Govt reacts to arena hitches

THE government, through the Ministry for Culture, Arts and Sports has issued an apology to the sports fraternity following a technical fault that occurred at Benjamin Mkapa Stadium’s lighting system in the city over the weekend.

The incident rendered to a temporary pause of the CAF Confederation Cup reverse leg quarter-final match between Young Africans and Rivers United as some of the lights were not functioning causing poor visibility at the venue.

However, through a statement released by the Communication Department in the Ministry for Culture, Arts and Sports signed by Eleuteri Mangi, the government has  apologised for the setback while insisting on  improvement on the services provided at the facility.

“The ministry apologises to fans especially Yanga supporters for the problem which occured…minor and major rehabilitations at the stadium are expected in order for it to continue providing good services to Tanzanians and neighbouring countries when using the arena,” reads part of the statement.

It further disclosed that the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary (PS) Saidi Yakubu has appointed Milinde Mahona as Acting Stadium Manager effective from April 1st, replacing Salum Mtumbuka who has been suspended to pave the way for investigations.

Others who have been suspended are Electrical Engineer Manyoni Kapesa, Managing Officer Tuswege Nikupala, Gordon Nsajigwa, Gabriel Mwasele, Yanuaria Imboru and Christina Luambano.

The statement further revealed that the PS will communicate with all stakeholders so that the upcoming matches at the arena should be played in the afternoon and not at night as procedures are being followed to get a contractor who will undertake major renovations before the start of the new Premier League season and the international matches to come.

“The PS has also tasked stakeholders from outside the stadium to conduct investigations on the problem so that required action should be taken,” it reads.

However, this is not the first time for the technical lights problem at the 60,000-capacity stadium to surface as it also happened during Taifa Stars against Uganda encounter in the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers

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