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Sports News of Friday, 6 April 2018


Commonwealth Games: Number of deported Ghanaians unknown - Australian High Commissioner

The Australian High Commissioner to Ghana, Andrew Barnes says reports that 50 Ghanaian ‘journalists’ have been deported from the ongoing Commonwealth Games are inaccurate and a misrepresentation of the facts.

Speaking to on Friday, April 6, 2018, Mr Barnes did confirm the deportation of some Ghanaians who failed to convince the Australian Border Force (ABF) about the purpose of their visit but added that the actual number of Ghanaians who were deported are unknown and may never be known.

“There has been some misreporting on this matter. The number that has been quoted as 50 journalists is incorrect. We haven’t got the specific numbers but what we do know is that the Australian Boarder Force rejected the visas of several dozens of people who were trying to get to Australia for supposedly to watch the Commonwealth Games and report on it. But these were several dozens of people not just from Ghana but from a range of countries. So we don’t want how many from Ghana and we won’t be able to find that out because this is something our authorities manage and keep to themselves. What this shows is that the Australian border enforcement is quite strict and we don’t let people come to our country illegitimately.”

Earlier this week, it was reported that at least 50 Ghanaian journalists have been deported from the Commonwealth Games which started on Wednesday April 4, in Gold Coast, Australia.

This follows claim that the Australian authorities were not convinced by their reasons for to the country although those affected claim to be journalists.

The first batch of the deported Ghanaians arrived in the country on Wednesday night and the remaining are due in Accra in the coming days.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Sports Minister Pius Hadzide, who has launched a probe into the matter has disclosed that the deportees received an endorsement from the Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC) before embarking on the trip to Australia.

“I have spoken to the GOC, that is the Chef de Mission, on this matter, and their position is that they did not facilitate any such thing," Mr Hadzide said in an interview with Citi FM.

“However my checks from the Games organizers in Australia indicate that the when they receive these nominations, they seek clarification and validation from the GOC before they are allowed to travel.

“So as to whether someone was complicit or someone just didn’t do a good job we are still investigating,” he said.