Politics the reason SA missed out on hosting AFCON?

Cape Town - South African Football Association (SAFA) president Danny Jordaan believes that politics was the real reason behind South Africa missing out on hosting the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament.

South Africa were favourites to inherit the rights to host the prestigious football showpiece after original hosts, Cameroon, were stripped of the duty to do so in November last year due to a lack of preparation.

On Tuesday, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) announced Egypt as the host nation with less than six months to prepare for the global event.

However, before the announcement, Jordaan was confident that SAFA put in a solid bid and that the country would host AFCON for a third time after doing so in 1996 and 2013.

Egypt have hosted the tournament on four previous occasions, most recently in 2006.

"If you compare South Africa with Egypt, we clearly have an advantage because we have the infrastructure, the experience ... just everything in place," Jordaan told City Press.

"The politics are another matter. Arab countries are very entrenched and CAF's headquarters are in Cairo."

In a year where South Africans are heading to the polls to vote in the national elections in May - a month before the tournament - many believed that SAFA's bid would fail.

However, when asked if SAFA received the backing of the South African government in their bid to host AFCON, Jordaan was extremely coy. 

"The bidding process was a late thing. We wrote to CAF to say they must give us details of what to expect from the government," he responded.

"Normally, the requirement would be infrastructure. There will be no cost incurred for infrastructure."

According to reports, R120 million is needed to stage the tournament and the financial-stricken SAFA approached the South African government for help prior to announcing their bid to take over from Cameroon.

Meanwhile, SAFA acting CEO Russell Paul said after CAF's verdict that he believed South Africa are far better equipped as hosts compared to Egypt.

"Without being arrogant from a technical perspective, there is no other country on the continent better-suited [than South Africa] to host, that can boast the infrastructure, roads and stadiums we have. We don’t have a fight with Egypt, we have a fight with the way the process has unfolded," he said as quoted by The Citizen website.

"We wrote to Caf before the announcement to say there is a list of requirements for a bid, a process to be followed. There is supposed to be an inspection team, but they never arrived in the country. Secondly, they said the announcement would be on January 9 and suddenly it was moved to the 8th.

"We had prepared a delegation to go [to Dakar] tomorrow, only to find the Egyptians had been there a while, with government representatives, ready to make their presentation."

The 2019 tournament will be the 32nd edition and will be played from June 15 to July 13.


Meet Legina, a singer who is on the rise in SA and USA

Legina is a South African R&B artiste who uses her American experience to influence the South African music industry.

Born Legina Sikwane, the 29 year-old singer rose to fame at a very young age when she started singing for a family band Sikwane Jazz Band. While under Sikwane Jazz Band, Legina managed to share the stage with performers like MormanChauke, Blondie Makhene, Victor Ntoni (the late), and Lawrence Matshiza. Legina performed in various venues across the country before moving to America. She also featured in the Mzansi Magic’s Africa Matters family documentary.

In 2016, Legina moved to America to pursue her musical career, and she made the kind of headway in the west that’s difficult to attain. While in America, she shared the stage with an American gospel group Gaither Vocal Group and she also opened stages for Australian politician Mary Jane Gillet.

“My mom introduced me to the music industry,” Legina told the Chronicle. “I do what I love in this industry, and I don’t just do it to be famous. Honestly, I love seeing how people feel whenever I perform; it is always an amazing feeling.”

With her family’s support, Legina told the Chronicle, she learnt a lot in America. For example, she explained, in America, most artistes have instruments as their back up whenever they perform, and it is important to master that. She added that while in USA, as an artiste from Africa, she received a good treatment.

“Right now, Gqom (house music) is taking over in our country,” Legina noted, “However, we are striving to bring back that R&B feeling in the industry. I want to bring the difference because there are people who follow pop and R&B in our country.”

Through her music, Legina said, she wants to bridge the gap between African and American entertainment.

On 9 November 2018, Legina released her single Heart of Gold which has been played on local radio stations, and also reigns on USA’s Radio Arplay.

She normally appears on stage alone and frequently features a keyboardist (Mac) and saxophonist (Norbert) to transcend her music repertoire.

Cosmo City Football League awards topachievers

Their 2018 football season has come and gone, and on 1 December Cosmo City Local Football League awarded its top achievers in a ceremony held at the Multipurpose Centre.

Every year, at the end of the season, Cosmo City Football league awards players and coaches who would have worked hard and done well, across all the development divisions from under11 to under17. .

The awards were meant to reward and motivate players and coaches to always strive to improve, to grow and to remind them that their hard work is acknowledged and appreciated, according to Cosmo City Football League chairman Thulani Malebana.

“The players were nominated by all the coaches in the junior league, with nominations submitted in writing,” Malebana said. “Once all nominations were received, they were counted and verified by the secretary and chairman of the league. The nominated players were then trimmed to the top 3 finalists, with the winners being announced at prize giving ceremony.”

As a development league, Malebana said, they always remind their junior players that it is not all about the final results of the match but it's about development, to be better than the previous week, to play each match with positive attitude and sportsmanship.

He added that they also remind coaches not only to focus on developing the players’ football skills, but also their social and interpersonal skills which in turn will make them better individuals in society. 

“The awards always encourage and motivate players to improve and give their best in every game. Our youngsters need to be taught and reminded that hard work and doing the right things comes with great rewards. Football has power to unite communities and our goal is to keep children away from drugs and teen pregnancies,” the chairman said.

Malebane thanked all the coaches in the league for their selflessness dedication and hard work  during the course of the season

Lumkile Mtshengu (13 years old), who plays forSpanish FC under 15 - was voted as the under 15 player of the season and alsowalked away with the junior league footballer of the season for 2018. The youngplayer said he was shocked but also excited when he was announced as the winnerof these prestigious awards. 

Creed 2

In 1985, Russian boxer Ivan Drago killed former U.S. championApollo Creed in a tragic match that stunned the world. Against the wishes oftrainer Rocky Balboa, Apollo's son Adonis Johnson accepts a challenge fromDrago's son, another dangerous fighter. Under guidance from Rocky, Adonistrains for theshowdown of his life a date with destiny that soon becomes his obsession. Now,Johnson and Balboa must confront their shared legacy as the past comes back tohaunt each man

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