The contractor undertaking the renovation of pitches for the upcoming Women’s Africa Cup of Nations has given an assurance that the Presbyterian Boys Senior High School (Legon PRESEC) park will be in good condition soon and ready for the continental competition.
Frank Boahene of Green Grass Technology, the company handling the restoration of pitches at the Accra and Cape Coast stadiums, and that of selected training fields for the November 17 – December 1 tournament, says there is no cause for alarm about about the condition of the Legon PRESEC pitch, which was badly damaged during the annual bonfire by old students of PRESEC students (Odadeɛs) on Friday night.
"I can confirm to you that we have begun works on the PRESEC pitch and hopefully the grounds will be put in place within 14 days. There is no call for panic and the damage caused isn't as bad as feared," he told Graphic Sports Online.
On Tuesday, some members of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the tournament visited the park to find out the latest development ahead of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) inspection team’s arrival.
Pictures of the heavily littered pitch went viral on social media with the old students and school authorities criticised for leaving the renovated pitch in a mess, at a time when an inspection team from CAF was also expected in town to visit the park.
However, the Odadeɛ leadership sponsored a clean-up of the park the following morning to restore it to almost its former condition, after which Mr Boahene and his Green Grass Technology team returned to work on the damaged portions of the pitch.
For Ernest Owusu-Afari, the vice president of the PRESEC alumni, attacks by the public on the body for the state of the pitch after the bonfire were unfair as the Odadeɛs had contracted sanitation firm, Zoomlion Limited, to clean up the place the following morning and also engaged Green Grass Technology to repair any damage on the field.
"It is rather unfortunate the way the issue about the pitch has been misrepresented in the media. I don’t think people have been fair to the group. We are responsible people and not that insensitive that we will leave such a mess without plans to clean up.
"We value the legacy this project leaves for the school as much as everyone else, and have been contributing to its maintenance. It is equally dear to our hearts,” he said.
"I don't know if you are aware that the pitch has been maintained by the old boys and the school for all these years. Through our efforts and contribution towards its maintenance, the pitch was in serviceable condition for it to be chosen again as a training ground”