N5bn Remodelled Adamasingba Stadium Fails To Make Nigeria Football Pitch Of The Year Award List
With the Pitch award ceremony coming up later this year, sports lovers in Ibadan, Oyo state, and Nigeria would speculate that the newly remodeled Lekan Salami Sports Complex Adamashingba Ibadan would be nominated among the best stadium in the country.
However, the stadium that was commissioned in late 2021 failed to be nominated on the list of stadia for the best football pitch award category in Nigeria.
According to NPFLUpdates, Mobolaji Johnson Sports Arena Lagos State, Godswill Akpabio Int’l Stadium Akwa Ibom State, and Remo Stars Stadium, Ogun State the stadia that made the list of best football pitch awards.
The Oyo state governor Seyi Makinde 2020 approved the total remodeling of the Adamashingba stadium, including the main bowl at the cost of 5bn.
According to the Oyo state government, the project included the remodeling of the main bowl, the construction of a state-of-the-art media center, a FIFA-standard studio with equipment, and the construction of FIFA-standard mixed zone including changing rooms, wet rooms, match officials’ rooms, referees’ rooms, doping control room, youth center/ball boys’ room, clinic, among others.
The remodeled Lekan Salami Stadium came to life on September 1, 2021, exactly one year after it was awarded to Peculiar Ultimate Concerns Limited through the Alternative Project Funding Approach (APFA).
Teni, Taye Currency, and QDot performed live at the unveiling ceremony,
The new Lekan Salami Stadium was completed with modern floodlights, a remodeled Squash Hall, a new 50 meters by 30 meters multipurpose hall for Basketball, Volleyball, Handball, and gymnasium as well as a Centre Court
It will be recalled that the Chairman of the South-West Governors’ Forum, Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu, and his Edo State counterpart, Governor Godwin Obaseki, former Vice-President, Atiku Abubakar as well as the President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Amaju Pinnick joined Governor Seyi Makinde, to officially unveiled the remodeled Lekan Salami Sports Complex, Adamasingba, Ibadan on September 1, 2021, after completion.
Though, the All Progressives Congress, APC, Oyo State chapter described the project as a scam, saying the remodeled stadium was not up to standard, and accused the state governor of using the project to siphon state money.
The state’s football team, Shooting Stars Sports Club, 3SC played the inaugural match against Slovenia’s first-division side, NK Tabor Sežana.
While the game against the Slovenian club was on, Westerndailynews.com reported that there was a downpour, which caused the newly refurbished pitch to be water-logged.
Videos also surfaced online of part of the stadium’s roof leaking while the game was on.
Meanwhile, after the embarrassing moment during the unveiling of the pitch, the state government issued a statement that said the pitch was still a work in progress.
According to governor Makinde’s press secretary, Taiwo Adisa, ” the automatic drainage system would only start working fully after three months.
“Besides, the pitch, as seen on Wednesday, is a work in progress, because the contractor has not handed over the project to the state government. The contractor had explained that the pitch needed three more months to fully solidify so that the automatic drainage system would become fully functional.
“But the unveiling had to be done to ensure that our darling Shooting Stars Sports Club returned to Ibadan, having been forced to play their matches outside the state for so long due to the absence of a good pitch in Ibadan.
“The contractor has given his assurance to address the challenges of the pitch and by the time the works are completed, Oyo State will have the value for its money, which has always been the priority and intention of Governor Makinde,” part of Adisa’s statement read.
18 months after commissioning and total completion of the whopping 5bn remodeled Adamasingba project, the stadium is far from competing with stadia earlier remodeled, and built.
Mobolaji Johnson Sports Arena Lagos State was remodeled and commissioned in 2019 with a 5,100 capacity. Godswill Akpabio 30,000 seater Int’l Stadium, was built by Akwa Ibom State and commissioned on November 7th, 2014, and Remo Stars Stadium Ijebu Ode, Ogun State with a 5,000 capacity.
With the above-mentioned stadia from other states in the country, still functioning at their best, Isn’t it laughable that the Lekan Salami stadium situated in the pacesetter state, now a shadow of its former state didn’t make the award list, and was remolded under the administration of the Governor of Oyo state, Engr. Seyi Makinde.