The Chief Executive of Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA),Mohammed Adjei Sowah has thrown his weight behind an initiative between Ghana Premier League club, Accra Great Olympics and WaterAid Ghana to use football as a social mobilising tool in fighting the spread of COVID-19 within the coastal communities in Accra.
The AMA boss expressed his commitment to support the initiative when the two entities signed a Memorandum of Understanding ( MoU) to seal the partnership at the Mensvic Grand Hotel in Accra yesterday.
The partnership seeks to leverage on Accra Olympics community presence in coastal communities and the popularity of players, legends, supporters, as well as management members of the club, to sensitise the public on the need to adhere to the COVID-19 protocols.
The Mayor of Accra in a speech read on his behalf by the Head of Public Affairs for the AMA, Gilbert Nii Ankrah at the ceremony commended the two entities for the initiative stressing that it would play a crucial role in educating people on adhering to the COVID-19 protocols and lead to behaviour change.
"The AMA believes that continuous education on the safety protocols would play an important role in changing the behaviours of citizens towards adhering to the COVID-19 protocols...Accra remains the epicentre and we are hopeful this initiative will help in shaping the public health, attitudes, behaviours, to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the city," he said.
Deputy Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Accra Great Olympics, Mr. Ato Coleman, defined the partnership as the best, especially when the majority of the club’s support base emanates from the coastal areas of Accra.
According to him using the passion of the nation as a tool to help fight the spread of COVID-19 was worth celebrating and that the club was ready to commence the education with community outreaches among others.
“The decision to bring these two entities together towards fighting this pandemic should be lauded because propagating the need to adhere to the COVID-19 protocols should be a priority, especially in the coastal areas of Accra where our core supporters come from...We are ready to commence the education with community outreaches and together with WaterAid, I believe we are on course to help fight this pandemic in our communities,” he said.
The Country Director for WaterAid Ghana, Mr Jesse Cofffie Danku in a speech read on his behalf by Mr George Cobinna Yorke, Head of Policy, Advocacy and Campaign at WaterAid Ghana, thanked Olympics for coming on board and was hopeful the project would improve water, sanitation and hygiene in the coastal communities of Greater Accra Region.
We are glad to have Great Olympics on board in our push to get the education on COVID-19 adherence through to the coastal areas in Accra. The focus is to spread it across the other clubs going forward and we believe that could be achieved, ” she said.
Chairman of the Ghana League Clubs Association (GHALCA), Mr Kudjoe Fianoo, who was present at the ceremony thanked Olympics for being the pacesetters in the education to adhere to COVID-19 protocols especially in communities where they have their support base.
Mr Fianoo, who is also the Executive Director of Olympics, said WaterAid’s decision to partner with Great Olympics through football was going to achieve great success especially when the sport was loved by all Ghanaians.
“This is an initiative worth celebrating and I look forward to seeing it spread across other clubs to help in the fight against this canker that has deprived us for a very long time.”
According to the Board Chairman of Accra Great Olympics, Major (Rtd), Amarkai Amarteifio, the club's rich history and performance in recent years had placed them in the position to lead this campaign adding that health and Sanitation were an important factor to youth development.