President of the Confederation of African Football, Patrice Motsepe, has insisted that the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations scheduled to hold in Cameroon will go ahead as planned.
With less than three weeks, uncertainty continues to trail the commencement of the delayed Africa biennial tournament due to the outbreak of new COVID-19 variant, Omicron.
Motsepe on Monday visited Yaounde’s Olembe Stadium, the venue of the opening match on January 9.
The CAF president however assured that the AFCON tournament would go ahead as planned.
“I will be in Cameroon on January 7 with my wife and kids to witness this incredible competition,” Motsepe stated on Monday.
“You can see that there’s a huge commitment and a focus to make sure that there’s good progress.
“We are going to host with the people of Cameroon an exceptional tournament. It will be the most successful AFCON. We are ready to show the world the best of African football and African hospitality.
“This tournament is important for the people of Africa and I’m so proud and so excited with the work done.”
The CAF boss pleaded with Africans to have a strong belief in its people.
“We have to believe in our people,” the 59-year-old added.
“We have to stop being the ones that lack confidence and are always expressing negative views of our people.
“All over the world there are competitions with challenges but we have to be more optimistic because sometimes we are over critical of ourselves.
“If we’re not going to have confidence in what we do, who’s going to have confidence in us?
“This is the generation where Africans must believe in Africans. We can host a football competition that’s as good as you can see in Europe and the world.”
Samuel Eto’o, newly elected president of Cameroon’s FA, also on Monday hit out at the constant reports placing the competition in doubt.
“If the Euros took place in the middle of the pandemic, with full stadiums in several cities in Europe and there was no problem, why AFCON wouldn’t be played in Cameroon?” he told French station Canal+.
“Or are you trying to say that like we’ve always been treated, we Africans aren’t worth anything so we have to put up with it?
“I don’t see why AFCON wouldn’t take place. The Cameroon FA that I represent will defend hosting this competition to the end.”