05.11.2003 Sports News

Minister re-launches SESSA games in Accra

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Accra, Nov. 5, GNA - Mr Rashid Bawa, Minister of State in Charge of Education, Youth and Sports, on Wednesday endorsed the assertion that the country's standard in sports has been falling and consequently the national teams have failed to sparkle at international competitions over the past two decades.

"This does not mean that the country lacks the talents, saying that with good planning and the building of solid infrastructure coupled with the provision of incentive, Ghana sports will once again witness the glorious days of the past", he said.

Mr Bawa was re-launching the Security Services Sports Association (SESSA) Games in Accra after a 12-year break. The break was due to the country's peacekeeping missions abroad and problems of funding.

Games to be competed for by all the security services in the country which kick-starts on the 24th November through to the 28th at the El-Wak Stadium are soccer, Volleyball, Hockey, Basketball, handball and tug of war.

The minister said Ghana's recent excellent performance at the All African Games in Abuja, Nigeria, should mark the renaissance of the country's sports.

"Let us begin the road to the revival of sports in Ghana with the 7th edition of the games at the El Wak stadium", Mr Bawa urged. He observed that the nation is full of grief, disappointment and rancour when the national teams fail to perform and vice versa and said in a bid to address the problem, government has embarked on a number measures which include enacting an appropriate bill which would provide the necessary legal framework to accelerate the development of sports as an emerging industry and promote private sector participation as an engine of its growth.

Mr Bawa said subsequently, the ministry intends to sustain the new revival of the SESSA games to serve as an important source to unearth talents and the training of the sporting talents for international competitions.

Government is voting 550 million cedis for the five-day games, which is to be beefed up by sponsorship from corporate bodies. Mr Emmanuel Atenga, Acting Chief Fire Officer said the Games are to foster cordial relationship among the security services and to help unearth talents for the national teams.

The SESSA games has produced high-profile sports personalities including, Azumah Nelson, Former WBC super featherweight Champion, Hannah Afiyie, Mercy Addy, former 400 meter champion, Sam Johnson, Felix Aboagye, Emmanuel Osei Kuffour, former players of the Black Stars and ace goalie Ali Jarah.

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