Sports News of Wednesday, 1 February 2017
Source: Erasmus Kwaw
The Ghana Olympic Committee and Cocoa from Ghana have signed a letter of intent to renew their partnership at a short ceremony in Accra on Thursday, 25th January, 2017. This was the culmination of a series of negotiation meetings that started in New York in October 2016.
The two bodies have committed to a new and improved, multi-year contract from 1st May, 2017 through the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, which will bring immense benefits to the Olympic movement in Ghana including technical, psychological, and kitting, among others. Cocoa from Ghana would become the Headline sponsor of the Ghana Olympic Committee through the Tokyo Olympic Games.
The President of GOC, Prof. Francis Dodoo signed on behalf of GOC while the boss of Cocoa from Ghana, Mr. Henri Wientjes signed on the dotted line on behalf of Cocoa from Ghana.
Ghana Olympic Committee President, Prof. Francis Dodoo said:
“Today the signatures commemorate a letter of intent. What happens now is that we will work with Cocoa from Ghana to look at the modalities of how we determine which sports they will support and at which level for Tokyo 2020.
“They have committed to really work with the Ghana Olympic Committee. I think we have shared goals in this venture. I think it is a great day for sports in Ghana.
“This goes on until at least through Tokyo 2020 and after that we will sit down again to see whether continuing beyond Tokyo is deemed viable by both parties.
Cocoa from Ghana’s Head, Mr. Henri Wientjes said he was impressed with the level of trust developed between his outfit and that of the GOC over the one year period, adding that he was excited about the new deal.
“When the first proposal came, a few big cocoa traders were also excited about it. We had to find an opportunity and the opportunity was the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. But we only had 4 months left. So with complete trust between the two parties (Cocoa from Ghana and the Ghana Olympic Committee), we negotiated figures, amounts. We negotiated what we wanted to do. Basically, we tried out each other. What we did realise is that, if you want to develop a brand, don’t think of one year, don’t even think of four years, think long term.”
“Coming from Holland, having been a sportsman myself, there are always discussions with federations and the Olympic Committee. Surely there will be differences in opinion.
“I’m glad to say that of the three members of the GOC who we have dealt with, and specifically Prof. Dodoo, the Dutch Olympic Committee and the Japanese Olympic Committee have appreciated how important it is that we have had the trust of each other. Once money is involved, trust is key.”
“I want to thank the members of the GOC. We have had our honeymoon for one year. Let’s think about Cocoa from Ghana.”
Background to the partnership agreement:
The Ghana Olympic Committee and Cocoa from Ghana signed a one-year partnership agreement ahead of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games last year.
The agreement brought together the umbrella body of the Olympic Movement in Ghana and one of the major players in the global cocoa industry.
Together, the two organisations aim to project the proud values of the country by investing in its youth using sports and cocoa production as tools for development.
As an Olympic body, the GOC seeks to develop and protect the Olympic Movement in Ghana, and to promote the ideals of the Commonwealth Games in accordance with the Olympic Charter and the Constitution of the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF).
Cocoa from Ghana is a Dutch-based organisation desirous of projecting the image of Ghana by marketing the country’s cocoa to the outside world.
GOC’s role in Sports Development in Ghana
The GOC’s primary role is as the sole authorized party to lead Team Ghana to the Commonwealth and Olympic Games.
The current GOC administration has played a leading role in sports development in Ghana.
Over two hundred people made up of athletes, coaches, journalists and administrators have directly benefited from training programmes embarked upon by the GOC through the Olympic Solidarity since 2012.
The training programmes included Technical Courses for Coaches, Sports Administration Courses, Coaching Development Scholarships, Athlete Development Scholarships, Preparation Grants for Teams attending major competitions like the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games and African Youth Games.