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Transportation Ministry denies rumor about taxing cyclists

first_imgThe Transportation Ministry has denied a rumor about the government’s plan to impose a tax on cyclists due the rising popularity of cycling amid the loosening of social restrictions that had been implemented to contain the COVID-19 outbreak.Previously, the ministry’s land transportation director general, Budi Setyadi, said bicycle usage should be regulated through a ministerial or regional head decree amid increasing cycling activities recently.“it is not true that the ministry is currently drafting a regulation on a bicycle tax,” the ministry’s spokesperson Adita Irawati said on Tuesday, as quoted by kompas.com. She added that the ministry was currently drafting a regulation focusing on the safety aspect of cycling as a daily mode of transportation, such as bicycle paths, reflectors and other safety equipment for cyclists.Read also: Urbanites turn to bike riding to beat cabin feverLaw No. 22/20119 on traffic and land transportation categorizes bicycles as non-motorized transportation, which permits the central government and regional administrations to regulate its usage.The Transportation Ministry would demand that regional administrations actively protect cyclists, Adita went on to say.Cycling has become a popular choice of transportation among Jakartans to commute and for exercise.Nongovernmental organization the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP) recorded a tenfold increase in the number of cyclists along Jl. Sudirman in Central Jakarta on June 11 – prompting the Jakarta administration to set up miles of pop-up bike lanes along Jl. Sudirman and Jl. Thamrin in Central Jakarta. (dpk)Topics :last_img read more

Why Arsenal are refusing to trigger Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang contract extension clause

first_imgAdvertisement Why Arsenal are refusing to trigger Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang contract extension clause Arteta is eager to keep Aubameyang at Arsenal for the long term (Picture: Getty Images)Arsenal are believed to be prepared to give Aubameyang a three-year, £250,000-a-week deal, plus bonuses, to convince him to stay at the Emirates.Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is unhappy with the pace of negotiations and wants Aubameyang’s future to be wrapped up as quickly as possible, urging the board to give in to his demands, while the Gabon striker’s decision is not expected to be reliant on Arsenal qualifying for Europe via the FA Cup.MORE: Arsenal offer £23m plus Matteo Guendouzi for Thomas ParteyMORE: Philippe Coutinho makes U-turn over Arsenal decision after rejecting first offerFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page. The Gunners have the option to keep their top scorer until 2022 (Picture: Getty Images)Arsenal have the option to automatically trigger a one-year contract extension for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang but have decided against doing so, according to reports.The Gunners’ top scorer, whose brace against Watford on the final day of the Premier League season took him to 22 goals, is out of contract next summer and Arsenal’s hierarchy have so far been unable to agree fresh terms.There are fears that the north London club will be required to cash in on Aubameyang this summer if he refuses to put pen to paper, rather than risk losing him for nothing in a year’s time. Metro Sport ReporterTuesday 28 Jul 2020 10:39 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link1.9kSharescenter_img Comment Advertisement Only Jamie Vardy scored more Premier League goals than Auba this season (Picture: Getty)However, a fresh report from The Athletic claims Arsenal have a rather stronger position than has previously been portrayed, having included a one-year extension clause in the original deal he signed when he arrived from Borussia Dortmund.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTThis unilateral option to add another 12 months to Aubameyang’s stay can be triggered now, but, rather surprisingly, Arsenal’s decision makers are refusing to do so.Firstly, the clause would require Arsenal to meet ‘punishing’ financial conditions, with the salary Aubameyang would receive being far above what they are able to offer him.More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing ArsenalSecondly, they do not want to hold a player of Aubameyang’s standing at the club against his will and feel it could be damaging to the team’s reputation.Despite the bigger salary the automatic extension would bring, it is also felt that Aubameyang himself would benefit more from the security of a longer term contract.last_img read more

