Africa-Press – Eswatini. CAF has reportedly promised to assist the country construct a stadium.
Information gathered from Eswatini TV news, on Tuesday, was to the effect that the Confederation of African Football (CAF) was ready to assist the country in constructing the stadium.
During the Eswatini TV bulletin, Eswatini Football Association (EFA) President Peter Simelane was quoted declaring the continental football mother body’s readiness to assist the country deliver the much needed infrastructure. “We acknowledged to CAF that in terms of infrastructure we are in need of a stadium and seek their assistance in the construction of a facility at international standard,” Simelane was quoted saying. It could not be immediately ascertained as to when the construction was set to begin and how CAF was willing to assist the country, as attempts to contact the president were made but his phone rang unanswered.
This publication reported earlier this year that with Eswatini among 23 African nations lacking a venue for international football matches, a multi-billion sports arena is on the pipeline depending on the availability of resources. Currently, Somhlolo National Stadium and Mavuso Sports Centre, which were the only venues that have been used to host international games, are banned as they do not meet Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) or CAF standards. The Ministry of Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs in Parliament in March this year reported about plans to construct a new stadium worth over E2.5 billion. The ministry made this revelation during submission of the ministry’s portfolio committee’s report and debate of the estimated budget of the 2023/ 2024 financial year. It is worth mentioning that some of the stadiums that cost around the ministry’s E2.5 billion budget include, among others, South Africa’s FNB Stadium.
The FNB Stadium was constructed in 1986 to 1989 and was renovated for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. It is an 87 000-seater and cost around E3.3 billion to construct according to Stadium Management South Africa. Meanwhile, Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit is estimated to have cost around E1.050 billion and has a carrying capacity of over 40 000 fans.