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We’ll invest in sports facilities – Mahama

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The flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress, John Dramani Mahama, has reiterated his dedication to improving sports infrastructure in Ghana when he is elected as president in the December general election.

During a conversation with media practitioners in Accra on Sunday, July 7, 2024, the former president stressed the importance of upgrading facilities for track and field events and tackling the decline of football pitches.

He also highlighted the need to support lesser-known sports to promote a more inclusive sports development strategy across the country.

Under Mahama’s administration in 2016, the Cape Coast Stadium, a state-of-the-art facility with a capacity of 16,000, was constructed and inaugurated.

This $35 million project, funded by a grant from China, was a key part of his broader vision to enhance sports infrastructure in Ghana.

In recent years, Ghana has lacked a world-class facility to host major sporting events.

The deteriorating conditions of the Accra Sports Stadium, the Baba Yara Sports Stadium, and the Essipong Stadium in Sekondi have been a significant concern.

When asked about plans to build a world-class football stadium, Mahama responded that given the current economic conditions, Ghana might not be in a position to bid to host any tournaments soon.

However, he emphasized that the need for improved infrastructure in the sports sector remains crucial for any government.

“We don’t have a world class standard Sports Stadium, we’ve been to several countries to watch matches. I have been to Wembley Stadium before, it is a stadium of a different class from what we have here in the country and often countries are energised to build this stadia if you bid to host something, if there’s an opportunity because you know you will get returns from the investment.

“In the current crisis in which we are, I will not stand here and promise that we will build a new stadium, but I have said that under the big push, we intend to spend a certain amount of money over five years on providing a good infrastructure including road, bridges, agro industrial parks and so on and so forth, that could include sports facilities.

“If you go to many countries, sports plays a good path in the 24 hour economy and so you find games played at night, but in our part of the country we can have games at night,” he stated.

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