Story and photos by David Finger

The 26th Annual WBO Congress officially kicked off Tuesday morning at the InterContinental Hotel in downtown Budapest as boxing insiders from around the world came to celebrate some of the exciting developments in the World Boxing Organization in 2013. The event kicked off with roll call, followed by an invocation. After approving the prior minutes from the 2012 Convention, the congress moved forward with the regional Vice President’s reports. Starting off was Vice President Mark Reels, who did reports from the NABO and the WBO Intercontinental. Although the NABO and the WBO Intercontinental both saw a slight drop in activity it still was a productive and profitable year for the regional organizations.

The NABO held an impressive 12 championship fights (with revenue of $46,760) while the Intercontinental held 20 championship fights (with a revenue of $68,560). Reels also discussed the success of the WBO in developing world class fighters. Reels discussed how the NABO has seen 54 of the 262 fighters who fought for the belt subsequently fight for the WBO title. Although Reels downplayed the statistic, expressing a desire to see that number rise, it nonetheless impressed many at the table, with President Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel calling it “impressive.”

“Our issue is with quality over quantity,” Reels said during his presentation, “we have criteria for a fighter who is able to fight for a title.” Reels, however, did want to see some leniency on the issue of fighters getting sanctioned for NABO and WBO InterContinental fights, noting some good fighters who technically fell short of the high standards set by the WBO in regards to qualifications. President Valcarcel expressed concern over the idea.

Still, with all 15 NABO championship fights since last year’s convention being televised by a major TV network, Reels had an impressive year by nearly any standard. “As far as activity levels go, it is low,” Reels added, “but we really are recognized the world over.” Reels then discussed the revenue of the Intercontinental, confirming that the WBO Intercontinental collected over $40,000 of the $68,560 income in 2013.

From there Vice President Istvan “Koko” Kovacs presented his report on the WBO Europe. Although he admitted it was a “quiet year” he still was happy to announce that it Iwas still a productive year for the European continent. There were 13 Intercontinental title fights, with 9 taking place in Europe. There were also 14 International title fights, with 9 taking place in Europe, as well as 11 WBO European title fights. There were 6 WBO Youth title fights, with 4 taking place in Europe, 21 female title fights, with 5 taking place in Europe, and 32 world title fights with 10 taking place in Europe. Overall the WBO had 29 fights in Europe, a drop from 38 the previous year. WBO Europe’s revenue in 2013 was $40,500. Kovacs also commented on the previous issue with the British Boxing Board, commenting on how the WBO no longer has any problems working with the BBB. The BBB refused to recognize the WBO in previous years.

Next was Vice President Jorge Molina’s report on the WBO Latino. Molina admitted it had been a “hard year” for the Latino, with “only 25 Latino title fights in 10 months.” Still, Molina was able to point to the WBO Latino’s proud tradition and was able to proudly say that the WBO Latino continued that tradition in 2013. “#7 WBO Latino Champions became world champions,” Molina said, “and four of our WBO Latino champions have become world title holders (this year).” The WBO Latino raised $26,000 in the 25 title fights since the last convention, with 13 planned title fights to round out the year.


From there a short video on the WBO’s widely successful WBO Kids Drug Free program was shown.

Next was Andrew Smalle’s WBO Africa regional report. Smalle admitted it was a slow year, with 7 WBO Africa fights since the last convention. From November of 2012 to December of 2012 there were three title fights, with revenue of $5,050. From January of 2013 to August of 2013 there were 4 WBO Africa title fights with revenue of $4,800. However, Smalle confirmed that additional income was expected as some sponsorship allocation was expected to kick in before the end of the year. Smalle also commented on the WBO’s commitment to high standards for the quality of the fighters who compete for the WBO African belt. Smalle’s commitment to the highest standards for WBO title fights has resulted in a lower number of championship fights, but also of a growing reputation in the continent.

“It’s been a challenge but I don’t see it as a negative at all,” Smalle admitted, “it can only go up from where it’s at now. We are a young organization, and one of our proudest moments was one of our fighters winning a championship earlier this year.” Smalle noted that despite the low activity, the WBO Africa’s high standard has resulted in it being the only regional African organization that has seen all of its champions ranked in the world rankings after winning a regional belt.

Next came Leon Panoncillo’s report from WBO Asia. Similar to the other organizations WBO Asia saw a slight decline in revenue, but it has continued its commitment to quality. Since the last convention the Asia-Pacific held 14 championship fights, raising $27,700. Panoncillo also anticipated holding 10 more fights before the end of the year. The WBO Oriental title had 5 fights, with 8 more planned for the end f other year. The WBO Asia Pacific Youth title had three title fights, raising $3,750. Although Panoncillo admitted that the Youth title has “not taken off” he was optimistic that a major Filipino television network was interested in partnering up with the WBO Asia-Pacific to award a youth belt to the winner of a “Contender” like reality series involving young prizefighters in the Philippines. Panoncillo’s biggest coup came with the exciting developments of his newest title: the WBO International championship. In just one year the WBO International title has become a highly prestigious belt, with Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios fighting for the vacant belt in Macao on November 24th. Panoncillo confirmed that the WBO has custom made a new belt for the winner of that fight.

The next report came from Zhang Tao on the China Zone. Although the WBO China Zone held only 7 fight shows, the WBO is still making headway into the world’s largest market, and Tao informed the board that he looked forward to hosting the WBO in China. Joe Hernandez then spoke of the Cuban boxing scene, and his desire that the situation in Cuba would soon open up. “When it (Cuba) does come free, the WBO will be at the forefront.”

