Cameroon Lose AFCON 2019 Hosting Rights Over Poor Preparation

INCOMPLETE STADIUM IN CAMEROON.  COURTESY

The country's status as hosts of AFCON has been in doubt for the last few months since the decision was made to increase the tournament from 16 to 24 teams.

"After having considered that a simple postponement of the tournament was impossible because of Caf's contractual commitments, and the importance of maintaining the competition calendar, the Caf Executive Committee decided that the next edition of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations could not be held in Cameroon".

This followed The Extraordinary Executive Committee meeting which was held in the Ghanaian capital of Accra on Friday.

Decision as to who replace Cameroon was not taken.

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CAF had considered relieving Cameroon of the hosting rights a year ago but pulled the breaks, warning the country to double up efforts on preparations.

Aside delays as per reports of inspection teams within the last 18 months, security in the country is said to be at high risk.

In October, CAF President Ahmad Ahmad visited Yaounde for a meeting with Cameroon President Paul Biya just days after CAF deferred the final decision on the hosting of next year's AFCON.

"... It will communicate openly and transparently on the process and subsequent decision", the press statement from the continent's football ruling body revealed.

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This will be the second time in recent memory that CAF has stripped a country of hosting rights of a continental tournament.

South Africa stepped in for war-torn Libya in 2013, Equatorial Guinea replaced Morocco in 2015 and Gabon stood in for Libya, which again couldn't host a year ago.

Kenya was declared unfit to host the 2018 Africa Nations Championships in January this year with Morocco stepping in as the replacement host.

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