GBFA appeals for help to compete in 2019 Arnold Classics
Executives of the Ghana Bodybuilding and Fitness Association are seething with rage after the government failed to honour a promise it made to the association.
Speaking at a press conference at the Accra Sports Stadium, the President of GBFA Abdul Hayye Yartey narrated that earlier this year the National Sports Authority, after receiving their budget for the 2019 Arnold Classics in South Africa assured them of support if they reduced the number of athletes and executives they will be sending to the competition.
The association heeded to the call by the sports body and reduced the number only for the General-Secretary of the NSA to inform them that ‘there’s nothing we can do for you’.
He lamented that the NSA’s decision to go back on its promise at the eleventh hour has thrown their plans into disarray since they banked all their hopes on the government.
He minced no words in stating that government has neglected the sport despite it being a member of the associations recognized by the NSA.
“This press conference has become necessary because we have been told by the NSA that they can’t help us in any way to travel to South Africa. This has been the norm for some time now and we think that the sport has been neglected”.
“The tournament is starting on May 17 and it has become a huge task for these athletes to raise the needed capital and funds to compete in the event. As a result of that some of them have decided not to compete again. This we feel is unfair because these athletes are going to participate in the name of Ghana.
Last year the same thing happened and no support whatsoever was given us as an association yet we managed to dip our hands into our pockets to fund our own trips and that of the athletes to South Africa , an action that brought glory to the nation as Ghana won the overall competition.”
“As I speak to you now, Ghana is the defending champion of the Arnold Classic and we believe that we have what it takes to defend it well. Last year we presented six (6) athletes to the Arnold Classic and all six won medals with Ghana’s Cyril Kofi Adjah claiming the overall award. He also won Ghana’s first PRO Card.”
Appeal for assistance
Hayye Yartey issued an appeal to benevolent Ghanaians and corporate bodies to provide financial assistance to the association as they bid to fly high the flag of Ghana in South Africa.
“Our hands are tied financially but we need to get the athletes there, so we are appealing to corporate Ghana and individuals to come to our aid in any way they can. No amount will be too big or too small. The ticket price for one athlete to get to South Africa is almost ghc3000. Accommodation, feeding etc is also another area that has to be looked at.”
“The harm has already been done and there is nothing we can do than to appeal to the good people of Ghana to come to our aid and that of the athletes to go make Ghana proud once again.”
The 2019 Arnold Classics is scheduled for May 17 to May 19 and team Ghana are expected to depart the country on May 14