By Timfuchi Aaron
On Tuesday February 22, 2022, Senegal inaugurated a new stadium situated some 30 kilometres from its capital, Dakar.
Diamnadio is the town accommodating the new stadium.
The stadium constructed within a period of 20 months has a 50.000 seat capacity and cost the sum of 150 billion francs.
The 50.000 seater capacity stadium constructed by a Turkish company is a lesson to Cameroon as regards the construction of the Olembe stadium that is still to be completed.
The construction of the sports edifice was launched by Macky Sall, President of Senegal on February 20, 2020 with the hopes of it getting finish within 17 months.
However, it was delayed due to the outbreak of Covid-19. The Diamnadio Olympic stadium is a multipurpose stadium that can host football, rugby and athletics.
The amount of money spent on constructing the stadium is less, compared to the over 200 billion francs that has already been spent in the Olembe stadium in Yaounde, Cameroon which is still uncompleted till date.
Many have also congratulated the Senegalese president who instead of giving the stadium his name, have decided to name it the Abdoulaye Wade Olympic stadium after Senegalese former president, Abdoulaye Wade.
Also, seeing the ultra-modern museum of the Abdoulaye Wade Stadium named after late Senegalese player, Papa Bouba Diop, memories of late Marc-Vivien Foé are easily brought back.
Cameroon is yet to honour Marc-Vivien Foé.
The context of his death is reason enough for him to be immortalized.
France, where he died while playing for Cameroon, have named the trophy for best African player in the French league ‘Prix Marc-Vivien Foé’.
That’s a significant way to remember the memory of the player.
In Cameroon, we await.
Meanwhile, the inauguration of the stadium saw the presence of several head of states from different countries. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and FIFA boss Gianni Infantino, CAF President Patrice Motsepe were among the VIPs that attended Tuesday’s inauguration.
During the AFCON in Cameroon, no single head of state apart from Biya as host president attended the event. Not even the opening and closing ceremony.
Even neighboring presidents did not come.
Is Cameroon now a country without friends?
For the country to host a continental event like the African Cup of Nations without the presence of a single president, sends wrong signals out.