Thursday, April 22, 2021

Stadia fiasco gets P83 million nod

Dilapidated sports facilities that were mostly built by Chinese construction companies will benefit from P83 million which was approved for the refurbishment of dilapidated sports facilities in the country.?Parliament approved P83 million after the Assistant Minister of Finance, Gloria Somolekae requested for a supplementary funding for the dilapilated  sports facilities.?In her supplementary budget she informed parliament that the requested money will be used for completion of the Francistown Stadium,improve functionality of the Lobatse Sports complex and the rehabilitation of the Serowe Sports complex.?The Minister  explained that an amount of  P60 million will be channeled towards the  Francistown stadium after the government  terminated the contract for the construction company that was awarded to build the  stadium.? 

She was hopeful that once the money is availed another construction company will be engaged to reconstruct some areas where there are some deficiencies.?“The project experienced design deficiencies which rendered certain areas of building works unusable. To make it functional the remaining works such as the completion of initial works should be carried,”she added.?The Minister stated that the stadium was one of those that were built prior to World Cup in South Africa in 2008. She indicated that the stadium could have long been completed in January 2010 but the project never came to materialise on time.

The new Lobatse Stadium will also need funds ┬áaccording to the minister ┬áto improve the functionality and durability of the facility.?She stated that the stadium which was built with expectations that it will attract some teams that ┬áparticipated in 2010 World Cup ┬áwas supposed to have been completed in January 2010.?“During construction, black cotton soil was discovered on site and this necessitated further adjustments on the designs and changes in the scope of the project,adding to further delays. The stadium was handed over to the government in October 2010. Within a few months after handover , a defect was discovered which the contractor took responsibility for and therefore had to rectify at their own cost,”she added.?

She further noted that after the rectification the government came to a conclusion that there was a need to undertake other works that are necessary for the functionality and durability of the facility.?She also stated that the works that will be undertaken will include the paving areas inside and outside the stadium,construction of sewer ,storm water drainage system pavement of VIP areas.?The Minister is hopeful that the works will take three months to be completed.  She also told parliament that a sum of P5,500,000 will be used to rehabilitate the Serowe sports complex. She said that the dilapidated sports facility that is no longer in use will be revamped for possible use.

When commenting on the supplementary budget , Tonota South MP, Pono called on the Minister of Youth,Sports and Culture , Shaw Kgathi to explain the furore behind the national stadium. Moathodi advised Kgathi to inform parliament on why the national stadium was not being used. He threatened that if Kgathi fails to answer and resolve the issue behind the national stadium there is need to dig a grave site for the minister  in the stadium.

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