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16.12.2005 Football News

Government fulfils promise to Hearts

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Accra, Dec 16, GNA - The Ministry of Education and Sports on Friday presented a 30-seater Toyota Coaster Bus to Accra Hearts of Oak Sporting Club for winning the 2004 maiden edition of the Confederations Cup competition.

The presentation was in fulfilment of a promise made by the Government to the Club when the trophy was presented to President John Agyekum Kufour early this year.

Miss Elizabeth Ohene, Minister of State in Charge Tertiary Education and Mr Osei Bonsu-Amoah, Deputy Minster of Sport at the Ministry, jointly presented the keys of the bus to Mr Commodore Mensah, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Hearts at a short ceremony in Accra. Miss Ohene said the presentation is government's appreciation to the Club for bringing honour to the nation by being the first team to win the Confederations Cup.

She promised that government would present a bigger package to the team if they were able to bring more honours and laurels to the nation. Mr Mensah also made an appeal to the government through the ministry to come to the aid of Hearts and three other clubs participating in continental competitions next year, adding that the financial implications involved is becoming too huge for the clubs. He said with the closure of the Ohene Djan - Accra and Baba Yara - Kumasi sports stadiums, the clubs are likely to suffer financially, hence the need for government to intervene.

The newly elected Board Chairman of Hearts said the support of government would go a long way in easing the financial burden on the clubs, citing the El-Wak sports stadium as highly unlikely to maximise gains when the club relocates there to be used for Hearts continental encounters.

Mr Mensah also urged the government to construct an alternative stadium for the nation apart from the Ohene Djan Sports Stadium. Hearts, early this year defeated arch rivals Kumasi Asante Kotoko on penalties to win the maiden edition of Confederations Cup competition at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium.