Friday January 31 2014

KCCA get Shs1b artificial turf

Mamelodi (L), Fufa head Magogo (M) and KCCA

Mamelodi (L), Fufa head Magogo (M) and KCCA officials inspect the Lugogo pitch yesterday. Photo by Ismail Kezaala 

By Andrew Mwanguhya


Fifa will roll out an artificial turf at the KCCA FC Stadium in Lugogo this year in the world body’s Fifa Support For Less Privileged Federations development project.
The news was disclosed by Fifa development officer Ashford Mamelodi at the facility yesterday.
“We are excited about this project and we are in advanced stages to bringing it here,” said Mamelodi.

Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Lesotho, Tanzania and Zambia among others are the countries to benefit from this project. “We await formal approval when the Fifa development committee sits in March and once that is done the technical work should start. Normally laying an artificial turf takes about three months, so it should be completed quickly once we start.”

Mamelodi could not readily disclose the cost of laying the turf but said it will not go past $700,000 (about Shs1.7b), the figure Njeru Technical Centre in Jinja is said to have cost. “Maybe $600,000 (1.5b) or slightly less. But there should be no worries because Fifa will pay for everything directly and no penny will go to Fufa. Fifa will also use their recognized international construction companies to lay the turf.”

But at a time court cases are still abound and parliamentary probes into the management of the game proceeding, Mamelodi did raise a few eyebrows when he said one of the reasons Fifa decided to bring this project to Uganda is because “we are satisfied with the stability of football in this country. “Yes we’ve had storms before but now we have a new regime and we are confident they are moving in the right direction.”

The head of that new regime, Moses Magogo, expressed appreciation to Fifa for the new project. “We are excited that now we can use the facility to host international games and it is a big improvement to football and to us and KCCA FC.”
The news of the second artificial turf in the country after Njeru comes at a time KCCA are preparing for their Caf Champions League clash with El Merrick in Sudan.