Blame NDC Gov’t For IOC Ban On Ghana – O B Amoah


    Former Deputy Minister of Sports and NPP Member of Parliament for Nsawam/Aburi Constituency, Hon. O.B. Amoah, has described as unfortunate the incident leading to the placing of a ban on the Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC) by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and blames government’s role in the whole caboodle.
    The IOC on Thursday, January 13th, 2011, suspended the Ghanaian National Committee after government failed to take agreed steps to ensure no political interference in the body. Ghana has thus become the second country to be banned following Kuwait last year, after efforts to ensure the GOC was protected from domestic political involvement failed.
    Kuwait was suspended on January 1, 2010 for political interference. In the case of Kuwait, the IOC said the country failed to meet a Dec. 31 deadline for amending a law that allows the Gulf state to interfere in elections of sports organizations.
    An intense unresolved power struggle hit the GOC which also extended to the Youth and Sports Ministry after some NDC leading members tried to usurp the authority of the B.T. Baba-led administration.
    The impasse between the B.T. Baba-led GOC and the ministry resulted in a few organizational hitches in Ghana’s participation at the Dehli Commonwealth Games in India recently. One major problem for instance was the mix-up in accreditation for officials and athletes.
    In the latter part of last year, then Sports Minister, Ms Akua Sena Dansua’s attempted to assert Ghana’s sovereignty by calling IOC’s “bluff” at the launch of the National Sports Council’s re-branding.
    Speaking in an interview on Citi Eye Witness News, the former Deputy Sports Minister, who expressed dismay at the latest turn of events, said he foresaw the imposition of the ban and laments that government sat idly by for the situation to get out of hand, even though their interference caused the situation to spiral out of control in the first place.
    “It is quiet unfortunate, we saw this coming and I just don’t understand why we waited all this time for it to get to this stage. We were given up to the end of year 2010 so I’m surprised we could not do anything about it,” he said.
    According to him, the Sports Bill which was supposed to give autonomy to sports administration has been unnecessarily delayed.
    “I remember when the then Minister of Sports, Akua Sena Danso was bringing the bill to Parliament, she said they had to wait for inputs from the Ministry of Local Government. But I thought the bill could be brought to Parliament for us to start discussing it, while the Local Government can just make any amendment…concerning the bill; but it is unfortunate we had to wait for this while,” he added.
    Hon. O.B Amoah expressed his frustration at the possibility of Ghana not being able to participate in any athletic championship sanctioned by the IOC and the Olympic Games if the situation is not resolved immediately.