Ababu: Kinoru Stadium is a joke

Sports CS Ababu Namwamba inspects Kinoru Stadium

Sports CS Ababu Namwamba (second right) together with other officials examines the wearing tartan track laid at Kinoru stadium during an inspection tour of the facility on December 2, 2022. He said the Sh915m stadium was substandard and could not host Fifa accredited matches.

Photo credit: Charles Wanyoro | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • He expressed disappointment in the quality of various finishes, the tartan track which is already damaged and the playing turf which is uneven and had poor quality wild grass
  • Toddy Civil Engineering Company was the stadium’s main contractor while Gregori International Company had initially been sub-contracted to do the turf
  • Namwamba said he will be taking a tour of all recently built sporting facilities that had been reported complete so as to verify their status

Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba has said the Sh915million Kinoru stadium is substandard and cannot host Fifa accredited matches.

Namwamba has ordered an audit to determine the extent of work done at the facility. 

He expressed disappointment in the quality of various finishes, the tartan track which is already damaged and the playing turf which is uneven and had poor quality wild grass.

Speaking when he toured the facility on Friday afternoon, Namwamba also noted that the irrigation system in the field is not reliable yet the stadium had been declared complete awaiting opening.

The CS, who was accompanied by Meru County Commissioner Fred Ndunga and other officials said he had received a report indicating that the stadium had been completed and contractor paid.

Sports CS Ababu Namwamba inspects Kinoru Stadium

Sports CS Ababu Namwamba (centre) together with other officials take an inspection tour of Kinoru stadium on December 2, 2022. He said the Sh915m stadium was substandard and could not host Fifa accredited matches. 
 

Photo credit: Charles Wanyoro | Nation Media Group

Kinoru was among the venues that had been selected to host the 2018 Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) matches before Kenya was stripped off the rights to host the continental tournament due to unpreparedness.

Toddy Civil Engineering Company was the stadium’s main contractor while Gregori International Company had initially been sub-contracted to do the turf.

“I have received a report indicating that Kinoru stadium is complete, and ready for use. I have inspected this stadium and I am deeply, thoroughly, unquestionably, unequivocally disappointed.

“When I look around this facility, I don’t see a billion shillings. If I had come to office before they were paid, I would not have paid, I would have stopped the payment. We must demand value for money,” said Namwamba.

He said the country had a shortage of CAF-accredited stadiums and was rushing to secure more so as to bid to co-host the 2027 African Nations Cup alongside Uganda and Tanzania.

Sports CS Ababu Namwamba inspects Kinoru Stadium

Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba (centre) addresses the press as Meru County Commissioner Fred Ndunga (left) looks on after an inspection tour of Kinoru stadium on December 2, 2022. He said the Sh915m stadium was substandard and could not host Fifa accredited matches. 

Photo credit: Charles Wanyoro | Nation Media Group

“It is going to be an East Africa Community (EAC) bid. If we are going to bring African football to Kenya, we want our people to have a feel of continental football. 

“We are going to see how we can improve this stadium alongside others so that as we are bidding for other games, we are confident that Fifa will find our facilities worthy of hosting such events,” said Namwamba.

Namwamba said he will be taking a tour of all recently built sporting facilities that had been reported complete so as to verify their status.

“In future I am going to take personal keen interest in every stadium…so as to avoid the kind of joke we are witnessing here when we are told that this is a completed stadium yet we cannot put it to use at the required level,” he asserted.

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