President Akufo-Addo has directed the Minister of Sports, Isaac Asiamah, to payback US$45,000 that Ghana’s first-ever boxing world champion, David Kotei, loaned to the country in 1976.
In a letter dated September 28, 2020, signed by the Executive Secretary to the President, Nana Bediatuo Asante, President Akufo-Addo has directed that the money be paid to the man who is popularly known as D.K. Poison. The President claims his order was on “compassionate grounds,” for a veteran boxer who has been virtually rendered penniless by the refusal of all successive government to settle their debt to the boxer.
“With reference your letter … dated 17th June, 2020, I write to convey the approval of the President of the Republic for an amount of Forty-Five Thousand United States Dollars (US$45,000.00) to be paid to Mr David Kotei (a.k.a. D.K. Poison) on compassionate grounds.
“By a copy of this letter, the Ministry of Finance is requested to take the necessary action to give effect to this directive. Please accept the President’s best wishes,” the letter read.
D.K. Poison, now 69, became Ghana’s first boxing world champion when he defeated then Champion, Reuben Oliveres by split points in a15 round bout in Inglewood, California, USA.
In 1976, he loaned US$45,000 out of his US$75,000 winning to the Ignatius Kutu Acheampong government.
And for Forty-four years the loan remained unpaid by successive governments.
Last year October, he met President Akufo-Addo and reiterated his appeal for his money. The President promised to see to it that the issue is settled. Hence the 28the September 2020 directive.
However, the US$45,000 of 1976 could be anything in the region of over US$ 1 million if inflation is taken into account.