Imposing and architectural completeness—that is what qualifies the Bingu National Stadium (BNS) as a national asset. It offers an alternative leisure place.
I was one of the spectators of the Luso TV’s Bus Ipite soccer bonanza. May the soul of Bingu wa Mutharika rest in peace.
Government sanctioned organisers of the event to host the match involving Nyasa Bullets and Be Forward Wanderers at this new facility. It was a litmus test on the newly constructed stadium.
I used the first match at the new stadium to cast an eagle’s eye on a diversity of things at the venue.
The stadium is positioned right at the heart of the Capital, an ideal setting for government and private functions.
Why not make use of the restaurants, bars, shops and other facilities waiting for potential operators?
There is need to move away from the chronic syndrome of associating stadia with football only. Corporate institutions can use the facility as an open air venue for their activities.
It just requires creative minds to fully utilise the facility to its optimum and enable government re-invest proceeds of this investment for maintenance and continuous upgrade of the stadium.
If we do not think outside the box, it will gradually lose its aesthetic appeal and degrade the beauty which it boasts.
Designers of the facility were visionary to deal with rampant ticketing scam, a major cancer when it comes to sports and entertainment business.
With the new stadium, you have a special place where a ticket is issued, from there you proceed to the gate where you present your ticket and proceed on to another barrier for verification before you enter the stadium.
It is only through well calculated syndicate and ticketing scam that this design can be overcome. The entry gates and passages are too spacious and visible that one can monitor and detect possible clandestine dealings.
Inside the stadium, it is recommended that there should be ushers to direct supporters of rival teams to their designated stands.
Opposing supporters should be placed at different sides. Not even a stone from David’s lethal sling, which brought killed Goliath can, reach the opposite stand.
This is a positive step towards curbing possible acts of violence between opposing camps.
Cleaners should always remember to clean the seats before which were unbearably dusty during the game.
Consideration should also be given to rubbish bins where patrons can throw in remains of various foodstuffs.
Now, the real test of the day was car parking and access roads. Come the official opening on January 20, officials should be ready to handle this nightmare.
The designated car park is too small for the big stadium. The first test came on a rainy day as it exposed the loose gravel soil. As a result of the downpour, some vehicles got stuck in mud in the car park. Exiting the place was a shocker.
Where one took 90 minutes to watch the game, one had to endure a three-hour snail-paced drive to get out of the chaotic parking lot along the Area 18-49 Road.
Government should make this road a dual carriageway with traffic lights at the junction.Patrons will be shunning the facility for fear of the inconveniences resulting from this chaos.
An innocent woman going to deliver food to a patient at Kamuzu Central Hospital found herself caught in the traffic jam as the match ended.
She had to endure a four-hour wait trying to get into the main road.
I am sure she missed the visiting hour.
All in all, the stadium is one of the best architectural facilities that have added beauty to the city. n