By Umar Faruk Birnin Kebbi
The Federation internationale de Football Association(FIFA) have handed over a newly constructed mini stadium worth 1.18 billion dollars to and Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) after the its was commissioned on Friday in Birnin Kebbi.
The mini stadium is situated along Birnin Kebbi- Kalgo- road which breaking ground was commenced on 21st September 2020, three years after under the immediate past administration of Senator Abubakar Atiku Bagudu as a governor.
In his remarks during the commissioning ceremony, FIFA representative,Mr. Solomon Mudege,Head of Development Programmes -Africa FIFA, said the edifice would continue to serve both male and female footballers in the state.
He said: “we are proud of this project and what it’s represent that, the people would have their own football facility that they can be use locally for their matches. It is a dream come to realization, positive development to the Sports activities in the state”.
Stressing that, the FIFA would continue to support Nigeria just like they did in other African countries where they provided standard facilities.
Mr. Solomon disclosed that Kebbi State mini stadium was the fist one to be completed in Nigeria, adding that, another one in Oborodo in Delta state would soon be completed to complement sporting activities in the region, while another one in Abuja, which on the plan, could be use for international matches and camping of the national teams.
He further said that the FIFA had provided projects funds and operational cost fundings which is about $1.25 million per year for maintenance of facilities, payment of salaries, organising congresses, marketing, promotions, organising Coaches, and skills workshops.
In his a short remark, Mr. El-Hadj Wack Diop,Lead -Dakar Regional Office FIFA ,commended the state and NFF for supporting FIFA to completed the historical stadium in the State.
Earlier speaking ,the National President of NFF, Alhaji Ibrahim Musa Gusau noted that the greatest problem in this part of the country was not football talent ,rather, non-availability of standard facilities for the footballers.
“Now that we are having this FIFA mini stadium here in Birnin Kebbi,our talented footballers will now have standard facility for their training and camping. In future, we want to have more of Zaidu Sanusi so that, once they succeed in abroad, more development would come to the country, particularly, Kebbi State”.
He thanked FIFA, Kebbi State Government for the support they rendered to the completion of the historical and first FIFA mini stadium in the Northwest region of Nigeria. Also promised to ensure proper usage and maintenance of the facility.
While delivering his speech, Kebbi State Governor, Dr. Nasir Idris, represented by the Head of Service,Alhaji Sufiyanu Garba Bena, who thanked FIFA for executed the project, disclosed that the state government provided four hectares of land for the project and paid N19m as compensation to the land’s owners.
He added that his administration would continue to support sports development through the youths and requested that NFF and FIFA should use Kebbi State as venue for football league.
Kebbi State Chairman NFF, Alhaji Abubakar Chika Ladan, disclosed that the four hectares of land was provided by the immediate past Governor of the state and had paid the sum of N19 million as compensation to the land owners. Which by then i was the commissioner of lands and Housing.
He commended the NFF President, FIFA for found the state worthy of the project and stressed that the stadium would continue to serve as main facility for the footballers in the state.