Dreams FC Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Kurt Okraku, has been elected the new President of the Ghana Football Association (GFA).
Mr Okraku fills the spot vacated by former GFA President Kwesi Nyantakyi who resigned in 2018 following damning revelations against him in an exposé by investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas.
Okraku led the way after the first round of voting and was a vote away from becoming the new President of the Association after the second round.
He polled 59 votes representing 50% of votes cast with candidates needing at least 60 votes to win.
George Afriyie, who polled 40 votes in the first round improved to 43 votes but was still well behind Kurt Okraku.
Nana Yaw Amponsah saw his tally slashed from 27 in the first round to 16 in the second.
However, as delegates were voting in the third round, George Afriyie conceded, saying he was “a unifier and a team player who works for football.”
In the third round, Okraku was endorsed by 93 delegates.
Kurt Okraku thus becomes the 7th GFA President since 1992 and the 24th in the Association’s history.
The elections were allowed to proceed after the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) rejected an injunction appeal by a disqualified Presidential aspirant, Wilfred Osei earlier on Friday.
Amanda Clinton and George Ankomah both dropped out in the first round with 0 votes.
Fred Pappoe also opted to pull out after polling six votes.
The GFA’s Congress has a total of 120 delegates with the Division One League clubs accounting for the largest group; with 48 delegates.
In the first round, 117 votes were counted with one rejected ballot and two absentees however all 118 present delegates had their votes counted in the second round.
97 of the delegates voted in the final round with four votes rejected.
How many terms?
Kurt Okraku will now serve a maximum of two four-year terms in office following the adoption of the new statutes GFA at September’s Extraordinary Congress
The new statutes were approved with an almost unanimous endorsement from the delegates.
One major criticism levelled at the GFA during the tenure of former President, Kwesi Nyantakyi was his lengthy stay in office.
Nyantakyi served as President for 13 years from 2005 to 2018, completing a total of three terms.
He had been widely expected to contest for a fourth term before the investigative piece by journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas which led to his resignation.
The GFA hopes the new term limits will prevent any individual from remaining in power for too long.
What are Kurt’s plans?
In his manifesto, dubbed “Game Changer”, Kurt Okraku stated that he intended to work toward changing the fortunes of Ghana football and giving it a new lease of life.
The manifesto was premised on four key areas or principles:
- Transparency, Accountability and Annual Audit;
- Gender and Equity;
- Good Corporate Governance;
- Professionalism, Innovation and Investment
Screams of ‘game changer’ rang round the auditorium as votes were counted in the first and second rounds. With Okraku seemingly heading for victory, the chants intensified with more people joining in.
On social media, the reaction to Okraku’s victory has been similarly positive with the Dreams FC CEO a popular figure among football followers.