Uasin Gishu Gov. Bii hits back at Nyong’o, Barasa over AFCON 2027 Eldoret choice

Tuesday, October 3rd, 2023 09:51 | By
Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii. PHOTO/(@GovernorBii)/X
Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii. PHOTO/(@GovernorBii)/X

The choice to pick Eldoret town as one of the venues to host Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) actions in 2027 has continued to draw reactions.

Kisumu Governor Prof. Anyang' Nyong'o and his Kakamega County counterpart Fernandes Barasa had questioned the choice to select Eldoret over their own towns.

Nyong'o and Barasa argued that there are many football fans in their counties compared to Eldoret, a town mostly known for the production of top runners.

Bii defends Eldoret

But Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii has hit back at Nyong'o and Barasa and explained why the choice to select Kipchoge Keino Stadium is a good move.

“Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County, is fit to host the upcoming AFCON 2027 due to the presence of Kipchoge Keino Stadium, which is being upgraded to have more than 20,000 seat capacity. The town hosts several five-star hotels and has a bed capacity of close to 10,000.

“Besides the stadium, Uasin Gishu and its neighbouring counties have high-altitude training centres ideal for sportsmen and women,” Bii said in a statement on Monday.

Apart from the presence of the Kipchoge Keino Stadium, the Eldoret leader pointed out other aspects that make Eldoret a top choice.

“We are the perfect location, linking you to the viewpoints of the Great Rift Valley in Elgeyo Marakwet County, direct flights to Turkana, the cradle of mankind, national parks, and conservancies such as Ruko, Mt. Elgon, Kapnarok, and Rimoi, among others.

“Eldoret also has state-of-the-art health facilities, and it hosts the second national referral hospital in Kenya," he continued.

CAF President Patrice Motsepe. PHOTO/CAFOnline
CAF President Patrice Motsepe. PHOTO/CAFOnline

Sporting heritage

Bii added that Eldoret is not only a city of athletics but also football fanatics, as many as there are in Kisumu and Kakamega.

“We acknowledge the rich sporting heritage of Kakamega and Kisumu and their contribution to Kenyan football, but it is important to remember that football is a sport that attracts fans across the country. It enhances unity and diversity.

“Our passion for the sport runs as deep as yours, and our city is more than ready to host an event of this magnitude. We are not just the land of athletics; we are also a land rich in diverse sporting activities such as volleyball, football, and javelin, among others," he continued.

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