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Access Bank: Commitment to develop football is exciting to us 



Access Bank, Division One League, GFA, Newscenta, Ghana Football,
Olumide Olatunji, Access Bank MD and Kurt Okraku, GFA President, Photo. GFA

The Managing Director of Access Bank Ghana PLC Olumide Olatunji has commended the leadership of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) for investing the right levels of energy and commitment to the development of the game.

He was speaking at the GFA Secretariat during the official announcement of Access Bank as the headline sponsor of the Division One League.

Access Bank is injecting $250,000 as headline sponsor of the Division One League (DOL).

The money will be invested in the lower-tier competition to support the various clubs and ensure the growth of the league.

Per the deal, the Bank would also provide overdrafts and loan facilities for the clubs and vehicle finance loans to equip clubs in running the affairs of the teams.


Access Bank would be the official bank of the GFA, and all DOL clubs, players, and officials are expected to open an account with the bank.

Mr Olatunji said over the years the GFA has been very instrumental in nurturing players in the various Leagues.

“Growing up, we knew of talents such as Abedi ‘Pele’ Ayew, Tony Yeboah and recently, Michael Essien and Asamoah Gyan but I think the challenge of the GFA is to see to it and ensure that these names are many in the country and I think that explains the partnership with Access Bank.

‘’We hope to work closely with the GFA to ensure that talents are natured, discovered and given an enabling environment to thrive and to begin to compete internationally.

‘’We believe in the GFA’s call to BringbacktheLove of football in the country and this is evident in the class of sponsors you have been able to attract.


‘’As a Bank that operates in a country so passionate about the game, we want to ensure that our partnership will be the right ingredient to grow the League to the desired standard – which the Bank, the Association, the League, football lovers and the entire population will be proud of.

“I must say that supporting the growth of sport is in line with Access Bank’s Cooperate Social responsibility and clearly tells you that we value the development of sport as a Bank.

“I am excited to see the GFA’s commitments to the development of the game. We at Access Bank also appreciate this commitment and are pleased to be supporting in this regard” he said.

Mr. Olatunji stated that “this was a good time to promote football in Ghana as the 2022 FIFA World Cup approaches and champion the “Bring Back the Love” initiative by the GFA.”

He assured the various clubs in the DOL that Access Bank would do its best to make the partnership a successful one.


“I finally call on Ghanaians to rally behind the Black Stars and support them in the upcoming world cup tournament,” he added.

Mr. Kurt Okraku, the President of the GFA said, “When I assumed office, I said I was not going to do business with any bank that is not prepared to invest in football, and today, we have Access Bank.

“Our new partner has the vision to become the world’s most respected African bank, as such, it seeks to empower key sectors of our economy for example sports and football.”

Mr. Okraku thanked Access Bank for trusting and believing in the GFA to invest in the Division One League as they seek to develop football in Ghana.

Mr. Kenneth Thompson, the Vice-Chairman of the DOL Board thanked the GFA and Access Bank for coming together to develop the league.


The 2022 Division One League is set to kick off on September 30.

Also present at the media engagement are General Secretary Prosper Harrison Addo, Gideon Ofosu, Eugene Nobel and Tophic Kadri Seinu, Chief Executive Officers and representatives of the 48 Division One League Clubs.


Bawumia: Govt will support family to give Atsu a befitting  burial



Atsu's casket, Newscenta, Turkey, arrival at KIA, ceremony, Dr Bawumia,

Vice-President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has pledged government support to the Twasam family to give Christian Atsu a befitting burial.

Receiving the mortal remains of Atsu at Kotoka International Airport in Accra, he said “The State will be fully involved with the family in providing Atsu a befitting burial.

The casket of Atsu landed at Kotoka International Airport Sunday Night from Turkey where he lost his life as a result of the earthquake that has killed over 45,000 people and counting.

On behalf of Government, Dr Bawumia extended condolences to the Twasam family, Ghanaians and the footballing fraternity for the “deep loss”.

“We hoped against hope and prayed but when we found him, he was no more. He played for the Black Stars and was much loved. We will sorely miss him. It is a painful loss,” he said.


Also at the airport to receive the casket were Minister of Information;- Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, Mr Evans Bobie Opoku-Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr Prosper Harrison Addo-General Secretary of the Ghana Football Association (GFA).

Many sympathisers also trooped to the airport to witness the arrival of the casket.

The Twasam family expressed gratitude to Government and Ghanaians for the support since the incident happened.

Shortly after the ceremony, the body was carried in a hearse and transported to the 37 Military Hospital morgue for preservation.

