CAF Excellence Centre : Rehabilitation Absolutely Needed
Since 2010 the centre, today fast depreciating, has been host to training sessions, FECAFOOT seminars and many other football related activities.
The CAF Excellence Centre in Mbankomo some 24km from Yaounde is gradually depreciating. Inaugurated in 2010, the centre was a pride not only for Cameroon but for Africa. From a distance the beautiful edifice attracted many football lovers in Cameroon and elsewhere. However, the story is different today.
At the CAF Excellence Centre in Mbankomo yesterday August 8, 2020, few workers could be seen in the vicinity. No activity was going on especially with the Coronavirus pandemic. Cameroon Tribune reporters were told to get instructions from the hierarchy before any visit could be carried out. Walking through the centre what immediately catches the eye is the overgrown grass in the walk ways and the training grounds. The centre constructed on several hectares of land serves as training ground for teams in the Central African Region. But the impression one gets is that of an abandoned structure.
The CAF Excellence Centre has a large central building with 40 luxury rooms, a restaurant, a conference room and several offices. The two playgrounds for training are all fading away. Other facilities include a multi playground for volleyball, basketball and handball, a tennis field, 35 double rooms, an Olympic pool amongst many others. All of these facilities are in a bad shape and absolutely need rehabilitation. Sources close to the centre say CAF is in charge of the workers and that workers have not been paid for the past seven months. Since 2010 the centre has been host to training sessions, FECAFOOT seminars and many other football related activities.
The CAF Excellence Centre in Mbankomo was constructed by CAF alongside Dakar, Senegal and Ethiopia under the former President Issa Hayatou. The centres were meant to help cut the cost of camping African players abroad and assist in the growth of local football. The structures, are constructed, equipped and managed by the continental football body, CAF. According to the regulating text, CAF can sell the facilities to the host countries after auditing to know the value and possible reasons why it should be sold. Unfortunately, the struggle by Cameroon to buy the structure and ensure the management was aborted.