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16.08.2004 Sports News

Female boxers accuse GBA of discrimination

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Accra, Aug 16, GNA - Female boxers in the country have accused the Ghana Boxing Association (GBA) of discriminating against them in the scheme of things.

Speaking to the GNA Sports on behalf of her colleagues, Ayokor Chaves a bantamweight said despite their good form, the GBA has denied them licences to enable them to earn money from their chosen profession. She said the inability of the GBA to license them has made them lose thousands of dollars that would have accrued to them as purses in the pugilistic business as they often receive offers to fight abroad. "We receive invitations to fight outside, just as our male counterparts but we lose the opportunity because we don't have professional licences.

"It is unfortunate that many years after the Beijing Conference, women are still being discriminated against in sports and it high time such selective practises stopped," she said.

Ayokor said the refusal of the GBA to license them has relegated their tasks to exhibition bouts and even though they thrill the fans with their good shows, they earn peanuts as compared to their male counterparts.

She said boxing was the only business they have chosen to do and called on the ministry of Education, Youth and Sports to prevail upon the GBA to license them.

Reacting to the accusation of the ladies, Mr Moses Foh-Amoaning, acting chairman of the GBA said they were only going according to a national policy formulated when Mr Edward Osei Kwaku was the sector minister.

He said since the women fight protected by using headgears, they must be classified, as amateurs and must be supervised by the Ghana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) and not the GBA.

Mr Foh-Amoaning said boxing was a very dangerous sport which required adequate medical facilities and a sufficient insurance cover which the insurers are not yet ready to provide for ladies and the GBA would be blamed if it allowed the ladies to be exposed to such risks.

On the possibility of female boxing becoming an Olympic sport in the future, the chairman said it was imperative for the nation to get ready and provide all the security needs of the sport in order to avert a tragedy as women were very vulnerable, particularly in the abdomen where their wombs are.

He said as soon as all the structures were ready, he would advocate for their participation in professional boxing, adding that for now, the terrain does not favour women professional boxing.