Porcupine Warriors Kumasi Asante Kotoko are racing against the clock to cough up $240,000 to Tunisian giants Esperance de Tunis or risked being bundled into division two football.
This was the upshot of a final FIFA ruling last week with regard to a breach of contract in Emmanuel Clottey’s transfer to the Tunisian club in 2015.
Kotoko have up to a May 10 deadline to make full payment or face the wrath of FIFA.
In a desperate bid to avert FIFA’s sledge-hammer landing on the head of their pet club, Ashanti Regional Circle Council (ARCC) chairman of Kotoko, Obeng Sekyere, has made a passionate appeal to supporters to contribute their ‘widow’s mite’ to pay up the money.
“If we don’t help the club at this particular time, we will be in trouble.
“Apart from sponsorship, gate fees and player sales, Kotoko have no real means of making money and as such we must all help the club out of this situation,” he told Light FM, a Kumasi-based radio station on Tuesday, calling on supporters home and abroad to contribute their bit to salvage the situation.
He said it was not the time now to blame the previous administration headed by Opoku Nti for the “unfortunate” situation, but rather think about the future of Kotoko.
“Most of these administrators have used their personal resources to run Kotoko until such time that the financial state of the club improves; so let’s rather think about how quick to settle this debt to save our club,” the ARCC chairman emphasised.
According to Mr Sekyere, the club was going to embark on a vigorous worldwide fund-raising exercise in the future when given the chance to relieve Kotoko from any financial quagmire.
Meanwhile, FIFA has highlighted three major cash component to be paid by the club.
First, FIFA is demanding Kotoko to make full payment of the $180,000 cash amount involved in the deal as of the time and have also instructed the Porcupines to pay an interest of $45,000 for the hold-up of the payment to Esperance.
The world football governing body further ordered Kotoko to pay the committee which sat on the case an amount of $15,000 – bringing the total amount due to $240,000.
It is recalled that FIFA fined Clottey and Kotoko $180,000 in 2015 after the former signed for the Porcupine Warriors at a time he had a running contract with Esperance.
However, the Porcupine Warriors failed to settle the fine with Esperance striking back to sign Kwame Bonsu from the Kumasi giants for $150,000 in 2019.
Stunned, Kotoko wrote for Kwame Bonsu transfer fee, but Esperance referred the matter to FIFA to re-open Emmanuel Clottey’s transfer saga.
After a string of sterling performances in the CAF Champions League campaign with Berekum Chelsea, Clottey joined Esperance in 2012 for $1.5m fees, which is still a transfer record for the transfer of a Ghanaian player from the Ghana Premier League.