SPORTS MINISTER COMMISERATES WITH THE FAMILY OF THE LATE FRED OSAM DUODU

The Minister for Youth and Sports Hon. Nii Lantey Vanderpuye has on behalf of H.E  President John Dramani Mahama, the Government and the Ministry expressed deep shock and condolences to the family of the late Fred Osam Duodu who passed on at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra after a short illness.

In a statement signed by the Public Relations Officer Mr. Otto Plahar, the Minister said    “the  news of the sudden demise of the legendary Osam Duodu saddens our nation especially when he was the only living AFCON winning coach after the equally unfortunate death of the triple winning coach C.K Gyamfi”.

As the footballing fraternity acknowledges this tragic loss, Hon. Vanderpuye stated that Mr    Osam Duodu would be fondly remembered for his legendary status in guiding the senior National team the Black Stars to the AFCON 1978 trophy as well as our country’s first time silver and gold victories at the 1993 Africa and FIFA U-20 Youth Championships in Mauritius and Australia respectively. “These achievements are testament to the value of unparalleled dedication and service to the nation”. He added.

The Sports Minister further stated that Mr Osam Duodu’s pursuit for a successful career both as a coach and an administrator would definitely leave an indelible mark on the minds of Ghanaians and all football loving people the world over.

“On behalf of the Ministry and the government of Ghana, I commiserate with the family of Mr. Osam Duodu on this sudden loss. May the good Lord grant the family the fortitude to bear and go through this difficult moment”. The statement concluded.

PRINCE EDWARD PAY COURTESY CALL ON JAMES TOWN MANTSE.

His Royal Highness Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex, has paid a courtesy call on Oblempong Nii Kojo Ababio V, chief of James Town and president of the Ngleshie Alata Traditional area as part of the activities marking this year’s Head of State Awards.

The Prince and his delegation which included the Rt.Hon.Lord Paul Boateng, the British High Commissioner, Jon Benjamin and Peter Anum, Executive Director, Head of State Award Scheme were led on the visit by the Minister of Youth and Sports,Hon. Nii Lantey Vanderpuye.

The visit which was heralded by a special durbar of chiefs and people of James Town at Mantse Agbonaa was attended by traditional authorities, government officials, students, the clergy, Head of State Award winners and diplomats.

Welcoming his august visitor, Nii Ababio said the visit was important because of the relationship that has existed between the people of James Town (formerly British Accra) and the British who lived with them.

He said that relationship dated as far back as the 18th century till around 1960 and recalled with nostalgia the good rapport that existed between them and noted that the visit was the evidence of that bond.

Speaking at the function,  Hon.Nii Lantey Vanderpuye gave a brief history of the relationship of the people of James Town with the British stressing on the importance of the visit of Prince Edward visit.

He lamented the fading nationalism in the youth and urged them to revive the attitude to work whole-heartedly for their country.

During the occasion, the Prince presented a special plaque to Nii Ababio from her mother whilst the James Town mantse reciprocated with traditional clothes.

Present at the ceremony  also was the Mayor of Accra, Hon. Oko Vanderpuye.

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PRESIDENT JOHN DRAMANI MAHAMA COMMISSIONS NEW CAPE COAST SPORTS STADIUM

The President of the Republic, His Excellency John Dramani Mahama has commissioned the new ultra-modern Cape Coast Sports Stadium at a very impressive ceremony in Cape Coast.

Speaking at the commissioning, the President said the Cape Coast Sports Stadium is very unique and the first multipurpose stadium to be constructed in the country complete with sporting facilities and equipment.

The President said the facility would not only add to the country’s existing sports infrastructure but also play a significant role in the development of sports in the country.

