Zuma wants to see South African Olympic bid

July 5, 2010

President of South Africa, Jacob Zuma, has said the country should try and bring the Olympic Games to the continent as part of the legacy of hosting this summer’s FIFA World Cup.

With football’s biggest tournament now coming to a close, talk has turned to whether South Africa could realistically host the Olympic Games as well.

Durban and Cape Town have both been linked with bids to host the 2020 Games, and Zuma has said: “This (the World Cup) has proved to the world that we are capable of hosting any international event, we have the resources and infrastructure.

“People are already talking about the possibility of bidding for major events and we are supporting this. The Olympics are an example, I don’t see why we can’t bid to host the Olympics in the future. It’s important for Africa.”

Zuma also hit back at the criticism the country received over the hosting of this summer’s World Cup. He said: “I think it was very important for us to succeed. But you must remember that, as South Africans, we pride ourselves on the fact that we always rise up to any challenge.

“As a matter of fact, nobody believed that we would have a smooth transition from apartheid and we did it. As you know, a FIFA World Cup has never been hosted in Africa. When South Africa first declared its intentions to host the World Cup, some people said, ‘what is this country from Africa thinking?’ Yes, we lost the first time, but we knew that we would do it next time.

“This is what defines us as a country – our attitude and the belief that nothing is impossible.”