The Ghana Olympic Committee organised a seminar on Monday to discuss the concept of autonomy for the various sporting federations in the country.
The GOC has been talking about getting the federations being independent form government influence in its internal workings in accordance with the IOC rules and regulations.
General Secretary of the GOC, Richard Akpokavi, spoke on the necessity of the seminar to Citi Sports.
“Sports has changed in the world now and so, from about the year 2000, sports was being micro-managed by politicians, governments and all kinds of interests.
So, the International Olympic Committee came up with some best practices such as good governance, transparency, accountability.
The IOC then decreed that each national committee should be autonomous in order to operate well. The national committee should be independent of government interference via the national sports authority and the like.”
He added that the idea of autonomy was deliberated at the last United Nations General Assembly and it was decided that the IOC should be free from interference and thus, the principle should be extended to the various national Olympic committees.
Akpokavi went ahead to stress that even though sporting federations were seeking autonomy, it should not be lost on the state to do its core work of providing funds for national teams and building infrastructure.
“Even as we (the GOC) work towards autonomy, it is still the responsibility of the state to fund the national teams and to provide infrastructure because it is a constitutional requirement.
Just as we think it is important to build schools and hospitals, it is equally important to provide playing fields because the young people of this country need these things to develop holistically.
Sports has great potential. It brings young people together and promotes peace and development. When people are playing, they do not ask of each other’s tribe or anything like that.
The challenge we are facing in Ghana is that we lack of resources and we have also not recognized how important sports is to us. We still see sports as something on the periphery.”
The GOC hinted that there would more discussions on autonomy for the sporting federations in coming months.
By: Nathan Quao/citifmonline.com/Ghana');