Bertha Mawunyo Gakpetor, Captain of Ghana Women Epee and Assistant General Captain of the Ghana Junior Fencing team has appealed to the government of Ghana, the Ministry of Youth & Sports and the National Sports Authority (NSA) to come to their aid as they go out to compete in the African Junior and Cadet Fencing Championship.
She spoke to Yours Truly and some sports journalists about their preparedness and ambition towards the 2020 African Junior Championship being hosted by Ghana from February 24, 2020 at the University of Cape Coast.
According to Mawunyo, they are ready as sports men and women, but they feel neglected by the government, because no one has come to their camp to inspire them from the government, apart from the Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC) president, Mr. Ben Nunoo Mensah and Madam Joyce Mahama of WOSPAG who visited them and gave them some items and motivational words.
The young fencer said a little word of inspiration from the president of Ghana can lead them to perform extraordinary and even shock the continent.
“With this low motivation, we feel neglected and the moral in camp is low, we want the government to come to our aid, because we are going to compete or represent Ghana, and also raise the flag of our nation” she expressed.
President of the Ghana Fencing Association, Mr. Mohammed Mahadi said it has not been easy hosting, camping and feeding the athletes for almost two months because their diet and performance has to be monitored and checked.
He said fencing is not a popular sport in Ghana, but can earn the nation more medals at international competition, and as Ghana prepares for the 2023 African Games, the nation must have good performers to put the name of the nation high.
He thanked the GOC President, Ben Nunoo Mensah for his support and inspiration.
He stressed that despite the lack of support from government, he knows the athletes are ready to achieve something big for themselves.
Nations competing in the 2020 African Junior and Cadet Championship have started arriving in Accra en route to Cape Coast.
By Elizabeth Alhassan and Sammy Heywood Okine