April 2016 – April 2024: The Bamenda Municipal Stadium Now, what next as Bamenda continues to languish without a modern stadium


Crowd at the Bamenda Municipal Stadium during Foncha Street FC VS PWD Bamenda in the Bamenda preseason solidarity tournament 

Former President of the Cameroon Football Federation Tombi A Roko Sidiki on April 20 2016  accompanied by North West Governor Adolph Lele Afrique laid the foundation stone of what was described as the Bamenda Olympic stadium. 

The laying of the foundation stone was greeted with euphoria by the football loving population of Bamenda, who have not had the luxury of a modern stadium in their city despite priding themselves with five elite clubs. 

Eight years down the road since the laying of the foundation stone, the stone itself is nowhere to be found. A few months after take off, construction works stopped inexplicably to the dismay of the population whose appetite for modern sports was already wetted. Tongues started wagging with different reasons advanced for the dilemma. It was getting glaring that the football loving public of the city of Bamenda will have to wait a little longer to enjoy their dream Olympic Stadium. And like all abandoned projects, the worse started happening-the depreciation of the few installed structures and the carting away of materials installed on the project site. 

Building plan of the Bamenda Olympic stadium 

As seats, irons, and other materials remained packed in the stadium, a section of it is now being used to rear animals and parking lot for vehicles.

North West Elite One clubs and some regional league clubs are ‘illegally’ (according to the former North West FECAFOOT President Mbigha Felix) using the facility for their training sessions. This is unfortunately, the better option for them. 

In the buildup to the 2022/2023 football season, efforts from organizers of the Bamenda Solidarity Pre-Season Tournament to use the stadium met with stive resistance from some football authorities of the North West region. The organizers after receiving a notice from the then FECAFOOT North West president visited the Bamenda City Mayor who happens to be the ‘landlord’ of the field to get authorization but it was rejected.

The playground was given a facelift, poles changed and two matches of the Bamenda Solidarity Pre-season tournament were played and it attracted thousands of football lovers.

With Eto’o Fils at the helm of the country’s FA hopes were again rekindled as he dispatched Maboang Kessack, his Chargé De mission, to visit and take first hand information about the situation of the stadium. At the end of his visit, he promised to take the worries to his national President. Unfortunately, till date, nothing has been mentioned about the fate of this lofty project. 

The Bamenda Olympic stadium project has been likened by many to the famous Ring Road Project which has been executed at snail space over the years. 

Enter the Bamenda Proximity Stadium

The announcement of the construction of the Bamenda Proximity Stadium came as a sigh of relief to the football-loving population of Bamenda.

December 31, 2022 was initially set as deadline for the project to be delivered and ready for use. It’s already April 2024 and there is nothing solidly to show for. The inexplicable delays are rather seen as frustrating given that North West elite teams especially elite one teams can’t enjoy homes games in the region. Clubs and theirs have to make costly trips to neighbouring West region for home games. Although several reasons have been advanced why works are going on a snail pace, they are not convincing enough to the fans that want to see their darling clubs play at home.

What the Population doesn’t know about the Bamenda Proximity stadium

The said stadium is being constructed in Ntaafi, a quarter in Bamendakwe, Bamenda 1 subdivision.

The land being used is property of the Bamenda I community and by extension the council.

The Bamenda Proximity Stadium is a project under the Presidential Plan for the Reconstruction and Development (PPRD) of the North West and South West regions.

During the visit of the steering committee chairman of the PPRD to Bamenda, the implementing partner UNDP, said the stadium project witnessed delays and work is now progressing smoothly.


Nji Nelson CHEFOR

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