By Stephen Asante,
Kumasi, April 18, GNA - The Ministry of Youth and Sports (MOYS), has directed the National Sports Authority (NSA) to stop the organization of non-sporting activities on the Baba Yara Sports Stadium pitch.
The measure is to stem further deterioration of the pitch, which had in recent times, been used in organizing entertainment and church-related activities.
Mr. Isaac Kwame Asiamah, who was inspecting facilities at the Stadium in Kumasi on Tuesday, decried the extent at which the 40,000 capacity facility had been damaged.
Accompanied by officials of the NSA, the Minister inspected the VIP, VVIP and popular stands, Presidential lounge, washrooms, dressing rooms, tartan tracks, hockey and soccer pitches.
Constructed in the 1960s, the Stadium, Ghana’s biggest sporting facility, had not seem any major rehabilitation works in the last decade, after the edifice was upgraded as one of the venues to host the African Cup of Nations (AFCoN) in 2008.
It is the only facility in the country capable of hosting international athletics competitions, following removal of the tartan tracks at the Accra Sports Stadium.
The lack of proper maintenance culture and financial constraints had seen fast deterioration of the Stadium and as of now, close to about 8, 000 seats had been damaged.
Mr. Asiamah said his visit formed part of measures by the Ministry to assessing all state-owned sporting facilities in the country in order to be abreast of their state of condition.
This, he said, would inform the government of how they could be put in good shape to host international events.
The Minister, who had already toured the Accra Stadium, announced of plans for rehabilitation works to commence at the Stadium in June, this year, and disclosed that this would cost about $12 million.
He reiterated the resolve by his Ministry to deepen the community parks concept, saying to this end, therefore, three new parks would be constructed in the Ashanti, Northern and Eastern Regions.
Mr. Asiamah later interacted with staff of the NSA, assuring them that the government had stepped up efforts to improve their conditions of service for their wellbeing.