Dutch Pensions Federation: Admin tax at odds with cost-cutting efforts

first_imgThe introduction of VAT in the Netherlands has increased pensions-administration costs by as much as 17% for more than for 5m participants and pensioners, the Pensions Federation has claimed.In a position paper submitted to Parliament, the industry group said the tax policy was at odds with the government’s aim of cutting costs in pensions.The government introduced VAT on pensions-administration provision on 1 January 2015, when it abolished the VAT exemption for pension funds to create a level playing field with insurers.The tax measure, however, does not hit large pension funds, such as the €372bn civil service scheme ABP, the €179bn healthcare scheme PFZW or the €67bn metal scheme PMT. These large schemes make up a “fiscal unit” with providers APG, PGGM and MN, respectively – on account of their being the providers’ only or largest stakeholders.Bram van Els, spokesman for the Federation, said: “This creates uneven effects at pension funds. The extra costs resulting from the VAT levy seem little, but, in the long term, they will come near the level of the expected rights cuts next year, which often comprise a few euros a month.”The Pensions Federation also lamented that VAT was charged on services for defined benefit plans but not defined contribution arrangements.The industry organisation disputed the cited reason for the distinction – that participants in a DC scheme run investment risk, whereas participants in a DB plan supposedly do not.“This conflicts with all other rules, which stipulate that pensions funds must warn their participants of the risks of a DB plan,” Van Els said.The highest court in the Netherlands is now looking into a case, brought by PFZW and Robeco, which have argued that pension funds with a DB plan should be granted a similar VAT exemption as schemes with DC arrangements.last_img read more

Thunderhill Raceway opener this Saturday; huge improvements for 2014

first_imgBy Edward AnschutzSTURGEON BAY, Wis. – One of the nicest racing facilities in Wisconsin readies for the 2014 season opener this Saturday night, May 17 at Thunderhill Raceway brought to you by Dave Hatch Racing and WDOR.Staff and management are crossing their fingers in hopes mother-nature will play nice and allow the men and women to strap in their racers and drop the hammer this weekend. Racing starts at 6 p.m.Track IMCA rep John Sternard is asking drivers to show up early for pre-race tech inspection. Dan Lewis will be on hand for Hot Shot Photos. Track promoter Woody Wodack has worked since championship night last season to make 2014 the best he can for drivers and fans. The hard work and dedication has certainly paid off as drivers will be competing for $28,000 in contingencies that include a boat load of racing parts for every division, thousands in cash and a 602 crate engine. The track known as the “Circle of Death” received a huge makeover for 2014. Hundreds of yards of fresh, premium clay now covers the newly-shaped racing surface. The track was surveyed and laid out with state of the art equipment. All problem spots in the track, namely in turn two and four, were cut out.This will add banking to the exit of each corner, setting it up for late-race passes. The clay was laid out from the top side of the track and worked to the bottom, which will offer drivers a multi-racing groove around the 1/3 mile oval. The track surface was also widened to 75 feet all the way around which will make it easy for three- and four-wide racing action. Thunderhill Raceway features arguably one of the nicest dirt track faculties in Wisconsin: On-track Musco Lighting that makes it look like daytime when night falls; a hard-packed pit area makes easy to work on your race car; the track is also level with the pit area, making it easily to keep up on track conditions or watch racing as if you were in the stands; the PA system is second to none with premium speakers in the stands and in the pit area; and the covered grandstand offers back rests and plenty of leg room. Five divisions do battle every Saturday night through the summer. IMCA Xtreme Motor Sports Modifieds, IMCA Sunoco Stock Cars, Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMods, IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stocks and Street Stocks will compete. For more information, please visit the track’s website at www.racethunderhill.com.Thunderhill Raceway is located at the John Miles Fair Park on Sturgeon Bay’s east side. The track GPS address is 1116 N 15th Pl. For your social media outlet like Thunderhill Raceway on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.last_img read more

Miami Heat lose first playoff game, #1 Bucks win in OT without MVP

first_imgNo sweep for the Miami Heat in the playoffs. Despite entering the playoffs as the NBA’s No. 1 overall seed, the Milwaukee Bucks have prolonged their departure by winning game four in overtime 118-115. Giannis Antetokounmpo aggravated his ankle injury in the second quarter, and was ruled out for the remainder of Game 4.Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo reacts after hurting his ankle during the first half of an NBA conference semifinal playoff basketball game against the Miami Heat Sunday, Sept. 6, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)The Bucks held their own after Giannis left the court, especially Khris Middleton, who scored 22 third-quarter points to keep Milwaukee afloat. After a tight second half, Game 4 is headed to overtime.The Bucks entered Sunday’s Game 4 trailing 3-0, a deficit no NBA team has ever come back from to win a best-of-seven series. Before today’s loss, the Heat were the only unbeaten team in the playoffs at 7-0.last_img read more

