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Goal Programme

Crowds and carnivals in Mahajanga

FIFA president Joseph S. Blatter (L) inaugurates Madagascar's first national football technical centre on the outskirts of the capital Antananarivo

The second instalment of FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter’s official visit to Comoros and Madagascar took place in Mahajanga, situated in the north-east of the latter island, where he proceeded to inaugurate the Stade Municipal Alexandre Rabemanajara.

In the presence of the President of the High Transitional Authority (HAT), Andry Nirina Rajoelina, and his wife, plus the Minister for Sport, Virapin Ramamonjisoa, and the President of the Madagascar Football Association (FMF), Mr Ahmad, Blatter unveiled the stadium’s new stand and artificial pitch in front of some 8,000 eager spectators. A carnival then ensued in the streets of Madagascar’s second largest port, home to almost 50,000 people.

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“I’m delighted that we have such a good working relationship with the Madagascar Federation and I obviously hope that we can continue to assist in football’s development here,” said Blatter. "I’m also glad that the Ministry for Sport is committed to the concept of sporting autonomy.”

After this brief stay in Mahajanga, the FIFA delegation’s next stop was Comoros, with the official inauguration of the association headquarters, the Said Mohamed Cheick stadium and the National technical centre – all three facilities funded by the Goal and ‘Win in Africa, with Africa’ programmes – planned for Thursday 4 March.

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