Sports

Bukom Banku: I lost to Bastie because of skin bleaching

Controversially-popular Ghanaian boxer, Braimah Kamoko – better known as Bukom Banko, has attributed his 2017 loss to compatriot Bastie Samir to the effects of skin bleaching.

“I lost to Bastie because I was skin-bleaching at the time.

“You become weak and suffer from all kinds of ailments when you bleach your skin; that’s why I lost to Bastie,” he stated.

The well-liked comical boxer made these remarks on Saturday night during his ‘Bukom Banku Live’ educative show on GHOne TV, admonishing people about the dangers of skin bleaching.

Banku caused a stir in 2016 when he started toning his skin – an act he had said in several interviews, was influenced by one of his three wives.

He then changed his name to ‘Banku Flesh’ to reflect his ‘fresh status’ as he continued with the bleaching.  However, after almost four months of skin toning, Kamoko surrendered the practice and he is today playing a crusading role.

On October 21, 2017, Banku suffered a humiliating seventh round TKO defeat to Bastie in their non-title 12-round cruiserweight contest at the Bukom Boxing Arena in Accra.

Banku looked in danger of being halted earlier after he slumped onto the turf but valiantly held on before the unbeaten Bastie delivered the coup-de-grace to secure victory.

It was his first professional loss in 28 fights (21 K0s) then. 

Dubbed ‘Make or Break’ by Box Office Promotions, the bout became the most-talked-about when Bastie Samir, nicknamed ‘The Beast’ challenged the garrulous Banku.

Unwavering efforts to get the two boxers back into the ring has since proved futile with Banku insisting he risks dying or suffering from a stroke if he goes ahead with the much-anticipated rematch.

“I was scared at the time of the bout because I almost suffered a stroke that night. When I was getting into the ring, I saw that Bastie was larger in size. I knew him to be shorter than I was, but he looked taller.

“I asked my coach to confirm if that was really Bastie in the ring and he confirmed. That night at the arena, everything was in Bastie’s corner,” Banku told UTV last year.

Interestingly, on September 7, 2019, Banku took on Hungarian opponent, Ferenc Albert – finishing him in the third of their 12-round contest at the St George Hall in Bradford, UK.

It was the Ghanaian’s first fight outside of Africa.

BY JOHN VIGAH

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