SA turns attention to Olympic Games

South Africa is to put in an official bid for the 2020 Olympic Games, South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) CEO Tubby Reddy announced on Tuesday.

This follows President Jacob Zuma’s public declaration that the Soccer World Cup was a success and his expression of confidence that South Africa could do a similarly excellent job in 2020.

“Enthused” by Zuma’s endorsement, the Sascoc board met on Tuesday to discuss the possibility of overseeing a 2020 bid process,” Reddy said.

“I can confirm that in light of President Zuma’s comments, we met today.

“We have decided that the way forward would be to engage the government and key stakeholders … but our intention is to provide a world-class city capable of hosting Africa’s first Olympic Games in 2020.”


He invited potential host cities to state their intention of being involved in a bid to host the 2020 Games.

Any city wanting to be involved in the bidding process would need to “contact him directly, as Sascoc CEO”.

He would provide them with the procedure as to what was required to bid for the games.

South Africa lost out in the bid for the 2004 Olympics, when Cape Town won the internal race ahead of Durban and Johannesburg, with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) awarding the games to Athens.

IOC president Jacques Rogge attended the Soccer World Cup final on Sunday.

On Monday, he said that from the start, when South Africa was named as World Cup host, the IOC knew the country would be able to organise the tournament.

“Now it is up to you as a nation to decide if you want to host this (2020 Olympics) event,” he said.

Dispelling concerns
Analysts have said a number of factors have been lining up in South Africa’s favour.

It has dispelled almost all concerns it was not up to the hosting the Soccer World Cup, one of the globe’s biggest spectacles.

It built the infrastructure and stunning venues for the Cup, albeit with some facilities receiving their finishing touches just hours before they were put in use.

It deployed a massive security force to cut down on petty theft and its frighteningly high rates of violent crime — some of the highest in the world outside a war zone.

The country is in the same time zones as large parts of Europe. Events held locally in the evening can be seen in mid-afternoon times in North America, which would likely sit well with major TV broadcasters from the United States, who are the IOC’s biggest source of revenue.

Durban will host an International Olympic session next year, where officials will vote on the winning bid for the 2018 Winter Olympics.

With the entire Olympic movement present at this meeting, local officials could not ask for a better opportunity to discreetly campaign for bringing the Games to South Africa and put out feelers for support of such a possible bid, which in itself is a multimillion-dollar undertaking. — Sapa, Reuters

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Related stories

As opposition mounts, Zimbabwe’s president lashes out

Emmerson Mnangagwa has accused ‘dark forces’ of destabilising the country

Big retailers need to step up to the plate

To stave off a multi-generational malnutrition crisis, the food industry must work with government to provide highly nutritious foods at cost during the pandemic

Crime stats mark a bitter start to Women’s Month

We must celebrate women’s achievements this month while agitating for structural change, argues Luke Waltham

South Africa prioritises fossil fuels over clean energy in post-Covid-19 recovery packages

The country is among the G20 countries who have invested in electricity produced from coal, oil and gas at the cost of addressing climate change

Challenges and opportunities for telemedicine in Africa

Telemedicine in Africa is currently limited by the availability of basic infrastructure, but, considering the lack of doctors in rural areas, it is a vital component in addressing the continent’s healthcare needs

Fight the disease of corruption in the same way we fight the coronavirus

Gogo Dlamini, Themba Dlamini’s mother, died of Covid-19, but Mzanzi has a chance to rid the country of fraud and exploitation and instead serve ‘Gogo Dlamini’, the people of South Africa
Advertising

Vaccine trial results due in December

If successful, it will then have to be manufactured and distributed

White men still rule and earn more

Women and black people occupy only a few seats at the JSE table, the latest PwC report has found

ANC still at odds over how to tackle leaders facing...

The ANC’s top six has been mandated to work closely with its integrity committee to tackle claims of corruption against senior party members

The PPE scandal that the Treasury hasn’t touched

Many government officials have been talking tough about dealing with rampant corruption in PPE procurement but the majority won't even release names of who has benefited from the R10-billion spend
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday