Government urges stakeholders to commit to stadium security

The Ministry of Youth and Sports has urged stakeholders to commit to ensuring the security of spectators at the various stadia to forestall a recurrence of the May 9 football disaster that rocked Ghana 11-years ago.

Speaking on Wednesday at a wreath-laying ceremony to mark the 11th anniversary of the May 9 stadium Disaster, Clement Kofi Humado, Minister of Youth and Sports encouraged stakeholders and the security agencies to re-examine their mechanisms for ensuring a high level of safety and crowd control in the country’s stadiums and other public places.

Mr Humado said “observing the sad incident annually does not only serve as a reminder of the painful event, but should rather be for all to examine our efforts and responsibilities as a society towards the lives of the victims’ survivors as well as survivors”.

He said the occasion therefore provides a platform to evaluate the procedures put in place as a country to mitigate and avert future occurrences.

The Minister also extended his heartfelt condolences to all families affected in one way or the other by the disaster.

“As Government continues to do all it can through the Stadium Disaster Relief Fund to assuage the pain and improve the lives of the victims’ families, we as citizens continue to pray for these families that they will not lose hope in life but to trust in the Lord.”

Mr Humado also appealed to Stadia Managers to leave no stone unturned to ensure that the various sports venues are equipped with the highest safety standards for spectators and officials.

The brief ceremony, which was held at the forecourt of the Accra Sports Stadium was attended by Kwesi Nyantakyi, President of the Ghana Football Association (GFA); officials and supporters of Accra Hearts of Oak and Kumasi Asante Kotoko and a section of the bereaved families.

The Minister laid a wreath on behalf of Government, Frank Nelson on behalf of Hearts of Oak and Dr Kofi Kodua Sarpong for Asante Kotoko.

Over 100 fans lost their lives with scores injured during a Premier League match between Accra Hearts of Oak and Kumasi Asante Kotoko at the Accra Sports Stadium on May 9, 2001. GNA

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