Gugs’ Final Draw party cancelled

2009-12-04 12:30

 

PLANS by the Western Cape provincial administration to host a party

in the township of Gugulethu to celebrate the 2010 Fifa World Cup final draw

appears to have been red carded at the last minute.

Apparently, the football

mother body, Fifa, does not want competition for the party they have planned in

the inner city.

The walls and floors of the Elukhanyisweni Centre in the township

had been cleaned, goalposts set up, a stage erected for performers and posters

advertising the event distributed across the township in preparation to

celebrate the draw.

But Ntsikelela Zokufa, the event organiser, from the provincial

office of Communication and Information Systems said when he went to the City of

Cape Town yesterday to get final approval to place a big screen at the centre to

broadcast the draw, he was turned down and the party had to be cancelled.

Zokufa said the city officials told him that Fifa does not want

another big screen broadcasting the draw besides the one set up in Long Street

in the inner city. However, the officials said the application for a big screen

simply came through too late for proper processes to be followed.

In response to the above, Zokufa said a big screen for the centre

was planned about three months ago and “everything seemed to be going

okay”.

The cancellation of the event would be a huge disappointment to the

Gugulethu residents and Zokufa did not know how he was going to explain all this

to them.

The plan was that before and after the draw, people would have been

entertained with street soccer, live poetry, dance and drama.

Interviewed on the matter, some of the residents of Gugs (as the

township is famously known) said they felt the city did not care about them and

that they felt excluded from the inner city’s party plans.

Some of them said the posters advertising the Gugulethu event had

been up for a month and that they had already organised friends from other

townships to join them for the evening.

A resident, Nokuzola Khanyiso, said she “marketed” the event to her

friends around Cape Town and felt embarrassed about having to tell them it had

been cancelled.

Anele Gwala, another resident, said the Elukhanyisweni Centre was

close to his home and watching the draw from there would have “been a dream” for

him. “I wanted to watch the draw close at home but with the cancellation news

spreading around Gugulethu I think I will miss it. This is because I cannot go

to Long Street.”

Zokufa did confirm that alternative plans being made were to have

the entertainment planned for Elukhanyisweni to continue at the popular eatery

Mzoli’s Place, but the setback was there was no time to communicate the message

to the people.

City of Cape Town’s 2010 World Cup director Lesley de Reuck said he

was not part of the meeting with the provincial organisers but was aware of a

request for a big screen to be erected at a site in Gugulethu, but the request

came through very late.

De Reuck said he supported the idea of having a big screen in

Gugulethu but could do nothing to change the city’s decision.

He said to organise an event in the city it needed to be logged at

the events permit office, go through an approval process, and then have plans be

submitted to the police.

“To ensure the safety and security at an event, it is imperative

this process is followed and this does take some time. If an event organiser

does not apply timeously, he or she will find it difficult in having the event

approved.”


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