Congo Brazzaville’s sports minister Hugues Ngouélondélé says his country will not be a candidate to replace Cameroon as hosts for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations.
CAF vice-president Constant Omari revealed on Friday that the central Africans had submitted a surprise bid to host the expanded 24-team competition.
But Ngouélondélé has denied the move saying they are not ready to organise the tournament in six months.
“We are six months away from the organisation of the Africa Cup of Nations, and it will not be possible for us to organise it with honour and dignity,” Ngouélondélé told RFI.
“It’s rather quite the opposite, Congo-Brazzaville will not be a candidate, it will not be possible.
“One day maybe we will be candidates, but for the moment it is not on the agenda of our government.
“Maybe the idea has circulated, but in the face of reality, we can’t organise a big party like this. We do not have the structures for the moment.
Congo’s bid could have had an impact on Group G where Zimbabwe are currently on top. Only one team would have progressed to the finals unless CAF had come up with different criteria.
Meanwhile, the CAF executive committee will hold an extraordinary meeting on 9 January to choose new hosts for the 2019 finals.