The 16,000-capacity multi-purpose stadium was funded by Government as its contribution towards the development of sports infrastructure in the country at the cost of $30,000.00.The construction of the facility was undertaken by China Jiangxi Corporation for International Economic and Technical Cooperation and has a football pitch, basketball, Handball, Volleyball and tennis ball courts, a modern eight-lane tartan tracks, boxing gym and arena and table tennis hall. It also has washrooms, dressing rooms, 60-bed capacity hostel, and kitchen.

President Mahama said construction of the sports stadium would go a long way to enhance sports development in the region.

He paid glowing tribute to the late President J.E.A.Mills for his role in initiating the project adding that it filled him with great pride to have fulfilled his promise to the people of Cape Coast in completing the project.

President Mahama  decried the deplorable state of the major stadia in the country but added that this new one would never go the same way. ” I would want to see this facility in good condition after five years,” he said.

He said a new policy would be introduced to ensure that the sports development function of the National Sports Authority is separated from the facility management role to bring about efficiency.

The President said every region would have its own modern stadium starting with Brong Ahafo, Upper East, Upper West and Volta in that order.

The Minister of Youth and Sports Hon.Nii Lantey Vanderpuye bemoaned the sorry state of the Kumasi, Essipon, and Accra and Tamale stadia and promised to fix them.

“I know Ghanaians will be worried this day when we are commissioning this stadium because of the way the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the National Sports Authority have allowed the earlier ones in Kumasi, Accra, Essipon and Tamale to deteriorate. I stand here today to assure the whole country and in doing so, we are not only going to manage this facility well, but we will fix all the others that have gone bad.”He said.

The Chinese Ambassador to Ghana, Her Excellency Sun Baohong said the project would deepen the relationship between the two countries, further diversify Ghanaian culture and stimulate economic development.

Present at the ceremony were Hon. George Kweku Ricketts-Hagan, Central Regional Minister and Hon.Mrs. Priscilla Arhin Korankye, Cape Coast Metropolitan Assembly.

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NEW CAPE COAST SPORTS STADIUM HANDED OVER TO MINISTRY OF YOUTH AND SPORTS

The New Cape Coast Sports Stadium has officially been handed over to the Ministry of Youth and Sports at a brief but colourful ceremony at the Ministry of Youth and Sports Conference Room.
The Handing-Over Certificate was signed on behalf of the Ministry by the Minister of Youth and Sports, Hon.Nii Lantey Vanderpuye whilst the Chinese Ambassador,
Her Excellency Sun Baohong, signed on behalf of her government.

The 16,000 capacity ultra-modern facility funded by the Government of the People’s Republic of China, was officially commenced on July 15th,2013 and completed on January 20th,2016 with a one year maintenance period from January 29th,2016,to January28th,2017.
The project was undertaken by China Jiangxi Corporation for International Economic &Technical Cooperation.

In his opening address, the Minister, Hon.Nii Lantey Vanderpuye, on behalf of His Excellency President John Dramani Mahama, thanked the Chinese Government for the project.

He praised the contractors for a good job done.” In fact I was at the Sports Stadium and I must admit I was very satisfied with the work done so far,” the Minister said.

He also praised the work of his predecessors especially his deputy, Hon.Vincent Oppong Asamoah, who was in charge of the project.
The Hon. Minister stressed that the new sports stadium would not be allowed to deteriorate like the others and said it would be given out to private facility managers to manage.
The Minister announced that the new stadium would be officially commissioned by His Excellency President John Mahama on 3rd May, 2016 and that the Chinese Under-19 Team would engage the Ghana Under-20 Team, the Black Satellites in a football match as part of the activities lined-up to officially open the stadium and said the Gabonese President was expected to grace the opening ceremony.
The Minister appealed to the Chinese Ambassador for the construction of an indoor modern gymnasium that would complement the facility.
The Chinese Ambassador, H.E.Sun Baohong, said the stadium was the largest ever China –aided project in the country.”This ultra-modern stadium, will undoubtedly promote the development of sports in Ghana, and will diversify the culture and sports life of the people of Ghana as well as enhance the tourism prospects of Cape Coast which will stimulate economic development,” she said.
She said she was happy their under-19 team would be playing with the Black Satellites. She said in the area of construction, China was way ahead of Ghana but in football, Ghana is leading.
Ambassador Sun Baohong revealed that some Chinese companies had requested to advertize their products behind the perimeter fence during the commissioning.

