Minister for Youth and Sports, Mustapha Ussif, says the ruling Akufo-Addo administration is dedicated to lifting other sporting disciplines aside from football as part of its drive to make Ghana a sporting destination.

According to him, it was rather unfortunate that the nation has invested a lot of resources into the game of football leaving the other disciplines to decline.

“But that is the shift in direction that the current government is working on, making sure that there is a huge investment in other sporting discipline aside football,” he said.

Speaking to JoyNews’ Gary Al-Smith at the Sports Ministry, he listed a few investments the government was making to see to it that Ghana as a sporting destination takes fruition.

He said, “The plan of government is to have a facility that is certified by the World Athletic Federation, and currently the work on that facility is ongoing. The University of Ghana Sports Stadium is going to be upgraded; we’re removing the tartan tracks there to replace them with mondo tracks. So once that is done, we’re also developing even a warm up athletic track just five minutes away from the University of Ghana main stadium bowl.

“So five minutes there will be a walkway where there will be security panel for the athletes to be able to walk after they’ve warmed up and they want to go into competition, and these are facilities that we have developed. And by December, all these facilities are going to be ready; we’re also doing these in consultation with the Ghana Athletic Federation so Bawa Fuseini is very much involved in this new agenda for other sports apart from football.”

He also added that the government was building an aquatic centre at Borteyman which when completed will be the best of its kind in West Africa.

The centre will have a 10 lane competition pool and also an 8 lane warm up pool, a feature he said cannot be found anywhere else in West Africa; “So we are positioning our country as a sports destination.”

“We’re also developing a 1000 seater basketball arena at Borteyman again. And this 1000-seater basketball arena is going to be one of the best basketball arena where we are also going to ensure that all these facilities, the FINA certifies the aquatic centre, we have the boxing federation to also certify the boxing arena making sure that other indoor games like boxing, badminton, even our traditional sports like ampe and oware, all these things can be played there.

“There is also tennis court, five of them that we are developing so we have open tennis court and also a covered spectator stand tennis court, 1000 seater with VVIP seating  place, and these are all facilities that we are developing, just giving attention to other sports apart from football,” he further stated.

He noted that even as much as these facilities were initiated due to Ghana gearing up to host the 2023 African Games, it also signified the government’s investment in ensuring that “we lift other sports.”

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