Amidst criticism over the construction of the Invincible Sports Park by President George Weah, thousands of Liberians continue to celebrate the landmark project with the anticipation of more of such projects being implemented across the country.
This was demonstrated by the reactions from citizens and foreign guests, including invited football icons who had gone to witness the dedication ceremony when Liberia Football Association (LFA) president Mustapha Raji took to the podium to make remarks.
Mr. Raji in his remarks echoed that the construction of the sports park by President Weah is a pathway for the growth of sports in the country and there is a need for more of such to be done with investors and private companies operating in the country to play a key role.
“To our investors and those who are making business in Liberia, it is important that you join hands with our president and citizens. You are making a lot of money out of our country, it is now time that you reinvest in Liberia.
“We have ArcelorMittal in Nimba, Bea Mountain in Cape Mount and Firestone that has operated in Liberia for over 100 years, it is now time Firestone construct a similar facility for the people of Margibi County.
“Mr. President, I am confident that you, along with your lawmakers will continue to push to ensure that we have these infrastructures coming our way,” Mr. Raji said as received a massive round of applause from the audience.
The sports park project, which includes a standard FIFA football pitch, two min football practice patches, two basketball courts, a tennis and volleyball court, was funded by NASCORP, Liberia Maritime Authority and NPA as part of their corporate social responsibility programs.
Raji also reminded President Weah and his cabinet that the various youth national football teams need support as the government continues to show that it's ready for the development of the sport.
“Our youth national teams need support and we believe with your support and the signals you’ve continued to show that yes, you’re ready for football development, you have not abandoned your kingdom. Yes, we will prevail.
“We see the light ahead of us, we see the light of success coming forward not just for basketball but for all sporting federations in this country.
“To our politicians, let us join hands with our President, let's join hands with fellow Liberians and work with our President for the development of Liberia.”
Another notable guest at the dedication ceremony who called for the construction of additional sporting facilities was former Deputy Youths and Sports Minister, Marbue Richards.
According to Mr. Richards, Liberia’s two large capacity stadiums, the SKD Sports Stadium and the Antoinette Tubman Stadium were built decades ago and have hosted overcrowded events; therefore it is time that the government look in the direction of constructing multiple new stadiums.
The SKD Sports stadium was built in 1986 and has a capacity of over 40,000 — which has been reduced due to the installation of bucket seats at the facility.
Fortunately Pres. Weah, upon mounting the podium, announced to the audience that the government of Liberia has reached an agreement with Aspire Academy of Qatar for the construction of a multipurpose stadium in Liberia coupled with other investments in sports development.