The upgrading of Kamuzu Institute for Sports (KIS) is under serious threat as some people have encroached some parts of the land meant for the project, Malawi News has learnt.
The facility got a lion’s share of funds allocated to the Ministry of Youth and Sports for the Department of Sports Project as part of upgrading the facility to host 2022 Africa Union Council (AUSC) Region 5
Games. KIS was allocated K1 billion out of the K2.6 billion
However, a visit to the site showed that encroachers have taken part of the land which belongs to the Ministry of Sports, threatening the commencement of the project.
Director of Sports in the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Jameson Ndalama, said he was aware of the challenges.
“We are aware of what is happening at Kamuzu Institute and we engaged the Ministry of Lands on the issue. Indeed, part of the land which was earmarked for the project has been taken by some people. At the moment, we are waiting for feedback from Ministry of Lands,” Ndalama said.
Malawi National Council of Sports (MNCS) acting Executive Secretary Henry Mereka said it was a concern that the land was under threat.
“It is true that encroachers have taken part of the land but the issue is in the hands of the Sports Ministry. We are dreaming in colour to upgrade the place so that it is a hub of all sporting activities in Malawi,” Mereka said.
The development comes after unidentified people destroyed perimetre fence of the facility last night. About 100 metres of the perimeter fence has been lost.
The Tonse Alliance-led government announced that the facility will be turned into a sports village in readiness for the Region 5 Games in 2022.Through the project, government is expected to rehabilitate basketball, volleyball, netball courts, football pitch and running tracks. The facility is also expected to have a state-of-the art swimming pool and gymnasium.
Apart from renovating the facility, government also announced that it will construct the long-awaited state-of-the art indoor sports complex in Lilongwe as part of preparations to host the Region 5 Games.
A total of K300 million was allocated for the Indoor Sports Complex which will be constructed in Area 48 near Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe.