UG hosts 3rd IC-PASHDA Sept 19

Author: Beatrice Laryea
Dr Bella Bello Bitugu - Director of Sports, UG Sports Directorate

The University of Ghana, Legon, will host the third International Conference on Physical Activity, Sport and Health for Development in Africa (IC-PASHDA) from September 19 to 22.

Themed ‘Inclusive and innovative physical activity, sport and health education for sustainable development in Africa’, the four-day event is an African Physical Activity Network (AFPAN) initiative with the aim of promoting physical activity, sports and health.

It is also for growth and development in Africa through healthy active living; as well as pursue abstracts of empirical and conceptual papers which address the theme and the following related themes for presentation at the conference.

Organisers of this year’s event indicated that the current issues in sports, personal health fitness, physical inactivity and sedimentary behavioural lifestyle, gender, equality and social protection and national efforts to achieve the Sustainable  Development Goals Agenda 2030 prompted the hosting of the event.

Professor Reginald Ocansey, Head of Physical and Sports Studies Department, said:”It is a global plan in more than 50 countries to promote physical activity in schools. Research suggests that children in Ghana get 30 per cent less than what they are expected by way of physical activity.

“Lack of physical activity in schools, to a large extent, affects academic performance. It has also come up that wrong approach to exercise could be painful; but exercise should not be painful. Exercise alone does not guarantee complete wholeness in body, but nutrition and other factors are important, hence this conference.”

The conference is expected to draw government officials and other stakeholders from around the globe to discuss the pertinent topic of physical activity and sports within the context of public health.

The Local Organising Committee (LOC) chairman, Dr Bella Bello Bitugu, Director, University of Ghana Sports Directorate, said in an interview, “So far, so good; we started last year September and I will say we are on course. Students are involved in the planning and have received approval from the University for the conference.”

This year’s conference, which will be chaired by Professor Ebenezer Oduro Owusu, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana, is the third edition after the maiden event in Mozambique, Maputo, in 2014, followed by the second edition in Nairobi, Kenya, in 2016.