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Rekindling Track And Field In The Ashanti Region With The Reopening Of Baba Yara Sports Stadium.

Located in the heart of Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of Ghana lies the Baba Yara Sports Stadium. The stadium has been the hub of many sporting activities not only in the region, but the nation. Recently, the stadium closed to make way for much-needed renovation projects. The renovations are complete, and the stadium is open to hosting sports activities again.

Mr. Emmanuel Kojo Appiah is the Ashanti Regional Director of the National Sports Authority (NSA). Appiah has been with the NSA after serving as a district coordinator for eight years.

“We thank the government of Ghana for thinking more about sporting activities and trying to make sure that the athletes and coaches are back on their feet,” Appiah said. “The stadium had been in a deteriorating state for a while and needed much renovation.”

Appiah also attributed the renovation of the stadium to the Minister of Youth and Sports and Professor Twumasi, who is the Director General of Sports.

The Baba Yara Sports Stadium houses a host of sports activities, soccer, and track & field mainly. The old tracks have been replaced with state-of-the-art tartan technologies. Prior to the opening, athletes and stakeholders held a meeting to discuss the way forward in maintenance.

“When the place was opened, meetings were held to discuss sanitation and maintaining the stadium. Structures, timetables and training schedules were discussed to make sure that everyone contributes to maintaining the standards of the tracks and the stadium.”

For many sports facilities, stadiums especially are monetized to finance maintenance and purchasing of equipment. This makes it possible renovate on a regularly basis. Appiah was positive the monetization of the Baba Yara Sports stadium was something being considered.

“COVID-19 made it a little difficult to get sponsors,” Appiah said. “We are trying to reach out to a number of companies to come on board to assist in mobilizing the funds to keep the stadium going. We are ready to get in touch with companies ready for Corporate Social Responsibility.”

Developing track & field has been the mainstay of the Ashanti region, especially for students Inter-Colleges Sports activities and the Super-Zonal Games.

“The Ashanti Regional Athletics Association and the National Athletics Association have plans to host about six or seven events related to track and field,” Appiah said. “We intend to organize series of workshops for athletes and coaches. The coaches are keeping their athletes in shape.”

As last words, Appiah sympathized with the inadequate support track & field receives.

“Unfortunately, in Ghana, it’s been soccer up here and the rest of the sports playing catch-up. We are trying to bring track & field gradually to get on the level of soccer,” Appiah said.

Kora, a former track & field athlete is set to organize an athletics event at the Baba Yara sports stadium. Follow our social media platforms for more updates.

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