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GOC President cautions athletes on Covid-19

By Vincent Ashitey
GOC President, Ben Nunoo Mensah
GOC President, Ben Nunoo Mensah
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Ben Nunoo Mensah, President of the Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC) has advised the sporting fraternity to be cautious about the pandemic that has hit the world and killed thousands of people.

According to the GOC president who doubles as the president of Ghana Weightlifting Federation (GWF), these days are very careful times and everyone, including sportsmen and women as well as coaches and official executives, ought to be health-conscious.

He added that the sports fans must also try to cultivate healthy living by frequently washing hands, keeping some distance, using sanitizers, handkerchiefs, tissue papers and obeying the strict advises of reliable and official information sources.

He urged the media to support the education of Ghanaians on the coronavirus, especially on preventive measures and not mingling in crowded places.

He fully supported the President of Ghana, Nana Akuffo Addo’ advise to keep school children and university students out of the classrooms for some period in checking the spread of the coronavirus.

Ben Nunoo Mensah also urged the athletes who are dreaming of participating at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games to keep on training and preparing calmly, though the pandemic would affect the biggest sporting event as people come from various places to converge in Japan.

He was however optimistic that a solution would be found by the world health authorities, but take a bit of research and testing time.

Until now, six Ghanaians have qualified for Tokyo 2020. They are Botsyo Nkegbe and Francis Assor for the Paralympics, athletes Joseph Amoah (200 meters) and Nadia Eke (triple jump) as well as Sulemanu Tetteh and Samuel Takyi, both boxers.

The situation around the COVID-19 virus has impacted the preparations for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, and is changing day by day.

The GOC remains fully committed to the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, and the IOC which encourages all athletes to continue to prepare for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 as best they can.

The IOC will keep supporting the athletes by consulting with them and their respective NOCs, and by providing them with the latest information and developments, which are accessible for athletes worldwide on the Athlete365 website and via their respective NOCs and IFs.

The IOC has confidence that the many measures being taken by many authorities around the world will help contain the situation of the COVID-19 virus.

Currently, all Olympic Movement stakeholders and the athletes face significant challenges around securing the final qualification places for the Games. In some countries, athletes are even finding it hard to continue their regular training schedules. The IOC is reassured by the solidarity and flexibility shown by the athletes, the IFs and the NOCs, that are managing these challenges across a number of sports.

So far, 57 per cent of the athletes are already qualified for the Games. For the remaining 43 per cent of places, the IOC will work with the IFs to make any necessary and practical adaptations to their respective qualification systems for Tokyo 2020.

Source: Ghana Olympic Committe