The highlight of Fight Night 17 of the Ghana Professional Boxing League was the introduction of Adaptive Boxing (Para Boxing) which got many fans on their feet as they enjoyed the night with excitement at the Bukom Boxing Arena in Accra.
Disabled athletes, Emmanuel Abban and Samadu Sofo gave boxing fans something new to cheer about, and special appreciation must go to the trainers of the boxers, Mr. Emmanuel Akpabli and Coach Lartekwei Larty who have found time and energy to discover the talents hidden in some great Ghanaians.
Very soon they may have the opportunity to fight in bigger rings abroad and that would be the reward of the executives of the Ghana Adaptive Boxing Council (GABC) led by Mr. Collins Zoiku, Mr Abubakar Samba, Dr Kwamena Gyan Aquey, Obu-Nene-Teye Mensah Mark and Mr. Patrick Johnson.
The GABC licenses, sanctions and governs Adaptive boxing events in Ghana
Ghana Adaptive Boxing Council is a newly formed governing body for the sport of Para‐Boxing in Ghana. The Federation is committed to developing Para‐Boxing as a national sport, from the recreational to elite level, supporting establishment of regulation and best practices.
The body serves as a democratic hub for national Para‐Boxing gyms, clubs and supports the growth of regulation and sport safety in the country by providing rules, regulations and governance, structured progression pathways, educational systems and licensing, which are developed democratically through the Federation’s elected board, expert committees and member platforms.
This process is a pathway towards promoting Adaptive Boxing into becoming a recognized Paralympic sport whose ultimate objective is the same as highest formal recognition possible for any sport. Recognition is even more critical for the safeguarding of Para‐Boxing’s participants worldwide. The challenges for Para‐Boxing are great, but so are the opportunities, and the sport should have no lesser ambition.
The ultimate goal for any disabled sportsperson is to represent their country in in international competitions of the Paralympics is not an exception. However, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) says wheelchair boxing can only be considered for Paralympic participation if it meets the right criteria.
Para‐Boxing is the world’s fastest growing Parasport with an estimated 2.3 million followers across the globe.
By Sammy Heywood Okine