Board member of the Ghana Athletics Association(GAA), Charles Osei Asibey has pleaded for immense support from the government and corporate organizations to help improve athletes in subsequent international competitions.
Ghana’s athletics governing body, earlier made known their struggles in finding funds to support athletes ahead of the ongoing Tokyo 2020 Olympic games.
President of the GAA, Bawa Fuseini in an interview on Monday morning, revealed that they needed $30,000 to shape their athletes for the games but got hold of only $10,000-$15000 from the Ghana government and $5000 from the Ghana Olympic Committee.
Speaking in an interview with Dennis Ivan Opoku on Y102.5 FM, Osei Asibey asserted that Ghana must improve her interest in athletics and that begins with investing in athletes.
“We feel there is more to be done in athletics in Ghana. The athletes representing us in Tokyo are personally motivated and determined but we haven’t placed high hopes on their output because we want them to have the exposure.
“Let’s not forget that the average age of these athletes is 22 years and they are all students. After school, they might divert from athletics and begin working if there’s no support.”
The experienced sports administrator continued: “Our plan is to prepare them for the All Africa Games and the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. So we ask how do we prepare atheletes without investing in them?
“It’s time Ghana shows interest in these talented lads and support the team financially. We ask the government to invest and corporate Ghana as well.
“This is a long term plan and to implement this, we need resources.”
Joseph Paul Amoah is currently in the semi finals of the 200metres race and the 4×100metres relay team will also compete for Ghana on Wednesday.
Sean Safo-Antwi, Benjamin Azamati, Martin Owusu Antwi and Joseph Paul Amoah claimed gold at the 2019 All Africa Games in Rabat, Morocco.
They recorded a time of 38.30 seconds which is just 0.18s shy of the Ghana national record of 38.12s, set at the Athens World Championships on 9 August 1997 by Abu Duah, Eric Nkansah, Aziz Zakari, and Emmanuel Tuffour.
Martin Owusu Antwi, who missed out on the Olympics, will be replaced by Joseph Manu when the team compete in Tokyo.
Owusu did not compete when Ghana placed second in heat 1 of the 2021 World Relays Championship to qualify for Tokyo.