The South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) on Thursday emphasised the huge strides they are making in petitioning for support in Durban, South Africa’s bid to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Among the strategies being used to convey the message of SA’s capability of hosting international games of such magnitude include: the Glasgow 2014 Observer programme, the hosting of lunches with key figures at Ekhaya, our ‘home away from home’ facility and Bid presentations among other strategies. SASCOC claims that over 10 delegates from South Africa are taking part in the Observer programme.
The South African delegates participating in the 13-day Observer programme include personnel from the Commonwealth Games Association, Sports and Recreation South Africa, KZN Provincial Department of Sport and the City of Durban among others. The participants have managed to build strong relationships and knowledge, which can only assist South Africa in our own bidding process according to SASCOC. The main aim of the Observer programme is to:
• Provide the Delegates with practical Games delivery information in a “live” Games context to assist their preparations;
• Highlight the benefits of hosting the Commonwealth Games;
• Generally promote the capabilities of the host city and country; and
• Enhance the transfer of knowledge (TOK) and information capture to complement other capture initiatives.
On the other hand, the other contingents from South Africa who are not attending the observer programme are on the ground attending meetings with representatives from Commonwealth countries and building strong relationships, say SASCOC. SASCOC’s main presentation in the Commonwealth Games Federations General Assembly showcased South Africa as a rainbow nation, especially the infrastructure in the city of Durban, the proposed host for the 2022 Commonwealth Games. This presentation has also been published during all the meetings and functions hosted by SASCOC at the Commonwealth Games and received positive recommendations there after.
In addition, relevant stakeholders have signed relevant documents on the bid and the Sports and Recreation South Africa Minister, Fikile Mbalula at his level is engaging the relevant principals for cabinet approval. SASCOC CEO Tubby Reddy says, “As the Commonwealth Games Association, SASCOC has developed an all-encompassing strategy to lobby for the 2022 Commonwealth Bid. We have made positive strides in our petitioning to all the Commonwealth countries during the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and they seem to be very forthcoming. It is Africa’s turn to host the Commonwealth Games and we are and will continue conveying this message to the Commonwealth countries’ representatives.” SASCOC President Gideon Sam added, “We have always as SASCOC, followed due process. We do what we do because we believe in it. Here in Glasgow, we are talking to all the Commonwealth countries’ representatives – these are people we believe in and they believe in us. They are coming to all our lunches, functions and presentations to support our bid. They believe it is Africa’s turn and indeed it is Africa’s turn.”
After hosting a successful Football World Cup in 2010, SASCOC is focusing on the various aspects of society’s development. The confederation says they are ready to invest in the hosting of one of the world’s mega events. South Africa has already successfully hosted, among others, the 1995 Rugby World Cup, football’s Africa Cup of Nations in 1996 and again in 2013, the All Africa Games in 1999, 2003’s Cricket World Cup and most recently the 2010 FIFA World Cup.