Chinese paid TV service provider, StarTimes won a five years contract from the Ghana Football Association (GFA). Per the contract, the Ghana premier league which use to be broadcasted for free by the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) on the national television will now be aired on the paid platform owned by the Chinese.
The Ghana Football Association (GFA) announced StarTimes as the new TV right owners in a press release. The FA said in a statement that, “StarTimes emerged winners of the competitive bidding process after the GFA accepted their offer, which was the best among other bids”.
However, the Ghanaian state-owned broadcaster, Ghana Broadcasting Corporation which is a major competitor denied the FA’s claim that, Startimes emerged the best in terms of the bids. In a statement released on the 8th of January, 2020, Ghana Broadcasting Corporation was disappointed in the FA’s decision because their bid for the right to broadcast the Ghana Premier League was higher than that of the Chinese company, Startimes which was granted the exclusive right over the National Broadcaster.
According to GBC, they made an annual offer of US$ 1,100,000 as against the offer of startimes which was US$ 1,050,000, the more reason they were shocked to be informed that, they lost the right. GBC further added that, this unfair decision to deny the state-owned broadcaster or a local television consortium the rights will deny many Ghanaians access to the Ghana Premier League and FA cup live games on Free-to-Air broadcast.
As it stands now, the football-loving Ghanaians who cannot afford Startimes decoders or the subscription fees will have to wait for the highlights after the matches are played.