02.01.2004 Sports News

Baah-Wiredu advocates for inter-dependency of sporting disciplines

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Accra, Jan. 2, GNA - Kwadwo Baah-Wiredu, Minister of Education, Youth and Sports has called for inter-dependence of the 26 sporting disciplines in the country in order to produce complete and "fully fit" sports personnel towards Ghana's sports revival.

To this end, he has challenged the various association chairmen, particularly that of the Ghana Football Association to encourage footballers to take to other sports, especially cycling, during off-seasons to relax their muscles and to enhance their endurance. Mr Baah-Wiredu said this when he led a high profile delegation under the auspices of the Ghana Cycling Association to honour Mr Mike Adjavon, father of Ghana Cycling.

Paa Adjavon, 84, a retired military man pioneered cycling as a sport in Ghana beginning from June 3, 1953 on his return from Manchester, UK, on a military training course, where he used part of his per diem to purchase his first bike.

He single handedly toured the country starting from Koforidua to popularize and whip up interest in the sport. The octogenarian cyclist quit the sport in 1979 after picking a hip injury and his son Stanley took over in the early 1990's but died shortly after.

The Cycling Association presented a stool, products from Cowbell, and a trophy, which will be competed for every third day of June to commemorate the birth of the sport.

The minister called for decentralization of all the associations to make them more effective in the regions and the districts to identify and harness talents in order for the nation to assemble crack squads for intentional competitions.

He urged all associations to be pro-active and find ways of supplementing government's effort to achieve higher results. Mr B. T. Baba, President of the Ghana Olympic Committee advocated for cycling, apart from its sporting dimension, to be widely used as a means of transportation to save the country from spending huge foreign currencies to import fuel.

He noted that apart from its economic value it would enhance the health of Ghanaians.

Mr Adjavon called for equal attention for all sporting disciplines. "Why do we keep developing the already developed sports and leave out the less developed ones", the octogenarian asked?

He also urged sports writers to devote more time to the lesser sports to bring them up to an appreciable level.

There were exhibition races by both veterans and young cyclists in honour of Paa Adjavon.

The oldest competitor 53-year-old J. K. Kumah, was presented with a bicycle for his endurance while all other competitors received products from Cowbell.

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