General News of Thursday, 12 September 2019
The Minister of Inner-City and Zongo Development, Dr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid says he feels demotivated to undertake development projects in Madina in Accra after some youth kicked against the construction of an artificial football pitch in the area.
According to the youth, the pitch does not measure up to the FIFA dimensions for football games, hence it would be unfit to host second division games involving their favourite Madina United team.
They insist that the pitch size must be increased because there was land available on the site of the project.
"It is painful that we are being dragged into NDC and NPP politics because we complained about the size of the pitch, why would we fight against a nice project because of politics?," a youth who gave his name as Alhaji Tanko told Graphic Online.
However, the Minister after a tour of the facility on Thursday told pressmen that the facility located at the Libya Quarters area of Madina, which measures 90 metres (length/touchline) x 62.5 metres (width/goal line) falls within the FIFA certified range.
"First of all, that is palpably false, that is not true. As you know by now, this is a FIFA certified pitch. FIFA has a minimum and maximum range for every pitch certified for competitive football matches and this pitch falls squarely within the FIFA range," Dr Abdul-Hamid said.
He stated that the world football governing body, FIFA has two specified dimensions for its standard of football pitches which measure a minimum of 90 metres (length/touchline) x 45 metres (width/goal line) and a maximum of 120 metres x 90 metres).
"So, this pitch is a FIFA certified pitch, it qualifies for every kind of match that we want to play on it... All of the technical experts from the Ghana Football Association have certified that the pitch is a FIFA standard pitch and fit for purpose," he added.
"And we are saying this on authority because we understand that those small number of young people are determined that once it is an NPP government project that is going to bring beauty to the place they will not agree. They will continue to disrupt it and put misinformation on social media".
He also accused the youth of being motivated by partisan interests.
Facilities at the Madina pitch which is expected to be completed in October include; a multi-purpose outdoor court, a children's playground, a five-a-side artificial pitch and changing rooms.