As the clock ticks closer to the Amputee Football World Cup in Mexico from October 24 to November 5, Ghana faces a 12 year ban if nothing is done to ensure the national team makes it to the event.
A ban on all international tournaments and competitions would be imposed on Ghana till 2030, depriving the national team, the Black Challenge of any international exposure.
The ban is imposed on nations that are unable to make it to the world cup after failing to notify the World Amputee Football Federation (WAFF) forty-five (45) days prior to the event.
With some ten days to go for the world cup to begin in Mexico, the members of Ghana’s national team, are on non-residential camping, awaiting news from management on their chances of making the trip.
Management of the team is feverishly working on sponsorship but all doesn’t look well as the days get closer.
According to Rev Richard Nii Amartey Adesah, Chairman of the Ghana Amputee Football Association, “the ban, if it ever happens, would kill the sport and leave the players dejected and hopeless”.
The fear of the players assumed peak dimensions when they announced their intention to embark on a demonstration against government on Monday, October 15 culminating in an appeal for asylum at the American Embassy.
At the time of going to press, management was locked up in a meeting to convince the players to rescind their decision as they pursue dialogue with the Ministry of Youth and Sports to avoid the ban with the potential of tarnishing Ghana’s international image.
The management is also appealing to the corporate world to come to the team’s rescue at this crucial stage.
Ghana is in Group B with Argentina, France and Italy and pundits predict that it can win the cup.
Ghana currently has thirteen (13) amputee football professionals currently playing in the Turkish Amputee Football league.
The opportunity for the transfer of these players, the first ever in the history of amputee football in the world, came as a result of Ghana’s splendid performance at the 2010 world cup in Argentina.
Whether Ghana would make it or not depends on the Sports Ministry’s decision and support from the corporate world.