Michael Essien has been lined up to tell his side of the story when the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into Ghana’s World Cup campaign engages him from his Italian base via Skype at 3.30pm on Monday, according to media reports.
Essien, a second half substitute in the Black Stars’ opening group game against the USA at the Brazil 2014 FIFA World Cup, was embroiled in controversy for allegedly skipping the team’s warm-up ahead of their last group game with Portugal, a charge the player later denied and promised to defend himself at the appropriate time.
It also emerged at the commission’s sittings that Essien was a key member of the players’ negotiation team and was also alleged to have said at a meeting that it was time some FA officials were beaten for failing to meet their expectations.
As a fact-finding body, the Justice Senyo Dzamefe-led commission thought it was only fair to give the AC Milan star and other accused players such as Sulley Muntari and Kevin-Prince Boateng the chance to share their side of the World Cup story.
The media officer of the commission, Thomas Boakye Agyemang, told the Graphic Sports yesterday that the Italy-based player would give evidence via Skype Monday.
He revealed that the commission was also making arrangements to hear from Muntari, Boateng, Harrison Afful, Kwadwo Asamoah and John Boye also via Skype at a later date.
Also expected to fly down from the United Arab Emirates to meet the commission is the Stars skipper, who made a brief appearance two weeks ago after the Ghana-Guinea AFCON qualifier in Tamale.
Appearing tomorrow at the resumption of sitting after a regional tour last week, will be the second appearance of a former Sports Minister, Elvis Afriyie Ankrah, Abudulai Yakubu and Prosper Apasu, chief director and chief accountant respectively of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, and Yaw Boateng Gyan, Kwame Ofosu-Bamfo (Sikkens) and Felix Ansong, all members of the Stars Management Committee, as well as FA officials, such as George Afriyie, Emmanuel Gyimah and Ibrahim Saanie Daara.
The names of GFA scribe, Mr Gyimah, and FA spokesman, Mr Daara, are reported to have appeared on the ministry’s claim sheet, as well as the list of beneficiaries submitted by the GFA president, Kwesi Nyantakyi.
Also scheduled for tomorrow are three home-based players — Stephen Adams, Fatau Dauda and Rashid Sumaila.
Credit: Graphic Sports