Morocco World News reports that Moncef Belkhayat, the former Sports and Youth Minister, has vowed to bring the Olympic Games to Casablanca if he was elected president of the Grand Casablanca region in the upcoming municipal and regional elections.
Calling his proposal to host the 2028 Games serious, Belkhayat said, “I have studied cities like Rio de Janeiro and Barcelona which were transformed by the Olympics.”
“The Olympic Games is an Olympic swimming pool, an Olympic stadium, and Olympic village and infrastructure. The overall budget is 38 billion dirhams only”.
He added that the experience he racked up bidding for international events such as the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations and the FIFA Club World Cup in Morocco should be the spur for a bid for a first African Olympics.
Belkhayat said, “officials at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) love Morocco and have told me that they would like to see the Olympic Games in Africa”.
Officials have long planned an 80,000 seat Olympic Stadium in Casablanca; the Grand Stade de Casablanca was first proposed as a possible 2010 FIFA World Cup venue yet various plans and designs have never come to fruition.
Applications to bid for the 2028 Olympic Games will be due in to the IOC in 2019. Africa has never hosted the world’s biggest multi-sport event.