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Sports News of Thursday, 25 June 2020


NPP primaries do not justify the reopening of contact sports - GBF

President of the Ghana Badminton Federation, Evans Yeboah President of the Ghana Badminton Federation, Evans Yeboah

While many have argued that the New Patriotic Party’s primaries held over the weekend proves that contact sports can be returned, President of the Ghana Badminton Federation (GBF), Evans Yeboah, has positioned that it will not be the best decision to resume contact sports in Ghana.

In a virtual discussion on the effects of COVID-19 on least financed sports in Ghana, he noted that the NPP primaries did not set the right precedent for contact sports as the Government’s social guidelines were defied.

He added that even so that doesn’t justify the need to bring back contact sports because unlike the primaries, the contact sports is a series of events.

“Comparing the NPP primaries to contact sports, there is a difference. First and foremost, that event was a one-off activity. Considering what happened, to a large extent they were basically not following the Government’s social distancing guidelines. Largely, I will consider it as a one-off event. Contact sports is a series of events. For example, some of the sports have leagues to play and that in itself is a whole systematic challenge and difficulty that goes down to trying to manage the situation. In my opinion, it wasn’t right but it does not create the avenue or the panacea to open contact sports immediately”, he told Ohene Brenya Bampoe.

He furthered that even if contact sport was returned, the cost of managing the sport will be a huge cost for club owners.

“I am privy to engagements with the ministry and the proposals on the table shows that there is cost associated with opening contact sports. Don’t forget clubs are privately owned. Largely, when it comes to the final funding, the clubs might say they cannot fund it.

Even when the leagues were on, we could not survive and now that there is nothing going on, you want us to play indoors. The cost element as to who you are testing, where you are fumigating; you virtually have to be fumigating after every competition. If those agreements can be firmed up quickly between those in contact sports, then there can be a relief. Perhaps it can be a gradual process because, within the context, there are some contact sports which can easily be managed and others will take some time”, he added.

The country’s quest to organise a successful general election by observing the protocols of social distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic was put to test last Saturday when the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) organised its primaries to elect parliamentary candidates for the December polls.

Successful as the elections went throughout the country, caution was completely thrown to the wind as supporters of the various contestants totally ignored the call for social distancing during the period.