Ghana Blind Sports seek for support to meet 2020 Paralympics qualifiers deadline

Author: Beatrice Laryea
The blind male goalball team made their first international appearance in the African Championship in Kenya in 2013 and placed fifth out of eight teams.

The leadership of the Ghana Blind Sports Association (GBSA) has appealed to the Ministry of Youth and Sports and corporate entities to come to their aid to meet the deadline for registration to participate in the 2020 Paralympic qualifiers on March 31.

Both the male and female teams are billed to participate in the 2019 International Blind Sports Association (IBSA) Goalball and Judo Qualifiers from June 29 to July 9 in Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA. 

The competition is crucial for teams to secure their ticket to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games where 16 slots have been allocated to each team.

According to the President of the association, Eric Kissi, his outfit had presented their budget to the Sports Ministry for support but had not received any favourable feedback, adding time was running out on them for the registration which ends on March 31.

“We are running against time. March 31 is the dead line and we have to pay our registration fee. We have submitted our budget but we have not had the opportunity to meet the minister and we know he is busy person but we are appealing to him and cooperate entities to come to our aid,” he said. 

The Ghana blind male goalball team made their first international appearance in the African Championship in Kenya in 2013 and placed fifth out of eight teams.

Their female counterparts were also in South Korea in 2015 for the Women’s World Championship where they finished seventh in a 12-nation tournament. Two blind athletes also represented Ghana at the African Games in Brazzaville, Congo, in 2015.

The GBSA has held two national competitions in 2015 and 2017. The Association also instituted the AU DAY Goalball Championship in 2016 that is held annually across the regions on May 25. This year’s edition will take place in Sunyani.

The Ghana Blind Sports Association is under the National Paralympic Committee and it is fully represented and functional in the ten regions of the country. It is the sports wing of the Ghana Blind Union, and affiliated to the International Blind Sports Association (IBSA).