Ghana government decides against sponsoring supporters to Brazil for the 2014 World Cup
By Ameenu Shardo
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Ghana?s Sports Minister Elvis Afriyie Ankrah insists not a dime of government money will be used to transport fans to Brazil to support the Black Stars at the 2014 World Cup.
The state has always financed the movement of supporters to back Ghanaian athletes at major sporting events all over the world for close to a decade now.
Government sent hundreds of supporters to Germany to support the Black Stars in their maiden participation at the 2006 World Cup in Germany.
Hundreds more ? in fact thousands ? we again sponsored in their trip to South Africa to do same for the Ghana national team at the last World Cup four years ago.
Government has now decided not to use public funds on this project which has proved very costly to the Ghanaian tax payer in recent years for June?s World Cup in Brazil.
The state has decided to use the alternative route of raising funds through corporate sponsorship to transport ?a few recognized supporters? to Brazil to offer morale to the Black Stars.
?We are de-emphasizing the Ghana in Brazil and emphasizing the Brazil in Ghana because majority of the people will be in Ghana watching,? Sports Minister Elvis Afriyie Ankrah told Power FM.
?The same principle applies to the question of supporters and let me use the opportunity to explain.
?One, government is not going to spend one cedi on any supporter.
?Two, we are not going to send officially thousands of supporters like we did in South Africa.
?We want to raise money through corporate sponsorship to take a few supporters ? teh recognized groups ? to Brazil.
?And this will be at absolutely no cost to the exchequer. We are not going to use funds from the consolidated fund to send supporters to Brazil.?
The government has approved a budget of $9.8m for Ghana?s participation at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.