Former Ghana's youth and sports minister Yaw Osafo Maafo has insisted that football in the country is on the decline due to corruption and poor officiating by referees.
Maafo, who has recently been appointed as the senior minister of the West African country, and runs the day-to-day affairs of governance with president Nana Akufo-Addo, believes the illegal practice got worse since 2010, leading to lack of interest and respect for the local topflight.
“Corruption in football got so deep after 2010 in this country and Ghanaians are no more interested in the local league,” Maafo said at the launch of anti-corruption and transparency week in Accra.
“Are there any politicians there [in football too to corrupt the system]?”
“The league becomes important when people see fairness during games. You destroy the league when people know that football matches have been fixed and referees do whatever they deem right to achieve their dreams. They have destroyed the game.
"Whenever there are call-ups for the Black Stars, apart from goalkeepers that are at times selected from the local league, no other player gets the chance because the local league is not competitive," he added.
Aside Augustine Okrah and Latif Blessing, recent top scorers of the local league have failed to glitter outside the country. They spend at most a season and return home to re-launch their careers.