By Ekemini Simon
If urgent attention is not given to the maintenance of the Akpabio International Stadium, sports activities may soon be grounded as facilities in the Stadium is presently experiencing early phase of rot.
The rot which has affected many facilities in the stadium has been conspicuous on the covering of the stadium as the hitherto white covering now have a new look of green suspected to be the growth of patina.
Inside the stadium it was noticed that some facilities have began wearing even as the track and the pitch is gradually deteriorating.
Investigation reveals that the reason the stadium may not have received adequate attention as regards maintenance is not unconnected to the debt the State is alleged to owe Julius Berger who were contracted to build the Stadium and continue with its maintenance.
A senior staff of the company who refused name on print disclosed to this reporter that although their organization is committed to fulfilling their part of the agreement signed with the State to maintain the facilities at the Akpabio International Stadium, they were unhappy over what he described as inability on the State to fulfill its part of the bargain. He pointed out that the failure on the part of the State has a way of affecting their maintenance output.
It could be recalled that during the post- Match press conference between Nigeria Super Eagles and the Tanzanian Team played at the Akpabio International Stadium, the Super Eagles Coach, Gernot Rohr had complained that the pitch at the Akpabio International Stadium was not good enough for International Matches, a development that may have cost the State the hosting right to World Cup Qualifier Match slated to be played in Port Harcourt.
Contacted, the State Commissioner for Youths and Sports, Mr. Monday Uko noted that the facilities at the stadium were not experiencing rot rather the facilities are enjoying adequate attention.
He however admitted that the covering of the Stadium was in a dirty state, but explained that its dirty state was caused by gas flaring coupled with heavy downpour. He assured that Julius Berger who are in charge of the stadium maintenance will handle the situation.