The President of the republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo cut the sod for the construction of sports infrastructure to host and organise the 13th African Games, Accra 2023. The Sod Cutting ceremony was held at Borteyman, the site designated for the construction of the sporting facilities to host the 13th African Games.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in his speech recalled how Ghana was part of the first African Games held in 1965 at Brazzaville, Congo, and was now preparing to host the African Games for the first time in histoy. He congratulated the former Youth and Sports Minister Hon. Isaac Asiamah and his team for winning the bid to host the biggest African Multi-Sports event in 2018.
The president indicated that, due to the devastating nature of Covid-19 pandemic, the African Games project is behind time, this has led to the execution of the hybrid model of improving and finishing existing sports infrastructure such as the University of Ghana Stadium to complement the new facilities that will be built at Borteyman.
According to the President, The Borteyman facilities include a 1,000-seater capacity swimming pool that is a 10-lane competition swimming pool, an 8-lane warm-up swimming pool, and a 1,000-seater multi-purpose Sports Hall for basketball, badminton, boxing, table tennis, and weightlifting.
Others are, a 500-seater temporary dome for handball, volleyball, judo, karate, and taekwondo and a five-tennis court complex, including a 1,000-seater Centre Court. The rests are a 6-lane warm-up athletics extract, 1 FIFA standard football training field and a 6 kilometers single-lane road, and a 3 kilometers double-lane road.
President Akufo-Addo emphasized how facilities are abandoned or misused after such events. He enlightened Ghanaians on the Legacy Project of turning the facilities into a University of Sport for development. He applauded the good work by the Local Organising Committee and the Ministry of Youth and Sports. He urged all Ghanaians to unite and support the 13th African Games as it is a National Project.
The Minister for Youth and Sports Hon. Mustapha Ussif said that hosting the biggest event on the African continent will bring enormous development to the country. He continued to say that the 2023 African Games sides with the President’s vision of developing Sports infrastructure in the country.
According to the Minister, The African Games is a massive and multi-sport event, and it requires modern and internationally approved facilities for a successful African Games.
He encouraged Ghanaians to embrace the 13th African Games with all their support to make history in 2023.
The Executive Chairman of the Local Organising Committee, Dr. Kwaku Ofosu-Asare thanked the President and the Minister for their selfless commitment to the project. He also thanked all stakeholders present for their contribution. He finally encouraged Ghanaians to see the African Games as theirs and support it wholeheartedly.