Teslim Balogun Stadium
After inspecting facilities designated for the 18th National Sports Festival tagged Eko 2012, the Main Organising Committee (MOC) has expressed satisfaction with the level of preparation by Lagos State.
The MOC led by its Secretary General, Abba Abdullahi Yola, told journalists after inspecting venues such as Onikan Stadium, Rowe Park Sports Centre and Teslim Balogun Stadium that he was satisfied with the level of work being carried out at the venues.
He, however, urged the Local Organising Committee (LOC) to ensure that work is speeded up in all the venues in order to ensure that the facilities are fully ready for the festival in November.
The MOC scribe said: “The Onikan Stadium renovations are going on well, the only problem is the pitch and I think they need more hands to remove the weeds that are growing there so that they can plant the grass and beautify the place. Also removing the weeds is not something that a machine can do, so they would need more manpower in removing the weeds. Aside from that, I think work there is going on well and the manager has promised that we would get results by the end of the month. We would be getting in touch with the contractor to ensure that more people are employed to do this so that they can meet up with the timeline.”
He added: “The work at Rowe Park is moving on well because I can see that they have done about 70 per cent of the job and I am particularly impressed with the facilities put in place for the physically challenged athletes that would be taking part in the games. Teslim Balogun Stadium is going on very well and I am quite impressed with the facilities on ground, all they need to do now is make some minor adjustments and the stadium is ready for the games.”
He, however, said: “The renovations are going on well, just that things have to move fasters because of the lack of time. We have been assured by the people in charge that by the end of the month renovations would be almost done. The renovation on the secretariat, I can say is 99 per cent complete, all the offices are set and all the equipment needed are in place and I have to commend the LOC Secretary General for his efforts in seeing that things are up and running.”
For the LOC scribe, Kweku Tandoh, the renovations work would be completed as at when due.
“For now I would say we are ready for the festival and we are on course with the timelines both in terms of the infrastructure, venues, and facilities. The good news is that all the renovations and construction work are expected to be completed by the end of this month. This gives us time to test-run the facilities and put right anything we may find to be fitted. In terms of all the other issues, the catering, the feeding, and the accommodations, all those process are going on according to the timeline that has been approved and set by MOC in conjunction with the LOC.
“So I can say that we are on course and we don’t expect unforeseen challenges that will affect the festival negatively,” Tandoh assured.
Meanwhile, the zonal qualifiers for team events will hold across the 12 centres of the federation. Teams are expected to compete in events such as basketball, volleyball, handball, football, Abula among others.