Ghana?s Paralympics team captain Raphael Nkegbe Botsyo is a man who has overcome countless challenges and trials to become a winner.

Though neglected, cheated and ridiculed, he is not bitter; nor is he angry at anyone or himself for that matter. ?It is time for us to really move ahead with disability sports in Ghana,? he said.

Botsyo is content with life but he wants more for his sports and has declared that the future of Paralympics in Ghana can be transformed if the right steps are taken now. Speaking to TV3 Sports, the 35-year-old veteran athlete was bursting with praises for the Right to Dream Academy?s unflinching support, counseling and sponsorship.

Botsyo is categorical in his belief that the NGO run by Englishman Tom Vernon has made it possible for Ghana?s para-athletes to genuinely compete against the best in the world.

?I do not know what we would have done without the backing of Tom, Anna and the rest of the RTD team because since they took up our plight they have been with us from day one.?

The Ghanaian missed out on a final place in the Men?s T54 wheelchair event when he finished 7th in a powerful field of racers at the Olympic Stadium. His time of 15:52 was not good enough to beat China?s Liu Yang, Holland?s Van Wheegael and Konchen Saichon of Thailand.

Yet typically, he has no regrets, saying, ??racing in front of 80,000 spectators is not something that happens often and I wish I could have qualified but I tried my best.?

With the experience gained from over a decade of competitions, the Paralympian said ??now is the time to really put our house in order and start grooming the next generation of physically challenged athletes.?

A veteran of two Commonwealth Games, two All Africa Games, World Championships and three Olympics (Athens, Beijing and London), Botsyo could be a key figure to mapping out a five-year development plan.

The reality however is that until we are serious with this agenda, it will take ?Ghanaian? foreigner like Tom Vernon to continue to fan the flame they themselves have lit.

Another name that immediately springs to mind and deserves tons of praise is the American Jane Driscol, eight-time winner of the Boston Marathon. His efforts have seen Eagle Sports in Atlanta, USA, supplying hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of equipment to Ghanaian athletes.

In 2016, one can foresee young talents in the CT-7 aside football event being recruited from the Akropong School for the Blind.

Paralympic Team Ghana can confidently present far more than the four athletes who were sent to London 2012.

There is only one catch?..Ghana must start preparing now!

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