The ailing Kamuzu Stadium has been allocated K1.5 billion for its rehabilitation, Minister of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development Henry Mussa told Parliament on Thursday.
The facility has not been used this season due to its dilapidated state as well as the artificial turf which has outlived its life-span.
“K1.5 billion has been allocated to the stadium for the rehabilitation of the stands as well as purchasing of a new turf.
“We know that the fans soccer fans are being denied the opportunity of watching games due to the closure of the stadium, but they can now be rest assured that they will soon be able to watch their teams at the stadium as we await the construction of the new stadium,” he said.
The ministry’s spokesperson Simon Mbvundula said the rehabilitation of the stadium will start as soon as possible.
“The minister has made it very clear that rehabilitation of the stadium is a priority and the works were only waiting for the passing of the budget.
“In fact, preparatory works have already started behind the scenes,” he said.
But while commending the move, Be Forward Wanderers general secretary Mike Butao said the worry is that the project could take long due to government red tape.
“Our plea is that they should let us use the facility for the first round while procurement of the materials and other prior feasibility work is taking place.
“We are suffering financially because the gate revenue from other stadiums cannot be compared to that of Kamuzu Stadium. In addition to that, we are also spending more on other logistics such as travel,” he said.