In all, a contingent of 11 from Nigeria made up of 5 officials and 6 boxers as well as a 19-man Ghanaian contingent, consisting of 7 officials and 12 boxers participated in the 7-Day Amateur Boxing Joint Training Programme.
Closing the ceremony, the Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports; Hon. Nii Nortey Dua commended the National Sports Council for its action-oriented initiatives which have stimulated Ghana’s National Sporting Associations to wake up from the institutional inertia that has plagued the system for many years.
The Deputy Minister praised the Ghana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) for their foresight to engage their Nigerian counterparts in the joint training exercise, particularly at this crucial moment when team Ghana is preparing for the World Youth Olympic Qualifiers in Baku, Azerbaijan. He admonished that, the Ghana-Nigeria joint exercise should be a wake-up call to all other national associations to gird their loins and achieve results on planned programmes especially through sponsorship from corporate Ghana.
Hon. Nortey Dua decried the fact that, out of about 34 National Sports Associations registered with the National Sports Council, not more than ten (10) national associations have been active. He therefore urged the Sports Council to continue to put the Associations on their toes.
The Youth and Sports Minister urged the technical men of both teams to analyze the outcome of the exercise seriously, especially the level of endurance of each boxer, applications of tactical moves taught, and, self discipline in and off the ring. He again entreated officials of team Ghana and their Nigerian counterparts to adopt the computer scoring system at the least opportunity since that has been the weakest point of team Africa during international competitions.
The Nigeria Boxing Federation President, Mr. Rotimi George-Taylor, in a speech read on his behalf by Prof. Emmanuel Ojeme, Chairman of NBF, commended every bit of the joint-exercise in Ghana, from hospitality to technical knowledge exchange. He therefore promised a reciprocal programme in Nigeria before the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
Mr. Ray Quarcoo, Chairman of the Ghana Amateur Boxing Association appealed to the National Sports Council and the Sports Ministry to double their efforts in the construction of training facilities and the acquisition of training and competition kits as well as equipment. According to Mr. Quarcoo, the lack of facilities and equipment continue to impede the general growth and development of Amateur Boxing in Ghana.
The Chief Executive Officer of the National Sports Council, Mr. Wolanyo K. Agra, assured GABA of his outfit’s continued support.
Team Nigeria has since left for home whilst their Ghanaian counterparts remain in camp ahead of the Baku, Youth Olympic Qualifiers.
Ghana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) hereby appeals for cash and material support from companies and individual philanthropists for the upkeep of team Ghana (The Young Black Bombers).
All such cash and material support should be channeled through the GABA Secretariat via these telephone and e-mail contacts:
KWAME AMPONFI JNR
Tel: +233 244819096