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GHANA WEIGHTLIFTING FEDERATION CALL ON HON.NII LANTEY VANDERPUYE

The Executive Committee of the Ghana Weightlifting Federation(GWF) led by their President, Mr. Ben Nunoo-Mensah, has paid a courtesy call on the Minister of Youth and Sports, Hon.Nii Lantey Vanderpuye, in his office to congratulate him on his appointment and also introduce to him the Executive Committee members.
Ben Nunoo-Mensah told the Minister, they had come to congratulate and to wish him well. The President of the GWF said “if there was anyone who could do the work better at the Youth and Sports, it is you.”
He said they were happy to have the Hon Minister who was their former Patron as the substantive Minister and recounted the federation’s achievements to date; the building of training centre and Youth programme offices for the federation within the Accra Sports Stadium.
Ben Nunoo-Mensah stated that the main focus of the GWF is to organize training for the kids in primary schools to whip up their interest in the sport which is part of their 4-year development agenda.
Welcoming the members of the Ghana Weightlifting Federation, the Hon. Minister said weightlifting is a sport that demands a lot of technical knowledge and was happy that a lot of people are now showing interest in weightlifting and urged the federation to do more of their outreach.
He intimated that morphological build of a person determines what sports they do and therefore the resource available must be used to train the right people.
The Hon. Minister said he was happy that the long held perception of weightlifting being seen as bodybuilding is no longer the case now; people now know the difference. He reiterated the need for the re-orientation of Ghanaians to believe in the other sporting disciplines and urged the weightlifting federation to step up its outreach programmes.
Hon.Nii Lantey Vanderpuye noted that without corporate support, the rest of our disciplines would suffer and called for support and announced that Turkey and Colombia has accepted to support the Ministry with some sporting facilities as well as train some athletes in preparation for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
He told them the security services have agreed to give thirty percent recruitment quota for sports men and woman with the prerequisite qualification and called on them to identify such people in their federation.He pledged his support for the Federation.

HON. NII LANTEY VANDERPUYE INSPECTS SPORTING FACILITIES IN WESTERN AND CENTRAL REGIONS

The Minister of Youth and Sports, Hon. Nii Lantey Vanderpuye, has inspected sporting facilities in the Western and Central Regions.

Prior to his inspection tour, the Hon Minister had earlier been invited as a Special Guest to a Durbar and Inter District Beach Soccer Gala Competition at Baku, in the Ellembelle District in Western Region, organized by the Integrated Youth Development (IYD) Project.

In the Western Region the Minister visited the Sekondi Gyandu Park and the Essipong Sports Stadium.
Speaking to the press after the inspection, Hon. Nii Lantey Vanderpuye said his visit was an opportunity to acquaint himself with the facilities under his Ministry. The Minister said the level of deterioration of the facilities at Gyandu Park was very appalling.” I cannot believe this is the same park I used to run sports commentary from. “ He lamented.

The Hon.Minister’s impression about the Essipong Sports Stadium was no different from that of the Gyandu Park because it has also stated to show signs of deterioration; the roofs were off at some places and their metal supports rusting. He said the facility can be out sourced to facility managers to manage.

The next phase of the Hon. Minister’s visit was to the Central Region where he first called on the Regional Minister, Hon Kweku Ricketts-Hagan before inspecting the Robert Mensah Sports Stadium, the Adisadel School Park, the New Cape Coast Sports Stadium and the Winneba Sports College.

At the Robert Mensah Sports Stadium, the Hon. Minister noted that although the playing field was in good shape, the fence wall around the stadium must be painted. He further observed that cement slabs were used instead of seats. The Adisadel School Park needed to be re-developed.

