Namwamba sets deadline for completion of Kasarani, Nyayo and Kipchoge Keino stadium renovation

FOOTBALL Namwamba sets deadline for completion of Kasarani, Nyayo and Kipchoge Keino stadium renovation

Joel Omotto 16:53 - 26.07.2023

The Sports Cabinet Secretary is determined to ensure the facilities are ready by the stipulated time with work set to continue even if 2027 AFCON bid fails

Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba has set a 2025 deadline for the completion of renovation work at Kasarani, Nyayo and Kipchoge Keino stadiums.

The three stadiums have been earmarked to host matches if the EAC Pamoja Bid of Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania to host the 2027 Africa Cup of Nations is successful and the government is set to close the facilities for their upgrading after a tender notice for the work was issued last week.

With Confederation of African Football (CAF) inspectors in Kenya to assess the country’s plans and preparedness to host the continental tournament, Namwamba has confidence that the timelines will be met this time around after previous failed attempts.

“We have figured out everything coherently, succinctly and we believe that we are good to go,” Namwamba told the media after the inspection of Kasarani Stadium on Wednesday.

“The bids (for stadia renovation) will open on August 17. Immediately we open the bids, the work will start and we expect that by 2025, we should be in a place where most of the targets we have set should be completed by that period.

“We will be closing some of these facilities, some longer than the others, but even as we close, we are also factoring in the fact that some of these facilities will be needed for qualifiers and teams participating in club championships.

“Harambee Stars are also starting the World Cup qualifiers in November so we have a plan that will enable us to continue with the refurbishing while we meet our national obligations in terms of national teams.”

The three East African countries are trying to convince CAF that they have what it takes to host the tournament amid rival bids from Botswana, Egypt and Algeria.

If the bid does not succeed, Namwamba says Kenya will still continue with their renovation work as it should have been done long time ago anyway.

“The work we are starting here in terms of upgrading the three stadia is work that Kenya should have done many years ago,” he added.

“The money we have spent constructing all sorts of little things all over the place should have been pulled to first of all upgrade the facilities we have.”

As per a circular released by the Ministry of Sports, CAF are to asses Kasarani and Nyayo stadiums as well as the Ulinzi Complex on Wednesday before looking at Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Eldoret, 64 Stadium, University of Eldoret grounds and the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) on Thursday.

The inspection team will then head to Uganda and Tanzania with the former, just like Kenya, currently lacking a CAF-approved stadium while the latter has one.