General News of 2014-07-03

Brazil 2014: Ghana donates about half-a-million dollars to Brazil

At a time the country is battling with serious economic challenges that have invited untold hardship on the citizenry, the Ministry of Sports and the GFA have freely donated over half a million dollars to the government of Brazil.

The mouthwatering ‘gift’ was doled out to the World Cup hosting nation which is also funding several infrastructural projects in Ghana following the Brazilian government’s decision to charge 17% tax on the over US$3 million recently airlifted to the Black Stars.

Brazil’s tax laws require that a 17% tax is charged on monies going out of the country beyond a certain threshold, and as a result, authorities of South America’s largest country demanded that each beneficiary player pays a 17% percent tax on the $100,000 received before they carried it home.

Just before the senior national soccer team’s last group match against Portugal, which saw them eliminated from the ongoing World Cup, government, on the insistence of the players, sent over US$3 million in physical cash on a chartered plane to Brazil to pay the appearance fees of the Black Stars.

A member of the Youth and Sports Ministry’s World Cup Committee, Kwadwo Adu Asare, confirmed the news, saying each player lost 17 thousand dollars of their tournaments appearance fees as taxes to the Brazilian government.

“It’s a shame people did not know this and advice appropriately,” he stated.

The public has since been raged with the news; with some complaining that looking at the challenges on the economic front; it was absurd for the country to lose such a huge amount in taxes to a country helping Ghana to bridge its infrastructural deficit.

Presently, the Brazilian government is assisting the government of Ghana through loans to embark on some infrastructural projects among which includes the three-tier Kwame Nkrumah interchange, 5000 housing projects at old Ningo and Pawlugu Multipurpose Dam project among others.

The decision to fly the over US$3 million to Brazil followed agitations by the Black Stars players over government’s delay in paying them the appearance fees.

But the outgoing deputy Minister of Sports, Joseph Yamin, explained that the money delayed due to a disagreement over the mode of payment and securing of landing rights for the chartered plane carrying the money to the senior national team.

He explained that the Ministry wanted to use an e-banking transaction, but the players insisted they wanted physical cash payment.

The insistence of the players he said, forced the Ministry to “come back and mobilize the physical cash to be sent to them. Saturday morning, the money was mobilized but a chartered flight to take the money to Brazil is what has delayed the money up until now.”

Prior to this, a statement from the Ghana Football Association stated “…the government is pre-financing the payment of the Black Stars’ appearance fees which will be reimbursed when FIFA’s prize-money for Ghana’s participation in the World Cup is paid after the tournament in Brazil.”

Source: The Al-Hajj
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