Markus Aslani followed with his report on female boxing in the WBO. He proudly announced that the WBO had a good year, with an emphasis on quality in regards to female championship fights.

After lunch there was a brief discussion on ratings by Luis Perez, followed by a report by Luis Bautista Salas, which not only focused on “loyalty” but also discussed the successful year of the WBO, with 54 total championship fights (33 men’s championship fights and 21 female championship fights). There was a brief discussion on the growth of the WBO in the British boxing scene.

“We have good working relations and we want to see how we can continue this in the future,” President Valcarcel said.

A discussion from representatives from the Japan Boxing Commission followed, which was a clear sign of the WBO’s success in breaking into a new market. At the last congress in Budapest in 2009 there was a controversy over the WBO’s inability to operate in Japan. The growth in Japan since then was a clear victory for the WBO as it moved forward in Japan.

Next came the legal report, in which the WBO legal representatives discussed several pending legal issues. Several issues regarding trademark registration was discussed, with several brands extended into 2018. They then followed up with a discussion on the recent litigation in Puerto Rico. Some confusion emerged in 2012 in regards to the administrative level, with the Puerto Rican Department of treasury moving forward with legal action against the WBO in regards to its tax exempt status.

“It’s confusion over what we actually do,” one of the legal advisors for the WBO said, “It’s a lack of knowledge of the working issues of the organization.” Although the WBO is confident that they will prevail, several members understood that even if they do not prevail in litigation, it will have little major impact on the WBO. If there is an issue we will simply change the way we disperse funds,” one legal advisor of the WBO said.

Rounding off Day One, WBO President Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel gave a special shout out to WBO Asia Vice President Leon Panoncillo over the impressive developments in Macao and the Philippines.

“We control Asia from A to Z,” Valcarcel said, “everything that occurring Asia is very important to us.”

Rounding off the night, boxing insiders visited the Lázár Lovaspark, where they were delighted by a traditional Hungarian horseshow as well as a traditional Hungarian dinner.

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After successfully making a second defence of his WBO Africa Light Heavyweight belt, albeit controversially against Sweden based Ugandan Hamza Wandera, Braimah Kamoko has indicated his readiness to take on the big boys in the division in world boxing.

Banku claimed a 3rd round TKO to secure his win number 23 in 23 professional fights, but it was not without sweat. Wandera had boldly predicted beforehand that he was going to end the Ghanaian nicknamed Bukom Banku’s unbeaten record. Wandera served notice of his intention by scoring a knockdown of Kamoko in the very first round, the first time the Ghanaian showman had ever visited the canvas in his career.

But the unbeaten Bukom Banku bounced back in style and dominated Wandera for the rest of the fight until the Ugandan refused to continue fighting in the 3rd round following complaints that he had been fouled by the Ghanaian boxer. Referee Roger Barnor had no choice than to declare Kamoko the winner.

Even though Wandera has consequently declared his wish for a rematch with international referee and judges, Bukom Banku is less likely to pursue such option because the unbeaten Ghanaian is keen on becoming world champion.

“I’m not sitting down, I’m going forward. I’m going to fight (WBO Light heavyweight champ Nathan) Cleverly for world title. I’ve set a perfect record in my country, now I have to go international.
And I’m more than ready,” the highly eccentric Kamoko indicated after the fight.


By Prince Dornu-Leiku



Ghanaian boxer Braimah Kamoko a.k.a Bukom Banku had to hit the scales twice this on Friday morning before securing the green card to defend his WBO Africa light heavyweight titles against his Namibian opponent Hamza Wandera at the Accra Sports Stadium on Saturday.

Bukom Banku failed to meet the required 175 pound weight limit for that category when he exceeded it during the weigh in.

An official of the World Boxing Organization, who was present, ordered it had to be done again after two hours. The Ghanaian boxer was left with his fate in his own hands as he had no option but to lose a couple of pounds in order to keep his title. This means Kamoko would have lost his titles ahead of the fight, if he had failed to meet the required weight expected by the association.

The Ghanaian boxer would have only fought for mere formality and a win would not have still changed the decision to strip him off his titles.
Kamoko was, however, able to shed of a couple of pounds after an hour of intense running and returned to the scales to make the weight.

Meanwhile, his Namibian opponent has rubbished the Ghanaian boxer’s wrath by saying he will send him packing. Bukom Banku also appealed to the Vice President John Dramani Mahama to be present at the Accra Sports Stadium to watch the fight.




When he began his professional career in 2003, Wilberforce Shihepo started out on a sour note, losing his professional debut against Sydwell Mokhoro. He would later get on track, winning six of his next seven bouts. In 2006, he got his first regional title shot against Stanyslav Kashtanov for the WBC Youth World Super Middleweight title. Unfortunately, Shihepo had to retire due to cuts he suffered during the fight. It was not until 2011 when Shihepo would get another opportunity for a title. This time it was for the interim WBO Africa Super Middleweight title. The “Black Mamba” would not disappoint this time. He won a technical decision over Donald Kampamba. Since capturing the WBO Africa Super Middleweight crown, Shihepo has made one defense of his title, and two successful non-title bouts. His most recent came against Jonas Olah. He stopped Jonas Olah of Hungary in the 1st round in a fight which took place in Offenburg, Germany – on 14th January 2012… This takes his fight record to (17-6-0)…Wilberforce is trained and managed by Nestor Tobias – of Nestor Sunshine Boxing Academy…

WINDHOEK – Namibia’s World Boxing Organization (WBO) Africa Super Middleweight champion and world champion prospect, Wilbeforce Shihepo, made short work of his bout against Janos Olah, at the Baden Arena, Offenburg, Germany on Saturday evening.

