GBFA Appeals For Support From Corporate Ghana And Individuals Ahead Of Arnold Classic 2019

GBFA Appeals For Support From Corporate Ghana And Individuals Ahead Of Arnold Classic 2019

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The Ghana Bodybuilding and Fitness Association of Ghana has called on corporate Ghana and individuals to come to the aid of the athletes to help secure travel tickets and other logistics ahead of their upcoming trip to South Africa for the Arnold Classic.

This appeal was made this morning by the President, executives and some of the athletes as they met the press at the Accra sports stadium.

According to the President of the GBFA, Abdul Hayye Yartey, they bagged their hopes on the National Sports Authority and were just like last year, they were assured of some form of support as the athletes continue preparations for the Competition, but at the 11th hour, they were informed that nothing can be done about it.

“This press conference has become necessary at this 11th hour because we have been told by the National Sports Authority and the Ministry of Youth and Sports that they cannot help us in any way to travel to South Africa for the Arnold Classic. This has been the norm for some time now and we think that the sport bodybuilding has been neglected”, Abdul Hayye Yartey mentioned.

According to him, this new development has thrown the entire trip to South Africa in a limbo as both athletes and executives will now have to fund their own trip.

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“The tournament is starting on the on the 17th of May and ending on the 19th of the same month. Today is 2nd May and how to get there has become a huge task for these athletes. Some of them have even decided not to compete again due to the fact that there’s no support coming from the Sports Authority and probably they might have to fund their own trips.

“This we feel is unfair because these boys have gone through a lot in terms of training and preparing for the competition which they are going in the NAME OF GHANA.”

“Last year the same thing happened and no support whatsoever was given us as an association yet we managed to dip our hands into our pockets to fund our own trips and that of the athletes to South Africa an action that brought glory to the nation as Ghana won the overall competition.”

“As I speak to you now, Ghana is the defending champion of the Arnold Classic and we believe that we have what it takes to defend it well. Last year we presented six (6) athletes to the Arnold Classic and all six won medals with Ghana’s Cyril Kofi Adjah claiming the overall award. He also won Ghana’s first PRO Card.”

“Our hands are tied financially but we need to get the athletes there, so we are appealing to corporate Ghana and individuals to come to our aid in any way they can. No amount will be too big or too small. The ticket price for one athlete to get to South Africa is almost ghc3000.

Accommodation, feeding etc is also another area that has to be looked at.”
“The harm has already been done and there is nothing we can do than to appeal to the good people of Ghana to come to our aid and that of the athletes to go make Ghana proud once again.”

Vice President of the Ghana BodyBuilding and Fitness Association, Mr. Charles Owusu-Ansah added that remunerated all the processes the NSA and the Ministry took them through yet it all came to knot.

“We presented our budget to them early January this year and they assured us of some form of support. We met the Director General of the NSA on countless number of occasions and did all that they asked us to do.”

“We were told to produce a photo album on all the athletes and executives in the Association, especially those travelling to the competition, which we did. After that, they asked us to trim the number of athletes down from 16 to 10 and that of the executives from 4 to 2. After all these back and forth, we were told last week Thursday by the Director General of the National Sports Authority that ‘HE IS SORRY AND THAT THERE IS NOTHING THEY CAN DO FOR US”.

“This has come as a big blow to us the executives of the Association since these athletes are looking up to us to work behind the scenes to take them to the competition. So like the president said, we have about two weeks to go and we believe that still something can be done about it. All we are saying is that we the GBFA want support from corporate Ghana and individuals to help us make the trip.”

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Two of the athletes Godwin Frimpong and Kofi Salia a.k.a. ‘Asaase’ who were given the opportunity to speak to the media aside appealing for support, were gutted by the recent development puts athletes off and takes away the pride that comes with representing one’s country at major competition.

“We have gotten to a point that we feel neglected by the nation. Year in year out, we prepare for competitions with our own money and even travel with our own money as well. We go to competitions all over the world and see countries coming with their sports ministers and other government officials, yet our case is different.”

“Let me state categorically that we are not begging for support to travel and go represent the nation. It is our right as athletes and if the powers that be think they cannot help us or even think the Sport is not one that they can support, they should come out and say it so that we the athletes will know where to go from there. Year in year out they make it look as if we are coming to beg them, when it is their duty to help us. When we go and get these medals and laurels, they come and take the glory by coming to take pictures with us and put it in their various albums as if they contributed to our success story”, Godwin Frimpong added.

Team Ghana is expected to leave Ghana three clear days before the start of the Arnold Classic which commences on the 17th to the 19th of May 2019.

Source:GBFA

 

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