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28.12.2005 Football News

Political groups to promote peace through soccer in Northern Region

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Tamale, Dec. 28, GNA - Two political youth groups in the Northern Region belonging to the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the major minority National Democratic Congress (NDC) have agreed to come together and promote peace by engaging each other through a "Unity Football Match" on December 31. According to the organisers, the essence of the match is to impress on the public and members of the two leading political parties in the Region that even among the political turbulence in the Region they have decided to broker co-existence and become peacemakers.

The Friedrich Ebert Foundation, (FES) a German NGO and the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) identified the Adoo and Azorka Groups as the troublemakers from the NPP and the NDC in the Northern Region who have now come together to accept that violence impedes development. At a short ceremony in Tamale on Wednesday to hand over jerseys and footballs to the two groups to prepare for the impending football match, Mr. Richster Amarfio, a representative of FES, sponsors of the programme said the Foundation was more particular about seeing the return of peace in the Region.

Mr Amarfio said there would be no good governance in any country in the midst of conflicts and political turmoil and gave the assurance that FES was ready to sponsor any group that would work towards ensuring lasting peace in the Northern Region. Mrs. Augustina Akosua Akumanyi, Deputy Chairperson of the NCCE who presented the jerseys and footballs to leaders of the two groups, expressed joy that "NCCE's education on peace is yielding good results". She said the saddest days of mothers is when they loose their children and called on women to constantly dialogue with their children on the essence of peace so that they do not loose their lives prematurely. She said it was time for Adoo club and Azorka club who have agreed to carry the "peace message and crusade" to play the match peacefully to prove to the rest of the country and the world that Tamale is now ready for lasting peace.

Mr. Gabriel Yaw Missodey, the Regional Sports Development Officer said for the first time, the two groups had met in a joyous mood and expressed the hope that the match would end the occasional political turmoil and confusions in the Region. Mr. Alhassan Adoo and Mr. Soofo Azorka, leaders of the two groups who received the jerseys and footballs for the impending match pledged that they would not incite any of their members to bring about any form of confusion. Both leaders jokingly said, "We will fight on the pitch for the Cup" and "We would show them good soccer but not to fight ourselves again", amidst applause from an enthusiastic crowd.

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