The “Black Mamba”, as the hard-punching Shihepo is affectionately known among his followers in Namibia, enjoyed one of his easiest paydays. He twice floored his Hungarian opponent with a vicious right within the opening two minutes of the first round of their non-title bout.

The Namibian was in mean mood and signalled his intentions very early in the opening round as he pounded the Hungarian with a combination of punches that left his opponent in serious pain, but the referee had seen enough.

He came to the Hungarian’s rescue by stopping the contest as Olah could no longer sustain the vicious onslaught from the giant Namibian and rightfully abbreviated the bout by declaring a technical knock-out (TKO) in favour of Shihepo.

The victory extended Shihepo’s (28) record in the paid ranks to 18 wins from 26 bouts, with a remarkable 15 stoppages. His handler Nestor “Sunshine” Tobias could not heap enough praise on the flamboyant boxer and told New Era Sports that he is currently locked in advanced negotiations to line up a title fight for the highly rated Shihepo.

“He’s in good shape and is ready to take on the best on offer in the world. Force is doubtlessly one of the best punchers in world boxing in his weight category and very few boxers would go the distance with him when he is on fire,” boasted Tobias.

Shihepo is currently ranked at No. 11 in world rankings and has a very good chance of staking a claim for a world title, since all boxers ranked in the top 15 are eligible to fight for a world title.


by Carlos Kambaekwa


World Boxing Organization (WBO) African boxer of the year Braimah Kamoko AKA Bukom Banku makes a return to the ring on February 25 when he makes a defence of his WBO Africa Light heavyweight belt against Kenyan Hamza Wandera in Accra.

Victory for the unbeaten Kamoko, 22-0, 16 KOs will move him closer to a fight against world champion Nathan Cleverly later in the year. Banku’s fight is the headliner of the first promotion of the year in Ghana put up by Golden Mike Boxing Promotions led by CEO Mike Tetteh slated for the plush Accra International Conference Centre.


By Prince Dornu-Leiku


WBO African boxer of the year Braimah Kamoko AKA Bukom Banku makes a return to the ring on February 25 when he makes a defence of his WBO Africa Light heavyweight belt against Kenyan Hamza Wandera in Accra.
Victory for the unbeaten Kamoko, 22-0, 16 KOs will move closer to a fight against world champion Nathan Cleverly later in the year. Banku’s fight is the headliner of the first promotion of the year in Ghana put up by Golden Mike Boxing Promotions led by CEO Mike Tetteh slated for the plush Accra International Conference Centre.
Also defending their titles on the same bill are hot prospects Joshua Okine and Emmanuel Tagoe AKA Game Boy. Okine takes on Bethuel Ushoona of Namibia for his IBF Intercontinental Welterweight belt whereas Game Boy defends his IBF Intercontinental Super Featherweight title against Santos Benavides of Nicaragua.
Also featuring on January 20 at the Accra International Conference Centre are Samuel Amoako versus Martin Haikali of Namibia for WBO Africa Lightweight belt, Ebenezer Lamptey against Ecuadorian Aduardo Flores for WBO Africa Super Lightweight title with the night completed by the national Featherweight championship between Ishmael Aryeetey and Samuel Adotei.


WINDHOEK – There seems to be no stopping Namibia’s interim World Boxing Organization (WBO) Africa champion, Immanuel “Prince” Naidjala, in his quest to become a world beater.

Young boxing sensation Naidjala was in no good mood in negotiating his South African opponent, Nkqubela Gwezela, and made easy work of his fight with a 5th round technical knockout, which left the South African slumbering on the canvas.

Naidjala extended his winning streak to 12 wins from 12 fights.

In the main supporting bout, former WBO light-heavyweight champion, Vikapita “Beast Master” Meroro, made his long-awaited comeback with a win against Zimbabwean, Chamunorwa Gonorenda, on points in a catch-weight fight.

Namibia’s award-winning boxing promoter, Nestor “Sunshine” Tobias, said he was very delighted with the results of all his boxers, adding that Namibian boxers can be ranked among the world’s best.

Tobias also hailed Meroro and Naidjala for a job well done, adding that Meroro’s performance was very phenomenal, “taking it from his last two defeats – but he still needs some time to recuperate and get back his alacrity”.

In another catch-weight fight, Peter Malakia beat Silas Mandeya of Zimbabwe on a unanimous points decision over four rounds, while in a welterweight fight over four rounds, Namibia’s Anthony Jaarman jacked up his seventh consecutive victory with a 4th round technical knockout against Martin Tshuma of Zimbabwe.

In a featherweight fight over four rounds, David Egumbo defeated Sem Kambonde with a 3rd round knockout.

In a lightweight fight, Mathias Shimbi attained his third consecutive victory when he knocked out Immanuel Andeleki in the third round, and in a junior welterweight fight over four rounds, Lukas Handivele defeated Jason Mashela on a unanimous points decision.

Also in a catch-weight category, Elias Nashivela trounced Thomas Shangula in a unanimous points victory.



Paulus Ambunda participated in the 2004 Summer Olympics. At the 2004 Olympics he was stopped in the quarter finals of the Flyweight (51 kg) division by Germany’s eventual bronze medal winner Rustamhodza Rahimov. Ambunda won the silver medal in the same division at the All-Africa Games in Abuja,Nigeria.

