Thursday, September 29, 2011

South African fans score big for Somalia


Sep 29, 2011 | Kgomotso Sethusha 

BAFANA Bafana fans will have a unique opportunity to help in worldwide efforts to alleviate famine in Somalia.

CRUNCH TIME: Bafana Bafana striker Siphiwe Tshabalala vies for the ball with a Niger player during their Africa Cup of Nations 2012 qualifying match, in Niamey early this month. Niger won 2-1. Bafana will play Sierra Leone in the final qualifier on October 8 in Nelspruit. Photo: AFP
Safa has announced that it will channel 10% of the gate takings from the keenly awaited Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Sierra Leone at Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on October 8 towards the Horn of Africa Relief Effort.
The fund has been established by the Safa and PSL joint liaison committee and will see the football organisations working closely to achieve one goal.
The Confederation of African Football has requested that each of its 53-member associations organise friendly matches to generate solidarity funds for contribution towards Somalia.
But due to Bafana's schedule, Safa opted for the joint liaison committee, comprising Safa finance committee chairperson and vice-president Mandla Mazibuko, chief executive Robin Petersen, PSL head of finance Kaizer Motaung and chief executive Zola Majavu, to lead the initiative.
"We've decided not to have a friendly match but instead came up with the idea of this committee involving the PSL," said Mazibuko.
"We are looking to raise a minimum of R1-million, and the PSL has already pledged R500 000 to the fund.
"We are looking at ways to add our bit to this noble cause and that includes taking some of the proceeds from the Bafana game.
"We've also asked our stakeholders and partners to come on board," he said.
The initiative should go some way towards mending relations between the two football organisations.
"Urgent humanitarian support is needed for these countries. The African football family cannot stay without reacting to this severe food crisis," said CAF president Issa Hayatou in a statement.
"I would like you to mobilise football clubs in your country to help fight this challenge."
Safa was expected to officially hand over the cheque to the continental football governing body at their executive committee meeting in Egypt yesterday.
"We have a responsibility for the wellbeing of our fellow brothers and sisters on the African continent," said Majavu.
Meanwhile, Mazibuko said he has had a fruitful meeting with SABC head of sport Sizwe Nzimande and he was quite confident Bafana's match would be beamed live on television.

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