Jan 5, 2012, 1:26 PM
Following its successful major rehabilitation, the Independence Stadium was on 27 April 2011 inaugurated.
Speaking at the ceremony, Hon. Sheriff Gomez, Minister of Youth and Sports, welcomed everyone to the event marking the completion of the rehabilitation works and commissioning of the floodlights of the Independence Stadium.
“The occasion is a clear testimony of the government, under the able leadership of His Excellency the President, Sheikh Professor Dr Alhagie Yahya AJJ Jammeh’s recognition that sport plays an integral role in the Socio-economic development of any nation as well as serving as a powerful tool for moulding people, communities and promoting peace and understanding,” he said.
“On the other hand, the physical activities involved will surely have a positive impact on our individual and collective national health,” he added.
“The stadium was completed in 1984 and was among the best stadiums in the sub-region at the time. After 27 years in use, this is the first time the stadium is going under such a major renovation work costing over D17 million.”
Hon. Gomez added: “We are all aware that this is the only stadium in the country of International standard where our sports men and women use for both national and international competitions and must therefore be kept to internationally acceptable standard as we pursue the construction of a new one.”
He stated that plans are being evolved to fix convenient facilities, such as the athletics tract and the scoreboard in 2011, the football pitch, a new digital advert ring and crowd control-ticketing, entrance control, seats in 2012-2013 and finally the rehabilitation of the B Field and other areas by 2014-2015.
“The MOYS, in collaboration with government, development partners and the international sports fraternity, will pursue vigorously, within this 5 years, investments in the uplifting of sports facilities across the country,” he stated.
He also thanked Alhagie Conteh and the Dabanani Electrical Enterprise for their commitment, dedication, patience and patriotism shown in this engagement.
He also extended his appreciation and thanks to the MOF for their support in the project and commitment to the rehabilitation of the stadium, while they work towards getting a new modern stadium for the country.
Mr Alhagie Conteh, managing director of Dabanani Electrical Enterprise, also spoke at the ceremony.