The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has circuitously rubbished reports in the European media that the continent’s flagship competition scheduled for Cameroon next month will be cancelled, insisting the tournament will take place as planned.
Africa’s football governing body says its top officials have already landed in Cameroon to step up the final prepaprations of the 24-team Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) that kicks of on 9 January in Yaounde.
French media outfit RMC Sport has been leading the campaign with unsubstantiated that CAF has been forced to take the decision to cancel the tournament because of the Omicron coronavirus variant.
Indeed RMC Sport is leading the agenda of the European Clubs Association (ECA) that started with their ambition to get Africa’s major global event postponed claiming Omicron coronavirus variant spreading rapidly even though its the rapid spread in only in Europe and not Africa.
Now CAF has responded to the claims of the European media insisting that its top official, the CAF General Secretary Veron Mosengo-Omba, has arrived in the country to seal preparation for the tournament.
Mosengo-Omba is joining a strong CAF team that is already on the ground in Cameroon together with the Local Organising Committee (LOC) and Cameroon government to deliver a great competition.
“We have put the best support system for this competition. For the last few months, our office in Cairo and also the office in Yaoundé has been working closely with the Cameroon government and the LOC in ensuring that we create the best possible conditions for the visitors,” Mosengo-Omba said on Wednesday.
“We are working on a number of aspects now including ensuring the movement of the 24 participating teams, the commercial partners and other stakeholders coming to Cameroon.
The CAF general secretary is confident that the work being done by all the parties to will ensure that the competition will be played under the best conditions for all the top starts scheduled to play.
Mosengo-Omba said: “There is a lot of progress in most operational matters and there is work that is currently being done day and night by the host nation, Cameroon to ensure that all the facilities for the teams are ready.
“We know of the massive effort that everyone is putting as part of the final touches on the ground. We see this progress, we acknowledge this progress.”
The top leagues of Europe that are oiled by the brilliance of African footballers like Mohammed Salah and Sadio Mane of Liverpool, Algeria’s Riyad Mahrez, Thomas Partey of Ghana as well as Gabon’s Pierre Aubameyang will be robbed of their excitement if the players leave to play for their countries.
The tactics by the European media and the ECA is seen by many in Africa as the strategy to rob the continent of its top players the deny it from being exciting.
The AFCON will be held in Cameroon and will start on January 9 and run until February 6.