HARARE Mayor Jacob Mafume says they are putting resources together for the renovations of Gwanzura, which will start as soon as Rufaro Stadium gets the green light to host Premiership matches.
City of Harare engineers are currently busy putting the final touches at Rufaro.
The venue is expected to pass a compliance test and be allowed to stage top-flight games during the 2024 season.
And, Mafume said as soon as Rufaro is cleared for top-tier action, which it last saw in 2019, focus will shift to Gwanzura, which they want to bring back to life by June.
The Highfield ground is in a sorry state having last been used for Premiership business almost a decade ago.
Mafume said once Rufaro starts to host league games, some funds realised from the stadium will then be channelled towards the refurbishment of Gwanzura.
“Gwanzura Stadium renovations will take a shorter time than we took to do Rufaro. We will move to Gwanzura very quickly,” said Mafume. As soon as Rufaro starts hosting games, we will be moving to Gwanzura. We will also be using some money realised from Rufaro to fund the renovations at Gwanzura.
“As a municipality, we are determined to improve our stadiums and recreational facilities.
“We will use the experience we got at Rufaro to do Gwanzura. But if we get a partner who can expand it, we are open to those deals.
“But we are moving to Gwanzura as soon as possible. We are going to re-develop Gwanzura and it will be a multi-purpose venue hosting not only football but other sports like rugby.
“At least the stadiums should be functioning and they should be improved whilst they are functioning.”
“There is no excuse for those stadiums to be derelict; they should be functioning. We cannot allow ourselves to be at that level of complacency.
“We have the manpower and the expertise within the municipality and there is no reason why we can fold our hands while stadiums are not serving the purposes they were constructed for.
“The shortage of functional stadia and recreational facilities could also be another contributing factor to drug and substance abuse menace.
“So we need to move in swiftly and see to it that we address these issues. We are treating it with the urgency it deserves, so we are not stopping. After Gwanzura, we will head to Dzivaresekwa, Mabvuku and other stadiums.”