Deputy Minster-nominee for Youth and Sports Ministry, Pius Enam Hadzide, has slammed calls by a section of the public that he is not fit to take up the role because of the enormous responsibilities in the sector.
Mr. Hadzide, who lost the Ketu North Member of Parliamentary seat to NDC’s James Klutse Avedzi in the 2012 December polls, was nominated by His Excellency, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to serve at the sports ministry after an earlier nomination of Member of Parliament (MP) for La-Dadekotopon constituency, Vincent Odotei, was reversed.
The ministry has witnessed the departure and reshuffle of several ministers over the years and the appointment of Mr. Hadzide has raised several eyebrows with many considering him a novice in the sector.
The sports ministry has also been under intense criticism over widespread mismanagement and an inadequate distribution of money culminating in the indebtedness of the National Sports Authority.
With the experience of the 2014 World Cup saga still fresh in the minds of Ghanaians, there still remains doubts as to whether Mr. Hadzide could deliver to the satisfaction of Ghanaians.
But speaking in an interview with Prince Yao Amevi on last Friday’s edition of the ‘AM Show’ Mr. Hadzide, who has more experience in youth development, said he is going there with no prejudice but to help salvage the terrible situation of the Ghanaian youth and also to develop sports.
“I am not aware of any such mafias in the ministry of youth and sports because I have not gone into the ministry yet. So I am going into the ministry not with any prejudice mind, not with any suspicion but going with an open mind and an open heart to work with the people and the structures I shall find in the ministry,” he stressed.
Commenting on the supposed ‘mafia delegation’ that has engulfed the ministry resulting in its failure to function effectively, Mr. Hadzide disclosed that even though he has no idea of such miscreants, he will collectively work with the substantive minister to make sure they don’t interfere in their mandate to serve the people of Ghana.
Mr. Hadzide stated that “If I go and there are things that I am unhappy about, I will let my voice be heard on those matters. As to whether they are mafias on not, it is actually not my business at this point.”
“I don’t have any evidence of such. I am ready to serve His Excellency and to serve the ministry to the best of my abilities.”
He noted that his assumption to office after his vetting and approval by the Appointments Committee of Parliament will address the low patronage of the local league after the super clash between Hearts and Kotoko failed to attract a massive attendance.
“In the past, the stadium was full with spectators when Hearts and Kotoko played. During those days, the fans went to the stadium as early as 9:00 a.m., and waited until 2:00 p.m., for the gates to be opened before the game.”
“But it is not so currently, people do not want to come to the stadium anymore. This is why I believe the president and the sports minister are calling on the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Premier League Board (PLB) and GHALCA for a stakeholders meeting for a total overhaul and rebranding of the local league.”