The sixth edition of the Africa Nations Championship (Chan) will take place in April next year as opposed to the traditional January, the Confederation of African Football (Caf) confirmed on Friday.
The competition, which exclusively features players from their respective domestic leagues, will be staged in Cameroon from April 4 to 25, the continental football body confirmed during an executive committee meeting in Cairo, Egypt on Thursday.
The Caf second statutory meeting that was chaired by president Ahmad Ahmad also approved recommendations concerning the location of the training sites and the hosting of the groups for tournament.
Cameroon minister of Sports and Physical Education, Prof Narcisse Mouelle Kombi, who is chairman of the local organizing committee, had earlier announced the competition will take place in the cities of Yaounde, Douala and Limbe, with Douala hosting two pools.
Kombi also announced that draws for the tournament will be done in January.
Caf stripped Cameroon of the hosting rights to this year's Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) citing delays in infrastructural preparations, but the country has since intensified preparations ahead of the 2021 edition and Chan 2020.
"Due to metrological issues, the dates of the Afcon 2021 will be decided jointly by Caf and the host country," Caf said as part of key decisions arrived at during the meeting.
"The Caf administration will now decide the dates, times and venues of matches after analysis of the opinions of the teams concerned."
Ethiopia withdrew as hosts of Chan 2020 and Caf directly awarded the hosting rights to Cameroon. It will be the first time the Central African country will host the competition.
A seven-member Caf Inspection team led by the First Vice President Constant Omari was in Cameroon in September to assess the country's readiness to host the competition.
During their one-week sojourn in the country, the team inspected sporting infrastructure and accommodation facilities in the cities of Yaoundé, Douala, Bafoussam and Garoua.
Defending champions Morocco, host Cameroon, 2009 champions DR Congo and 2011 winners Tunisia are among the 16 teams to take part in the tournament.
Others include Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Zambia, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Congo, Burkina Faso, Guinea, Niger, Mali and Togo that is making her debut in the championship.