CAF sets July 14 deadline for Bingu Stadium to be ready
FAM has until July 14 to submit detailed information complete with video footage on the status of Bingu National Stadium (BNS) in Lilongwe, which the association has proposed to host the 2022 World Cup qualifiers.
The deadline is contained in a letter which Confederation of African Football (CAF) has written to its member associations whose stadia were either banned or provisionally approved during the previous round of pre-inspections in April.
The letter, addressed to association general secretaries, reads in part: “Kindly note that a new round of stadium assessment will be conducted by CAF in order to verify the status and conditions of the proposed venues.
“As part of the referred new stadium assessment, the national associations are requested to send to the CAF Club Licensing Department [Club.firstname.lastname@example.org] an up-to-date stadium information report no later than July 14 2021.
“The report should be completed by the club licensing manager in your federation and be accompanied by the documentation requested. Based on the previous stadium decisions issued by CAF in May 2021, kindly find below the type of information requested from your national association.”
According to the letter, Malawi is among eight countries whose stadia were banned. The others are Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Liberia, Mali, Namibia, Niger and Senegal.
Those that were provisionally approved are Cape Verde, Congo, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Libya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Sudan, Togo, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
The letter further reads: “The above requested stadium report, including photos and videos must be recent, detailed and accurate with the current status of the stadium. Based on the information provided, a final decision will be taken by CAF latest by July 21 2021 regarding the approval of the stadium and the location of your next qualifying matches for the Fifa World Cup qualifier.
“Kindly note that CAF may decide to carry out an independent inspection visit by one of its experts after receipt of the report sent by your federation. CAF’s inspection visit is not, however, a prerequisite for its decision to approve a stadium.”
CAF says if a country’s stadium does not meet the minimum criteria set by CAF, its national team will play its matches in an approved stadium outside its territory.
Football Association of Malawi licensing and compliance manager Casper Jangale said the association is working hand-in-hand with BNS management to ensure that the stadium is ready by the set deadline.
“We have been inspecting the stadium and I would say we are satisfied with the progress.
“Grass has been replanted and fertiliser has been applied and in due course herbicides will be applied. In the next few days, we are optimistic that the pitch should be in good condition,” he said.