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President Blatter attends Yaounde inauguration

FIFA President in Yaounde, Cameroon

FIFA President Blatter was in Yaounde, Cameroon on Monday 5 May 2014 in order to attend the inauguration of the CAF Centre of Excellence in the Mbankomo district.

The centre is the first of three which is being constructed by CAF and boasts three football pitches as well as volleyball, handball and basketball facilities as well as an Olympic-sized swimming pool and gymnasium. The other centres will be located in Addis Ababa and Dakar.

The centre, which is expected to provide training facilities to players and referees from across Africa is considered to be a landmark in Cameroon’s footballing history.

Having been open for the past four years, Mbankomo has already played host to CAF training, development workshops and seminars and FIFA courses; served as a base for Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions and other national teams, but also hosted a number of top-flight games in the country.

FIFA participated in the building of the centre through its Win in Africa with Africa programme, by providing one artificial pitch. When inaugurating the Centre along with CAF President Issa Hayatou, FIFA President Blatter said “this CAF Centre of Excellence in Mbankomo will certainly help boost football development in Africa.”

At the event, the FIFA President said: "I’m angry when we don’t manage to fight against racism and discrimination (in football stadiums). We should not close stadiums, we should take points from or relegate a team. The first time when a disciplinary committee will be brave enough to take some points from a team in a competition, racism will be over.”

After the ceremony, in which President Blatter was made an honorary citizen of Mbankomo, the FIFA delegation met the Cameroon Head of State, Paul Biya.

After the meeting, the FIFA President remarked that both had the same views on “how football is a force for good in society, producing emotions and connecting people.”

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