LOC optimistic after CAF inspectors Kinoru visit
A ray of hope was evident among the Local Organizing Committee for the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN), as Confederation of African Football (CAF) delegation in Kenya for stadia inspetion mission on Wednesday visited Meru’s Kinoru stadium.
Led by CAF 2nd Vice President Omari Constant Selemani, the CAF delahation took over an hour going round the facilty, whosr construction work is going on 24 hours a day.
Thus, the LOC CEO Herbert Mwachiro is confident that Kinoru will be a mong the four venues that will host the event set for January, considering the impression derived from tremendous progress in the ongoing construction.
“The architects from Public Works are here. They have assured us that they will meet the strict timelines and they are working 24hours a day.
“So far we are on course and all we want is CAF to tell us there is no Morroco, there is no South Africa, Kenya Its yours and we shall deliver this event,” charged Mwachiro.
There are reports that the Southern African nation and the North African one are on standby to stage the tournament if Kenya fails to convince CAF on preparedness.
He noted that the stadium will carry a sitting capacity of between 12,000 and 15, 000 fans, with all the work expected to be done by December 15.
Gabriel Komora, the Sports Kenya Director general, said the government has given enough funding towards completion of the stadia across the country especially the ones earmarked for CHAN.
” We are not thinking about money for now, it’s a question of when the work will be done. If they were ready by next week they would be paid.
“It should not be funding that should take away CHAN from Kenya,” he averred.
Speaking at the County Government headquarters where the entourage paid a courtesy call to the Meru County Governor Kiraitu Murungi, FKF President Nick Mwendwa observed that the newly opened Isiolo International Airport will be a major boost for the event.
“The airport is a major boost to this event. The officials will be able to watch and monitor the event for various matches because they can easily connect from Nairobi to this end.
“The kind of commitment shown here is a statement that we are serious about this tournament,” he said.
Murungi on his part thanked the event organisers for choosing Meru as one of the venues for the second biggest CAF competitions.
“We are honored to have the Director of CAF competitions with us here today. This is a very big competition coming to Meru, and we to assure everyone we will do everything sible to support this course,” told the Governor.
The inspection continues on Thursday in Nairobi’s Moi Sports Centre Kasarani, before Friday’s final visit to Eldoret’s Dr. Kipchoge Keino Stadium.
The CAF delegation will then give a comprehensive brief on the observation of their one week inspection, awaiting the final word on September 23 in Accra, Ghana, during the CAF Executive Committee meeting.
Kenyans are hoping to avoid the 1996 embarrassment when CAF stripped the East African nation African Cup of Nations (AFCON) hosting rights for lack of proper preparations, with South Africa grabbing the opportunity to win their maiden African title.
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