After Successful Course For Referees And Judges

Mr Collins Kofi Zoiku, President of the Ghana Mixed Martial Arts Federation (GHAMMAF) has made a passionate appeal to the African Games LOC, Ministry of Youth & Sports and the National Sports Authority (NSA) to support them to organize a successful demonstration at the upcoming 13th African Games to be hosted in Accra, Ghana.

Speaking to Yours Truly on the way forward for the sport in Ghana, he noted that the African Games is a big platform to showcase the talent of the nation, and Ghana has great potential not only in boxing but other combat sports, especially Mixed Martial Arts (MMA).

He stressed that the right to stage the sport at the biggest sports festival has been hijacked by the professional body, Ghana Mixed Martial Arts Association (GAMMA) and it should not be so because the Games are essentially for Amateur athletes.

According to Mr. Zoiku the GHAMMAF is the rightful organization to stage the sport at the Games, and threatened to take legal action if his outfit is not given the right to organize.

He expressed gratitude for the successful completion of the Referees and Judges program.

He told the participants “Your dedication to maintaining high standards in officiating was evident throughout the training, from the comprehensive curriculum to the engaging instructors. The professionalism and organizational abilities demonstrated by the GHAMMAF executives greatly contributed to the overall positive experience. I would also like to commend the participants for their enthusiasm and unwavering commitment. I am confident that this training will raise the bar for officiating in our sport.”

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He also thanked Vice President Mr. Ali Ajami and Executive Board Member Mr. Thomas Akumani for their support and contributions to a successful and excellent program.

About 40 people took part in the two day seminar for MMA referees / judges and first aiders.

The second day focused many on officiating and intentional fouls that they must check, such as head butting, strike to the throat, strike to genitals, strike to spine or back of the head , lifting an opponent upside down and hitting his head on the canvas, biting, spitting on the canvas, kneeing the groin, holders and punching and others.

Referee David Mills who lectured the participants on day two urged them to practice officiating at home or wherever they feel comfortable.

He advised them to invest in themselves to upgrade and reach far, but it is not easy.

Mrs. Deladem Ephraim-Etsey Secretary of the GHAMMAF said certificates in digital form world be sent to all participants.

Mr. Ahmed Mustapha of International Kickboxing Federation, Ghana described the course as very important and educative.

Mr. Olivera Welbeck, a combat sports practitioner said the course came at the right time and he learnt a lot.

Mr. Emmanuel Akpabli, Technical Director said the GHAMMAF is ever ready to organize the MMA Demonstration at the 13th African Games.

Mr. Sammy Gyan, Vice President of the Ghana Boxing Supporters Union (GHABSU) also prayed that more courses should be organized for other stakeholders like the media, coaches and promoters.

Mr. Patrick Johnson, Secretary General of the Federation advised the participants to practice what they learnt to be perfect.

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By Sammy Heywood Okine

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