Tanzania government have confirmed Benjamin Mkapa Stadium will undergo a major facelift aimed at boosting their chances of co-hosting the 2027 Africa Cup of Nations finals.
Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda have already presented a joint bid to the Caf Confederation of African Football (Caf) seeking to stage the continental showpiece for the first time ever in the history of the competition.
On Wednesday, while tabling the 2023/2024 fiscal year budget, Tanzania’s Sports minister Pindi Chana said the stadium needs major renovations in order to improve its standard and it will be closed for renovation after Taifa Stars takes on Niger in a 2023 Afcon qualifier.
“We will close the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium soon after our national team [Taifa Stars] have faced Niger in the Afcon qualifier. We had a committee that reviewed the status of the stadium and came up with a report that it needs to be renovated in order to regain its original status,” said Chana as quoted by The Citizen.
According to the minister, the government will also build two modern stadiums in Dodoma and Arusha in readiness for the Afcon.
“In hosting the Afcon finals, you need to have not less than eight modern stadiums. Since we are with Kenya and Uganda, we are sure of winning the bid and the two stadiums will be ready before the 2027 finals,” added Chana.
Taifa Stars will meet Niger at the stadium in Dar es Salaam on June 17 in Group F before travelling to Algiers to face Algeria on September 4.