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General News
May 9 Memorial Walk Today 5/9/2008

Former Kumasi Asante Kotoko CEO, Mr. Herbert Mensah, leads football fans, officials of Accra Hearts of Oak and Kotoko, and family members of victims of the May 9 tragedy on a peace walk today to commemorate the seventh anniversary of the darkest day in Ghana football that resulted in the death of 126 soccer fans at the Ohene Djan Stadium.

The May 9 memorial peace walk commences this morning at 6.00 am from the Nima Police Station to the Ohene Djan Stadium for a short memorial ceremony in front of the May 9 monument at the stadium''s main entrance.

Officials of the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports, National Sports Council CEO, Mr Ernest Prince Oduro-Mensah, and representatives of the clubs will give addresses during the ceremony at the May 9 cenotaph. After the walk and memorial, there will be Moslem prayers at the Central Mosque at Abossey Okai later in the afternoon (1.00 PM).

The horrifying scenes of May 9, 2001, during an ill-tempered league match between the nation''s two leading clubs took place during Mr Mensah''s tenure as Kotoko boss, and he was personally involved in evacuating the injured and dead from the horror stair wells of the stadium to the hospital after the stampede.

Even after his exit, Mr Mensah has taken time each year to mourn with some of the bereaved families, a personal crusade that saw him paying an emotional visit last Friday to families of the victims in Kumasi. Accompanied by a director of Hearts, Alhaji Sulemana Braimah (Alhaji Hearts), Mr Mensah used the occasion of the visit to donate food items and an unspecified amount of money to the families after which they joined Moslems at the Kumasi Central Mosque for prayers.

Mr Mensah, who is currently the Managing Consultant for Prosport Ghana, told the Daily Graphic that he has never forgotten the horror images that greeted him on that fateful day, and his involvement in the memorial is to ensure the memories of the victims are not forgotten as Ghanaians take steps to prevent a recurrence of that tragedy.
Source: Daily Graphic

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