The Algerian Government has announced that the country’s new Stade de Baraki will be named after former South African President, Nelson Mandela.
Mandela held close ties with Algeria, having travelled to the country in 1961 to receive training from the armed forces of the Algerian National Liberation Front (FLN). In his book Long Walk to Freedom, Mandela stated his struggle against apartheid was significantly inspired by his time with the FLN.
Upon returning to Algiers, the capital of Algeria, in 1990, Mandela declared that “the Algerian army made me a man”.
Proposals to rename the stadium after Mandela, who died in 2013, first emerged last week, but have now been confirmed by Abderrazak Sebgag, Algeria’s Minister of Youth and Sports.
He told El-Hiwar: “The national commission for the naming of stadiums has decided. Baraki’s new stadium will be named after Nelson Mandela.”
Work began on the stadium, located outside of Algiers, back in 2009 but was only completed in October. The facility has a capacity of around 40,000.