We’ll restore power supply to Teslim Balogun Stadium – LSSC Official

Supreme Desk
11 May 2024 3:54 PM GMT
We’ll restore power supply to Teslim Balogun Stadium – LSSC Official
On groans by athletes, staff and other stakeholders that the facility had no public power supplies for months, Fatodu, also said: “ Construction work is still on, issues with power are also being addressed vigorously.’’

The Lagos State Sports Commission (LSSC) has assured stakeholders that public power supply will be restored at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, which has been without supplies for more than two months.

The Director-General of LSSC, Lekan Fatodu, made this known on Saturday while responding to inquiries by the newsmen in Lagos regarding public power supply at the state-owned Sports City.

On groans by athletes, staff, and other stakeholders that the facility had no public power supplies for months, Fatodu also said, “Construction work is still on, and issues with power are also being addressed vigorously.’’

Supreme News reports that activities at the iconic Teslim Balogun Stadium are grounded as a faulty transformer has thrown the entire sports city into darkness for more than two months.

A check by the correspondent also showed that the once-bubbling stadium, currently undergoing re-designing, is now a shadow of itself, as some of its administrative staff are squatters elsewhere.

Similarly, sports and sundry activities at the National Stadium, Surulere, are almost in a state of comatose due to its partial closure.

Supreme News further reports that this has led many athletes to shift their attention to the adjacent Lagos state-owned Teslim Balogun Stadium to sharpen their skills.

However, the state-owned sports stadium that hosted the 2019 U-17 World Cup is suffering the same fate as activities that have been grounded or are in a sleepy state.

Also, some staff of LSSC with their offices domiciled at the Teslim Balogun Stadium have temporarily relocated to the Mobolaji Johnson’s Rowe Park to squat with other administrative staff due to power outage.

The administrative units such as Accounts, ICT and the Public Relations departments now operate partially at the Mobolaji Johnson Sports Centre, Rowe Park.

A visit to the stadium, which hosted of the 18th National Sports festival, also showed that some available staff of LSSC seated at the frontage of their various offices due to the heat waves.

Some of them who were seen discussing in hush tones, were unwilling to respond to NAN inquiries or grant interviews, citing the civil service rules as part of their reasons to avoid press interviews.

However, some athletes that spoke with the newsmen expressed disappointment over the development, adding that it was obvious that the management of LSSC appeared helpless in such situations.

Some athletes, who wished to remain anonymous in the media, said that they were unable to train for almost three months due to the prevailing condition of the facility.

A Para athlete, Muyiwa, said that it was tough to train without electricity at the stadium.

“Although there are no fans and the management only puts on the central air conditioning when we have competitions in the Molade Okoya Thomas Hall, we need light to train in the morning, especially when the hall is dark.

“Sometimes we train in the morning and evening, but most of us prefer to train in the morning because we have other things we are doing to provide for our family.

“We have a new person as the D-G of the Sports Commission; we are not yet sure what the new management will do to ensure that power is restored to the stadium.

“It’s over two months now—close to three months—that the stadium has been in total darkness with no solution in sight,’’ he said.

A security personnel, who also spoke on conditions of anonymity, said that it had been tough monitoring the 24,325-capacity stadium without light.

“We do have a tough time monitoring the facility because once it’s dark, there won’t be a generator to light up the stadium, so we have to use the torch light to go around.

“We still have to do our jobs anyways because there is ongoing construction in the stadium, and the equipment must be guarded well.

“We just need to appeal to the relevant authority to expedite actions to ensure that the power is restored to the stadium on time,’’ he said.

Another source, who is middle-level staff, said that if the stadium remained in darkness, such a condition would compromise the security of facilities there.

“This is very unfortunate; for almost three- months we have not had light here. You can see for yourself that the ever-busy Teslim Balogun Stadium now looks like a ghost town.

“It is even worse in the night; it is shameful that the whole place is in total darkness.

“The security of lives and property in the stadium at night is suspect. It is high time for the management of the LSSC to do something about this embarrassing situation,’’ he said.

Another official also pointed out that the fault was actually with the power distribution company that supplies electricity to the area.

“We are not the only ones affected; some communities here in Surulere are also in darkness. The transformer is faulty, and I think the management of the stadium is doing something about it,’’ he said.

Supreme News reports that the ugly trend at the stadium is eye-sore as there are also indications that the ongoing redesign of the stadium has slowed down or may have been put on hold.

The former Director-General of the LSSC, Oluwatoyin Gafaar, had in an interview with newsmen in 2023 assured that the stadium would be fully open for use in the first quarter of 2024.

However, with the first quarter of the year gone, there is still enormous work to be done at the stadium.

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