Posts Tagged ‘CAN 2010’

Nations Cup stadiums standing idle in Angola

March 8, 2011

By Louise Redvers
BBC Sport, Luanda

It has been thirteen months and counting since Angola hosted the Africa Cup of Nations. But the four stadiums built from scratch for the tournament are standing idle, with uncertain futures. The venues in Luanda, Lubango, Benguela and Cabinda are disused, locked up and some are reportedly disconnected from power supplies.

Last week I went to see the massive 50,000-seater stadium in Luanda and found the site totally deserted. A tall wire security fence blocked off the main entrance and grass was growing over the empty and rain-sodden car park.
Since the end of the tournament in January 2010, the Chinese-built stadium, with its distinctive curved red roof, has been used on just a handful of occasions, the last time back in November to celebrate Angola’s Independence Day.

Angola on a New York Budget?

February 20, 2010

Is it possible to get by in the world’s most expensive city on a New York budget? Check out this blog from Vanity Fair:

Bradt’s Mike Stead comments on the African Cup of Nations

February 3, 2010

Mike Stead, author of Bradt’s Angola, former Deputy Head of Mission and Consul at the British Embassy in Luanda, comments on events surrounding the African Cup of Nations.

AngolaAngola’s hopes of winning serious international respect were severely blunted when the Togolese national football squad was ambushed by Cabindan terrorists just days before the African Cup of Nations football championship opened in Luanda earlier this month. Three members of the Togolese party were killed and others seriously injured in an incident that should never have happened. Just why the squad took the most dangerous overland route into Angola is not known. Various factions of FLEC (the Cabindan separatists behind the attack) have long threatened foreigners in the oil-rich enclave of Cabinda and have threatened further attacks. It would be foolhardy of any commentator to declare any country safe from terrorism, but provided visitors avoid the interior of Cabinda province, they are far more likely to come to harm in a mugging or traffic accident than be caught up in terrorist related violence.

In a show of defiance, the Cup of Nations opened on schedule and every town and village has worked itself into football frenzy with Angola’s national colours of red, black and yellow on display everywhere. If Angola wins the cup, expect the party to go on for a week. The government is using the tournament to show off the billions of dollars it has spent over the last few years on bringing the infrastructure up to scratch – new schools and hospitals, new roads, railways, hotels, upgraded airports and brand spanking new Chinese-built stadia. There’s still much to be done – you don’t heal the mental and physical wounds of nearly 30 years of armed struggle with dollars, even when they are counted in billions. Angola is opening up and becoming an easier destination for experienced businessmen and travellers alike but mass tourism is still many years away due to the difficulty of getting visas, flights and cheap hotels.

Bradt’s Angola is the only English-language guide to the country and is essential reading for all visitors and residents.

Price: £17.99
ISBN: 978 1 84162 304 7
Publication: Out Now!

Angola seeking future for football stadia

February 3, 2010


By Louise Redvers  – BBC News, Luanda, Angola



With the football over and the last players and journalists making their long and expensive journeys home, Cup of Nations host Angola is now faced with a new challenge – how to avoid the Athens-effect. Built by Chinese construction companies at a cost of $600m (£380m) the four super-modern facilities, which seat between 20,000 and 50,000 people are now empty. More………….

Angola rebranded: Oil, landmines… and football?

February 3, 2010
By Louise Redvers
BBC News, Luanda

The Cup of African Nations ended with a dazzling fireworks display, but for many the overriding memories of Angola’s tournament will be the deadly attack against the Togolese team, the high costs and the traffic jams.

While Angolans are claiming a symbolic victory for hosting the biennial football tournament, their enthusiasm has not been shared by some visiting journalists and teams.More………………

Musing on Angolan politics

January 31, 2010

By Paul Myers. I haven’t really delved into the politics of Angola in this blog, but since I’m leaving in 46 hours 28 minutes – and you can sense I’m in no rush to leave – I feel this is the time to broach the subject of civil war and a nascent multi-party state. More…………..

Angola : Complacency Hands Separatists Publicity

January 27, 2010

Alex Vines, Chatham House London:  Most of Angola is peaceful and safe but northern Cabinda province has for many years been unsafe because of a low level insurgency by separatists operating out of the Mayombe rain forest.

