be relegated will become third-tier clubs. This ultimately devalues the clubs because if you consider the number of investment clubs has put in over the period for only to be demoted to third-tier league is not right,” he added.
New Edubiase United President Abdul Salam Yakubu has also kicked against the new policy to demote 30 clubs from the Division One League at the end of the season.