After months of speculation and being dodgy about his future ambitions, George Akwasi Afriyie last Friday officially declared his intention to vie for Ghana football’s top job, insisting he was the best man to succeed incumbent GFA president, Kwesi Nyantakyi, who has indicated he does not intend to seek another mandate when the FA goes to the polls in 2019.
The man who has been the right-hand man for Mr. Nyantakyi believes he has what it takes not only to succeed his boss but also to “continue his good works”.
The GFA vice-president chose the most lavish setting to make his declaration.
Before family, close friends and significant members of the football fraternity at his 50th birthday celebration at the Mensvic Grand Hotel in Accra, Mr Afriyie said: “I’ll like to use this memorable occasion to announce my intention to take part in the 2019 FA presidential elections.
Yesterday, he told the Graphic Sports that he had the best credentials to take Ghana football to the next step.
“I think after serving on the Executive Committee for three terms and the role I have played in this current tenure, I have gained the experience needed as well as gone through the mill to and learnt enough to place me in a position to take over from my boss.
“Irrespective of the numerous criticisms, I believe this administration under Nyantakyi has achieved a lot and I don’t think anyone is better placed to continue and build on the achievement than my good self,” he said.
Last Friday’s night declaration was done in the presence of Mrs Christine Nyantakyi, wife of the GFA president, who is away on CAF duties.
Mr Afriyie said he had carefully considered running for the top job and made up his mind only after Mr Nyantakyi said he would not seek another term after almost 13 years in the hot seat.
The Black Stars Management Committee chairman assured the Graphic Sports that he would soon come out with his vision and plans for Ghana football.
He insisted it would be one that almost every member of the football family would like because he had done extensive consultation “to build on the gains made in Ghana football.”
Mr. Afriyie, whose association with football started with Swedru All Blacks in the late 1990s, has also had an association with Accra Great Olympics, Liberty Professionals and at the moment, Okyeman Planners, a Division One side.
His declaration brings to two, the number of people who have openly made known their intention to succeed Mr. Nyantakyi.
The first to openly declare his ambition was Nana Yaw Amponsah, president of division one side Phar Rangers.