IT may have taken three years to celebrate the glory proper, but it was all smiles when national powerlifter Juliana Arkoh was presented with GH¢10,000 by the Christ Apostolic Church International (CACI) for winning a haul of medals in the sport, in Canada.
A member of the church, the then 21-year-old Ms Arkoh put up a string of sterling performances to win four gold medals for Ghana at the 8th Commonwealth Powerlifting Championships 2019.
Her captivating performance, against all odds, blossomed her into instant stardom in Canada – and raised her popularity rating in Ghana where she had already carved a magnificent niche in weightlifting.
The strong-hearted Akwapim-Abiriw lady grabbed an incredible eight medals at the African Weightlifting Championships held in Casablanca, Morocco, 2013.
But the leadership of her church – CACI, was particularly enchanted by the Canada feat, promising to honour her appropriately.
That deserved celebration eventually came off on May 31, last month, at the headquarters of the CACI at Osu in Accra, where the Chairman General Apostle George Yeboah on behalf of the church, gave Ms Arkoh a cash prize of GH¢10,000.
The gesture was to motivate her to do more for the country and also bring honour to the church of which she is member.
Ms Arkoh, who fellowships with the Cantonment Circuit Assembly of the church, expressed her heart-felt appreciation to the Chairman General Apostle Yeboah and his elders as well as members of the CACI, for their prayers and support.
The multi-gold medalist was equally grateful to then resident pastor of the Cantonment Assembly, Rev. Thomas Awuku Ayew and his team, who took her to meet with the Chairman General, leading to last month’s presentation.
The versatile athlete said she was motivated by the award and promised to keep working very hard “so I can achieve more for the country and also make my church proud.”
Ms Arkoh, who is currently pursuing a degree programme in Sociology at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), is billed to compete in another high-profile powerlifting competition in Auckland, New Zealand, from November 28 to December 4, 2022.
BY JOHN VIGAH