Football fraternity commemorates 22nd anniversary of May 9 stadium disaster

Stakeholders in the football fraternity have marked the 22nd anniversary of the May 9 football disaster that claimed 127 lives at the Accra Sports Stadium.

A wreath-laying ceremony was held on Tuesday morning as various bereaved families, the Ghana Football Association, Ministry of Youth and Sports, National Sports Authority and representatives of Hearts and Kotoko remembered football fans who lost their lives in one of the most tragic football disasters in the world observed the day.

Mr. Mustapha Ussif, the Minister of Youth and Sports, stated in his address that the commemoration of the May 9 disaster stood as a solemn reminder of the many lives lost.

‘Today we remember not those who lost their lives but those who assisted in the rescue efforts. The May 9 disaster serves as a reminder of the importance of safety in our stadium.

‘As Sports Minister, I am committed to ensuring the safety of all athletes and football fans, and we must take the necessary steps to ensure such a tragedy does not happen again,’ he said.

Mr. Ussif added that the commemoration should serve as a unifier in the football fraternity, urging football fans to comport themselves while patronising football matches.

Professor Peter Twumasi, Director General of the National Sports Authority, in his address, consoled the various bereaved families and reiterated the continued support for their well-being.

He stated that the safety of fans at various stadiums remains one of the major responsibilities of the NSA, which is the sole custodian of the country’s sporting infrastructure.

‘This moment serves as a solemn reminder for us in the football space that such an unfortunate incident should never happen again.

‘We can say that all the renovated and newly built stadia have been improved in terms of the entry and exit points, which will ensure the safety of lives at all times,’ he noted.

The annual wreath-laying ceremony was attended by significant individuals, including the CEO of Kumasi Asante Kotoko, Nana Yaw Amponsah, Prosper Harrison Addo, GFA General Secretary, and some representatives of Accra Hearts of Oak.

Source: Ghana News Agency