Kwesi Nyantakyi Tipped For CAF President

Wed, 3 Jun 2015 Source: Kofi Otabil

The sudden decision by Sepp Blatter to stand down after 17 years as FIFA President has generated a lot of discussions and anxieties within the football fraternity. The lay-down tradition from these kinds of situations makes one to bet on Issa Hayatou to succeed Sepp Blatter as the in-coming president of FIFA. Michel Platini was previously considered to be the heir apparent to Sepp Blatter until few days before the FIFA elections when Platini requested that Blatter resign his position as FIFA President. Bear in mind that Platini became UEFA President on the strong connections of Blatter. In fact the previous UEFA President Johansson had challenged Blatter earlier for FIFA Presidency in 1998 and thus incurred the displeasure of the FIFA supremo and therefore decided to teach him a lesson; Platini then sneaked in as UEFA president in 2007.

Issa Hayatou also attempted to topple Blatter for FIFA president in 2002 but have been able to repair the damage caused as a result of that ill-timed action. Hayatou has therefore re-gained the confidence of Blatter as he’s been able to convince most of the African countries to vote en-block for Blatter. It’s a very dicey situation since Platini and other European FA presidents such as Dyke of England as well as retired footballer Luis Figo of Portugal have all expressed their interest to become FIFA president. They all have the notion that FIFA needs to be cleansed from some of the corrupt practices being peddled. Most of the football nations from Africa, Asia and the Concacaf regions have concerns about their future should the FIFA presidency get into the wrong hands. There is a perception that the group including Dyke and Platini have programmes that may adversely affect the growth of football in Africa, Asia and the Concacaf regions.

Issa Hayatou is seen as the rightful person to head FIFA due to his enormous experience in running CAF for 27 years. There is another school of thought that kicks against the presidency of Hayatou due to the notion that he’s corrupt. Kwesi Nyantakyi is tipped to replace Hayatou as CAF president once he ascends on to the presidency of FIFA. Kwesi Nyantakyi has become one of the trusted lieutenants of Hayatou within the CAF set up. Kwesi has taken his time to get into the inner caucus of Hayatou; he’s not shown any personal ambition of challenging his boss for CAF presidency. Some of the positive attributes of Kwesi Nyantakyi is his negotiation skills such as brokering peace between the two football rival factions in Kenya to form one domestic football league. Kwesi is seen as new kid on the block with innovate ideas to turn CAF into a credible force; however he faces a lot of criticism for Ghana’s poor showing at the 2012 World Cup as well as the dwindling fortunes of the domestic league.

Kwesi Nyantakyi ascending to the CAF presidency will be the first for a Ghanaian. Personally, I believe that Ghana football needs a person like Herbert Mensah to rekindle the passion of football. He’s got the marketing skills needed to bring in the needed financial resources as well as sponsorships to push out football to another level. These are my candid thoughts; what are your thoughts?

Written by: Kofi Otabil

Source: Kofi Otabil