FUFA excom member gives four reasons East Africa will win 2027 AFCON bid


FOOTBALL: FUFA excom member gives four reasons East Africa will win 2027 AFCON bid

Mark Kinyanjui 15:40 - 20.09.2023

Byamukama has given four compelling reasons East Africa will win the 2027 AFCON bid  when the CAF executive committee meet to decide the fate of the bid on 27 September.

The Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) head of marketing and TV sponsorships Rodgers Byamukama has revealed the five reasons why East Africa will win the 2027 AFCON bid when the Confederation of African Football (CAF) executive committee meet to decide the fate of the bid on 27 September.

Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda have all bid to co-host the tournament, alongside  Egypt, Algeria and Namibia.Byamukama is very optimistic the region will win the bid, giving five concrete reasons behind it.

Speaking to Pulse Sports during the Africa Football Summit by the Football Foundation for Africa held in Nairobi last week, Byamukama said that the bid was “serious” and very “conducive” for East Africa.

The East Africa Pamoja bid 2027 is serious and very competitive from our perspective and conducive on both aspects,” Byamukama said.

Byamukama revealed that the vast population of the region will make the tournament very marketable for CAF, as only Nigeria matches the region numbers wise.

“We have done a lot of things together as an East African community, if you look at the SGR, the ports and so many things. It is one of the things we are passionate about because if you look at the three countries, the majority of the population in East Africa is in the U segment so we believe it is something that will help and further build our integration capacity.

“It is not a bid based on sentiments, but rather based on very competitive grounds. For instance if you look at our population, there are over 200 million people, which is only beaten by Nigeria which forms a huge marketing platform for the AFCON finals, which means that if all three countries have three group stage games each, at least nine matches will be filled to the brim,which will be good business for CAF.”

The media-friendly official also cited the region’s road network, air transport and the standard gauge railway (SGR) as state of the art, which will make moving from country to country convenient during the tournament.

“If you look at the infrastructure, we have had places where infrastructure has been a huge problem in different countries where AFCON has been hosted.

“I am talking about transport infrastructure. With the extension of SGR from Nairobi to the border of Uganda and with the air transport where flying from one capital to the next takes just one hour, we think that will be a very good convenience ground for the fans that will be traveling.

"If you look at our road networks from Nairobi to Kampala and Kampala to Tanzania, it is motorable and we are using it to transport our goods from the Coast.”

Byamukama also pointed out the region’s tourist attractions, including the wildebeest migration from Mara to Serengeti, which he believes will attract a lot of people to come and drink in witnessing the attractions.

“If you look at tourism, three of the top five mountains in the world are found in East Africa- Mount Rwenzori, Mount Kenya and Mount Kilimanjaro. Look at the Wildebeest migration in The Mara and Serengeti, which is a wonder of the world. Lots of people come from the world to come see it. 

“Football is not just about 90 minutes. It is an experience before, during and after. That is something that will bring fans out here. What you find in our national parks, you cannot find anywhere else, so over and above football, even without talking about our hospitality, culture diversity, there is a lot that will bring fans from all over the world, not just in Africa.”

He also pointed to the goodwill from all the three counties’ presidents, who have all approved for the region to commit upto 90 million USD (12.6 million shillings) to prepare for it.

“The support we have from all the three governments. You have seen all the three presidents in different times flagging off the bids of the respective countries.

“ We have not seen that anywhere else where the countries bidding alongside us have the endorsement from the highest offices, and by the way, you need up to 90 million dollars to host this tournament which has been given by the three East African governments.”

East Africa has never hosted the AFCON before, so winning the bid will go a long way in laying foundations for the development of football.