What is happening to Kenya's second largest sports facility Nyayo Stadium?

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What is happening to Kenya's second largest sports facility Nyayo Stadium?

What is happening to Kenya's second largest sports facility Nyayo Stadium? By Robert Abong'o: 164 Wednesday, October 24th 2018 at 11:48 GMT +3 | Football

Nyayo Stadium as at now [Courtesy]

Just what is going on at Nyayo Stadium?

Kenya's second largest sporting facility, which boasts of a 30,000 seater capacity has been undergoing refurbishment since late last year.

In August 2017, Government commissioned a face-lift worth Sh450 million, one that was meant to elevate it to 'world-class'. At this moment in time, the country was coming to terms with getting ready to host Africa Nations Championship football tournament (CHAN).

However, a month later, due to obvious po or preparation, hosting rights were revoked and given to Morroco, who were more than prepared to host the 16-team tourney.

In January, Sports PS Kirimi Kaberia toured the facility and told Kenyans it would be ready in two months.

Chandresh Babariya (centre), the contractor carrying out renovations at the Nyayo National Stadium, briefs Sports PS Kirimi Kaberia - [Courtesy]

"I expect this venue to be ready by March. I have just asked the contractor to hand over the keys to this facility by the end of that month," said Kaberia.

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"We already have stakeholders and individuals who are willing to come on board and help in whichever way. We are also organising a conference which will bring all the federations and institutions of the corporates willing to pledge and merge the need of the federations support," Kaberia emphasised.

This was not to be, sadly.

In March, reports surfaced that, Gregory International, the company contracted to plant grass in the stadium had packed their bags following delays in payments. Even though the Sports PS rubbished these claims and confirmed the payment process was valid, the mystery of how the stadium was going to be ready in time for Kenya's AFCON clash against Ghana kept lingering over Kenyans' minds.

Chair of the National Assembly Committee on Sports accompanied by Sports PS Karimi Kaberia [Courtesy]

"We pay for work done. We received their invoice and it is in the process of being paid but they have to wait just like everybody else. All contractors have given us timelines when the works will be done and this is indicated in the contract," explained PS Kaberia. He then expressed confidence that by September, the stadium would be ready. The company's withdrawal was also attributed to the heavy rains.

Three months later, Lexis International Chief Contractor Chandresh Babariya promised to complete works inside the stadium in six weeks, only if the Sports Ministry was quick to disburse needed funds. This was following a visit to the stadium by the National Assembly Committee on Sports. Babariya revealed that they had received less than 45 per cent of the entire budgetary allocation. Consequently, the Sports CS, who was among the people present vowed to act on speeding up the availability of the remaining fund.

Nyayo Stadium in September [Courtesy]

We are in October. October 24. Still, if you walk into Nyayo Stadium now, you'll ask yourself the question â€" what is being done?

Slow disbursement of funds, delayed payments, negated tenders, long rains and a really long politicking period are among the reasons Kenyans believe have stalled the refurbishment of Nyayo Stadium.

The stadium as at now [Courtesy]
The refurbishment works as of October [Courtesy]

Here's what's supposed to be going on at Nyayo Stadium.

A new office block to be constructed behind the VIP dias. There will also be VIP hospitality rooms.

A shed around the whole stadium is supposed to be constructed â€"previously, only the VIP section had a shed.

Changing rooms be moved from below the VIP dias to the left side of the stadium.

A new pitch surface was supposed to be actualized.

Swimming pool area to be re-done.

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