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Victory Before the Match: Ghana’s Black Queens Secure Overdue Bonuses Ahead

Ghana's women's football team, the Black Queens, will receive overdue bonuses of $7,500 each before their Olympic qualifier against Zambia, dispelling boycott rumors and highlighting government support for women's sports.

The Black Queens of Ghana are set to receive their long-overdue bonuses ahead of their crucial 2024 Olympic Games qualifier against Zambia.

This announcement comes as a relief and a sign of respect for the athletes who have diligently represented their nation on the international stage.

The Black Queens have outstanding earnings amounting to $7,500 each, accumulated from their victories in the past year, spanning qualifiers for both the Olympics and the 2024 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations.

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Gifty Oware-Mensah, the chair of the Black Queens management committee, has confirmed that the sports ministry is expected to disburse these funds by Thursday afternoon, just in time before the team’s pivotal match.

Addressing concerns of repeated delays in bonus payments, Oware-Mensah remarked on the historical context of such issues, noting that it is not uncommon for there to be a lag in compensating the players. However, she emphasized the ministry’s promise to settle the dues in full this time around, highlighting the government’s recognition of the athletes’ worth and contributions.

Amidst swirling rumors of a potential boycott of the upcoming qualifier in Accra, Oware-Mensah clarified that such speculation stemmed not from the players themselves but from the passionate support of the Ghanaian public on social media. Concerned citizens voiced their belief that the athletes deserved timely payment of their bonuses, sparking a national conversation about the treatment of female athletes. However, after direct discussions with the team, no intentions of a boycott were expressed, and the camp atmosphere remained focused and tension-free.

In a show of solidarity and support, Ghana Football Association (GFA) president Kurt Simeon-Okraku and youth and sports minister Mustapha Yusif met with the squad, reassuring them of the government’s dedication to not only clearing the outstanding bonuses but also to the broader support of women’s football in Ghana. Yusif’s assurance to the players was a pivotal moment, reinforcing the ministry’s obligation to honor its commitments to its athletes.

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The forthcoming match against Zambia is more than just a game; it’s a testament to the resilience and dedication of the Black Queens and a reminder of the critical role that timely financial compensation plays in professional sports.

As Ghana prepares to potentially face either Tunisia or Morocco in April for a spot at Paris 2024, the resolution of the bonus payments issue marks a significant step forward in fostering a supportive and equitable environment for women’s sports in the country.

This incident has not only highlighted the challenges faced by female athletes in securing fair treatment and compensation but also showcased the power of community advocacy in pushing for change.

SourceBBC

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