Cameroon’s Minister of Sports and Physical Education, Narcisse Mouelle Kombi, has been criticized for not attending the opening ceremony of Francis Ngannou’s martial arts complex inaugurated on Tuesday June, 27, 2023 in Douala, Cameroon. The complex is the first of its kind in the country and it is dedicated to the training of young martial artists.
The opening ceremony was attended by local dignitaries and members of the public, but Prof Mouelle Kombi was a notable absentee. His absence has been met with widespread criticism, with many people questioning his commitment to the development of sports in Cameroon.
“It is a shame that the minister of sports could not find the time to attend such an important event,” said one Cameroonian Twitter user. “Ngannou is a national hero, and he deserves to be treated with respect.”
Ngannou, who left Cameroon at the age of 26 to pursue his dream of becoming a UFC champion, has said that he hopes the complex will help to inspire other young Cameroonians to pursue their dreams.
“I hope this complex will show young people in Cameroon that anything is possible if you work hard and never give up on your dreams,” Ngannou said. “I am proud to be from Cameroon, and I hope this complex will help to put Cameroon on the map as a major player in the world of martial arts.”
Despite the controversy, Ngannou remains optimistic about the future of martial arts in Cameroon. He believes that the complex he has built will help to inspire the next generation of Cameroonian martial artists.
“I am confident that this complex will help to create a new generation of Cameroonian champions,” Ngannou said. “I am proud to be a part of this project, and I am committed to helping to make Cameroon a major player in the world of martial arts.”
The controversy surrounding Minister’s absence from the opening ceremony is a reminder of the challenges facing the development of sports in Cameroon. The country has a wealth of sporting talent, but it lacks the infrastructure and support necessary to nurture that talent. It is hoped that the opening of Ngannou’s martial arts complex will help to change this.
By Washira Helene