British & Irish Lions

Government to make British & Irish Lions tour a 'protected event'

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British Lions fans (Getty Images)
British Lions fans (Getty Images)

Government is moving to make next year's British & Irish Lions tour to South Africa a "protected event".

That was confirmed by minister of the Department of Trade Industry and Competition, Ebrahim Patel, in a government gazette made public on Monday.

Making the tour a "protected event" effectively means that government will pass legislation that will shield the tour from any opportunistic marketing and money-making campaigns from non-sponsors, protecting SA Rugby's commercial partners in the process. 

The gazette also seeks to ensure that local business will benefit from the event.  

According to the gazette, the "protected event" designation will be under the understanding that:

- The procurement policy of the organisers shall comply with the public sector procurement principles such as procedural and substantive fairness, equity, transparency and competitiveness.

- The procurement policy of the organisers shall apply constitutional procurement principles, the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition Codes of Good Practice for Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) when evaluating suppliers and administrative law principles of fair procedure.

- The organisers must submit an impact assessment/report on the British and Irish Lions Rugby Tour on communities in South Africa to the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition at least six months and not more than 12 months after the termination of the "protected event" designation.

- The date of termination of the "protected event" designation is 30 August 2021.

The Lions will play five tour matches and then three Tests against the Springboks - a total of eight matches - between 3 July and 7 August next year. 

Full 2021 tour schedule:

Saturday 3 July: British & Irish Lions v Stormers - Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town
Wednesday 7 July: British & Irish Lions v South Africa Invitational - Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth
Saturday 10 July: British & Irish Lions v Sharks - Kings Park, Durban
Wednesday 14 July: British & Irish Lions v South Africa 'A' - Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit
Saturday 17 July: British & Irish Lions v Bulls - Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Saturday 24 July (first Test): Springboks v British & Irish Lions - FNB Stadium, Johannesburg
Saturday 31 July (second Test): Springboks v British & Irish Lions - Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town
Saturday 7 August (third Test): Springboks vs British & Irish Lions - Ellis Park, Johannesburg

- Compiled by Sport24 staff

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