Football News Ronaldo signing signals Serie A renaissance: Franco Baresi

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Football News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. London: Cristiano Ronaldo signing for Juventus last year was a shot in the arm for Serie A and bolstered the impression that the league is undergoing a renaissance, Italy and AC Milan legend Franco Baresi told AFP. Baresi, widely considered to be one of the greatest ever defenders, said that Ronaldo’s arrival in Serie A was a clear statement the Italian championship is once again attracting star names.Baresi, who won the European Cup/Champions League three times in his 20 years at Milan, added that it was good for European football that Serie A is becoming a force again.“Yes, there is a renaissance in  Italian football, it is growing again,” said the 58-year-old Baresi, after appearing at the Betting on Football conference at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge ground.“There is significantly more interest and the arrival of some great footballers like Ronaldo.“His signing is a very clear and positive signal. Italian football has always been at a high level but is growing again.“Italian teams are doing well in Europe again, so it is on the up.” In the last six seasons, either Napoli or Roma have finished second in Serie A, but Baresi believes that only the two Milan clubs can hope to end the Juventus dominance of which seems certain to stretch to an eighth straight title this season.Napoli are again the closest challenger but are 15 points adrift. Inter and AC Milan are third and fourth respectively with Roma fifth.“Juve have had an easy time in the last seven or eight years because Milan and Inter have gone through a difficult period with the changing of ownership,” said Baresi, who captained Milan from the age of 22.“But they are the only two teams with the history, the brand, the following and structure while the other two lack some of those elements.”‘We have hope’ While Baresi played for Milan his older brother Giuseppe was an Inter stalwart. When they played each other and it was a “very emotional time” though their parents remained neutral.He says he is impressed at how former Milan hardman midfielder Gennaro Gattuso is faring as coach of his former club.“He went through a difficult time but he is doing a good job, he is doing very, very well,” said Baresi.“The whole team is going well together, all are very focussed in making it into the top four to qualify for the Champions League.” Baresi experienced contrasting World Cup emotions, winning a medal in 1982 though he did not play a game, and missing the first penalty in a shootout loss to Brazil in 1994.He says the resurgence in the league is having a knock-on effect on the national side.Italy was a nation in shock when their team failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup finals but Baresi has confidence in Roberto Mancini.“Mancini has started a project and injected young players of high quality into the squad so we have hope,” he said.Baresi, who says Arrigo Sacchi was the greatest coach he played under due because he was an innovator, said that his favourite current defenders  are Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool and Matthijs de Ligt of Ajax, though he is reluctant to compare them to players of his era.“It is difficult to make comparisons,” he said.“I like van Dijk and de Ligt they are both very strong and very athletic.“Liverpool have grown hugely as a team recently and a lot of that is thanks to van Dijk.”  last_img read more

