Fifa approves $500,000 teams housing facility

THE WORLD football body, Fifa, has approved $500,000 (about Rwf343 million) for Rwanda which will go towards the construction of a youth and national teams' accommodation facility.
Amavubi players during a past training session. The team will soon get a permanent housing facility which will be built with a grant from Fifa. (File photo)
Amavubi players during a past training session. The team will soon get a permanent housing facility which will be built with a grant from Fifa. (File photo)

THE WORLD football body, Fifa, has approved $500,000 (about Rwf343 million) for Rwanda which will go towards the construction of a youth and national teams’ accommodation facility.

The planned housing centre was part of the 32 Goal projects approved by Fifa’s development committee recently.

Fifa Senior Manager for Africa Development Programmes Zelkifli R. Ngoufonja toldSaturday Sport this week that the accommodation facility was approved as part of Goal Project Five for Rwanda.

“The objective of the accommodation centre is to host the national teams so as to reduce on the accommodation costs,” he said.

“We hope this centre will also ensure better concentration of the teams and preparation for competitions as well as generate additional revenue for the member association,” added Ngoufonja.

The facility will be a major boost for Rwanda, which is preparing to host the 2016 African Nations Championship (Chan) finals.

It is set to be constructed in Gahanga, Kicukiro District with construction work set to kick off in January next year.

Funds for the project will mainly come from the Fifa Goal Project grant with the Rwandan government contributing a smaller percentage.

The first such project in Rwanda was the construction of the Ferwafa headquarters and a technical facility in 2001. In 2007, the Fifa Goal Bureau approved the installation of an artificial turf at the technical centre to help improve the training of the youth there.  

The third was the establishment of a football academy at the technical centre in 2008 which later played a key part in Rwanda’s qualification for the 2011 Under-17 Fifa World Cup finals in Mexico.

The installation of an artificial turf at the Muhanga stadium in 2011 was the latest. The facility is being used to host local league and cup games.

The Fifa Goal Project is an initiative of Fifa president Sepp Blatter and it started in 1999 to help improve infrastructure in developing countries, mainly in Africa and Asia. To date, it has provided support to over 500 development projects, with $200 million invested.

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