At the New Cape Coast Sports Stadium, the Hon. Minister told the press that he was satisfied with work done so far but his only reservations however, were the low fence fall around the stadium and the colour of the seats which do not reflect the national colours.

At the National Sports College, the Hon. Minister and his entourage were taken round by Mr. Erasmus Adorkor, the Director after briefing the Minister on the academy.H on Nii Lantey Vanderpuye stated that the Ministry was working with the Ministry of Education to affiliate the University of Education, Winneba with the Sports College to award degrees and diplomas in Physical Education (PE), sports medicine and coaching.

Hon.Nii Lantey Vanderpuye praised the staff of the College for their hard work and said his vision is to turn the College into a centre of excellence; He also lauded the Public Private Partnership (PPP) project which has been initiated to give the facility an excellent face-lift.

The Hon. Minister was accompanied on his trip by the Director General of the National Sports Authority, Mr.Joe Kpenge, the Deputy Director of the National Sports Authority in charge of Technical, Mr.Saka Acquaye and officials of the Ministry.

MINISTER OF YOUTH AND SPORTS LEADS STAFF TO OBSERVE NATIONAL SANITATION DAY

The Minister of Youth and Sports, Hon.Nii Lantey Vanderpuye has led the staff of the Ministry to undertake a three-hour clean-up exercise at the Ministry to observe National Sanitation Day, which fell on March 5th.

As early as 6:30 in the morning, the Hon. Minister together with management and staff as well as the cleaners of the Ministry started the clean-up exercise. They weeded and cleaned the lawns as well as trimmed the flowers around the office premises.

All the various offices, the rest rooms and the spaces under the steps were all neatly cleaned.
Speaking to the staff after the exercise the Minister praised them for the team spirit with which they undertook the exercise.

He said the clean-up exercise was going to be a regular programme and advised the staff against indiscriminate littering.

“We need to maintain good environmental hygiene and desist from throwing rubbish about. The cleaners are only there to assist us to make sure office environment is clean and so we must not leave the cleaning solely to them” the Minister emphasized.

Hon. Nii Lantey Vanderpuye assured the staff that the whole office building would soon be painted to give it a beautiful look to reflect the new image of the Ministry.
The exercise was supported by Zoomlion Ghana Limited who provided logistics and also material contributions from staff.

HON. VINCENT OPPONG ASAMOAH LAUNCHES WEIGHTLIFTING YOUTH DEVELOPMENT PROJECT

The Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports,Hon.Vincent Oppong Asamoah, has launched a youth development programme for the Ghana Weightlifting Federation(GWF) at a short but impressive ceremony at the Accra Sports Stadium,in Accra.
Speaking at the launch, Hon.Asamoah said he was very happy that a lot of young people are now beginning to show interest in weightlifting which is a good sign for the development of the sport.
Hon. Vincent Oppong Asamoah stated that when given the chance, Ghana has the potential to perform in any sporting category. He noted that the establishment of a roadmap for the development of weightlifting throughout the whole country is a positive development that deserves commendation.
The Deputy Minister said the Ministry was in discussions with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development for a percentage of their budget allocated for Sports development to be used in assisting the Ministry.
He noted that the media has a key role to play in order to popularize weightlifting and called on them to play that role effectively.
Hon. Asamoah thanked De-United Foods Industries Limited (DUFIL) importers and marketers of Indomie Noodles for their support and urged other corporate organizations to also support and with this declared the programme duly launched.
The country Manager of DUFIL, Mahesh Shah later presented a dummy cheque for twenty thousand Ghana cedis and fifty boxes of indomie to the Deputy Minister on behalf of the Weightlifting Federation and a sponsorship package of ten thousand Ghana cedis worth of products for the project.
Present at the ceremony were the President of the Ghana Weightlifting Federation, Mr. Ben Nunoo-Mensah, Ambassador Ashim Morton, a member of the weightlifting board, Mr.Saka Acquaye, Deputy Director General in charge of Technical of the National Sports Authority.