UW ready for rival MU

first_imgGREGORY DIXON/Herald photoEvery season, several key games seem to be marked on the calendar as dates to keep an eye on for each team. These games are usually rivalry games or games that will have great significance on the outcome of a season.With Wednesday’s game at the McClimon Soccer Complex, the UW men’s soccer team looks to finish off its slate of nonconference rivalries with a win. So far this season, both games with in-state rivals UW-Milwaukee and UW-Green Bay have ended in ties after a combined 220 minutes of play. Sitting at 5-5-3, the Badgers get a chance to improve that record against the Marquette Golden Eagles under the lights tonight.”A win against Marquette would certainly go a long way in terms of not only in-state bragging rights, but also in terms of the big picture — positioning ourselves for a good run down the stretch,” Rohrman said. “Our guys are motivated and know what they need to do now that the Big Ten Tournament is right around the corner.”Wisconsin, fresh off a tough 2-1 loss Saturday against Ohio State, has only scored two goals in its last four games. Since the offensive explosion of four goals in a shutout of Northern Illinois three weeks ago, the offense has been having a lot of trouble finishing, a trend that seemed to have come to an end just 10 minutes into its game versus Ohio State.”That first goal definitely gave us some momentum and confidence. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to clear the ball in certain instances and that put a little more pressure than we would have liked on the defense,” Rohrman said.One of the positive things taken out of the loss to the Buckeyes this weekend was the improved offensive play of the Badger forwards. Sophomore Brandon Miller and junior Victor Diaz got the start up top and made their presence known right away.”We found that even though (Diaz and Miller) had never played with each other up top, they seemed to complement each other very well,” Rohrman said. “They certainly showed themselves to be a very dangerous tandem in the final third, whether it is individually or playing off of each other. And when you can throw in a guy like (sophomore midfielder) Pablo Delgado in there as well, you’ve got a lot of skill moving forward with the ball.”Hopefully for the Badgers, a couple more days with the new formation will prove to be just what they need, despite their current three-game losing streak. The Golden Eagles have been in one of the worst scoring slumps in the nation, however, only managing two goals in their last eight contests. In terms of their overall results, Wisconsin and Marquette are remarkably similar, as both teams have beaten Northern Illinois, tied UW-Green Bay, and lost to Northwestern as well as Drake, leading to the belief that this matchup will certainly be exciting for the fans in Madison tonight.With only four games left in the regular season before the team heads off to East Lansing for the annual Big Ten Tournament, look for Wisconsin to show the crowd at McClimon tonight why this particular matchup is ready to be checked off the list and crossed off the board.last_img read more

5th Kwara Open Tees-off Tuesday with Professionals’ RoundÂ

first_imgProfessional golfers from across the country would converge at Ilorin Golf Club from Monday November 6, 2017 for the official practice round ahead of the 5th Kwara Open that tees-off Tuesday.The Director of the Professional Golfers’ Association of Nigeria, Samson Lawal has assured of the full assembly of top ranked Nigerian professionals to be available for the 72-holes championship.“We are glad Kwara Open is making its return to our calendar. We thank Governor (Abdufattah)Ahmed for keeping to his words, during the closing ceremony of Kwara at 50 Open Golf tournament, and recently, when we paid him a courtesy call; to revive the event. I believe the peace that exists in the state and the hospitality of the good people of Kwara State would be  factors that will pull our members down for this event.”  He said.The tournament  would be a ranking event, where professionals will be looking to pick up points for ranking on the PGA of Nigeria’s Order of Merit. The event is sponsored by the BUA Group, Sterling Bank Plc, Medview Airlines,  Airtel and the Kwara State Government.Top among players expected at the event include, Sunday Odegha, the nation’s number one ranked golfer, Oche Odoh, Nigeria’s only player with World ranking points. Others are Daniel Pam, former number one player and winner of the maiden IMEGA regional qualifier, Sunday Olapade, homeboys Mustapha Aminu and Kabiru Mohammed.Top category one players are also billed to feature along with professional players, while category two players, veteran players, ladies and guest players would be wrapping up the event on Saturday November 11thand Sunday 12th after 36 holes round of play in their respective categories.The CEO of the company saddled with marketing and organising the event, Luqman Owolewa, informed that the event has already generated interests across the West African region as some notable golfers from neighbouring countries have sent in entries to be part of the tournament.“We have entries for the event from some countries including Ghana and Togo among others and we would be glad to host them and further establish Kwara State as the golf hub in the region.” he said.Captain of the Club, Mr Lai Maliki said the course is in good shape and the club facility is ready to host golfers for the week.“The course is in fantastic shape and I am sure the players will enjoy every bit of play in the condition it is presently”. He said.Amateur entries have come in from MicCom Golf and Country Club, Ada, Ibadan Golf Club, Minna Cantonment Golf Club, Ekiti Golf Club, Ikeja Golf Club, Ikoyi Golf Club, Abeokuta Golf Club, Benin Golf Club, Kano Golf Club and Kaduna Golf Club among others. Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Stabbed by Patriotism: The D.K. Poison story

