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General News | Jan 13, 2005

Honouring heroes is without ethnic inclination - C'ttee

GNA
Accra, Jan. 13, GNA - The Ministerial Committee set up to Recognise Sports Personalities in the country on Thursday said the naming of sports facilities after heroes and heroines is the prerogative of government and is devoid of any ethnic inclinations.
A statement signed by the Committee's Chairman, Dr. Emmanuel Owusu-Ansah, referred to comments in a section of the media, specifically by the Ga-Dangbe Council for naming the Accra Sports Stadium after the late Ohene Djan, a seasoned Sports Administrator. It mentioned that a retired Staff Sergeant Randy Tettey, who described himself as a spokesman for the Ga-Dangbe Council, also complained about what he termed the neglect of the Gas in the naming of heroes after state facilities.
The statement debunked the notion that the Accra Stadium should have been named after Mr Richard Akwei, who served as a Chairman of the Ghana Football Association before independence saying, "any illustrious son or daughter of Ghana can aspire to have a state facility in any corner of the country named after him or her".
The statement said the induction of sports personalities into the National Sports Hall of fame and the naming of sports facilities after some of them were the prerogative of the government who acts in consultation with the good people of Ghana.
It said arguably Ohene Djan remains the most dynamic and resourceful Ghanaian sports administration of all time.
He was the first Director of Sports in the newly Independent State of Ghana and had initiated a lot of innovations in football administration including the engagement of foreign coaches for the national soccer team.
It said Ohene Djan rose to become an Executive member of the Confederation of African Football and until now remained the only African, south of the Saharan to have occupied position of Vice President of FIFA.
He introduced the national football league system, which was now in its 45th year.
It was under his administration that Ghana won twice in 1963 and 1965, the African Cup of nations.
The statement concluded saying, "As the doyen of the Sports Administrator of this country, Ohene Djan deserves the flagship of the facility, which is the Accra Stadium".
It said the Sports Ministry had directed the National Sports Council to institute Regional and District awards where local sports heroes could be glorified and honoured and possibly local facilities might be named after them. .


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