Holali Ativor: Ghanaian intersex footballer speaks about her derailed career and struggles with stigma

Holali Ativor: Ghanaian intersex footballer speaks about her derailed career and struggles with stigma

- Holali Ativor is an intersex Ghanaian footballer who discovered that she had ambiguous genitalia at 15

- At age 19, she was dropped from the Black Queens after it was confirmed that she is neither female nor male

- Ativor recounted her struggles with stigma and her subsequent derailed career with Mx24gh

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At 15, Holali Ativor discovered that she was born with ambiguous genitalia but little did she know that it would derail her dream of playing football at the national level.

In 2019, she lost a chance to play for the Black Queens because she failed to meet the team's gender requirement after a medical examination by a doctor at the Ghana Football Association (GFA) indicated that she is intersex.

Though Ativor considers herself a woman, football stakeholders do not think so.

Holali Ativor: Ghanaian intersex footballer speaks about her derailed career and struggles with stigma
Holali Ativor: Ghanaian intersex footballer speaks about her derailed career and struggles with stigma. Image: MX24
Source: Instagram

Intersex people are individuals born with any of several variations in sex characteristics including chromosomes, gonads, sex hormones, or genitals that, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, "do not fit the typical definitions for male or female bodies."

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Speaking in an interview on MX4 with Nuong Faalong, Ativor disclosed that she knew about her physically ambiguous genitalia before the medical and physical examinations.

''I knew about it. I was treating it though my team players, managers, and coaches didn't know about it ... I was treating it at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in 2017 before they called me to play for the national team in 2019. They checked and dropped me because I'm intersex,'' she said.

Ativor, aged 21, disclosed she first found out about her physically ambiguous genitalia at the age of 15.

''When I went to Kumasi Sports Academy and I bathed with one lady, I found out that mine [genitalia] is different from theirs. From the day I saw that I went home and showed my mother - I called my sister and asked why mine is different from theirs.''

Ativor admitted that she has since been struggling to fully accept herself, affecting her self-esteem and self-worth.

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''I feel sad,'' Ativor told Nuong Faalong as she recounted her struggles with social stigma among others in a special documentary.

Earlier, YEN.com.gh reported Mabel Alukbadek has landed a job as an IT End User Support Officer at the head office of the Fidelity Bank.

Three years ago, the young determined woman moved from Sandema in the Upper East Region to Kumasi and later to Accra to seek greener pastures and further her education.

Alukbadek had always wanted to become a military officer but had to study Systems Engineering to enable her to pursue that dream.

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Source: Yen

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