first_imgChapter Two: A date with DestinyWith an enviable bout record of 20 wins in 22 fights including 12 K.O.’s and 2 draws, his thirst for a larger slice of the pie grew stronger and so with manager Sammy Doherty in his wake he left Ghana and settled in Melbourne and later Sydney in Australia.His reputation as one who ended careers had spread so wide that not a single opponent he considered worthy was willing to fight him.DK PoisonHe had to make do with a bunch of journeymen in the twilight of the careers.The situation was so bad that Commonwealth Champion of Australia at the time George Toure declined an invitation to fight Poison despite the latter offering his purse to the champ.The situation became dire he and his manager departed for the United States of America where they encountered a similar situation after he had campaigned to fight between 1973 and 1974 with no luck.His manager Sam Doherty decided to play his final card by travelling to the United Kingdom to convince Jack Solomons, promoter of the first-ever world title bout in Ghana in 1964 to play the chess game of boxing matchmaking in their honour.He obliged to take on the challenge of getting D. K Poison a shot at the world featherweight title but only under the condition that the State of Ghana would fund all the bout expenses.Hungry and unrelenting in his will to fight for a world title Poison devised a plan to speak to the State about his intentions.After several key conversations he hit the right notes with the right people including Colonel Nkegbe, Ghana’s Commissioner for Education, Culture and Sports as well as the late Justice D.F Annan.Through them, a boxing syndicate was created, and finally, the wheels were in motion.His world title ambitions coincided with those of then military Head of State General Kutu Acheampong who viewed sports and specifically D.K. Poison as a great opportunity to legitimize his rule and also gain the popular support of the people.Gen. Acheampong receiving D.K Poison as he presents the Commonwealth trophy and plaque donated by H.P Nyemitei,also on hand is Col. Simpe AsanteBefore the syndicate could secure him a shot at the world title, the bureaucracies of the process angered Sammy Doherty who abandoned his boxer midway and returned to his country, but it didn’t matter.Because the boy who had been inspired by newspapers, disapproving parents and a career that looked to have hit a snag would finally have the opportunity to take his talents to the highest possible level.D.K. Poison had been presented with the third opportunity to finally win Ghana a world boxing title where Love Allotey and Floyd Klutei Robertson had failed.He was set to fight Reuben “Rockabye” Olivares in his title defence on September 5th 1975 at the Forum in California.Upon arrival with his entourage, which also included his wife in the United States, he would soon discover that the path to a world title was more than a mere 15 round fistfight.Camp Olivares had never witnessed this much talked about African box but were keen to avoid any surprises while gaining a psychological edge in the process.“They refused me a proper gym in the beginning and asked that I train outside in the cold so they could examine my fighting style, but I refused and insisted on the right thing being done until they put me in a proper gym with a heating system.Even then, they sent several boxers of theirs to spar with me, but I was smart and didn’t give away much about my skills.They dismissed me as a hungry boxer from Africa looking to make some quick money,” he indicated.Olivares even dared to make jokes about Poison based on inside information he had gathered.“At the official bout presser, Olivares had found out that I liked to go to bed by 8pm regardless of what I was doing and joked that he would put me to sleep and knock me out by the 8th round.“I told him that his belt would soon be mine.” He smiled.In a last-ditch attempt to knock off his focus they sent beautiful and seductively dressed women to his hotel room a day before the bout, but he remained steadfast.“They sent some beautiful girls to tempt me, and some of them could speak English, so I told them that as for my manhood, I had left it in Africa,” he revealed while laughing.The bout itself proved an easier task than the process of actually getting there.He knocked Olivares down 3 times and dominated him all throughout the fight while the referees ignored and failed to dock points from his opponent for several illegal punches.Ruben OlivaresThe victory for the Ghanaian was so glaring that the crowd at the Forum begun throwing missiles into the ring in disgust that their favourite had lost.So tense was the atmosphere at the Forum that D.K. Poison was not immediately declared the winner but rather whisked away to a quiet room somewhere in the arena.After an hour, when tempers had subsided, he was finally declared the winner and a world champion.He earned an amount of 7,000 USD but believes he should have picked up a purse of 15,000 USD along with his belt which would eventually arrive in Ghana three weeks later.Nonetheless, he had forever etched his name in the history books of the sport and was ready to return home.