The once abadoned mainbowl of the Abuja national stadium re-named MKO Abiola national stadium is now wearing a new-look courtesy of the intervention of Africa’s richest man, Alhaji Aliko Dangote.
It will be recalled that after the passionate appeal by the Minister of Sports, Sunday Dare, for public spirited individuals and corporate organisations to embrace his adopt-a-pitch initiative, Dangote in August 2020, offered to rehabilitate the mainbowl of the MKO Abiola national stadium with a whopping $1m.
Although the renovation work had continued well beyond the given deadlines, the facility’s playing pitch is now lush green and ready for use just as the ultra-modern scoreboard is now functional.
Consequently, the Sports Ministry has given the assurance that football activities will soon resume at the venue which was commisioned in 2003 for the 8th All Africa Games.
Prior to Dangote’s intervention, the MKO Abiola national stadium had deteriorated to the extent that the pitch became an eye sore and the scoreboard dysfunctional.
The rehabilitation of the stadium is no doubt in fulfilment of the mandate of the Minister to renovate existing infrastructure, and develop grassroot sports.
According to the Sports Ministry, there are plans to rehabilitate the Chief Obafemi Awolowo Stadium, Ibadan through a private, public partnership model.