Albert Nukpeza: Don’t put hopes in 2023 African Games

BY: Isaac Ashietey
Albert Nukpeza- Former chief athletics coach
Albert Nukpeza- Former chief athletics coach

Former chief athletics coach, Albert Nukpeza, has stressed the need for the nation to double up her efforts in grooming talents to compete for laurels at the 2023 African Games or forget about winning medals.

"We have two-and-a-half years to host Africa but nothing is being done to build a strong team to represent Ghana ahead of the event,” Coach Nukpeza lamented.

In an interview with Graphic Sports, the former 400 metres athlete advocated that all athletics competitions and activities by the Ghana Athletics Association (GAA) be suspended for three years so they would focus on recruiting good talents for the 2027 African Games.

“Athletes’ chances in the upcoming Games are very bleak and getting the ultimate for the country cannot be achieved, looking at how things have turned out over the years.

‘’What is our preparation towards hosting the event, and what are we doing now as a country to groom  talents for such occasion? Nothing has happened!” he noted.

However, Coach Nukpeza believed that it would be of a greater good should the country back off hosting the 2023 Games because the state is not yet there in terms of preparation.

He said if the state was bent on hosting the event, then the right structures and preparation needed to be in place now with some crop of athletes earmarked for the 2023 Games.

‘'We should not wait to start preparations next year while we have a short time to prepare for success,” he cautioned.

Ghana won the bid to host the 13th edition of the African Games in 2023, beating Nigeria and Burkina Faso to the right. It’s the first time the Games will be staged in Ghana.

Ghana has participated in 11 All Africa Games (as it was previously called) out of 50 countries that have taken part in the competition.