Powerlifting ace shocked at death of federation boss

Powerlifting great Juliana Arkoh is in shock, following the sudden death last week of president of the Ghana Powerlifting Federation (GPF), Goodwill Joseph Kwame Agyemang.

Mr Agyemang, 52, died on Tuesday June 1 shortly on admission at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, having driven there himself after reportedly complaining of some discomfort in the chest.

“I learnt he was driving in town and felt some uneasiness and drove to the hospital himself, but never came back,” Ms Arkoh lamented after breaking the news to the Times Sports at the weekend.

“I’m totally shocked because we spoke on phone two days earlier about the sport.”

Ms Arkoh carved a piece of history last year when she clinched four gold medals at the 8th Commonwealth Powerlifting Championship at the Holiday Inn Hotel in StJohn’s Newfoundland, in Canada.

With a performance pavilioned in power, splendour and grit, the 21-year-old Ghanaian rocked the auditorium as she picked medals in the squatting, dead-lift and bench press phases of the prestigious competition – after nine brave attempts.

Twelve countries including hosts Canada, England, USA, Ireland, South Africa and India took part in the highly competitive event.

“I still have such golden memories of the event and Mr Agyemang’s relentless support for me. He will forever remain in my heart.

“He believed in my capability after switching from weightlifting to powerlifting. He told me I had the talent to do exploits and thank God I repaid the confidence and trust he reposed in me,” she recalled, shedding tears.

According to the powerlifting top-notch, the death of Mr Agyemang, who was also a member of the Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC),  will hurt the sport gravely, “since he really had the passion for it.”

A family source told the Times Sports yesterday that funeral arrangements will be communicated later.


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