Ghana’s exploits in aquatic sport has received a major boost with the completion of the very first FINA-approved Olympic standard swimming pool which will be known as the Bukom International Pool.
The pool situated within and constructed by the Trust Sports Emporium in Accra, houses other facilities including the popular Bukom Boxing Arena, which has hosted many high profile boxing events, the ‘Ga Mashie’ Boxing Hall, conference facilities, a gymnasium and a physiotherapy center.
The pool has all standard requirements and fittings required for the International Swimming Federation’s (FINA) certification and will be fully operational next month. The standard 25m by 50m pool also has a giant underground, pumping and filtration plant.
It is expected to make massive impact amongst children and youth especially in Jamestown, Korle Gonno, Mamprobi and Chorkor which are the immediate communities around the facility.
Mr Kwabena Amponsah-Dapaah, the CEO of the Trust Emporium, told Joy Sports in an exclusive conversation, that his outfit is planning to position the edifice as a hub for major competitions in the West African sub-region.
“We have worked very hard in the background to ensure the completion of the pool. We look forward to getting many of the kids in school to develop an interest in the sport and further develop their talents.”
“The bigger dream is to make world champions and Olympic Gold medalists out of this place. With regular competition and the right support, we are sure to make a major impact in the sport around the world.”
According to him, the facility will also be placed under a strict maintenance regimen to ensure it serves many generations. “We are very aware of the maintenance demands of this big edifice and we are committed to it. We will set different standards, especially as we are within close proximity to the Atlantic Ocean,” Mr Dapaah added.
Ghana is yet to make an impact at the Olympics in swimming due to the lack of support locally and the inability of the swimmers to get consistent international competitions. Abeiku Jackson and Kaya Forson go down in history as the first swimmers from Ghana to make it to the Olympic Games in 2014 in Brazil. Ahead of the Abeiku who is Ghana’s highest rated swimmer, competed in three events at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland.
The Trust Sports Emporium was commissioned by former President John Mahama in November 2016, with the Bukom Arena, serving as a pioneering facility. Since then it has hosted boxing, music and basketball events. The edifice is a joint venture between the government of Ghana, through the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) and ETC Polska of Poland.