Govt committed to infrastructure provision – Mustapha Ussif
The Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr Mustapha Ussif, has said that the government was committed to the provision of necessary infrastructure to aid the development of sports in Ghana.
That, he said informed government decision to construct multipurpose youth and sports centers across all regions of the country.
The reason for this is to unearth talents and nurture to become future stars that will win laurels for the country at international events.
Mustapha Ussif made these remarks on Saturday at the 47th Sports Writers Association of Ghana (SWAG) night held at the Accra International Conference Centre.
In all, over 40 individuals made up of male and female athletes, administrators as well as institutions were awarded for their contribution towards sports development in the country.
Black Stars and Ajax ace, Kudus Mohammed, was adjudged the winner of the topmost Sports Personality of the Year award, beating competition from Paul Amoah (Athletics) and Abraham Mensah (Boxing).
According to the Youth and Sports Minister, the construction of the new facilities was testimonies of the government’s willingness to develop sports at all levels and would also pledged that the needed support would be accorded the Accra 2023 Africa Games Local Organising Committee (LOC) to stage a successful competition.
He praised the sportsmen and women for their dedication and hard work in a bid to make the nation proud while commending SWAG for recognising the efforts of the athletes.
“The year under review was an eventful one and in all the competitions, we had patriots who collectively and individually fought hard and lifted the flag of Ghana,” he stated.
He urged all sportsmen and women to be disciplined and work hard to excel in their various fields.
The President of SWAG, Mr Kwabena Yeboah, lamented over the lack of investments into infrastructure despite the efforts by athletes over the years.
He said Ghana has been to the World Cup four times and yet had nothing to show in relation to infrastructure proceeds from the World Cup money given by FIFA.
“There are no legacy projects to show for our World Cup participation yet a lot of funds are spent on the national team’s participation over the years,” he stated.
The experienced Sports Journalist said, Ghana’s abysmal performance at the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup marks the recent downward spiral of Ghana football, a development he stated has affected the country’s pedigree as a force in football.
“The year under review was quite challenging. Football woefully failed to make any significant impact in continental and world football,” he stressed.
“Our clubs grievously failed to make any impact in Africa, a trend that is agonisingly becoming an enduring pattern,” he added.
He urged the government and stakeholders to come out with a development plan for sports, which would include infrastructure development to meet international standards.
“We are even running out of time with the organisation of the African Games and if an extension is not given, Ghana could not be able to complete facilities to host the rest of Africa,” he stated