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AFCON 2023: Côte d’Ivoire ready to ‘host Africa’



The Ivorian ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Kalilou Traore, has reiterated his country’s readiness to host the 2023 African Cup of Nations (AFCON). Traore stated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Abuja. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the tournament is scheduled to start from January 13 to February 11, 2024.

According to him, the country has put all measures in place to ensure a hitch-free tournament.

“This will be one of the biggest events for Africa, and you can imagine that all the people of Côte d’Ivoire are mobilised to make it a very great event.

“Starting from the Head of State, President Alassane Ouattara and the Prime Minister, who right now is the Minister of Sports, is particularly in charge of the organisation of this tournament.

“Beyond the government, the population has been mobilised. The tourist sector has been mobilised, and the security, the building sectors have built many stadiums that will host different matches.

“So all the sectors in Côte d’Ivoire have been mobilised and they are ready.

“I say almost ready; now they are fine-tuning all the little things, so that they will be ready before the official opening on Jan. 13.”

The envoy explained the mobilistion is in terms of budget and the overhaul of infrastructure to ensure a successful tournament. “Of course, when I say the whole government is mobilized, it means that officials of the government are mobilized, and the budget of the government is also allocated for this tournament.

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“You know when you want to build six or seven stadiums, it will cost a lot of money, especially when you want to put in place all the facilities,” he said.

Traore further said that the Ivorian government was working closely with the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to achieve the desired goals.

“Each country has to take charge of its own team, but when they bring them into Côte d’Ivoire, the facilities are there for them to use,” he said.

He said that every facility that would facilitate the performance of the teams has been provided by the government of Côte d’Ivoire. The envoy said that Côte d’Ivoire and CAF were working together with the various countries’ football federations to ensure a hitch-free AFCON in the country.

“I recently visited the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) president, and they are in touch with their counterparts in Côte d’Ivoire in terms of preparation,” he said.


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