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Herdsmen turn Abuja National Stadium to grazing reserve

06 September 2016, 10:32

Abuja - The multimillion dollar complex of the Abuja National Stadium has been reduced to a sanctuary for cattle rearing by herdsmen, New Telegraph reports.

The property, worth $300 million, was left to dilapidate, attracting the interest of herdsmen who now find the place useful for their cattle despite an existing order, issued in September 2015, prohibiting open grazing in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), which the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) is empowered to enforce.

A security official attached to the stadium said “It has been a routine for these herdsmen to herd their cows to this place for grazing, especially in the last one year. They invade the stadium at will and it seems nobody is ready to stop or caution them.”

Also see: WATCH:Work or get fired-sports minister

The National Stadium, Abuja, was built when Nigeria hosted the 8th All Africa Games 2003 (COJA) 13 years ago, but has become a shadow of itself over time.

The National Stadium in Lagos is also in a sorry state after suffering abandonment for many years. It last major tournament hosted was the AFCON 2000 where the Super Eagles lost to Cameroon on penalties in the final, no thanks to a Victor Ikpeba’s missed penalty.

News24 reported that Minister for Youth and Sports Solomon Dalung lamented the country’s sporting facilities in Lagos that are in a dilapidated state.

Speaking during an inspection tour of the main bowl, swimming pool, Tennis court, and National Institute for Sports at the National Stadium in Lagos in January, Dalung lamented that that the facilities have long been abandoned without proper maintenance and regular sporting events.

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- News24 Nigeria


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