The Confederation of African Football (CAF) inspection delegation will meet William Ruto, Kenya’s Deputy President on Friday after concluding a four-day tour and inspection exercise on Kenya’s venues for next year’s CAF African Nations Championships (CHAN).
The team which arrived in on Sunday morning is expected to be joined by Suketu Patel, the CAF 1st Vice-President for the Friday meeting.
CAF will be seeking assurance from the government for a second time that they are fully behind Kenya’s hosting of the event.
Ruto met another high powered CAF delegation in August last year, led by President Issa Hayatou and second vice president Almamy Kabele Camara. Ruto had also met Nick mwendwa, the FKF boss on Friday, in another build up meeting towards the championship.
CAF had registered some worry over Kenya’s preparedness, but Mwendwa who attended a CAF Executive Committee meeting in Gabon a fortnight ago assured everything was in place for the championship.
Ruto is also expected to assure the team of the government’s commitment especially in getting the match venues ready in time for the January showpiece.
The Local Organizing Committee which was gazetted at the beginning of the month had a meeting on Saturday ahead of the arrival of the CAF team.
“It is vital to point out that the outcome of the inspection will determine further our capability and capacity to successfully host CHAN 2018 in Kenya,” Mwendwa said after the meeting on Saturday. He added; “As the host nation we want to remove any doubts during the inspection and assure CAF and Africa as a whole that Kenya will be ready in time and successfully host the 2018 CHAN which we believe will dispel any notion that there is need for CAF to seek an alternative host.”
Failed bid in 1996
The last time Kenya won a bid to host a continental tournament was in 1996, but later pulled out forcing CAF to take the tourney to South Africa.
Mwendwa remains confident everything will be in place. The biggest challenge is getting the stadia ready and FKF narrowed down to five venues to be used. Apart from the Kasarani and Nyayo Stadia in Nairobi, FKF have also picked out on the Kenyatta Stadium in Machakos, the Kinoru Stadium in Meru and the Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Eldoret.
Apart from inspecting the stadia, the CAF team will also inspect hospitality and medical facilities as well as training grounds.
Monday will see the team tour Nyayo and Kasarani to check on progress. They will also tour five-star hotels which have been picked by the LOC to host teams and CAF delegation. The team will then inspect the training venues in Nairobi.
Among the training grounds include Utalii grounds, Kenya School of Monetary Studies and Barclays Sports Club all along Thika Road, GEMS Cambridge International School and Brookhouse School on Magadi Road, Hillcrest schools in Karen, International School of Kenya and the Rosslyn Academy in the posh Runda suburb.
The team will then head to Eldoret on Tuesday where they will inspect the Kipchoge Keino Stadium. Wednesday will see them in Machakos and Thursday in Meru.
On Friday, the final day of the tour, they will hold a review meeting with the LOC and then have a meeting with Ruto.