Paulus Ambunda made his professional debut on June 30, 2007 when he defeated Johannes Gabriel by points. Since then, Ambunda has defeated all of his opponents. In october 2009, Ambunda captured the interim WBO Africa Bantweight title by knocking out Lwazi Mzolisa in the second round. After conquering the WBO Africa title, Ambunda still holds that belt today. On the 5th of November of this year – he successfully defended his title against Bongani Mahlangu from South Africa (12-3-0)…Bongani Mahlangu is the WBA Pan Africa champion – and in a very tightly contested fight – managed to find the extra reserves that a true champion possesses to shade his adversary over 12 rounds and win by unanimous points decision…

Well done Paulus ‘The Rock’ Ambunda…

Immanuel “The Prince” Naidjala will be the main bout on Saturday when he faces South African Nkubela Gwezela at the Windhoek Country Club.

The WBO Africa bantamweight interim champion has been busy this year and this will be his fifth bout of the year.

He is still unbeaten after 11 fights. The Namibian who has seven knockouts under his belt, beat Emmanuel Simbeye from Zambia on a fifth round knockout in his last fight.

Naidjala might have a hard battle against Gwezela who has a record of 29 fights with 20 wins.

The 32-year-old South African who is nicknamed The Destroyer lost his last fight against Siviwe Hasheni on a split decision in East London in June this year.

Gwezela is the former South African bantamweight champion.

In the fight preceding the main bout, Former WBO Africa lightweight champion, Vikapita Meroro will fight Victor Moyo from Zimbabwe in a catchweight fight with an 87kg limit.

Meroro has a record of 20 wins from 23 fights while his opponent has a record of six wins from 11 fights.

In his last fight, Meroro lost to Braimah Kamoko of Ghana by unanimous decision in Accra, Ghana in June.

Before that, he had lost his WBO Africa light heavyweight title to Isaac Chilemba in South Africa in March by unanimous decision.

Meroro and Moyo met once before in March 2009 when Meroro knocked out Moyo in the second round.

In another catchweight (limit 62.23kg) fight on the same evening, Peter Malakia will face off against Silas Mandeya of Zimbabwe.

Malakia has a record of 18 fights with 8 wins, 9 defeats and 1 draw while Mandeya has a record of 5 wins from 11 fights.

Another boxer who is quickly making inroads on the local boxing scene, Anthony Jaarman (6f, 6w) will fight Zimbabwean Bhekimpilo Mlilo (7f, 3w, 4l) in a welterweight bout over 4 rounds.

David Egumbo (2f, 2l) will fight fellow Namibian Sem Kambonde (2f, 2l) in a 4 round featherweight bout.

Matthias Chimbi (2f, 2w) will go up against Immanuel Andeleki who will be making his professional debut on the evening. The lightweight bout will be fought over 4 rounds.

In a junior welterweight bout, Lukas Handivele and Jason Mashela will both make their professional debut in a 4 round encounter.

Lazarus Namalambo (2f, 2w) will take on Elikana Kalenga (3f, 2w, 1l) in a 4 round featherweight fight.

Elias Nashivela will make his pro debut against Thomas Shangula (1f, 1l) in a catchweight fight over four rounds in the first fight of the evening.

Tickets to the fight will cost N$100 while a table at ringside that seats 10 people will cost N$10 000. Tickets are available at the Boxing Control Board office.



Braimah Kamoko, the newly decorated WBO African Boxer of the year, has reiterated the desire to fight for a world title because that is the only challenge he awaits now. Kamoko received the award from WBO Africa President Andrew Smale at a quiet but lavish ceremony in the Ghanaian capital of Accra last Saturday night and immediately demanded to take on the world.

“This is the first time I wear coat, I feel like I’m going to heaven. Yeah this is Bukom Banku the man himself. I want the world title now, I want to fight (WBO Light Heavyweight champion Nathan) Cleverly because he is holding my title. I say they should give me the chance to fight him now,” Braimah Kamoko, famously called Bukom Banku told the audience just after receiving the accolade.

The unbeaten Kamoko (22-0, 16 KOs), also the WBO Africa Light Heavyweight champion, was also full of praise for his management and promotion team, the Golden Concepts Management International and Golden Mike Boxing Promotions. According to the boxer who overcame several setbacks including an eye defect, he may not have been fighting now without the support of especially Golden Concepts boss Henry Manly-Spain and his wife Ivy.

Hear the highly eccentric Bukom Banku: “I want to thank my manager, I died and at the funeral he came to raise me up. Mr. Manly-Spain and Golden Mike have done more than enough for me and I will forever be grateful to them. Mrs. Manly-Spain, she is the first lady in Ghana, she is a real mother. For them, I will be a world champion before I die.”

Henry Manly-Spain declared his commitment to push not just Bukom Banku but many other boxers under their stable to become world champs soon.

“Ladies and gentlemen, I can see a very huge potential in Braimah Kamoko as a potential world beater and I believe with the needed support and commitment, he will rule the world. I wish to produce boxing world champions in the near future and I know Braimah Kamoko is one of them,” Mr. Manly-Spain has pledged.



The exploits of hard hitting crowd puller Bukom Banku in 2011, has received due recognition from the World Boxing Organization (WBO).

The recognized boxing body has given Banku aka Braimah Kamoko the new award of WBO Africa Boxer of the year in the Light Heavyweight category.

And by the feat, Banku is now the number one on the continent and the second best in the world for the year under review. He emerged tops out of 14 African champions.

The award has placed him in a better position for a World title in the next few months, stated Andrew Smale, vice president, WBO Africa at the awards presentation ceremony in Accra last Saturday.

The WBO Africa vice president revealed that Banku reigned supreme due to the fact that the Ghanaian boxer mounted the ring just on two occasions but the enormity of the bouts warranted the award.

The boxer expressed profuse thanks for the honour done him and promised to extend his dominance to the world stage.

