By Naneka Hoffman
Youth and Sports Minister D. Zeogar Wilson, Mr. Solomon C. George, Montserrado County Representative and Chairman on Youths & Sports, and Deputy Youth & Sports Minister Andy Quamie have shunned the Liberia National Handball Association’s (LNHA’s) award program held at the Sports Commission on Broad Street over the weekend.
Wilson and George were both invited as special guests while Quamie was invited as an honoree at the closing and award program of the 2020/2021 National Handball League graced by handballing stakeholders.
According to Thomas Kojo, Director for Youths & Sports, he represented Deputy Minister Quamie because he went for a burial.
The Liberia National Handball Association National Handball League came to an end on 23 October 2021 at the Sports Commission on Broad Street.
There were six handball clubs that participated in the just-ended National Handball League which are Ducor Athletic Handball Club, crowned as 2021 Champions; and Navigators, crowned as Runner-up.
Other participating clubs are Central Freeport, Bushrod Island Warriors, Mighty Ranger, and Sinkor Oilers.
The awards were given out to deserving players and teams which included Emmanuel G. Kollie, Best Goalkeeper; Hassan Tucker, Most Improved Player; Johnson Gbadeh, Most Valuable Player; Sharman Kpadeh, Higher Goal Scorer and Central Freeport, Most Discipline Team.
Speaking at the closing and award program, Mr. J. Aratus Larkpor, president of the Liberia National Handball Association said the lack of playing facilities, office space as well as financial support from the national government has forced the association to run from individuals’ pockets just for the love of the game.
Mr. Larkpor said handball is one of the fastest-growing sports in Liberia behind football, basketball, and kickball.
Larkpor lamented that since the ascendency of his leadership in 2018, the association is yet to receive any financial support from its local partners that including the Liberia National Olympic Committee (LNOC) and the Ministry of Youths & Sports (MYS) in the name of promoting handball in Liberia.
However, he stated that his leadership was able to transform the game from the school level to the communities and now to the national level.
Meanwhile, Larkpor explained that it is their hope to decentralize the game of handball within the country, adding that the decentralization process will begin in 2022/ 2023 within six counties, Margibi, Bomi, Grand Cape Mount, Grand Bassa, Bong County, and Nimba, respectively.
Moreover, he said it is their dream that in 2025/2026, handball is played within the fifteen counties of Liberia and also in the National County Meet.
He at the same time appealed to the government through the Ministry of Youths & Sports and the two chairpersons on sports at the Legislature to increase the sporting allotment within the National Budget for sporting federation across the country and for the LNOC to subsidize all Olympic sports in Liberia.https://thenewdawnliberia.com/handball-federation-decries-lack-of-support/—Edited by Winston W. Parley
By Naneka Hoffman