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Cameroon Steadfast In Spite of Threats

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Elizabeth MOSIMA | 19-07-2017 12:07

Efforts are being made by the government to ensure a successful organisation of the AFCON 2019.

When the African football governing body CAF announced Cameroon as the host of the 32nd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations, the news was recieved with joy and great expectations. Cameroon won the bid against Algeria, Guinea, Ivory Coast and Zambia. Cameroon’s bid was centred around four venues in Bafoussam, Douala, Garoua and Yaounde.

Recently, rumours have been going on that Cameroon will not be ready before January 2017. As a result other countries such as Algeria, Morocco, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea Conakry have begun showing interest in taking over the challenge. Algeria for instance has announced that it is ready to apply for the hosting of the African Cup of Nations AFCON 2019 in the event that the African Football Confederation (CAF) withdraws the organisation in Cameroon. Reports hold that Algeria Football Federation’s President, Kheïreddine Zetchi, said his country has submitted its candidature to host the competition if Cameroon is stripped of her hosting rights.

Morocco has equally shown interest in taking over from Cameroon in staging the 2019 African Cup of Nations in case of lack of capacity. Fouzi Lakjaa. President of the Royal Moroccan Football Federation, says his country would be willing to step in as replacements if upcoming Confederation of African Football (CAF) meetings make organisational changes that Cameroon will not be able to fulfil.

Cameroon is reportedly experiencing delays in the execution of various Nations Cup infrastructural projects. This notwithstanding, efforts are being made by the government to ensure that the different game venues and other aspects are ready before the competition. Already, the officials of Picini, the company in charge of constructing the 60,000-seater Olembe Stadium to host the opening ceremony of the 2019 AFCON assured the public in a press briefing in Yaounde that the infrastructure will be ready by October 2018.

It should be recalled that speculations were equally high on the organisation of the 2016 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon. In spite of the doubts and suspense, the organisation was the best as far as the women’s competition is concerned. Cameroon was even rewarded by the African football governing body for the successful organisation of the tournament. With the resounding success, Cameroon is poised to give its best come January 2019  

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