Senegalese President Macky Sall has unveiled a model of new stadium set to be built in Senegal, Dakar.
The 50 00 seater stadium will come with a built in Video Assistant Referee (VAR) system.
The Stade du Senegal is scheduled to be inaugurated on August 2021 the authorities said at the launching on Thursday.
“I had the ambition to build this stadium the day after the Poland-Senegal (1-2) match during the 2018 World Cup in Russia. During a lunch with FIFA president Gianni Infantino, I asked him how much he estimated the construction of the Spartak Stadium in Moscow (where the match was being played). He gave me an indication. It was an important cost. But I considered that Senegalese youth and Senegalese sports had no price,” said President Sall.
In his speech, the head of state said that the sports infrastructure, will meet the highest international standards, including 50,000 seats with an autonomous water and electricity supply system thanks to a 2 megawatt photovoltaic plant to control future operating costs.
Mr. Sall added that “this complex, the first of its kind in the sub-region, will be built by the Turkish company Summa”.
According to him, it will also be composed of “a training ground, a stadium (annex) of 2,000 seats with an athletics track and all facilities related to the Olympics but also a third football field with all the necessary equipment.”
The Turkish company has already built in Diamniadio, the new city commissioned by the head of state, the Dakar Arena, the Radisson Hotel and the Exhibition Centre.
According to the Senegalese leader, the laying of the foundation stone of the Stade du Sénégal is part of his desire to make Diamniadio “an integrated and multifunctional city.”
Mr. Augustin Senghor, who heads the Senegalese Football Federation (FSF) said he was “overcome by an emotion that is difficult to contain for a sportsman” a feeling that, most certainly, Senegalese may have experienced in the distant early years of independence with the construction of the Demba Diop stadium or in the early 1980s with the erection of the Leopold Sedar Senghor stadium.
The future Stade du Senegal, which costs an estimated at 238 million euros (156 billion CFA francs), will also be equipped with presidential and VIP boxes, a press box with more than 1,500 seats, 40 commentators’ boxes, a high-performance air-conditioning system and fashionable audiovisual equipment.
It was on the sidelines of the UK-Africa Summit in January that Macky Sall obtained a financing agreement from the Standard Chartered Bank.
For Mamadou Diagna Ndiaye, President of the Senegalese National Olympic and Sports Committee (CNOSS), “this long-awaited” stadium will leap from being a dream to a reality in 17 months.
He said that “it is up to the youth of Senegal and Africa to take ownership of this achievement and ensure its sustainability,” as he was involved in the preparation of the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) that his country will host in 2022.