Mbabane: The newly constructed Ka-Langa Football Technical Centre is now ready to host football matches.
This was disclosed by the acting Eswatini Football Association (EFA) President, Dr. Comfort Shongwe in a brief interview with this publication.
Shongwe said it was highly expected that the coming football matches will be hosted in the facility, something which will address the issue of football pitches shortage in the country which is characterized by the closure of Somhlolo National Stadium for renovations.
On Thursday, the Minister of Sports Culture and Youth Affairs, Harries Madze Bulunga, together with Ministry of Sports Parliament Portfolio Committee members and sports officials toured the technical centre.
The project was funded by FIFA and cost over E30 million. It is now at 70 percent completion.
Minister Bulunga said the ‘state-of-the-art’ facility will change the face of football in the Lubombo region and the ripple effects will be felt countrywide. He said the facility will play a multifaceted role in the development of football in Eswatini.
Bulunga highlighted that the facility has become readily available at a time when there is a glaring shortage of suitable facilities to host domestic football matches due to various reasons, including the continued rehabilitation of Somhlolo National Stadium.
This facility, according to Bulunga, will help in immediately lessening the stress on the football machinery by providing a more suitable base to host matches and ensure that ongoing competitions are completed on time.
Bulunga said the government will continue to create a conducive environment to attract sporting investment to Eswatini. He reaffirmed the government’s commitment to facilitating more of such investments into the country, saying: “We remain ready to work with the EFA and other sporting institutions to bring sustainable, high-quality sporting investment into our Kingdom.”
The minister said the construction of Ka-Langa Sports Centre is in line with the government’s decentralization programme – bringing services closer to the people.
Ministry of Sports Senate Portfolio Committee Chair Princess Tsandzisile said they were looking forward to seeing football developing in the country, and with such a facility, the youth will be able to showcase and develop their skills.
Ka-Langa Indvuna, Musa Nkambule expressed his excitement on behalf of the community saying: “As a community, we are very proud to have such a facility in the area. We hope that it will be named after our late resident Victor Gamedze who played a critical role in the development of football and bringing the facility here.”
The Ka-Langa Football Technical Centre brings much-needed infrastructure to the area and the Lubombo region. It is part of the EFA’s commitment to decentralizing their facilities to ensure that the growth of football is equally spread across the Kingdom. The EFA is also constructing a similar technical centre in Mkhuzweni in the Hhohho Region while plans are underway to kick-off a similar project in the Manzini region.