A retired referee, Reverend Nsiah Boafo, has confessed to taking bribe to influence matches during his days.
The man of God said there is no referee on earth who has not accepted a bribe to influence a match before.
His confession is coming at a time the Number 12 expose by Anas Aremeyaw Anas has exposed some referees accepting bribes to influence their decisions on some matches they presided over.
The man of God who retired voluntarily due to a call from God to do his work said, referees are not angels and in general, referees have accepted bribes.
He said, as referees, you are to preside over matches and ensure that, your decisions do not create tension or problems on the field of play.
‘’There is nothing that can exist without a name. It is not the referees that accept bribes but the bribe can walk to you. There are certain situations that can put your life in danger if you do not accept the bribe.’’
When asked if he had accepted a bribe before, he said, ‘’I have taken a bribe before. Why should a reverend minister lie that I have never accepted a bribe before? I have accepted a bribe before.’’
He was however quick to add that, there are descent referees who have never accepted a bribe before but are the ones who are usually attacked by team supporters when they feel a match was manipulated.
‘’Nobody should deny that the teams do not approach the referees when they are about to play a game. They always come to the referees. I remember an incident occurred where all the teams clashed when they came to meet referees to help them win their match.
Reverend Boafo also revealed that, he sometimes return the monies paid him when the team that paid the money lost the game.
‘’But for my calling as a reverend minister, I would have accepted a bribe today,’’ he stated.
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has provisionally suspended about 15 referees’ over the number 12 expose.
The decision was taken after the Disciplinary Board of CAF held a meeting on 7th July 2018 on referees who were captured in the secretly recorded video taking bribes before officiating various games.
Kenyan Assistant Referee Mr. Marwa Range was handed a life ban from all CAF related football activities.
Others were banned for years ranging from 2 to 10, a press release issued by CAF on Saturday announced.
Mr. Yanissou Bebou, Referee from Togo and Mr. Jallow Ebrima, Assistant Referee from Gambia have been suspended for 10 years from all CAF related football activities.
An Ivorian referee Mr. Denis Dembele was also banned for 6 years from all CAF related football activities.
Those banned for five years are: Mr. Boukari Ouedraogo, Referee, Burkina Faso; Mr. Moriba Diakite, Assistant Referee, Mali; Mr. Demba Boubou, Assistant Referee, Mauritania; and Mr. Maman Raja Abba Malan Ousseini, Assistant Referee, Niger.
Two Assistant Referees Mr. Marius Tan and Mr. Bi Valere Gouho as well as Mr. Coulibay Abou, a Referee, all from Cote d’Ivoire were banned for two years.
However, the statement said three Ghanaians implicated in the documentary video dubbed ‘Number 12’, Mr. Lathbridge Reginald, Referee; Mr. Bello Aboudou, Referee; and Mr. Nantierre Eric, Assistant Referee were provisionally suspended pending their appearance before the Disciplinary Board on 5th August 2018.