Akii Bua Stadium will be ready to host AFCON 2027 – Nabbanja

GULU, May 4, 2024 – The government will commission the construction of the new Akii Bua National Stadium in Lira City in the next two weeks as the country prepares to host African Cup of Nations 2027 [AFCON 2027].

Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania will jointly host the 36th edition of the most prestigious African football competition, having submitted a joint bid to the Confederation of African Football [CAF] in Cairo, Egypt.

Part of the requirements asked by CAF is for Uganda to have at least three standard stadiums each with a capacity to accommodate 40,000 people.

Parliament has allocated Shs 100 billion to kickstart the reconstruction of Akii Bua National Stadium expected to boost football in Northern Uganda.

Addressing the gathering in Gulu City over the weekend during the stakeholders’ engagement, Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja confirmed the allocation of the Shs 100bln for the construction of the stadium.

Meanwhile, the Chairperson Lango Parliamentary Group Judith Alyek further urged the government to speed up the process of building stadium named after John Akii Bua, a national hero who was the first Ugandan to win an Olympic gold medal.

Nabbanja noted the government has heavily invested in infrastructural development in Northern Uganda in the health sector, roads and water and will do more on such developments.

Nabbanja further noted that President Museveni has directed the construction of Gulu-Lira City road as well as the road connecting Gulu Airport to Bank of Uganda Gulu Currency Centre City.

She explained that upgrading Gulu, Arua and Lira municipalities into cities was part of the government’s deliberate plan to rebuild Acholi, Lango and West Nile sub-regions.

“Let me take this opportunity to inform the people of Lango that we put 100 billion in the budget of 2024/2025 to work on Akii Bua Stadium. The president directed that we should also work on those roads from Gulu Airport up to Lira,” she said. “We are also going to work on the road from Gulu Airport up to Bank of Uganda in the same project and the contractor is already available.”

Meanwhile, Martin Ojara Mapenduzi, the Member of Parliament for Bardege-Layibi Division says, negotiation is ongoing with the government for upgrading Pece War Memorial Stadium in Gulu City. Other stadia in Uganda expected to host AFCON 2027 matches are Namboole National Stadium in Kira Municipality, Wakiso district, and Nakivubo War Memorial Stadium in Kampala, now known as Ham Stadium, after being reconstructed by Kampala businessman Hamis Kiggundu.

The 2027 Africa Cup of Nations, also referred to as AFCON 2027 or CAN 2027, is scheduled to be the 36th edition of the biennial African football tournament organised by CAF. It will be hosted by Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda in June and July 2027.

This edition of the tournament will be the first ever to be hosted by three different countries, and also the first in 5 decades to be organised in the CECAFA region, since it was hosted by Ethiopia in 1976. This came after CAF president Patrice Motsepe announced that the competition will be zonal oriented so it can be hosted by all the geographic zones of Africa.

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