President John Agyekum Kuffour last Sunday officially commissioned the refurbished 40,528-capacity Baba Yara Sports Stadium with a call on managers of the stadium to adopt a holistic maintenance approach to keep it in excellent shape.
The President believed that only a positive maintenance culture would put the stadium in good shape for posterity and said the current edifice was a major improvement on the previous state and would play a vital role in the development of the game in the country.
Ensuring proper maintenance, he noted, could also enable the Sports Council to raise adequate revenue from the facility for its numerous activities as well as help transform sporting activities in every corner of the country.
President Kuffour also advised the spectators who would visit the stadium to take good care of the facilities to ensure that they were sustained for many years to come.
He urged management at the stadium to adopt effective mechanisms and policies to generate revenue from the stadium.
The newly refurbished stadium have facilities, like drainage field systems, four floodlights with each having 75 bulbs, a large video score board, communication systems, shops and 128 exit gates, restaurants, Police Post, Medical and Doping centres.
President Kuffour said the Government had plans of providing similar facilities in all the 10 regions of the country in a bid to afford every citizen the opportunity to participate in sports.
He said the completion of the stadium was an indication of Ghana 's preparedness to host the rest of the continent in the three-week soccer fiesta.
The President commended Consar Company Ltd, who were contracted by government to rehabilitate the Baba Yara Stadium, for a job well done, urging them to closely monitor any defects in order to repair them for the tournament.
He was, however, much particular about the proper maintenance of the pitch and noteed that the beauty of the entire stadium depended on the quality of the pitch which, he said, should be irrigated and trimmed consistently.
He announced that work would soon commence on a 20,000-seater capacity sport stadium in Cape Coast.
This, President Kufuor said, was part of his government's total support to the development of the nation's sports. He, therefore, called on all Ghanaians to support the nation in hosting a memorable competition.
In the international friendly to mark the commissioning of stadium, the national under-17 side, the Black Starlets, suffered a 2-0 thrashing in the hands of their Cote d'Ivoire counterparts.
By Gabriel Amoah