Thank you, Mr. Speaker, for giving me the opportunity to add my voice in congratulating the Black Stars and to urge them to put in much effort to win the Cup for Ghana.
Mr. Speaker, I think that last Sunday, 3rd February, 2008 was a great day for our motherland, Ghana. Our Black Stars performed creditably and excellently. What they did actually showed that as Ghanaians when we see ourselves as one people, when we come together, there is nothing on this earth that we cannot do. The performance of the Black Stars has shown us that when we remain united as a country all the economic, social, political and cultural problems that we are going through now we can solve them.
Mr. Speaker, when I was watching the match and the referee awarded a penalty to the Nigerians I almost cried. I became confused because my expectation from the Black Stars was that we were going to take a commanding lead throughout the 90 minutes. Unfortunately, the Nigerians scored the first goal. This created a lot of tension among Ghanaians but later on Michael Essien, the great illustrious son of Ghana, gave Ghanaians the equalizer and all of us became happy.
When I was viewing the television I saw the President of the Republic of Ghana smiling after Michael Essien had scored the goal. In the dying minutes Agogo gave us the winning goal and all Ghanaians became happy from that moment.
Mr. Speaker, there is one problem that has characterised this ongoing FIFA Cup of Nations, that is the selling of tickets. On Friday, it was reported that less than 4,000 tickets had been released to the agents who are responsible for the sale of tickets. By Saturday, this complaint was still in the public domain.
Meanwhile, by 10 o'clock on Sunday the whole stadium was full. So you ask yourself, when the Local Organising Committee (LOC) has released less than 4,000 tickets and the stadium with a capacity of 40,000 suddenly becomes occupied by people who have got tickets -- 40,000 minus 4,000 that is 36,000 where did the 36,000 tickets come from? We did not get tickets; most people did not get tickets, but at the end of the day the stadium was full. This is a great worry.
So I want to use this medium to call on members of the LOC to do all Ghanaians good by doing transparent work by making the tickets available to all Ghanaians. I wish to recommend that this time round the tickets are sent to the gates of the stadia so that people who want to watch a match can access the tickets at the gates. You buy your ticket and you enter, so that we can avoid these agents who condone and connive with the LOC to sell the tickets through the back door.
I thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I want to say that we wish the Black Stars well in the subsequent matches. All our souls, our prayers and everything are with them. They should do their best and get us the Cup. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.