“When we arrived in Ghana, I was overwhelmed by the crowd that awaited us because I had never seen anything like it in my life.I experienced mix feelings, and before I could hold myself, tears were rolling down my face.Ghanaians had lined up right from the airport through the principal streets, through UTC and then to the Castle,”He jokingly admitted that the act of waving at the crowd for an hour was harder than the bout against Olivares.The biggest shock, however, came upon arrival at the Castle, where he saw his parents, the same ones that had bastardized and ostracized him for his career choice.They were dressed in fine clothes and with beaming faces sipped on champagne to celebrate his conquest.He would go on to successfully defend his belt against Uehara Flipper and Shig Fukuyama both from Japan.It was after his bout with Fukuyama that his tussle with his managers, the State of Ghana, over money would begin. Chapter One: AlphaThe olive green leather couch was weathered, but he sat in it like a king, slightly slumped with his head cocked back and his right arm held close to his face, fist mildly clenched.His eyelids tended to shut when he spoke, almost as though he wanted to snooze off.Still, when he rose to his feet to demonstrate a ring scenario, he moved with the agility of a cat, and when he swung an arm, all in the room exchanged looks of shock.There stood D.K. Poison, nimble and durable as ever, ready to walk us through his journey.Behind him, high up the wall, hung his soul and pride, the first-ever world boxing title that Ghana could call its own.It was green and made of leather that had seen better days, it lacked the glint and sparkle of the present-day titles, and as we picked it up to examine, he poked fun at how it could have used some real gold in it.It would bring him joy and adventure beyond his wildest dreams but would also plunge him into a dark place.The living room itself was adorned with so many heirlooms and citations gathered on his sacred journey, it had the feel of a museum about it.Before he wore gloves before his prize money was hijacked by an entire nation to allegedly purchase mackerel for the State, before he sunk into depression and cut off the world he was on his way to becoming an electrical technician.The quality of his own decisions, however, would turn a rather ordinary and even mundane existence into one that would be documented years down the line.He received his technical education at the Government Boys secondary school now Kinbu Junior High but dropped out midway through the process which according to him, was way too lengthy.Belonging to a large family with seven other siblings, Kotei’s boxing journey did not start at a young age nor in Bukom, the famous suburb in the heart of Accra which has churned out a good number of Ghana’s World Champions.He was born and bred in Adabraka before his large family moved to Nima.It was on that fateful day, when he and his friends huddled around the daily sports newspapers, gloating over the photograph of Joseph Kpakpo Allotey, that something within him snapped.“During our school days, some of us always bought the newspapers, and the first page we always opened was the sports page.“We opened the paper on one of such days and saw a boxer who said he was going to defend his title.“The guy was so small, his name was Bob Allotey.Bob Allotey “I told my friends that if this guy has a title, then I am going to become a boxer and also become a champion.“From then I found a pole and an old military sack which I stuffed and started doing my own thing,” he revealed on The Tracker on Citi TV.At the time he was already 17 years old and had never even seen the inside of a boxing gym, but his own defiance and ambition told him that a life spent fixing electrical gadgets while stressing over negative and positive terminals was not his calling.The decision to act on this inspiration would create a chasm between him and his parents, who incessantly made their displeasure known that their backyard would not become a makeshift gym.He was labelled a vagabond by his old man and their relationship deteriorated to the point where he was compelled to move from home and take up residence with a friend in Lagos town (New Town).It all finally begun to come together for him as he established contact with his first-ever gym, the J.K Mensah boxing club in Kotobaabi with Joe Tetteh as his trainer.His technique and progression within the short spell he had been in the gym shocked his trainers.“They started me right from scratch and had me doing nothing but basic techniques of shadow boxing in my first two weeks, and then in my third week, they asked me to put all I had learnt into practice.