The eThekwini Municipality hopes that the facilities and experience in hosting international events will be advantageous to them in their bid to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
This is the view of municipality speaker Loggie Naidoo. In his address to the Sports, Events and Tourism Exchange dinner at the Moses Mabhida Stadium last night, Nadioo said the city has proved to be the country’s events hosting destination.
“We have the world class facilities that are supported by good infrastructure,” Naidoo said. “We have our strategy, we want to be Africa’s city for sports, arts and culture and tourism.”
As the bidding and hosting strategy was discussed at the SETE conference, which ended today, cities interested in hosting must submit their proposals to the South African Sports Confederations and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) before 31 March next year.
This is to avoid cities that raise their hands to host international events without consulting the federation. “It seems like cities compete against each other and that should not be the case. The attitude of going on your own should stop. It’s time to do things unison.” Sascoc president Gideon Sam said.
KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Social Development and Tourism, Mike Mabuyakhulu, shares the same sentiments as Naidoo, but warns that they must not underestimate other cities.
“We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves,” said Mabuyakhulu. “It’s a matter of common course but Durban has facilities that are comparable to the word.
“Durban is well-documented globally. We have proved beyond reasonable doubt in the previous events we’ve hosted.”
Mabuyakhulu said sports tourism has a huge impact in the economy and said they engage in “productive events spending not consumption spending”.
DA eThekwini deputy caucus leader and Umhlanga councillor, Heinz De Boer, said financial implications have to considered before the city and country bid. “It would be unwise to try and host any Commonwealth games or even Olympics without considering the financial implications to the city and country as a whole,” De Boer said.
“We cannot afford to spend what could be several billion rand to host these events if it means other service delivery is compromised.
“The hosting of major events can only be positive for the local economy of a city…economic factors would determine whether we host.”
KZN is not new in hosting major sports events as they have previous hosted Volvo Golf Championship, Dusi Marathon, Comrades Marathon,co-hosted 2010 Soccer World Cup and 2013 African Cup of Nations.
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