Cameroon (Face2Face Africa) The west and Central Africa Nation of the Republic of Cameroon has won the bid to host Africa’s biggest soccer tournament, the African Football Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2019.
Cameroon won the bid to host the tournament on Saturday, September 20th 2014, after beating contenders the Ivory Coast, Guinea, Zambia, and Algeria.
The decision to award Cameroon the hosting rights for the 2019 edition of the soccer tournament was taken by an 18-man committee of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) that was led by its President, Issa Hayatou, who made the pronouncement during a press conference in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.
Opening the envelope to declare the winner, Hayatou said, “The host for 2019 will be Cameroon.”
Talking to the press shortly after CAF’s decision, the Normalization President of the Cameroon Football Federation (FECAFOOT), Prof. Joseph Owona, expressed happiness that CAF has attributed the 2019 competition to Cameroon.
“We are very happy to receive and host the competition again. That’s a great triumph of our country, our government, and our federation. So I have to thank the CAF executive committee for giving this opportunity to the Cameroon federation, and we will do it.”
The one and only time Cameroon hosted an edition of the tournament was in 1972, when the country was known then as the Federal Republic of Cameroon, during the reign of former and late-President Amadou Babatoura Ahidjo.
For a country like Cameroon that has participated in seven World Cup Tournaments, and as the first nation in Africa to reach the ¼ final in 1990, and as the winner of four AFCON trophies, Cameroonians reacted positively to the good news.
Here is what some of the public told Face2Face Africa:
“I am very happy that at last we are going to host the competition. All the times that we have lifted the trophy have been done so on foreign soil. So it is our turn to host and win it, God willing.” — Nji Daniel
“Though Cameroon is coming in to the race to host the competition, after she did so in 1979, it is still something to be joyful about. Smaller football nations in Africa like Mali, Burkina Faso, and others have hosted. It is but normal that as a giant football nation in Africa, we should host and why not win the trophy.” – Waters Atangana
“ At last the tournament is coming to us. We now have a very young and talented national team that could win the competition.” — Mvelle Henry
The competition will be hosted in the Cameroonian cities of Yaoundé, Bafoussam, Limbe, and Garoua.