The Chief Executive Officer of Golden Mike Promotions, promoters of Banku, Mike Tetteh pointed out that the recognition was timely. ‘The recognition has come at a time when boxers, promoters, investors, managers and fans needed motivation to keep the momentum of the sport intact.’

Golden Concept Management International CEO, Henry Mainly Spain, manager of Banku, mentioned that boxing is one of the most lucrative businesses in the World. He called on corporate Ghana to come on board to brainstorm as business executives to provide opportunities which will make the sport attractive.

Banku, who turned pro in 2000, has kayoed 16 of the 22 pugilists that he has encountered, with no defeat. He received a beautifully designed plaque.

The award ceremony was originally scheduled for the US and later to South Africa but was moved to the boxer’s home country due to logistical challenges of Banku’s management.

By Kofi Owusu Aduonum


World title aspirant Braimah Kamoko popularly called Bukom Banku is set to receive his (World Boxing organization) WBO African boxer of the year 2011 at a lavish ceremony slated for the Coconut Grove Regency Hotel in Accra this Saturday November 26 at 7pm.

The dinner buffet/ award presentation ceremony with live music by THE CELEBRANTS band, will see Andrew Smale, the WBO Africa President present the award to Bukom Banku.

The unbeaten WBO Africa Light Heavyweight champion won all two of his fights this year and was expected to have taken up the award at the WBO Congress in Puerto Rico last month but US immigration officials in Accra refused the visa application of certain key members of the boxer’s management and promotion team.

Now the GoldenMike Boxing Promotions and Golden Concept Management International are organizing this presentation ceremony to officially recognize the accolade for the boxer.

“Attendance is strictly by invitation and nobody would be permitted entry without an invitation. All should comport themselves because dignitaries will be there in their numbers therefore no invitation, no entry,” GoldenMike Boxing Promotions CEO Mike Tetteh iterated in a statement.

Vikapita “The Beastmaster” Meroro will return to the ring after a long absence on December 3 when he faces off against Victor Moyo of Zimbabwe in a light heavyweight international bout at the Windhoek Country Club and Resort.

Meroro last fought in June when he lost to Braimah Kamoko of Ghana by unanimous decision in Accra, Ghana.

Before that, he had lost his WBO Africa light heavyweight title when he went down to Isaac Chilemba from Malawi in South Africa in March by unanimous decision.

“I know that if I hadn’t lost those two fights I would have been world champion by now,” Meroro said.

“Now I know I have to make sure I get back into the world rankings by winning my next fights starting with this next one in December,” he added.

Meroro has a record of 23 fights with three defeats. His Zimbabwean opponent has a record of 11 fights with six wins and five losses.

Meroro and Moyo fought each other before in 2009 in Windhoek and Meroro emerged as the winner with a second round knock out.

The bout will be over eight rounds.

The main fight of the night will see Betuel “Tyson” Uushona go up against South African Michael Sangweni in a 10 round welterweight international bout.

Event promoter, Nestor Tobias, said after Uushona’s last fight he needed to get back into the ring.

“Tyson fought recently but that fight was stopped and recorded as a draw, so I decided to give him another fight since he had trained hard for a fight,” Tobias said.

His fight against Francis Gakpetor was controversially stopped in the second round when the referee said Uushona had head butted his opponent.

“I am looking forward to stepping in the ring again especially after what happened at my last fight,” Uushona said.

“The whole fight was ruined by the official, but I don’t want to dwell on that and I will focus on the next fight,” he added.

Uushona has a record of 27 fights, one loss and one draw while Sangweni has a record of 17 fights with 11 wins.

On the same evening, Immanuel “The Prince” Naidjala (11f 11w) will step into the ring in an eight round bout against Zimbabwean Brighton Zhande (7f 6w 1l).

Naidjala, who is the WBO Africa interim bantamweight titleholder last fought in September against Emmanuel Simbaye and he won with a fifth round knock out in Windhoek.

In other fights, Peter Malakia (15f 10w 3l 2d) will fight against Silas Mandeya (11f 5w 6l) from Zimbabwe in a four round lightweight bout.

David Egumbo (2f 2l) will fight fellow Namibian Costa Costa (2f 2l) in a four round featherweight bout.

Philemon Kanime (2f 2l) will face off against Jason Mashela (pro debut) who is also from Namibia. The junior welterweight bout will be fought over four rounds.

Lazarus Namalambo (2f 2w) will take on Elikana Kalenga (3f 2w 1l) in a four round featherweight fight.

Elias Nashivela will make his pro debut against Thomas Shangula (1f 1l) in a catchweight fight over four rounds in the first fight of the evening.

Namibians featured prominently at the World Boxing Organisation Convention held recently in Puerto Rico in October.

Nestor Tobias was awarded the WBO African Promoter of the Year for the second consecutive year. He staged four events this year alone, which involved eight WBO Africa title fights.

Five Namibian boxers are on the list of the 14 WBO Africa champions.

WBO Africa bantamweight champion, Paulus Ambunda is the highest ranked Namibian on the WBO ranking with a rating of three in the world after 17 unbeaten fights.

WBO Africa welterweight interim champion, Betuel Uushona is ranked 11th in the world with a record of 26 fights with one loss.

Wilberforce Shihepo, who is the WBO Africa super middleweight titleholder is rated 11 in the world and has a record of 16 fights and 6 losses.

Immanuel Naidjala is the WBO Africa bantamweight interim champion and is rated 15th in the world. He is still unbeaten after 11 fights.

The WBO lightweight champion, Martin Haikali is still not ranked but has a record of 10 fights with four losses.

Braimah Kamoko from Ghana is the WBO Africa Boxer of the year. Ambunda was last year’s recipient of the award.

