GNPC gifts Apenkwa GH¢1.3m artificial park

BY: Bernard Neequaye
Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu, National Chief Imam, performing the ceremonial kick-off at the commissioning of the turf
Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu, National Chief Imam, performing the ceremonial kick-off at the commissioning of the turf

Artificial grass experts BLAG Ghana Limited and the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) have handed over the Apenkwa artificial turf to the community after its completion.

The 11-a-side turf, which was sponsored by the GNPC Foundation, took a year to be completed at a cost of GH¢1.3 million.

The state-of-the-art pitch, which includes fencing and flood lights in order to give footballers within the community the chance to play at night, was initiated by the NPP Member of Parliament (MP) for the Okaikoi Central Constituency, Mr Patrick Yaw Boamah.

Speaking at the inauguration of the project, the Executive Director of the GNPC Foundation, Mr Dominic Kwesi Eduah, explained his outfit’s vision to impact lives through education, environmental projects, as well as the provision of social amenities, among others.

Investment by GNPC

Mr Eduah said the construction of the Apenkwa artificial turf formed part of over 30 facility uplifts his outfit was engaged in and expressed his excitement at completing it.

''Our outfit remains poised to impact the lives of Ghanaians and develop talents and in doing that we have to provide facilities to facilitate their development process,'' he said.

Mr Boamah, who led the presentation of the Apenkwa turf to the community, thanked the GNPC and promised to ensure that the facility is put to good use.

He thanked the Presbyterian Church in the community for offering the land to be transformed into an artificial turf which he said would help unearth and nurture footballers within the area.

Unearthing and nurturing talents

“I am glad that this artificial pitch has been completed and I am very grateful to the GNPC for helping the community.

“This is going to help unearth and nurture talents within the community and that is a good thing for the youth,” Mr Boamah noted.

The Minister-Designate for Youth and Sports, Mr Mustapha Ussif, called for private participation in transforming community parks to artificial turfs to offer the youth an opportunity to build their talents.

Mr Ussif called on the youth within the community to make good use of the artificial turf to help produce more talents in football.

“I think the artificial turf is the way to go and I expect private companies to invest in the youth through the building of such facilities in our communities,” he said.

BLAG Ghana’s commitment

For his part, contractors for the facility, BLAG Ghana, through its Chief Operating Officer, Mr Eddie Dankwa, explained that the Apenkwa artificial turf represents the top-quality FIFA-certified synthetic grass which provides excellent playing characteristics and helps prevent injuries to footballers.

Mr Dankwa said his outfit was committed to the transformation of pitches into artificial turfs and called on Ghanaians to embrace it.

“Not every artificial turf is certified by FIFA, which can lead to injuries of footballers who play on it. Our focus is to help prevent that, as well as provide night football under floodlights,” he added.