The team expected to depart Accra on Wednesday for the tournament which begins tomorrow are still in Accra due to a lack of funds to buy air tickets
The nation’s female Goal Ball Team, the blind football group, are stranded in Accra over government’s failure to secure their tickets for their IBSA World Games in South Korea, with a day to go for the start of the event.
The team, scheduled to leave Ghana on Wednesday, are hoping there would be a miracle to save them from missing out on this year’s event that is beginning from Friday, 8th to Monday, 18th May in Seoul, the South Korean capital.
According to the leadership of the team, government had approved the budget of $34,000 for the trip but the Ministry of Youth and Sports cannot guarantee tickets for them, leaving the delegation of twelve stranded at the Accra Hockey Pitch, where they are camping and feeding at the benevolence of the leaders.
Last-minute attempts to get the Ministry to intervene have been met with the usual ‘no-money’ syndrome that is becoming the fate of disability sports any time a disability sports association had a tournament to attend in the name of Ghana.
The Korean government had already taken care of some aspects of the Ghanaian team’s expenses such as visa fees, feeding, accommodation and internal transportation in Seoul but Ghana government’s inability to secure tickets for the team risks rendering all those supports useless.
“We are still hopeful we would make it to (South) Korea to lift the flag of Ghana high despite what we are facing now” Mr. Eric Kissi, Leader of the Delegation said at their residential camping base in Accra.
“I am appealing to Ghanaians to urgently come to our aid to salvage the future of Goal Ball in the country since our failure to participate in this event has serious repercussions on the name of the country and the morale of Persons with Disability,” Mr. Kissi pleaded.
The team urgently needs air tickets to make it to South Korea to participate in the world championships by the close of day Thursday.