Rwanda to battle Kenya, Cameroon to host 2016 ACN

Rwanda’s ability to host 2016 African Cup of Nations will be tested to the limit as it will be coming against Cameroon and Kenya in the bidding process.
WE ARE TAKING OFF: Sports Minister Joseph Habineza.
WE ARE TAKING OFF: Sports Minister Joseph Habineza.

Rwanda’s ability to host 2016 African Cup of Nations will be tested to the limit as it will be coming against Cameroon and Kenya in the bidding process.

The bidding for the tournament kicks in 2010. As part of the bidding process, Rwanda is set to kick start an ambitious project that will see several infrastructures put in place. Among them a 40000-45000 seater stadium.

While speaking to Times Sport, Sports Minister Joseph Habineza revealed that Amahoro and Nyamirambo stadiums will be upgraded to meet the required standards of hosting a tournament of such magnitude.

Habineza said that Rwanda will need to construct four stadiums before bidding for the 2016 nations Cup.

“We were told that the most important thing needed is to locate four venues that will host the 16 teams that normally participate at the Nations Cup finals.

“We also have plans to construct another 25000 seater in either Rubavu, Northern Province or in Southern Province.”

We also hope to talk with our partners from China and see how best we can construct a 40000 seater stadium in or outside Kigali City.” Habineza said.

Habineza further added that the hosting infrastructure which is the most urgent thing is expected to commence before Rwanda hosts the U-17 African Youth Championship in 2011.

“During the 2011 U-17 AYC, Caf officials will clearly notify whether Rwanda can bid for the African event or not,” Habineza said.

The Confederation of African Football (Caf) president Issa Hayatou recently confirmed Rwanda as the host nation of the 2011 U-17 African Youth Championship finals.

Cameroon and Kenya have also expressed interest in hosting the 2016 African Nations Cup tournament. The central African country has hosted the tournament just once, in 1972, when it was eliminated 1-0 in the semi-finals by Congo Republic who went on to win the title.

Kenya Football federation’s campaign to bring the 2016 Africa Cup of Nations to the country has begun in earnest. In the past Caf turned down Rwanda’s proposal to bid to host the African 2010 Nations Cup.

Instead, Kigali was awarded the rights to host the 2009 African Youth Championships as a dress rehearsal event. CAN 2010 will be hosted by Angola.

Rwanda was awarded the rights to host the Youth Championships during the last edition held in Congo Brazzaville in 2007.

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