A blame game has started over why the Togolese football team decided to drive from Pointe Noire in Congo to Cabinda City. This was like dangling a juicy joint of meat in front a pack of hyenas and the result was the attack on the footballers by a splinter group of Front of the Liberation of the Enclave of Cabinda (FLEC). More…………..

Angola : day 5 – Probably my least-interesting day so far

January 26, 2010

Talk about a sentence to suck the reader in, eh? Honestly, it was a work day not so different from an off-day on any American sports beat. There was a hotel lobby. There were journalists waiting for some time with players. There were PR guys calling the shots. Didn’t matter if it was Luanda, Angola or Kansas City. More…………………..

Soccer, Terrorism, Repression and Constitutions in Angola

January 24, 2010

From the Amnesty Inernational USA blog – The new decade started off with a bang in Angola-literally. Fireworks exploded in the night sky at the opening games of the Africa Cup of Nations soccer tournament on January 10th; and, sadly, gunfire shattered the day as the Togo soccer team was attacked on their way to participate in the tourney. Continues……………….

Angola spent 600m dollars on stadia

January 23, 2010

The government of Angola spent $600m (Shs1.2 trillion) to build four new stadiums and refurbish 13 others for the ongoing Orange Africa Cup of Nations. More……………..

Angolan police deny Ghana ‘intimidation’

January 23, 2010

By Nick Reeves (AFP). LUANDA — Angolan police dismissed out of hand an accusation of intimidation made by the Ghana team ahead of Sunday’s Africa Cup of Nations’ quarter-final with hosts Angola. Ghana complained on Friday of “disgraceful intimidatory” tactics deployed by Angolan security forces designed they claimed to destabilise them ahead of the last eight face off with Angola. The declaration by the Ghana Football Association (GFA) followed what was described as a “brutal” attack on a Ghana journalist at the team hotel in Luanda. More………….

Angola : Volatile mix of soccer and politics

January 20, 2010

Amnesty International warns the Angolan authorities against a crackdown on human rights

January 20, 2010

Amnesty International has warned the Angolan authorities against a crackdown on human rights activists after several were detained in the Cabinda region in the wake of the 8 January attack on the Togolese national football team.  More………….

Algeria coach admits his side played for a draw

January 19, 2010

Algeria coach Rabah Saadane has admitted that he told his team to ‘take it easy’ during their draw with Angola at the Africa Cup of Nations. Mali lodged a protest with the Confederation of African Football (Caf) saying the sides purposely played out a goalless draw to ensure progress. More……………

Angola unites as the Palancas Negras prepare for Cup of Nations D-day

January 18, 2010

The check-in hall at Luanda’s domestic airport is some kind of vision of hell. It is hot, dirty and crowded, full of touts flogging tickets for flights that may or may not be on the timetable, which is an aspiration rather than a schedule in any case. Angola may be the only country in the world where it is quicker to drive than to fly. Read on…………..

Luanda’s stadium of vanity

January 18, 2010

The day’s experience is summed up as a petrol tanker pulls into the oil refinery on an industrial estate beneath the cliffs of Luanda’s giant Boavista slum.

As the driver slows for the gate to be opened, a boy of about 12 runs up with a bucket, wrenches open a tap on the lorry’s flank and takes a precious few seconds worth of gushing petrol before sprinting away again. More…………….

After 4 decades of war, Angola tries to recover

January 18, 2010

LUANDA, Angola — During a visit in August, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton publicly urged the government of Angola to hold “timely” presidential elections.

Just four months later, President Eduardo dos Santos announced that presidential elections would be delayed from 2009 to at least 2012. Continues…………………

Angola 2010 – My fears become reality

January 17, 2010

What we fear eventually becomes our reality. That’s what my philosophy teacher taught me some years ago. How dreadfully true that has now come to be for me as many of my fears about CAN 2010, expressed severally on this page, are, one by one, frightfully coming to pass! Read more……….

Angola uses football to showcase economy

January 17, 2010

For a country where 60% of the population lives in poverty last Sunday’s opening ceremony of the Africa Cup of Nations was an extraordinary spectacle. Read on………….

Much ado about Angola visa

January 17, 2010
By Charles Nyende.  It has taken me four days to travel from Nairobi to Luanda. Four days of colossal frustration instead of several hours of boring air travel to finally get to Angola’s capital city. Read the rest of this sadly typical tale of visa woes………..