Tributes have been pouring in for the player and his family,  following the confirmation of the recovery of his body in the wee-hours on Saturday.


The 31-year-old before suffering the tragic incident featured in their game against Kasimpasa SK on February 5, 2023, and scored the only goal in the game to give his side the win.

The sad event hit many Ghanaians due to the contribution and sacrifices Christian Atsu had made for his country both on and off the pitch.

He made 64 appearances for the Black Stars, netting ten goals and nine assists.

Atsu, known for his generosity towards the less privileged in society, left behind a wife and two children.

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Ghanaians thank God as Christian Atsu is rescued alive



Christian Atsu, Newscenta, rescued alive, earthquake, Turkey,

Mustafa Özat, Vice-President of Hatayspor, the football club Christian Atsu plays for has confirmed that the Ghanaian international has been rescued alive.

He said: “Christian Atsu was removed with injuries. Unfortunately, our sporting director Taner Savut is still under the rubble.”

The Ghanaian international is said to be having some breathing difficulties with some injuries and has been taken to the hospital to receive treatment.

He has been confirmed safe by the Turkish rescue team after a major earthquake hit the country Monday morning.

Confirmation of his rescue has sent Ghanaians from all walks of life happy expressing gratitude to Almighty God


The hashtag ” #GloryToGod” has been trending on social media with various social media users, who are relieved with the news of Atsu’s rescue after hours of conflicting reports.

A statement from Ghana Football Association (GFA) said: “We’ve received some positive news that Christian Atsu has been successfully rescued from the rubble of the collapsed building and he is receiving treatment. Let’s continue to pray for Christian”.

The Hatayspor forward was also affected by the disaster as he was trapped in the rubble for about 24 hours in his residence in Kahramanmaras, Turkey.

The earthquake, measuring a magnitude of 7.8 on the Richter scale, is said to be the worst to hit the country in a century. The last incident was in 1939.

The former Chelsea and Newcastle player joined the Turkish side in September last year and was on the scoresheet on Sunday when his side beat Kasimpasa 1-0.


Atsu made 65 appearances for the Black Stars of Ghana, scoring nine goals.








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Christian Atsu’s team debunks claims he has been rescued



Christian Atsu, Newscenta, missing, earthquake, Turkey,

Hatayspor FC Vice-President Mustapha Ozat says efforts are still being made to contact Ghanaian international Christian Atsu and Sporting Director Taner Savut.

Atsu and Savut are among the thousands of people who remain under the rubble following an earthquake that struck many cities in Turkey in the early hours of Monday.

According to the Vice-President, most members of the Hatayspor playing body have been accounted for, except for Atsu and Savut, who remain under the rubble.

“Christain Atsu and Taner Savut are still under the rubble. We are trying to reach them,” Mr Ozat said.

Many Ghanaians from all walks of life are praying for the rescue of Christain Atsu, who scored his first goal for his team in their 1-0 win over Kasimpasa on Sunday.


“On behalf of the Government and people of Ghana, I extend heartfelt condolences to the Governments and peoples of Turkey and Syria on the devastation and the tragic loss of lives occasioned by Monday’s earthquake. “May their souls rest in perfect peace,”  President Nana Akufo-Addo tweeted.

“Our hearts and prayers go out to the survivors, and we pray that our fellow Ghanaian, Christian Atsu, is found safe and sound,” he wrote. Former President John Dramani Mahama wrote on Twitter: “Let’s continue to pray for our brother, Christian Atsu, and his club director. The city of Hayat is in the region affected by the earthquake. Let’s continue to pray that God spares their lives.”

In other related developments, the Ghana Paralympic Committee says all athletes living in the Turkey region are safe and sound.

A statement released by the GPC said it had made contact with athletes in affected areas, with no casualties yet.
Rescuers in Turkey and war-ravaged Syria searched through the frigid night into Tuesday, hoping to pull more survivors from the rubble after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake killed more than 4,000 people and toppled thousands of buildings across a wide region.

Authorities feared the death toll from Monday’s pre-dawn earthquake and aftershocks would keep climbing as rescuers looked for survivors among tangles of metal and concrete spread across the region beset by Syria’s 12-year civil war and refugee crisis.


Survivors cried out for help from within mountains of debris as first responders contended with rain and snow. Seismic activity continued to rattle the region, including another jolt nearly as powerful as the initial quake. Workers carefully pulled away slabs of concrete and reached for bodies as desperate families waited for news of loved ones.

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