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Cabinet approves Sh4.2bn for CHAN hosting

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Nyayo National Stadium construction. Photo/RAYMOND MAKHAYA

NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 21- Just less than 48 hours before the Confederation of African Football (CAF) makes a decision on whether or not next year’s African Nations Championship (CHAN) will be hosted in Kenya, Cabinet on Thursday approved a Sh4.2bn budget for the games’ hosting scheduled for January 12 –February 14.

The latest stance from the government is seen to inject some level of confidence for the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) team which will be travelling to Accra, Ghana on Friday ahead of CAF’s Executive Committee meeting on Saturday.

“We have some level of confidence that CAF will trust in us because they have been here and they have see that we are doing everything humanly possible to ensure that we host CHAN. We are waiting for a positive response from them,” CHAN Local Organizing Committee Deputy Chief Executive Officer Herbart Mwachiro said in a previous interview with Capital Sport.

An inspection team from the continental body was in the country last week inspecting the ongoing construction of match venues which has lagged behind thus causing anxiety on whether or not the championship will still be held in the country.

Construction ongoing at Nyayo National Stadium. Photo/RAYMOND MAKHAYA

The Moi International Sports Center Kasarani, used in July for the IAAF World Under-18 Championships is seen as 80 percent ready with most of the work having been done prior to the world showpiece.

Much concern has been around the Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Eldoret and the Kinoru Stadium in Meru which are massively lagging behind.

However, with the budget approved by Cabinet chaired by President Uhuru Kenyatta, it is expected that contractors will work round the clock to ensure that everything runs well and in time.

FKF presidnet Nick Mwendwa converses with the contractors on site at the Nyayo National Stadium. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

Nyayo National Stadium is expected to be completed by the end of October while Kipchoge Keino and Kinoru are both expected to be ready by mid-November, just slightly less than two months to the biennial championship specially designed for home-based players.

“Contractors are working round the clock to ensure that everything is ready. The progress at Nyayo is great but definitely there is a concern with Kinoru and Kipchoge Keino but definitely, we will get it done. We are constantly pushing to ensure we can be ready,” FKF boss Nick Mwendwa said last week as the CAF inspection team visited Kasarani and Nyayo Stadia in Nairobi.

CAF will hugely hinge on the report from its inspection team when they meet in Accra on Saturday on prior to the final of the West African Football Union (WAFU) finals in the Ghanaian capital.

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