“They didn’t believe that I had never boxed in my life before,” he stated.He kept training and seeking a shot until he signed a contract of 3 GHC to fight Famous Lartey in his first-ever professional bout at the Accra Sports Stadium.He went on to annex the featherweight title in 1966 in 6 rounds and followed it up with another devastating performance against Hassan Taher for the African Union Boxing title in a bout that lasted only one round.He confessed that had he been savvier about the political workings of the boxing industry he would have sidestepped certain bouts including the Commonwealth title bout against Scot, David Armstrong in search of World glory.Nonetheless, he had become the complete dominant force of the sport in the land, so much so that he had to vacate his title due to a lack of willing opponents.center_img Chapter Three: A lonely placeHe had barely started basking in the euphoria of the night, a successful title defence against Fukuyama when he was pulled aside by the head of delegation Colonel John Slater from the rest of the crowd who could not get enough of him.It happened at the Ghana embassy in Tokyo, two hours after the fight, at a party thrown in his honour or perhaps to condition him for what was to come.It was then that he was informed not asked, that a portion of his purse to the amount of 45,000 USD would be taken away to alleviate the dire needs of a nation.Here he was, surrounded by politicians and underworld figures from the world of combat sports in faraway Asia, agitated but helpless to prevent a situation that would become cancerous to his existence.“In the business of boxing, the promoter always deals with the manager when it comes to the details.“You could sign a contract in their presence, but later they will agree on things that did not appear in the documents.After the fight, the promoter hands the check to your manager and not you the boxer, so it was given to Colonel Slater.They didn’t tell me how much of my purse would be deducted until I got to Ghana,” he revealed.D.K. Poison had suspected foul play with these dealings from the get-go.To become a boxer eligible to be called a World Champion; however, he couldn’t do it on his own.Due to the system of governance that was run at the time, it was obvious that his only shot at a world title would have to be fully sponsored by his country.Perhaps the government of Ghana, his managers felt a sense of entitlement to him and his talent in a way that he still doesn’t appear to have come to terms with.“I thought you gave the money to the state for free.”Nathan Quao, then first aid to President Jerry John Rawlings in the early and mid-nineties innocently retorted as he requested to be paid back.His trips to sitting governments to present evidence had become routine and also more depressing each passing time.He always carried the original copy of the telex of the transaction done through Barclays bank on which the amount of 30,000 USD which had been paid into his account was boldly written.Acheampong who instigated everything gave him tales of reassurance and the run around until he passed away.The Rawlings administration had clearly told him that Ghana was grateful for his benevolence, they didn’t mince words.Under the Mahama government, he was handed an amount of 1,500 Ghc to use as transportation home. He promised a follow-up meeting which never materialized.But the real heartbreak and disrespect of his greatness occurred when he made an appearance in the latter days of the sittings of the Dzamefe Commission.The Black Stars 2014 scandal was the main agenda. Still, such commissions also had the power to rectify through policies and recommendations other discrepancies within Ghana’s sports structure.He was barely audible as he struggled to talk through a crowd of media men jostling for position with their tripods at the rear of the press room, they barely recognized him.He used colonial day words like Tinapa and Telex while summarizing his story, the modern generation could not even relate to those.The entire scene reeked of desperation and anarchy, attributes that were alien and could never occupy the same room with D.K. Poison.Unfortunately, that had become his story.Living in isolation and subtle anger in a house that shows signs of its old grandeur but needed its old shine just like it’s master.Until people like Ekow Asmah, writer and former publicist of Ike Quartey took it upon himself to nurture the champ into a state of mind where he felt connected to the society and his country again.He is currently waiting to follow up on a petition for his money from the current government.Bureaucracy can be a bastard, but somewhere in that complicated maze human effort and compassion should be put into giving this hero his 45,000 USD while we still can.It’s more than legal tender to him, it will represent a sign of justice and diligence.Ironically he believes that all the success and frustrations were written into his story by his maker.“I believe it was my destiny to become a world champion.“I believe that this situation with my money is also my destiny”, he said rather casually.World glory had brought noise, both pleasant and unpleasant, but now it was time to return to his life of solitude.Tucked away between the wall and some paint buckets was an old black fading punching bag.He confessed that he brought it out when he needed to give his grandson some pointers on the noble sport.He smiled as he said it.He still loves it with all his heart.last_img read more