Mr Speaker, I did so wonderfully. [Laughter.]
The mix of these experiences would
indeed, be felt in Brazil and our prayer is that Ghana should be the first country in Africa to lift the World Cup. [Hear! Hear!] And it is going to happen with the kind of experiences I have talked about. and of course, the fasting that some of us would continue to do. So, the whole country should continue to fast until the World Cup is brought to Ghana and to the continent of Africa.
Mr Speaker, Parliament's fasting and prayer would be led by you and I hope it would be great. [Laughter.] Mr Speaker, I think preparation to any World Cup Tournament takes a lot; getting the players on board, the good time is important, so that team work would be exhibited. From now till next year, we need to do proper preparations. I know that the handlers of the national team would not rest but continue to ensure that preparation is on course and that everything the team needs, they will get them.
Mr Speaker, we must commend the sponsoring companies for all these years that they have supported the Black Stars. And it is important that since we started engaging the private sector in our schol- arship drive, the Black Stars have always excelled. So, the contribution of the pri- vate sector is so key and we must continue to ensure that we have the private sector on board.
Mr Speaker, Ghana is always united when the Black Stars do well and we should continue to ensure that the Black Stars indeed, do well. Teams that have qualified, as my Hon Colleague said -- We have Ghana, Nigeria, la Cote d'Ivoire, Cameroun and Algeria. But the bet is on Ghana because of our performances over these years. So, we need to ensure that we do not slip but move forward.
Mr Speaker, we believe that between now and the tournament period, the coach would be so much assured of his position, so that he gets the concentration that he needs. Sometimes the media reportage and the rumours do not help a coach when he is in charge. The coach must be given
all the support by all and sundry. The Ghana Football Association (GFA) over the years -- Mr Speaker, I must commend the GFA President, Mr Kwesi Nyantekyi.
These three achievements that we have chalked are all under his administration and that is significant. Since he assumed the reins of the presidency of GFA, this man has demonstrated quality leadership that has ensured our three time qualifica- tion. He is a young man who needs to be encouraged.
Mr Speaker, in saying all these things there is one thing I would also want to talk about Mr Speaker. This with your training and advice I would -- [Laughter.] Mr Speaker, it is unfair to this country when as a nation, we are all united behind a national team.
Mr Speaker, we have all witnessed the Black Stars -- We have enjoyed the way they have played and the way the whole country came together all these years. Mr Speaker, I do not think it is fair and proper -- And in this House, it is not about politics, we should be more decisive on matters like this --For some people to print T-Shirts with the President's picture embossed -- [Interruption.] Mr Speaker, I do not think it is good for our soccer.
The Black Stars belong to all of us. It is for Ghana. The Black Stars cannot belong to any single individual. So, it is important that this message is drummed home.
Mr Speaker, it has never happened and I do not think we should continue in this vein. It is unfair to do that. Let us admit it. Black Stars belong to all Ghanaians. We shall have Presidents who will come and go but we shall have Black Stars forever and ever. [Hear! Hear!] And that point, in my view, is very important to stress that never again should we see such a thing because Black Stars are our pride. They are our everything and that thing should not be encouraged.
Mr Speaker, with this, I end by once again, commending the Black Stars, the management team, the technical team headed by Kwasi Appiah and indeed, all Ghanaians.
Mr Speaker, I cannot end properly without also sounding a note of caution to whoever or which team we will put in place to ensure our participation at the World Cup Tournament. Mr Speaker, the other time there was a Committee put in place for the World Cup Tournament with some Government representation. Mr Speaker, this time round, we beg those people who will be in charge of spending --
Mr Speaker, the last time, the kind of expenditure Ghana incurred was so hor- rible. Mr Speaker, I have the Order Paper here of Tuesday, 19th --