Kamuzu Stadium is now officially not recognised by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to host any international game after being ruled out as unfit by the continental football governing body’s envoy.
CAF inspector Omar Ben Hassan is in Malawi for inspections ahead of qualifiers for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations and the 2014 World Cup qualifiers. Malawi hosts Kenya and Namibia between this month and September.
“Stadiums which do not meet CAF standards, i.e. stadiums which are unable to host club competitions or matches between national teams will be removed from CAF’s list.
“CAF will provide each national association with the conditions to which stadium(s) must adhere in order to meet their specific requirements,” reads CAF website www.cafonline.com
The CAF executive committee made the position on the stadium inspection after its meeting on Friday March 8 2013 in the Sofitel Hotel in Marrakech, on the eve of the 35th Ordinary CAF General Assembly in Morocco.
FAM commercial manager Casper Jangale confirmed on Monday that they felt it was not necessary for Hassan to inspect the giant Blantyre arena as it was condemned recently. The stadium, whose most terraces are cordoned off awaiting major renovations, hosts club games.
“At the moment, I would say yes [removed from the list] because he hasn’t inspected the Kamuzu Stadium. He has inspected Civo Stadium and other venues which we consider as training venues such as Nankhaka Stadium. He came on Friday and he will be here until Wednesday,” Jangale said.
Apart from inspecting Civo, which CAF security envoy Nicholas Musonye also scrutinised last October, Hassan from Seychelles also assessed the standard of hotels and hospitals closer to the stadium.
Jangale was confident Civo, which proved small when the Flames hosted Ghana last October in the decisive match for the 2013 Nations Cup qualification with Musonye pleading with fans to climb off the beams, would pass the second test.
“Preliminary indications from Mr. Hassan are that he is impressed,” he said.
The inspector will then submit a report to CAF who will in turn communicate to FAM on the verdict for the Lilongwe venue.
Malawi Institute of Engineers’ president Dr. Matthews Mtumbuka recently argued that if the stadium is able to host league games involving giants such as Big Bullets and Mighty Wanderers, then it can also host an international match.