The immediate past president of the Normalization Committee of the Ghana Football Association, Dr. Kofi Amoah, has responded to the hue and cry over his recent receipt of $1m cash settlement payment by Glo, a telecom operating in Ghana.
In the following press statement issued by Dr. Kofi Amoah to ekowasmahsports.com, this afternoon, following enquiries by same, he narrates:
The GFA-Normalization Committee was launched by FIFA in Accra on September 18th, 2018
This press statement will touch only on a current issue of media interest regarding the payment of USD 1 Million by GLO Ghana Ltd to the GFA as part payment of an Arbitration Award.
Without getting into the details of the case, suffice to state that the GFA prevailed in most of its claims and the Sole Arbitrator, Lawyer Kizito Beyuo, issued its Final Award on August 29th, 2017, more than one year before the GFA-NC came into existence!
And here are the details of the Award that GLO Ghana Ltd were to pay to the GFA:
(i) The GFA shall recover from GLO the cedi equivalent of USD 4,624.000
(ii) The GFA shall recover from GLO simple interest on the cedi equivalent of USD 4,624,000 at the prevailing Bank of Ghana US Dollar base rate from August 15th, 2014 to August 15, 2015
(iii) The GFA shall recover from GLO simple interest on the cedi equivalent of USD 3,124,200 from August 16th, 2015 to date of final payment at the prevailing Bank of Ghana US Dollar base rate
(iv) GLO shall pay the GFA for its costs of legal representation in the sum of USD 50,000 and the costs of this arbitration in the sum of USD 105,000
Ladies and Gentlemen of the media, this is the award in favour of the GFA that the NC came to meet. And it was perfectly in our mandate to do all we could to collect the funds to be used in its operations and especially to be applied in assisting football clubs meet their financial obligations.
The NC met with GLO Representatives in search of solution towards the payment of the Arbitration Award.
With no progress forthcoming, the NC engaged the services of a reputable Law Firm to assist with collecting the Award from GLO.
Meetings and correspondences ensued between the NC and Mr. Frank Davies of Davies & Davies Law Firm regarding the NC’s determination to collect the Award.
Davies & Davies expressed the interest and ability to do the work and collect the award funds for the GFA
It was agreed between the NC and Davies & Davies Law Firm for the entire Award funds to be collected and if the firm was successful, it would be paid 10% of any/or all of the recovered amount. We were told, and the rate card of fees approved by the Ghana Bar Association confirmed, that collection of funds by a lawyer attracted 10%-25% of recovered amount. This arrangement is in writing as well as in the minutes of the NC board meetings.
It must be pointed out here that the lawyer who represented the GFA in the Arbitration, Lawyer Thadeus Sory, was granted a sum of USD 50,000.00 as his total fees by the Sole Arbitrator to be paid by GLO and not to be paid a percentage of the Award monies paid by GLO to the GFA. The Arbitrator based his decision on the fact that “the GFA did not succeed on all its claims, and the fact that the matter was uncontested, the Tribunal will award the GFA the sum of USD 50,000 as cost of its legal representation”
Davies & Davies had to work hard to succeed. When a gentlemanly approach for collecting failed, similar to the NC also failing with this approach, the lawyer had to take the matter to the courts
Surmising from verbal and written briefs furnished the NC, our lawyers had to go to court several times. But they succeeded in their “motion on notice for leave to enforce final arbitration award” at the Commercial Court division of the High Court of Justice
On November 20, 2019 I received a message from Mr. Frank Davies of Davies and Davies that GLO had made a down payment of One Million dollars cash towards the Award. The GFA President, Mr. Kurt Okraku, was in Cairo at the time for the Meteors Olympic Games qualifiers. It was arranged that on his return, we shall meet to discuss the NC Handing Over Notes and other matters
On November 26th, 2019, Dr. Kofi Amoah and Mr. Kurt Okraku met to discuss the NC Handing Over Notes to the new GFA Administration. President Okraku was told of the GLO USD 1 Million payment. He was also told of the 10% fees charged by the lawyer and that USD 900,000 was to be picked up by the GFA. He did not express any disagreement with paying the lawyer since the documentation supporting said payment was part of the Handing Over Notes. He suggested he will send the Acting General Secretary to come pick it up. The next day, a GFA Finance Department staff came to pick up the funds and receipt was furnished.
Since this happy happenstance of getting the GFA USD 900,000 cash to help with its enormous cash-strapped challenges, some sections of the media have over speculated and somersaulted to inject all kinds of negative motivations and meanings into what honorable people who consider other people to be equally honourable would have jubilated and saluted the efforts of the NC and its lawyers.
I have directed Lawyer Frank Davies to return the $100,000 paid to him for his appreciable service to the President of the GFA and submit his invoice for same, which he has done!
For those who read corruption into everything, there is absolutely none here
The members of the NC were called by the President of Ghana and FIFA to help with the process of reforming Ghana football.
We responded, worked hard, kept the faith and delivered our mandate.
We wish the new GFA Administration well and we hope that they will get the support needed to help them succeed.
Thank you and Regards
Dr. Kofi Amoah
Former President of the GFA-Normalization Committee
December 3, 2019