The 20,000 space Limbe Omnisports Stadium used for the female AFCON last November 2016, has been polished again awaiting any continental rendezvous.
The Presidential lodge which was only partially covered during the last competition is being entirely covered this time. Limbe, in its various facets, is offering baits of two training stadiums namely the 2,000-seater Centenary stadium, the 1,000-seater Middle Farms Stadium, the annex of the Limbe Omnisports Stadium and the Omnisports itself. These stadia were all useful last year when eight nations showcased their female football talents. Pool “B” was hosted in Limbe while Pool “A” featured in Yaounde, the Nation’s capital.
In addition to the sports, hotel, medical and road facilities in Limbe, two other stadia of 1,000 space each are lying ready in Buea some 20 kilometres bird’s fly. With two outlets all tarred between both cities through Mutengene or Tole, communication between both major towns of the South West is very smooth. Like in 2016, some teams were hosted in Buea while others stayed in Limbe for matches in the Limbe Omnisports Stadium. Training sessions for the competitors were near luxuriant and the visitors from across Africa all appreciated their stay in the Region before going for the finals in Yaounde.
In other areas usually considered by CAF, medical facilities have been pumped in Limbe and Buea with the latest being the Scanning facility should any spectator or actor sustain head injuries. The roads are splendid wide and tarred and the various Mayors are taking the challenge to keep their city sparkling clean.
Asongwe George: “Limbe Play Grounds Officially Received This Week”
Director, Limbe Centenary Stadium.
What is the nature of the centenary stadium that awaits training sessions for 2019 AFCON?
First I want to be thankful for the Head of State, President Paul Biya, for doing us very good stadia in Fako Division. All the five stadia in Fako are now in active service. The national team of Cameroon once trained here to play their match against Zambia. During AFCON 2016 the Kenyan team trained also in our centenary stadium. We are very prepared because the playground is wonderful. Our stadium takes 2000 seats and, these seats I bet you, can host the Nations’ Cup. It is just a problem of options. If the Cameroon can take the option to oganise the Nations’ Cup it would be a matter of sacrifice. All of us are sacrificing to see that the Nation’s Cup in Cameroon 2019 is splendid. The stadium has been constructed by the Chinese Tianyuaug Group. As I am saying the stadium will be received tomorrow by the Ministry of Sports and Physical Education. I underwent training like many other stadium directors in Bafoussam last year. We trained to manage the infrastructure, the playground and everything concerning the stadium.
Do you fear any hitches?
There is nothing that will disturb us organising the Nations’ Cup here. If you look at the medical equipment worth 60 million CFA, the dressing room everything is set. The infirmary is there and there is nothing to fear in the domain of health. For now I have five staff members who are taking care of the stadium. This stadium costs CFA six billion. It covers a land surface of two hectares. We have a G220QS capacity electric transformer that picks up a few seconds if there is power failure. This can facilitate us to play matches at any time of the day. Everything regarding this centenary stadium is in order. The parking lots in and out are still to be done and that cannot take up to a week. But there is parking for VIPs inside the stadium. We have 53 toilets. For the rest of the rooms there is my office, secretariat, waiting room and conference hall and a big dressing room with toilets and baths.
As a sports instructor, what is required by CAF when organising such a competition?
I think what CAF also usually requires are good roads, hotels, medical facilities and security. All of these things have been proven by Cameroon in previous organisations especially in Fako here.
Did you visit the Limbe Omnisports Stadium recently?
I did. The few things to be done are already done. By covering the VIP section entirely. Any time from now they will do the reception. The centenary stadium will be received on 26 July and the next day the neighbouring one, the Middle Farms, will be received the next day.
After the reception what do you think should still be done to ensure a proper hosting in 2019?
I think the company in-charge of the renovation of the stadiums will stay on for one full year to see that everything goes well. If anything goes wrong during this one year they will carry out repairs. So, they are on the stand-by. As you can see the Chinese are still present. There are always permanent workers of the Chinese Group at the stadium.
What last thing do you have to tell the public concerning the hosting of the 2019 AFCON?
I am inviting so many guests to Limbe which is a town of friendship and to say that Cameroon has taken the option that the Limbe centenary stadium for the nations’ cup 2019 to be played in Cameroon. We have sacrificed for that. Everybody should join hands on deck to see that we get through and we succeed. If we could succeeded in 2016 female AFCON and even were rated as the best organisers so we are ready to take off for 2019.