GHANAIAN ATHLETES TO SOUTH KOREA PRESENTS MEDALS TO DR.MUSTAPHA AHMED

Three Ghanaian athletes who took part in the Dream Project 2016 in PyeongChang in South Korea, has presented the medals they won at the competition to the Minister of Youth and Sports, Dr. Mustapha Ahmed, at a brief ceremony in his office in Accra.
They are Hawa Kombat, Eliasu Alale, and Judith Balyeyel; all from Bolgatanga in the Upper East Region. They were led to the Ministry by John Ali Atia their coach and Philippina Frimpong, Secretary-General of the Ghana Athletics Association.
Briefing the Minister on the competition, John Ali Atia said even though this was the first time the children were competing in ice skating sports, they have really made an impact which in later years could help make them better . He said the children comported themselves well and that it was not surprising that they won medals.
Coach Atia said the children found ice skating a wonderful new experience which with time would improve their skills and expressed gratitude to the Korean Embassy in Ghana for sponsoring their trip.
Welcoming the young athletes to his office, Dr.Mustapha Ahmed said he was happy that the three young athletes had the opportunity to contest in such a competition abroad and praised them for their achievements.
The Minister said such training would go a long way to prepare such young athletes better for future competitions and mentioned that the Ministry was in collaboration with other countries for the training of our athletes outside the country and mentioned Colombia specifically as one of such countries.
He thanked them for coming to present their awards to him and assured them that the Ministry was ever ready to support them in similar future programmes.
Present during the presentation were the Chief Director of the Ministry, Mr. Victor Xola Senaya, Director of Finance and Administration, Alhaji Rex Sumani, Mr. Seth Osei-Agyen, Director of Sports, Mr.Ernest Kwakuyi,Deputy Director in Charge of Sports and the Public Relations Officer of the Ministry.

DR.MUSTAPHA AHMED HONOURS COMMUNITY FOOTBALL GALA AT ADA

The Minister of Youth and Sports,Dr.Mustapha Ahmed accompanied by Mr. Francis Oti Akenteng technical director of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Mr.Didi Dramani, coach of the under-17 national women’s football team, was the Special Guest at a community football gala organized at the Kasseh Coronation Park at Kasseh in the Ada East District, in the Greater Accra Region.

Dr.Mustapha Ahmed was at the football competition as special guest of the Member of Parliament for the Ada Constituency and Minister of State at the Office of the President in charge of Social and Allied Institutions, Hon. Comfort Doyoe Ghansah.

The soccer gala, an initiative of the Ada MP was meant to unearth football talents to be sponsored for a one year training attachment in Accra.

The competing teams were Big- Ada All Stars, Ada-Foah United, Asigbekope All Stars. Kasseh All Stars, all from the Ada East District and Sege Stars and Donro F/C from the Ada West District.

The match which started at ten o’clock in the morning witnessed a beautiful display of good football by the competing teams and by five O’clock in the evening, proceedings came to an end. At the end of it all Sege All Stars became the eventual winners by defeating Donro- F/C by 7-6 goals on aggregate through a penalty shoot-out.

Addressing the people at the programme, the Minister said he was pleased and honoured to witness the gala meant to foster friendship among the youth and the community and to promote peace.

According to the minister, apart from providing entertainment, the match also afforded him the opportunity to see the nature of the pitches in the various communities and to improve upon them..

Dr.Mustapha Ahmed said he was highly impressed and delighted at the display of great football skills and the show of good sportsmanship and the display of excellent spectatorship.
He thanked the MP for the Ada Constituency for coming out with such a laudable programme and called on other communities to also come out with similar programmes.

Hon.Doyoe Ghansah on her part thanked the Minister of Youth and Sports for honouring her invitation.