Vice President calls for partnership in sports development

John Mahama – Vice President

Vice President John Dramani Mahama on Saturday called for effective partnership between government and the corporate sector to make sporting activities professional and a major job market.He said: “Sports is becoming a big business in the world and most of the rich professionals we find all over are sports personalities, and we therefore need to develop it to create more jobs for our teeming youth in the country.”

Mr Mahama who was opening the six-day second annual ECOWAS Games in Accra noted that the Africa continent was increasing in population and there was therefore the need for massive investment in sports to become a major arena for job creation and talent building.

Ghana, Nigeria, Togo, Benin, Mali, Liberia, Senegal, Burkina Faso and Cote D’Ivoire are the main participants in the Games which will feature handball, volleyball, boxing, athletics and traditional wrestling.

Mr Mahama said that although government had prioritized sports in its developmental agenda, scarcity and limited resources were impeding such a progress, and noted that a partnership with the private sector could set as an elaborate springboard for growth and development.

Vice President Mahama said apart from serving as a job market, sports has the potential of providing fitness for all and advised Ghanaians to at least engage themselves in one game or the other to remain strong and healthy.

He commended all the local organizations that sponsored and supported the programme and called on the sportsmen and women to justify the investment put in the event to ensure it becomes a success by exhibiting high level of sportsmanship in this year’s Games and succeeding ones.

Mr Clement Kofi Humado, Minister of Youth and Sports advised all participating countries to use the Games to foster unity within the sub-region since he noted that would go a long way in serving as the panacea to the daily political crises in the region.

He appealed to the participants to also visit some of the historic and tourists sites in the country to have a comprehensive appreciation of the country and make friends to ensure peaceful co-existence.

Dr Adrianne Diop, ECOWAS Commissioner in-charge of Human Development and Gender called for concerted efforts in stemming political violence through the sub-region and to channel all resources towards nation building.

She said sports was becoming the universal activity that could foster unity and effective African integration and called for pragmatic measures by all to help improve on the quality of the games in the subsequent years.

Source: GNA

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