Togbe Chairman, distinguished guests from the football fraternity, gala organizing committee, security personal, friends of the media, ladies and gentlemen welcome to Kpando. Let me thank you all for your presence here today. What started as a small thing has overwhelmed us all. It’s now bigger than we anticipated, thanks to the John Painstil Football Academy.
I have been a football fan for many years, and some of the people who whipped my interest in football are with us today and others will join us next week for the SUPER MATCH, AKPINI STARS VRS FORMER BLACK STARS.
Let me serve notice on my respected former black stars, that if they don’t up their game, Akpini Stars will embarrass them big time with goals. The Minister of Sports will be here watching, important dignitaries like Kpando Chiefs and other Chiefs including Togbe Afede will be here including; Also several MPs will be storming Kpando for the Super match. So former Black stars better prepare well or else face humiliation at the hands of Akpini Stars.
KPANDO LOVES SOCCER
Kpando has been a soccer community and made its name in football long before kpando Hearts of Lions came into existence.
Years ago we had teams like Mulpo, Akpini Eletey Football club in Kpando who made strides in the sport. Kpando groomed many men, not as a business then, but as a game. We love the game, we love football.
FOOTBALL NOW IS BUSINESS
Today football is business and we believe that our love of the game can be turned into football business. Go round the municipal from Sovie, to Dafor Tornu, to Gbefi, Kudzra, Aloyi, Konda, Zongo, Torkor, Gbofe and indeed all over Kpando you will find talents that will amaze you. The Asamoah Gyans are here, the John Paintsil’s the Maestro Abedi Peles, the Messis, the Ronaldo’s they are all here. We can churn out good players from this Municipal for local and international clubs. There many international players who hail from Kpando.
BRAIN BEHIND THE PROGRAM
This Gala was inspired by voices of talents within Kpando. I have listened to stories of many talented footballers who had no support, and unable to advance, like Ibrahim and many others, look at Kpomone from Aloyi, he was just playing at a football field on a visit to Accra when a scout spotted him but for COVID he would have left for Europe. Today by this event am here to tell the talented footballers in Kpando Municipality that as long as am MP of Kpando, they have support, they have a backbone. Every footballer from here will be given the opportunity to excel.
And to the soccer world home and abroad, local and international we are saying that by this week long event we are packaging Kpando as a hub for football stars. Great footballers like Eto, have roots in the Municipality. Kpando is not only ripe for religious Tourism, our Grotto hosts people from beyond the borders of Ghana for answers to prayers. Today our own prayers have been answered and Kpando is now a hub for football stars. If you want your team to go high, and to go far, come look for talents in Kpando.
Players from here were part of the team that won the under 17 World Cup years ago. Some are playing in Sweden now. We have the men, we have the talents. Atiku, Samba, Akoto who played nationally and internationally are examples of Kpando football talent.
Finally, one thing of great concern to us as citizens of the municipality is the state of our stadium. The government has neglected this stadium for far too long. I remember under the NDC, the then Sports Minister Hon. Elvis Afriyie Ankrah was here to inspect the stadium it was on the drawing board for 2017 to give the Kpando Sports Stadium a big lift. We expected that this program would have been started by current NPP government. However, the state of the stadium is getting worse. The walls are crumbling; the stadium always barely passes for approval for GFA sanctioned matches.. If nothing is done, Kpando won’t have a stadium, meanwhile Kpando’s contribution to the sports in Ghana is huge.
AS RESPONSIBLE CITIZENS
As responsible citizens we realize that if we wait for government we may never see a revamped stadium. In our own small way, we are using this event to raise funds for the fencing of the stadium, providing a tunnel from dressing room to the pitch, bigger camera stand, regrafting of pitch, provision of borehole an Astro turf, floodlights, spectator stands, scoreboard, dressing rooms, toilet facilities etc. We call on all organizations to use a tiny part of their social responsibility budget to come to our aid.
Once again thank you John Paintsil Academy, to the Management led by Mr. Charles Nkansah who arranged everything and made it possible. Thank you all so much for coming.