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Representatives of sponsors of the event.

Launch of the Democracy Cup Celebrates Sports and Democracy in Ghana

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In a ceremony at Parliament House, the Speaker of Parliament, Right Honourable Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, officially launched the Democracy Cup yesterday. This football match is set to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Ghana’s Fourth Republic, symbolizing the connection between sports and democratic values.

The Democracy Cup is scheduled for July 5, 2024, at the Accra Sports Stadium, featuring a highly anticipated match between Premier League giants Accra Hearts of Oak and Kumasi Asante Kotoko. This much-anticipated match promises to be a highlight in Ghana’s sporting calendar, with the winner earning the opportunity to represent Ghana in Washington DC. They will compete against DC United during the Capital City Africa Cup, as part of Ghana Week DC in October. This initiative not only showcases Ghanaian football talent but also helps bridge the gap between Ghana and its diaspora community.

The launch ceremony saw key representatives from the Ghana Tourism Authority and Beyond the Return initiative in attendance. Deputy CEO Ben Anane Nsiah represented the CEO of the Ghana Tourism Authority, while Annabelle McKenzie, Director of the Beyond the Return Secretariat, was present to highlight the collaborative efforts in promoting Ghana through sports.

Mr. Bagbin, who is known to be a strong supporter of Asante Kotoko, called for the Democracy Cup to become an annual event, highlighting the importance of sport in Ghana’s democratic and national life. “This initiative is further evidence of our commitment to strengthening Ghana’s democracy,” he said. “We want the Democracy Cup to be a regular fixture, promoting not only democracy but also the role of sport in our national life.”

Accra Hearts of Oak’s Managing Director, Delali Anku-Adiamah, shared the Speaker’s sentiments, emphasizing the event’s significance in reminding Ghanaians of the value of their democracy. Abraham Antwi, a representative of Kumasi Asante Kotoko, pledged the club’s support and playfully predicted a third victory over their rivals this season.

The President of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Kurt Okraku, expressed the organization’s full backing for the match. He commended Mr. Bagbin for acknowledging the role of sport in good governance and promoting democratic values. Mr. Okraku also called for increased investment in Ghana’s sports infrastructure and development, recognizing the broader impact of such initiatives.

As a prelude to the main event there will be a match that features Members of Parliament taking on former Black Stars players, adding an extra layer of entertainment to the occasion. The Minister of Youth and Sports, Mustapha Ussif, was unable to attend the launch and shared a statement that was read on his behalf by his Director of Finance & Administration, Eric Mensah Bonsu. In the statement he welcomed Parliament’s decision to celebrate its anniversary through sport and pledged his support by donating jerseys and footballs to all participating teams. 

Beyond the Return and the Ghana Tourism Authority have expressed a strong interest in how sports can bring people together. The opportunity for the winner of the Democracy Cup to represent Ghana in Washington DC against DC United further emphasizes this, as it serves to connect Ghana with its diaspora community.

The Democracy Cup stands as a testament to the unifying power of sports and the shared values of democracy, promising to be a memorable event for all involved.

Ivy Prosper

Digital Creator, Writer, Producer, Speaker