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Africa Games 2023: University of Ghana’s academic calendar could stall work on games’ village – Sports Director

There are genuine concerns the academic calendar of the University of Ghana could slow down Ghana’s preparation for the 2023 Africa Games, as highlighted by Director of Sports at Legon, Dr. Bella Bello Bitugu.

Besides housing the games village which will include a dining area as well as a medical hub, the University of Ghana’s rugby field and the Legon stadium located in the institution will be centers for the games, making the university a nucleus for Accra 2023.

But it comes with major responsibilities, as certain standards will have to be met. All rooms of the UGEL facilities – ‘diaspora halls’ – which will be occupied by athletes and officials from Africa’s other states, will need to be upgraded with cooling systems amongst a list of other requirements before August.

However with school in session and students on campus, only so much can be done. The current semester ends on September 25, and though not confirmed, the new academic year could start in January 2023 – timelines UG’s sports director, Dr. Bitugu, fears could affect preparation towards the Africa Games.

“They [Diaspora halls] will be refurbished and upgraded to meet the standards of the sporting event. Basically, what is supposed to be done are; there are supposed to be dorms which will serve as dining halls and then a kind of clinic for medical services. Also, there are the four halls which will serve as accommodation and of course in the various rooms, standards must be high; we should have ventilation, the wash rooms, water heater, beds, wardrobes – those things required for games of that nature.

“But you also have to understand that it is a university which has its academic program so they [LOC and contractor] have to work around students being present and what they can select to do when students are around, and what they do when students are not. So this is a balance that they have to strike, but that is between the contrctor, LOC and UGEL – who are managers of the facility,” Dr. Bitugu explained to JoySports.

Work at the Legon stadium was restarted late 2021, but is still far from completion with only four months to February’s deadline.

Work on all earmarked facilities at Borteyman and the University of Ghana need to be ready by February 2023, but Dr. Bitugu is unsure facilities at the University will be.

“I am not the contractor, and I am also not the LOC,” was Dr. Bitugu’s reply when asked by JoySports if the stadium will be ready in February.

“I do not have the documents with me but if experience will guide us on the construction and completion of such facilities, you can estimate and make your conclusion whether they will be finished by February seeing what they have on the ground now,” he ended.

Organizers have approved 23 sporting disciplines for the games with teqball the only demonstration sport on the schedule.

Source: Ghana News

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