Kamoko was responsible for Vikapita Meroro losing his light heavyweight title earlier in the year in Accra, Ghana.

WBO second vice president, Andrew Smale said that the WBO was growing in Africa.

“There is no doubt that the WBO Africa title is the most contested on the continent in comparison with other African continental belts,” Smale said.

“The WBO Africa title has been contested 22 times this year alone in Namibia, Ghana and France. All other organisations together could only muster seven in total,” he added.

WBO Convention News

I have just returned from the WBO Annual Convention in Puerto Rico – held in beautiful San Juan (24th-29th October)…In between taking care of business – it was good meeting with old friends and making new acquaintances.  The Convention was dedicated to founding President – Dr Luis Batista Salas who together with other flag bearers over the years – including current president Francisco Valcarcel – have established an organization which lives by its principles of dignity, honesty and democracy…

During the Convention, tribute was also paid to all the great Puerto Rican champions over the years…In attendance – were the current crop of champions – as well as champions of old.  The most colourful being Hector ‘Macho Man’ Camacho…

All the reports submitted during the Convention, points to an organization with solid leadership, that is financially sound, that is growing in stature and that is entrenching itself as one of the foremost sanctioning bodies in the world.



Sadly not all African delegates who expressed an interest to attend – were able to attend. Deon Dwarte (South African boxing referee and judge) – was the only other South African in attendance.  Other notable Africans in attendance was big Ola Afolabi – the Nigerian Cruiserweight – who is currently Nr.1 in the Junior Heavyweight division…

There is no doubt that the WBO Africa title is the most contested on the continent in comparison with other African continental belts on the continent.  The WBO Africa title has been contested 22 times this year alone in Namibia, Ghana and France…All the other organizations together – could only muster 7 in total…Enough said!!

History was also made earlier this year – when Carlos Takam of Cameroon (23-1-0) fought Gbenga Oloukun of Nigeria (19-6-0) for the WBO Africa Heavyweight title in Paris, France…

Currently there are 14 WBO Africa champions:

Division Name Fight Record Country World Ranking
Heavy Carlos Takam




Light Heavy Braimah Kamoko




Super Middle Wilberforce Shihepo




Middle Kojo Issah



Not ranked

Middle – Interim Laatekwei Hammond




Welter Samuel Colomban




Welter – Interim Bethuel Uushona




Light Martin Haikali



Not ranked

Light – Interim Sarfo Tyson




Junior Light Maxwell Awuku




Jnr Light – Interim Osumana Akaba



Not ranked

Junior Feather Alfred Tetteh




Bantam Paulus Ambunda




Bantam – Interim Immanuel Naindjala






WBO ARICA AWARDS @ The convention

WBO Africa Promoter of the Year – was awarded to Nestor Tobias of Namibia for the 2nd year in succession. Nestor has staged 4 shows this year alone involving 8 WBO Africa title fights…4 of the champions in his stable enjoy favourable world rankings and his loyalty to the WBO has not gone unnoticed…

WBO Africa Boxer of the Year – was awarded to Braimah Kamoko of Ghana (22-0-0)…the strong and talented Lightheavyweight who is currently ranked Nr.2 in the latest world rankings…



Get ready – we are in for a bumper year in 2012.  More promoters from other parts of Africa are coming on board. Some of our current WBO Africa champions stand at the threshold of world title fights…so watch this space

My Pledge as Vice President for Africa for 2012:

  • Lead the Organization by upholding the values of Dignity, Democracy and Honesty
  • To raise the bar

In saying so – expect a few changes which will be communicated to you in due course!



  • Paulus Ambunda (17-0-0)       W12    Bongani Mahlangu (12-3-0)    Windhoek, Namibia (5th November 2011)


Also check out our brand new WBO website – launched at the WBO Convention in Puerto Rico (www.wboboxing.com).  Happy Reading!!



Until next time – KEEP PUNCHING


This picture shows Nestor Tobias proudly receiving the award of WBO Africa promoter of the Year from Mr Andrew Smale (on his right)…On the left of Nestor Tobias – is the Deputy Minister of Sport for Namibia – Minister Pohamba Shifeta who is a regular guest at tournaments in Namibia…

The award was handed to Mr Nestor Tobias before the WBO Africa Bantamweight title fight – which took place at the Windhoek Country Club – just outside Windhoek on Saturday – 5th November 2011.  Nestor Tobias has this year successfully staged 4 shows – involving 8 WBO Africa title fights…

Nestor currently has in his stable 5 WBO Africa champions:

  • Wilberforce Shihepo (16-6-0) – ranked Nr.11 in the WBO world rankings @ Super Middleweight
  • Bethuel ‘Tyson’ Uushona (25-1-1) – ranked Nr.10 in the WBO world rankings @ Welterweight
  • Martin Haikali (10-4-0) – Not ranked
  • Paulus Ambunda (17-0-0) – ranked Nr.3 in the WBO world rankings @ Bantamweight
  • Immanuel Naindjala (11-0-0) – ranked Nr.15 in the WBO world rankings @ Bantamweight

Any promoters and managers who are interested in linking up with Nestor’s Sunshine Promotions in Windhoek can contact him on: nestorsunshine@yahoo.com

Contact Numbers: +264811298581/+264812453349

WINDHOEK – There seems to be no stopping Namibian boxers in their quest to become world-class boxers.

This was confirmed by Namibia’s pocket-sized undisputed World Boxing Organization (WBO) champion, Paulus “The Rock” Ambunda, when he retained his WBO bantamweight title after courageously trouncing South African Bongani Mahlangu on points, in a 12-round bout at the Windhoek Country Club Resort & Casino on Saturday.

