• The decision to entrust KDF with the renovations and construction of these stadia stems from their remarkable achievement in constructing the 10,000-seater Ulinzi Sports Complex in record time, commencing the project in October 2022.
Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba on Tuesday made a significant move, handing over the responsibility for the construction and renovation of four key stadia to the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF).
They include the 30,000-seater Nyayo Stadium, 60,000-seater Moi Stadium, Kasarani, Kipchoge Keino Stadium, and an all-new Jamhuri facility named ‘Talanta Sports City.’
The move is a strategic step in aligning with the government’s ambitious plan to host the 2027 Africa Cup of Nations, with the host nation set to be revealed on September 27 this year.
The decision to entrust KDF with the renovations and construction of these stadiums stems from their remarkable achievement in constructing the 10,000-seater Ulinzi Sports Complex in record time, commencing the project in October 2022.
“It would be a great honour to host Afcon in partnership with our neighbours and even if we don’t make it through, plans are in place to renovate our stadiums,” said Namwamba, while speaking to NTV.
In a bid to secure the Afcon hosting rights, Kenya threw their hat into the ring alongside neighbours Uganda and Tanzania, forming a joint bid. This formidable effort aims to challenge individual bids submitted by Algeria, Botswana, and Egypt. Namibia have since withdrawn their interest.
Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda have never hosted Cup of Nations, making their bid for the 2027 tournament all the more significant.
The bid, valued at approximately Sh335.7 billion, has garnered full backing from all three football federations, each committing to provide about Sh147 million towards the project. Confederation of African Football have advised that the funds be deposited by January 2025.
President William Ruto earlier on expressed confidence and emphasised the elevation of Kenyan football. During his announcement, he underscored the government’s commitment to an overarching sports development plan aimed at enhancing the monetisation and commercialisation of sporting talents, with the ultimate goal of restoring Kenyan football to prominence on the global stage.
This initiative became all the more urgent when it was revealed that Nyayo Stadium and Moi International Sports Complex did not meet CAF’s criteria for hosting Champions League and Confederation Cup matches, casting doubts on Kenya’s ability to host such prestigious football tournaments.
Meanwhile, Namwamba has outlawed the use of playing pitch at both Nyayo and Kasarani for non-sports-related activities.
“It is noted with due concern that we have different groups using our stadia for other gatherings apart from sports and we will not allow this to continue without the ministry’s approval. We have forbidden use of stadia, especially the section used for playing football, rugby and the likes,” Ababu said.