The Republic of Botswana and Namibia who are bidding to co-host the Africa Cup of Nations tournament finals in 2027 commenced the stage of the facilities audit this week. The audit is currently ongoing in Botswana and the Consultants will proceed to tour Namibian facilities once the exercise is complete in Botswana.
During the assessment, Botswana-Namibia 2027 (BONA2027) Head of Secretariat Mr Geoffrey Gare urged Batswana to be supportive and confident about co-hosting the AFCON 2027 tournament since it will leave a lasting legacy that will benefit the Country going forward. He highlighted that if Botswana and Namibia were to win the bid to host, both countries will spend a lot of capital on preparations but will gain greater investment in return.
He further assured the gathering that the current failure to meet the CAF requirements for hosting category three and four games will not negatively impact Botswana’s mission to bid for AFCON 2027.
Gare said that winning and hosting a tournament of such magnitude will need both countries to build infrastructures that meet CAF’s new stadia regulations and all other necessities fit for hosting.
He highlighted that building a stadia that can accommodate 40 000 fans will be an accomplishment that will benefit Botswana in future, not only during the tournament but will be a lasting infrastructural legacy. Gare further explained that hosting AFCON 2027 will not only focus on stadia that meet the required standards but also make sure that all the locations in Botswana hosting the games are accessible, thus engaging all responsible stakeholders that need to contribute to the project since it will be a national event.
That the hotels will have to upgrade their star ratings and provide quality service to promote Botswana and Namibia as a destination of meetings, investments, conferences and exhibitions.
Mr Gare also mentioned the event will give Botswana’s tourism sector exposure and attract tourists. He stated that building new stadia and renovating the current ones will give Botswana an opportunity to host regional football tournaments and local athletes will have training facilities of an exceptional standard.
Such development will enhance the phase of football development in the two countries and ensure that sport benefits from the improved infrastructure for other sport bodies to successfully bid in future. He concluded by urging Batswana to have faith and continue portraying Botswana positively and believe that Botswana and Namibia are capable to host the Africa Cup of Nations tournament in 2027