Ambunda started the first round with some good jabs, to which the skillful Mahlangu responded well.

In the second round, Ambunda started throwing his heavy blows, which kept the South African running for safety for most of the fight.

In the eleventh and twelfth rounds, it became a hit-and-run affair as Mahlangu was now constantly on the run, which made it difficult for Ambunda to hit his target.
Ambunda is still undefeated after 17 professional fights, while this was his opponent’s second defeat after 17 professional bouts.

In another exciting under-card fight, Namibia’s WBO Interim Africa super middleweight champion, Wilberforce “Black Mamba”, Shihepo was in no mood to compromise and made his opponent pay dearly for having the guts to accept a fight against him – a complete marauding Namibian boxer.

Shihepo made easy work of his fight against Johannes Pieterson of South Africa when he bombed the South African with a fifth round technical knockout.

In other action, WBO Interim Africa Welterweight champion Tyson Uushona and Ghanaian opponent Francis Gakpetor’s fight ended in a draw after a clash of heads that left Gakpetor with a stream of blood all over his face, which left the ring doctors with no choice but to end the fight.


by Otniel Hembapu


by Carlos Kambaekwa

WINDHOEK – The mere uttering of the word Wilberforce “Force” Shihepo is enough to send shivers running riot in the bellies of potential opponents.

At 27, Force is determined to unlock his unlimited potential and nothing will stand in the way of the strongly built Namibian when the World Boxing Organization (WBO) Africa Super Middleweight champion squares up against Johannes Pieterson in a non-title eight rounder.

The bout will be the main under card for the much-anticipated Paulus Ambunda/Bongani Mahlangu WBO Africa Bantamweight title fight at the Windhoek Country Club on November 4.

With time not on his side anymore, the flamboyant Shihepo is taking no prisoners and is itching to make short work of his fight against the equally dangerous South African in what promises to be an all-out affair.

The Namibian boasts an impressive record of 15 wins and six defeats from 21 bouts in the paid ranks but has since come of age, while a good chunk of his losses were self inflicted through his carefree lifestyle and inability to keep super fit prior to big fights.

The “Black Mamba”, as the muscular Shihepo is affectionately known among his ardent fans, is now a changed man and destined for greater things with the much sought-after World title the ultimate destination.

His handler Nestor “Sunshine” Tobias is confident that one of his most prized assets is a work in progress and could have the world at his feet once he hits his peak.
“The boy has a lion’s heart required in the tough and demanding rigours of professional boxing and above all, he is courageous and possesses dynamite in both hands – a rare commodity in modern boxing,” raved Tobias about his unpolished gem.

His opponent has 14 wins, six losses and two draws to his credit – certainly a remarkable record not to be taken lightly, but Force is a man possessed and would stop at nothing in realizing his dream of getting a crack at the World title with a comprehensive win over the South African – come the 4th of November 2011.




NESTOR ‘Sunshine’ Tobias on Wednesday won the WBO Africa Promoter of the Year award for the second successive year.

Financial constraints meant that he could not accept the award in person.
Tobias will be officially presented with the award byWBO fourth vice president Andrew Smale before WBO Africa bantamweight Paulus ‘The Rock’ Ambunda’s title defence fight next Saturday.
Arguably the top promoter in the country, Tobias said yesterday that he was not surprised to win the prestigious prize as it was testimony to the hard work put it by his stable, a point his detractors need to take note of.
“It’s through the boxers’ hard work and commitment that we are able to get these awards. To those people who are always talking negative about us, they should know that these things don’t come for free. For us boxing is our livelihood. It is all we do.”
The WBO Africa Boxer of the Year 2011 was awarded to of Ghana, a man Tobias felt had scored a dubious victory over Namibia’s Vikapita Meroro in July.
Ambunda, who faces challenger Bongani Mahlangu from South Africa, was the recipient of the award last year.


Keeping true to his nature, Tobias seized the opportunity to promote Ambunda’s upcoming fight. ‘The Rock’ Ambunda has the makings of a world champion, the handler said.
Tobias has plenty of faith in the fighter, whom he said has the potential to emulate former two-time middleweight world champion Harry ‘Onkugo’ Simon and former WBA lightweight title holder Paulus ‘The Hitman’ Moses.
According to Tobias, the 31-year-old Ambunda can secure his chance at world title shot once he disposes of Mahlangu.
The WBO bantamweight world strap is now vacant after two time champion Nonito Donaire stepped up a division, a development that has edged Ambunda closer to realising his dream.
“Ambunda is at his peak now,” Tobias said.
“He is rated number three in world and if he wins he can improve that position and become the mandatory challenger.
“It’s also motivation for him. I want him to be the third guy from Namibia to fight for a world title.”



WINDHOEK – While Africa is blessed with a significant number of highly talented boxers – the continent is poorly represented in some of the high-profile global titles.

It’s a well-documented secret that a good chunk of African boxers are holed up in the less prestigious World Boxing Federation (WBF) and several other low-profile boxing umbrella bodies, but Namibian boxers have their eyes firmly fixed on the real McCoy.

Namibia’s World Boxing Organization (WBO) undisputed Africa bantamweight champion Paulus “The Rock” Ambunda, is one step away from a crack at the coveted world crown.

However, the quicksilver Namibian must first negotiate his way past the equally dangerous Bongani Mahlangu when Ambunda makes his 4th title defence against the South African in the main bout at the Windhoek Country Club on November 5.

Ambunda is unbeaten in 16 fights with 10 stoppages, while his opponent holds an impressive record of 15 wins and one defeat to his credit in 16 fights in the paid ranks.

