When the word boxing is mentioned in Ghana, the first name that comes to mind is Bukom, the undeveloped urban community in Accra. Since independence, Bukom has created a name for itself as the hub of boxing in Ghana and West Africa, a place where so many Ghanaian boxing legends were born and trained to get to the world level.
Ghanaian boxing legends like Iyke Quartey, Azumah Nelson and Joshua Clottey were all produced by the humble Ga community of Bukom. What makes this feat more surprising and worth praising is the fact that Bukom isn’t known to have modern boxing facilities that exist in other countries, yet it has made use of improvised training equipment like concrete blocks and heavy car tires to produce title-winning champions.
In fact, it is common to go to Bukom and see kids and teenagers of school going age in boxing gyms after school, training hard with the hope of following in the footsteps of the likes of Azumah Nelson and become world champions someday. Children born in Bukom are made to know right from infancy that fighting is a skill that when guided onto the right path could lead one to greatness and riches.
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For this reason teenagers who get into a fight on the streets of Bukom are hardly stopped, as it is believed that is it during these tangos that the talented boxers are discovered and then nurtured to conquer the word.
To reward the community for its production of so many world champions in boxing, the government of Ghana in 2016 commissioned an ultramodern 8000 capacitor boxing arena in the community named Bukom Boxing Arena. While the boxing arena may not be enough to appreciate what the community has done for Ghana in terms of the sports, it reminds everyone that Bukom is the home of boxing in Ghana.
And if ever anyone thought Bukom was done producing world champions, well then you are not far from being wrong. Richard Commey, the current International Boxing Federation (IBF) Lightweight champion is just the latest world champion to come from Bukom and be added to the tall list of champions produced by the community. If ever you embark on tour of Accra, be sure to visit Bukom and have a tour of the town that gave birth to Azumah Nelson, Iyke Quartey and the countless world boxing legends.