Government has announced plans to renovate and upgrade Namboole stadium which is currently in a dilapidated condition.
In a statement released on Wednesday, the Minister for Educations and Sports, Janet Kataaha Museveni said government attaches an important role that the stadium plays in the development of sports in the country and thus cannot be neglected.
“In line with its mandate to promote sports in the country, government in the coming days through the Ministry of Education and Sports will embark on the plan to renovate and upgrade Mandela national stadium at Namboole to internationally acceptable standards in a phased manner starting with the needs assessment,” Mrs Museveni said.
She noted that since all sports activities are now at halt, they will use this time to start the renovation works at the facility which is the home of football in Uganda.
Officially opened in 1997, the 35000 capacity Mandela National Stadium also known as Namboole is home to the country’s national football team, the Cranes.
Since construction by Chinese over 20 years ago, the stadium has not seen any major renovations around it which is a cause for alarm.
“The stadium has got out-dated infrastructure – the bowl, halogen floodlights that consume a lot of power, electrical installations that are not readily available on the market, sanitary facilities need repair or change of plumbing installations,” Mandela National Stadium Managing Director Jamil Ssewanyana told Daily Monitor recently.
“Then the lack of a CCTV system and real time access controls (turnstiles) to monitor the stadium users on entering the stadium, during and after events.”
Last month, CAF released a report in which it deemed the stadium unfit to host any international matches including Cranes qualifiers.
The facility had failed to meet both the continental body and world football governing body-FIFA standards, prompting the ban.
CAF highlighted the playing surface, size of the pitch, dressing rooms, floodlights, pavilion, technical bench, media centre and parking among others that are in a dire state.
The latest move by government will then see the facility cleared by CAF if it passes the test to host international games.