Director-General of the National Sports Authority (NSA), Prof Peter Twumasi, is anticipating an increase in budgetary allocation for sports, following Ghana’s “success” at the 2020 Olympic Games held in Tokyo, Japan.
According to the NSA boss, who was the leader of the government’s delegation at the 2020 Tokyo global sports festival, Ghana’s achievement at the games makes a strong case for a review of sports budget allocation.
Team Ghana made good impressions during the games, winning her first medal at the Olympics in 29 years. Samuel Takyi won bronze in the featherweight division, ending Ghana’s 49-year wait for an Olympic boxing medal.
Ghana’s 4x100m men relay team also booked a place in the final of the track event for the first time since the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
In the process of achieving this feat, the team broke the national record, which stood at 38.12 seconds set at the 1997 World Championships in Greece by the quartet of Aziz Zakari, Emmanuel Tuffour, Abu Duah and Eric Nkansah, with a new record of 38.08 secs.
In swimming, Abeiku Jackson, who topped his heat, also broke his own national record, and Christian Amoah of weightlifting also broke a national record and is currently ranked 12th in the world in his weight division.
These successes have enforced the call for a review of the budgetary allocation of the least financed sporting disciplines.
The NSA has been starved of the requisite resources and support to maximize its search stream to achieve its mandate of unearthing talents and enhancing sports development in Ghana.
Speaking in an interview with LUV FM’s Delali Atiase, the NSA boss noted that Samuel Takyi’s boxing medal buttresses why the country should increase the budget allocation for the sports ministry, which in 2020 stood around ¢40 million.
“I think you are right [the budget] has to go up,” the NSA boss said.
“The President’s commitment is there, and I think what we have to get done should be how it can be reflected in the Finance Minister’s budget for next year.
“The whole of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, our budget doesn’t exceed ¢40 million, if you convert it, it’s less than $10 million, what can you do with this”? he quizzed.
“It is like an amount for one department for the Ministry of Energy or maybe education, and this is what is being used for all federations.
“So, if the federation is not able to secure some support, sponsorship from other organizations, then they suffer.
“At the National Sports Authority, maybe the whole year, probably I’m given about ¢10 million, and I’m able to access about ¢5 million; what can you do with this?”
Professor Twumasi believes the time is ripe for the government to support the other sporting disciplines, just like is done for football.
“It’s time for us to look at the financing of some of these federations because we have realized that it’s not only football that can give us that joy.
“The National Sports Authority will send our exclusive budget, and I’m sure that the Ministry of Youth and Sports will forward it, and then the Finance Minister may have to increase it,” he emphasised.
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