Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, says the ministry needs between N5bn and N10bn to renovate sporting facilities across the country.
Dare made this known in a statement signed by his media office on Thursday.
Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja was in a bad state one year after it was named after the presumed winner of the 1993 presidential election, Moshood Abiola.
A worker at the stadium, who spoke on a condition of anonymity, wondered why billionaire businessman Aliko Dangote had not taken charge of a part of the stadium, as promised by sports minister, Sunday Dare last year.
“Since the change of name of the Abuja National Stadium to Moshood Abiola Stadium by the President, the edifice has been left unkempt.
“The sports minister in October 2019 promised that business mogul, Aliko Dangote, was willing to adopt the main bowl, nothing has been heard about that as at today,” the stadium worker told The PUNCH .
But Dare in the statement, said the stadium would be renovated soon, adding that negotiations were at an advanced stage with Dangote Group.
“Work will soon commence at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja. We were on the verge of completing the documentation process, review contracting process for the rehabilitation of the Moshood Abiola Stadium before COVID-19 struck. We had to shut down the whole country, a global shut down as the case maybe,” the sports minister said.
“Remember, it is a private company and they had to go through a lot of processes, they had to invite more than eight different contractors. They have to visit the stadium, they have to turn in their bill of quantity and also sit on a review board.
“They also had to decide which contractor was the most suitable to give us the best job. Being the National stadium, all of these take time; they are normal standard operating procedure.
“I am glad to say that very soon, we are now at the stage of purchasing order and we must remember that we cannot force or accelerate the process because we are dealing with a well-respected Nigerian who is bringing in his money without any plans to recoup anything to maintain the National Stadium,” he added.
According to him, the ministry will also look at giving out the National Stadium, Lagos to interested concessionaires.
“In the next couple of weeks, we will have those who are interested in taking over the National Stadium Surulere concession and hostel come forth and the normal process of concession will take place.
“We are also looking for special intervention funds of about N5bn to N10bn from the government that would enable us renovate and upgrade other sporting assets across the country.”