Fans of Enyimba Football Club under the aegis of Concerned Enyimba Supporters (CES) have concluded plans to march round the commercial city of Aba to protest the non-completion of Enyimba Stadium which has resulted in the People’s Elephants playing their home matches outside their home-base.
Chairman of the group, Donatus Ajujungwa, in a release made available to reporters yesterday pointed out that the decision to protest was borne out of the fact that their darling team that brought laurels to the city, Abia State and the country has been neglected by the state government.
He noted that the fortune of Enyimba, a team that is a house-hold name in Africa has nose-dived to such an extent that if care is not taken it may be relegated from the elite Nigerian league.
Ajujungwa further stated that the protest would have taken place earlier but for the fact that his group thought the state government would move to complete the Enyimba Stadium project before the commencement of the 2016/2017 NPFL season.
He wondered why the stadium should be abandoned and the club forced to host her home matches in far-away Calabar, Cross River State where it has since relocated to.
According to the group, fans of Enyimba have been deprived of the opportunities of cheering their darling team, a situation that is most regrettable and unacceptable.
“We have made out time to inspect the level of work done at the stadium and realised that what is holding the use of the stadium is only the re-grassing or laying of the artificial turf,” the group stated, adding: “Our further investigations also revealed that the contractor handling the project, Monimichelle Sports Facility Construction Limited is ready to finish the project if the funds were made available.”
The group urged the Commissioner for Youth and Sports in the state to as a matter of urgency make the state government see reasons on the need to complete the project.
“Our peaceful demonstration is to drum it to the ears of government that at this period of recession and hardship the only thing that can keep body and soul together is sports, especially football. Enyimba playing at home is the only thing that brings joy to the soccer-crazy Aba residents who troop to the stadium to cheer their darling team.”
The group warned that the protests would be sustained until the state government completes the project and brings Enyimba back home.