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25.01.2001 Sports News

Surprise Nomination For Youth And Sports

By Accra Mail
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One thing that President Kufuor has succeeded in doing so far is the surprise package of his ministerial nominations.

He has been seen by many to be keeping the list to his chest. Not even his close associates have the power to influence him as regards his choice of the people to work with him.

Last Monday in another surprise move he nominated Mallam Abu Yusuf Isa as minister for youth and sports designate. Mallam Isa is the national chairman of the PNC, a party which contributed significantly to President Kufuor's second round victory.

Going by his election promise to form an all-inclusive government Kufuor had a commitment to fulfill to the PNC. Mallam Isa's nomination has shocked many football fans who had hoped to see the nomination of big names in soccer. But Kufuor has proved that he is not swayed by big names in sports.

Nobody knows what factors led to the nomination of Mallam Isa among other PNC contenders for that particular ministry, but probably the desire to introduce fresh blood into the ministry was the uppermost consideration. Careful Kufuor, by this action is offering the opportunity to another citizen of this country to offer what he can and to learn in the process.

Kufuor definitely needs someone who can calm nerves and bring sanity into sports administration, which was characterised by rancour and divisiveness. And if in his wisdom he thinks Mallam Isa can do that job, why not.

Mallam Isa hails from Bawku in the Upper East Region. He schooled in Bawku Secondary School and was in Nigeria for 12 years before returning to home. He currently stays in Kumasi the capital of Ashanti Region. Little was known about him until he emerged as the national chairman of the PNC.

As a committed PNC man it is hoped that he would exhibit the same level of commitment towards the sports sector of our national life. With a youthful countenance there is no denying the fact that Mallam Isa who is a popular figure in Nima must have something up his sleeves to offer for sports.

There is often the temptation to abandon the youth segment of the ministry of youth and sports. The youth constitute an important portion of our population and in fact the bulk of our sporting men and women are drawn from this segment of our population. That he himself is youthful and has a cordial relationship with the youth in places like Nima, Kumasi and the north we think there is light at the end of the tunnel provided he would not have a place for arrogance which characterised the tenure of his predecessor.

All we can say is that he should not be shy to learn and to apologise when he steps on the toes of people he migtht come across in the course of the performance of his functions.

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