The Ghana Football Association (GFA), on Saturday, May 9, 2020, joined the Ministry of Youth and Sports, National Sports Authority, Accra Hearts of Oak SC, Asante Kotoko SC and others to commemorate the 19th anniversary of the 2001 stadium disaster.
In attendance at the event were Deputy Youth and Sports Minister Hon. Perry Okudzeto, Board Chairman of the National Sports Authority Kwadwo Baah Agyemang, Chief Executive Officer of the National Sports Authority Professor Patrick Twumasi and other dignitaries from Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko.
The GFA was represented by General Secretary Prosper Harrison Addo, Deputy General Secretary Alex Asante, Communications Director Henry Asante and Sena Akoto-Ampaw, Head of the Competitions Department.
It would be recalled that 127 football fans died in a stadium disaster at the Accra Sports Stadium during a Ghana Premier League game between arch-rivals Accra Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko exactly 19 years ago.
“This was a painful day in the history of Ghana football, which we pray never happens again. Families and loves ones of our brothers who lost their lives as a result of this unfortunate incident have endured so much pain over the years which words cannot describe.
“We share in their pain and wish to assure them that the state will continue to support them at all times.
“We ask for divine strength for all affected families in these times and may the departed have eternal perfect rest.
“On behalf of the President of the Republic of Ghana, H.E Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the Minister of Youth and Sports, Hon. Isaac Kwame Asiamah, GFA President Kurt E.S Okraku and the people of Ghana, we wish to extend our deepest condolence to the bereaved family and to ask God’s guidance for them as we observe the 19th edition of the May 9th stadium disaster,” Perry Okudzeto said in a statement on behalf of the Minister of Youth and Sports.
There were also speeches by Elvis Herman Hesse on behalf of Hearts of Oak and Kennedy Boakye Ansah for Asante Kotoko.
For his part, GFA General Secretary Prosper Harrison Addo said: “first and foremost, we once again send our sincere condolences to the families of all victims of the May 9 disaster. Over the years, the GFA has developed regulations, strategies and processes for dealing and punishing any perceived bad officiating. There have been improvements but we will continue to strive to bring more advancement in our game. Fans must have faith in the leaders of their clubs and the regulations. In unison, we say NEVER AGAIN.”