The Sports Ministry has the mandate of formulating policies and programs to promote and develop sports activities from the grassroots to the apex status.
It is also to provide sports infrastructure to unearth talents from the grassroots to fill the various national teams, for the purpose of winning laurels for the country.
It is also to create numerous opportunities for the youth of our country to develop their capacities from all sectors of our economy. From governance, employment, security, education, leadership, sports, skills training etc.
When H.E. the President nominated Hon Isaac Kwame Asiamah to the Youth and sports Ministry and he was subsequently approved by Parliament, the President asked him to go and fill the lacuna and work hard to resolve the challenges of the sector.
It can be said that the Minister didn’t disappoint his boss and the sporting publics and the youth of our country.
Before he assumed office, there were eight Ministers who occupied the office between 2009 to 2016 under the previous administration of NDC. The Presidents were the late Prof Atta Mils and John Dramani Mahama.
These Ministers were
Mohammed Mutaka Mubarak
Elivis Afryie Ankrah
Nii Lante Vanderpuye
As stated, they manned the sector for 8 solid years. We are yet to see their legacies.
When the current Minister took office, he was appalled about the rot at the 4 stadia left by the previous NPP Government led by President John Agyekum Kufour. He decided to change their statuses by renovating them. He began with the Accra sports stadium and the Kumasi sports stadium and the two newly built, Tamale and Essipong that hosted the 2008 AFCON tournament are also benefiting.
He took the initiative to bring the nation’s Wembley back to life. Accra sports stadium was given a new lease of life. Comprehensive renovation from the washrooms, changing rooms, VIP side, new seats for the spectators, the pitch, provision of floodlights, scoreboard etc. The stadium hosted the women’s AFCON in2018.The other venue was the Cape Coast sports stadium. This facility too was started during the reign of President Kufuor.
Currently, Kumasi and Essipong are also under massive renovations.
Tamale was partially done to host 2019 independence celebrations. The phase 2 will begin soon.
The other task was the construction of ten multi purpose stadia across the then ten regions of our country. These sporting centres are not only sited in the regional capitals but also in the district centres.
The essence is to decentralise sports.
The ten multi purpose centres includes
Kanishie Azumah Nelson Sports Complex, Greater Accra
Axim, Western Reg
Dunkwa on Offin, Central Reg
Ho, Volta Region
Dorman Ahenkro, Bono Reg
Wa, Upper West
Navirongo, Upper East
Yendi, Northern Reg
Nyinahin, Ashanti Reg and
Koforidua in the Eastern Region.
These centres have other sporting facilities in them, such as basketball, tennis courts, handball, netball, tartan tracks etc. Also restaurants, hostel facilities and ICT centres to train the youth within the catchment areas.
The pitches are FIFA standards. What it means is that both local and international matches can be played on them.
As part of his immeasurable contribution to the development of sports in the country Hon Asiamah has also championed the payment of allowances to our sportsmen and women through the Youth Employment Agency as well as securing permanent accommodation for national team coaches.
During his tenure as minister he has also ensured that Premier League clubs received GHS50,000 to help in their Premier League campaign.
It is also intended to decentralise international matches involving our national teams from the Black Stars to the Black Maidens.
The newly created six regions will also benefit from the multi purpose stadia project in the next NPP administration, Insha Allah.
The Hon Minister’s next move is to tackle the reconstruction of our traditional stadia such as Nkawkaw, Kpando, Gyandu, Konongo, Tema, Coronation ,Sunyani, Malik Jabir parks.
Currently, the Nkawkaw park is under reconstruction. The aforementioned parks will follow suit.
The New Edubiase stadium is also receiving massive reconstruction. The initial design done by the NDC government had some defects and it was redesigned to meet FIFA standards.
Some individuals and corporate bodies bodies are complementing the efforts of the Ministry by constructing what is called astro turfs in the various locations of the country.
The Ministry of Inner City and Zongo Development is also constructing some stadia in our Zongo communities.
It is important to appreciate the rationale behind the provision of the numerous sporting facilities across the country because about 75% of our youth are involved in different sporting activities.
The Hon Minister has also undertaken the first phase of the renovation of the Ministry’s block. Before his assumption to office, the Ministry’s block was an eye sore. It was receiving condemnations from the general public and the sporting family. International visitors were livid with the conditions of the block.
The phase 2 will begin soon.
On the Youth front, the Hon Minister has ensured the completion of the reviewed national Youth policy to address the challenges confronting our young men and women in areas of governance, unemployment, security, inadequate financial support and other challenges.
The Ministry has completed working on the two Legislative Instruments for the National Sports Authority and the National Youth Authority Acts to operationalize the two laws.
The Hon Minister has ensured that the three agencies under his remit work in unity. Excellent collaboration and teamwork.
These agencies are the National Sports Authority
National Youth Authority
Winneba Sports College
He lobbies very well for the increment of their budget allocations. He makes sure that all the federations are assisted to be participating in all competitions including the international ones.
He inherited huge medical bills of the athletes and he has strategically settled about 75% of the bills.