Ambunda’s handler, Nestor “Sunshine” Tobias, is upbeat about his boxer’s prospects.
“What makes this fight very interesting is the fact that the current WBO bantamweight world champion, Nonito Deneiro, has given up his crown after he moved up a notch to the super bantamweight category,” says the world-acclaimed boxing guru.
“The title is vacant and is now there for the taking since the number one and second ranked challengers are both from Asia – victory for Ambunda, who is ranked number three in world rankings, could pave the way for a crack at the world title against one of the two Asian challengers,” adds Tobias boastfully.

Tobias also lashed out at the reluctance of corporate businesses to come on board as sponsors for major boxing events. Boxing is a very expensive exercise in terms of organization, purses, travelling, judges, referees and many other aspects attached to the high demands required in professional boxing.

“Apart from our regular sponsor Nampower, we have been gravely struggling to convince and lure potential sponsors to our shores despite the unsurpassed success of our boxers. Namibia has a very good chance of adding to the list of former world champions Harry Simon and Hitman Moses, but this dream can only be realized if all stakeholders put their shoulder to the wheel.”

The boxing bonanza will be preceded by two top-notch bouts involving Namibia’s WBO Africa current champions Wilberforce Shihepo and Bethuel “Tyson” Uushona.

The hard-punching force will defend his WBO Africa super middleweight belt against Johannes Pieterson from South Africa, while Uushona puts his belt at stake against south Ghanaian challenger Francis Gakpetor over eight rounds.

Entrance fee is N$10 000 per table of 10 for the VIP’s (finger meals included) while spectators on the grand stand are required to cough up N$100 per seat.


by Carlos Kambaekwa


Paulus Ambunda will defend his WBO African bantamweight title in a boxing bonanza at the Windhoek Country Club on November 5.

Namibian boxing promoter Nestor Tobias said this on Wednesday at a press conference at the Namibia Sport Commission, where he also donated boxing equipment to the Namibia Sport Commission.

Tobias donated 100 punch bags to the NSC which will be distributed throughout Namibia’s 13 regions to help develop boxing at grassroots level.

“We must still finalise Ambunda’s opponent but it will be done later this week. He needs to defend his title within 120 days because his previous fight was not a title defence,” Tobias said.

Ambunda’s last fight was on September 24 when he easily beat Twalib Mubira of Kenya on a third round technical knockout.

It was Ambunda’s 17th straight victory as a professional and took his WBO international ranking up to fourth in the world.

Several other fighters will also feature on the undercard, according to Tobias. They include Tyson Uushona, who holds the WBO African Interim Welterweight title, Wilbeforce Shihepo, who holds the WBO African Super Middleweight title, Julius Indongo, Abmerk Shidjuu and Samuel Kaapapu. Uushona and Shihepo will however not be defending their titles.

Tobias also announced that he was busy negotiating to stage a fight in Namibia for Paulus Moses for the WBA Interim Lightweight title.

Moses was offered an opportunity to fight Richard Abril of Cuba for the WBA Interim Lightweight title in Panama on October 22, but Tobias turned down the chance because it came too soon after Moses’ last fight against Sidney Siqueira of Brazil on September 24. Abril is now expected to fight the former WBA lightweight champion Miguel Acosta for the WBA Interim Lightweight title on October 22.

Tobias said he was now negotiating with Don King to set up a fight for Moses against the winner of the Abril-Acosta fight.

“We asked the WBA for another chance to fight the winner of the Panama fight. So they said yes, we can do that, on condition that we host the fight and fund it. We are busy negotiating with Don King about it,” he said.

Tobias, meanwhile, was once again honoured for his sterling work in promoting boxing when he was recently nominated by the World Boxing Organisation for the Best African Promoter/Manager award. This is the second year in a row that Tobias has been nominated for the award, after he won the award for the foirst time last year.

“It just goes to show that people are looking at what we are doing here in Namibia. Namibia has become a big country with regards to boxing and this recognition will just motivate my boxers and I to achieve greater heights,” he said.

Accra, Oct. 16, GNA – Ghana’s Osumanu Akaba defeated Beninoi Theodore Lokossou on Sunday to clinch the World Boxing Organisation (WBO) Africa Super featherweight title at the Lebanon House, Tudu in Accra.

Lokossou retired in the seventh round as Akaba cruised to a Technical Knockout (TKO) victory on the main bout of the promotion dubbed: “Only the strong” and put together by Heart of Lions Boxing Promotions.

Akaba, 31, fighting for the first in 12 months was off-colour but gradually warmed himself into the course of the bout. Lokossou, twice loser against the Ghanaian had other things in mind as he opted to entertain the crowd with his body antics.

“I have disciplined him very well and I do not think, he will consider facing me again. I am looking forward to the title,” Akaba said after the bout.

As early as the second round, the ‘Golden Boy’ was in the lead as the Beninoi had no antidote to the flurry of punches visited on his face and body.

Lokossou made a serious impact in the early stages of the third round as he opened fire on his Ghanaian opponent forcing the latter to find solace on the ropes, but did not last.

Cautious-Akaba threw in everything from the fifth round as he attacked from the beginning till the end with the sixth round inclusive. His combination of punches and hooks dazed Lokossou, but he was saved by the bell in both the fifth and sixth rounds.

As expected, the Beninoi bowed out in the seventh round giving the ‘Golden Boy’ his 27th victory of his career.

Akaba was decorated with the title by Andrew Smale, Vice President of WBO Africa assisted by Samir Captan, President of the Ghana Boxing Authority and Godwin Kwame Ahiakpor, Chairman of Heart of Lions Boxing Promotions.