Sunday, October 17, 2010

Ghana amputee soccer team heads to Argentina for World Cup after Ghana president gives them funds for the trip

From GhanaWeb:

President John Evans Atta Mills has brought smiles to the faces of members of the National Amputee Football Team by ordering the release of $76,000 dollars to facilitate the team's participation in the Amputee World Cup Soccer tournament.

The team was stranded after officials of the Sports Ministry failed to raise GH89, 000 to enable them travel to Argentina on Thursday October 14, ahead of their opening Group C match on Saturday, October 16, against Turkey.

The National Sports Council had earlier revealed it had exhausted its budget for 2010 and was therefore not in a position to fund the trip.

President Mills who had earlier directed the Ministry of Youth and Sports to quickly facilitate the departure of the team to the Amputee World Cup announced the release of $76,000 dollars on Friday evening. The amount is far more than the additional amount of $49,000 that was needed.

The total amount now stands at $116,000.

The news of the release was broken to members of the Amputee team and journalists at a news conference on Friday at the Accra Sports Stadium.

The Chairman of the Association, Francis Adjetey Sowah, who thanked President Mills for the timely intervention, also told Citi News that arrangements have been made with organizers of the tournament to shift Ghana’s first game with Turkey to Sunday October 17, by which time the team would have arrived.

Members of the Amputees team who were devastated at the initial sad news that they could not travel were extremely excited at the refreshing news.

The team has gone through a torrid time since September, going cup in hand to various corporate bodies to enable it raise funds. Their woes were further deepened when another promise by a sympathizer to buy their tickets fizzled out.

Ghana’s Amputee Team is the highest ranked in Africa and 4th in the world.