My government will pay local professional footballers salaries – Alabi
A flagbearer aspirant of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Professor Joshua Alabi, has promised to introduce a salary structure for professional footballers playing the local premier league and the lower divisions, should he win the NDC top job and eventually become president.
He said he will also ensure that sportsmen and women are enrolled unto the social security program to guarantee a comfortable retirement.
Joshua Alabi made the disclosure on Eyewitness News on Thursday.
The remuneration of footballers has become a matter of great concern as some players are paid as low as GH¢ 200 per month.
Some footballers have also continually demanded a payment system that will put them on social security schemes against their retirement.
According to Alabi, ensuring that footballers are paid by the state will be one of the key interests of his government should he win the NDC flagbearer elections, and is also elected president of the country at the 2020 polls.
He said as part of the arrangement, local footballers who are paid by the state will be required to give 5% of their monthly salary to the state when they travel outside the country to ply their trade.
“Every Premier division club player and Division 1 player will be paid by the government. Before you pay a player, his club should have registered him, then the player and the government will enter into an agreement that at any point when he gets a contract outside, 5% of the monthly salary must come into our sports fund. So if we have 5% of Asamoah Gyan’s salary every month, Michael Essien, Muntari, we will be generating more than the amount of money we will be spending and we could even use the excess of the money to go into football academy, basketball academy,” Alabi said.
He added that his government will also construct boxing academies to train young people who he says waste their talent and money by fighting on the street.
“You see young boys fighting on the street, I think it is a waste of talent and money. You create a boxing academy, we will build them up professionally and they move. At a point in time, the amount of money that we will generate will be more than what we are spending, and when players are out of the normal life, we could use the same fund as pension fund for them,” Alabi added.