|| It is not too late for South Africa to take back some of its sovereignty
Patrick Bond, Eye on Civil Society column (The Mercury) 8 June 2010
Could a last-minute U-turn reverse egregious mistakes that our national
and municipal governments are making, apparently under the thumb of the
Fédération Internationale de Football Association (Fifa)?
The barrage of flag-waving, vuvuzela-blowing hypernationalist publicity
cannot drown out at least six game-changing critiques of the World Cup:
1) dubious priorities and overspending;
2) Fifa super-profits and political corruption;
3) heightened foreign debt and imports amidst generalized economic
4) breaking of numerous trickle-down promises;
5) suspension of democratic freedoms; and
6) repression of rising protest.
Consider each of the six in turn. First, overspending has been most
obvious in our white elephant stadiums.
Which events can fill the stands after the last soccer match in July?
How many officials had Durban-type delusions - i.e., that we will
successfully bid for a future Olympic Games? These white elephants cost
the state R24 billion in subsidies.
The most expensive (R4.5 bn), at Cape Town’s Green Point, was foolish,
for the existing soccer stadium in Athlone could have hosted the
semifinals with an additional layer of seats. But no, according to Fifa
documentation, “A billion television viewers don’t want to see shacks
and poverty on this scale.”
Durban’s 70 000-seater Moses Mabhida, that R3.1 bn ‘Alien’s Handbag’
(according to Pieter Dirk-Uys) is delightful to view, so long as we keep
out of sight and mind the vast backlogs of housing, water/sanitation,
electricity, clinics, schools and roads, and the absurd cost escalation
(from R1.8 bn).
Harder to keep from view is next-door neighbour Absa Stadium, home of
Sharks rugby, which seats 52 000 and which easily could be extended
(considering that Durban municipality will knock out 15 000 seats from
Mabhida after July anyhow).
Amnesty for this red card would be imposition of a windfall profits tax
on the companies that built the white elephants, directing revenues
straight to neglected township facilities, including dusty, rocky soccer
The second red card is Fifa’s culture of corruption and excess luxury in
South Africa, the world’s most unequal major country. Reports of bribes
for players, referees and officials are emerging.
Lord Triesman, who chaired England’s Football Association and headed its
2018 World Cup proposal, last month claimed in a taped phone
conversation that Spain and Russia are intent on paying referees to fix
There are yet deeper corruption problems, such as the death penalty
imposed on corruption whistle-blowing in Mpumalanga: at least eight
suspicious kills and a hit list indicating profound splits in the ruling
But the biggest corruption problem, as Foul! author Andrew Jennings puts
it, is that “The unaccountable structure they’ve installed is honed to
deliver the game to the needs of global capitalism - with no checks or
restraints. Just cheques.”
Those outflows are reason enough for a third red card: the huge import
bill and rise in foreign debt we are suffering, much as did
Olympics-opiated Greece before its fall. According to the Mail&Guardian,
not only will it Fifa not be subject to taxes, the Zurich soccer gnomes
can ignore SA exchange control regulations.
Since the Fifa profit estimate is R24 billion (after all they sold TV
rights alone for $2.8 bn), the export of funds will hit our current
account balance extremely hard. Already we are at the very bottom of the
emerging markets rankings, making likely a rand crash sooner than later.
Worse, the construction bubble has been driving our economy, just as
happened in the US prior to its crash. New luxury transport
infrastructure, for example, is a gamble on rich people’s behaviour, as
the R25 billion Gautrain costs riders eight times more than previously
advertised and probably won’t dislodge Joburg-Pretoria commuters to the
new stations given traffic jams and parking shortages.
As labour leader Zwelinzima Vavi, put it, Gautrain “does nothing for
those who really
suffer from transport problems – above all, commuters from places like
Soweto and Diepsloot. Instead, it takes away resources that could
improve the lives of millions of commuters.”
And was a new R8 billion King Shaka International Airport wise for
Durban, given that the old one had excess capacity until 2017, and given
the doubling of distance and taxi fares from central Durban?
Mitigating these red cards requires a full rethink of government’s
relaxation of exchange controls and its high-end infrastructure spending.
A fourth red card is the lack of trickle-down to the masses, witnessed
in wasted opportunities – the trashy Zakumi doll mascot made in China,
not here – and the brute displacement tactics of municipalities.
Informal street traders are furious at being displaced and barred from
selling in the major cities, as are Durban fisherfolk evicted from the
Crafts, tourism and township soccer facilities were all meant to be
boosted. But as SA Football Association Western Cape provincial
president, Norman Arendse, remarked, Fifa’s ‘fatal’ top-down approach
left grassroots soccer with merely ‘crumbs.’
Again, this red card need not be slapped on municipalities, if they
urgently inform Fifa that the local business Exclusion Zone is now
inside not outside the stadiums, so that local informal traders and
fisherfolk can get on with their lives.
The fifth red card is for Fifa’s takeover of SA’s sovereignty. Civil
society groups trying to arrange a pro-education march to Union
Buildings learned last week learned that “all marches and gatherings,
including ours, have been banned in South Africa for the whole of June
until 15th July.”
The reason is that, according to a Fifa-RSA contract, “Police officers
and other peace officials will be provided to enforce the protection of
the marketing rights, broadcast rights, marks and other intellectual
property rights of Fifa an its commercial partners.”
The sixth red card goes to the SA police for their repression warm-up,
starting with ‘general’ Bheki Cele’s 2008 ‘shoot to kill’ order as
security minister in KwaZulu-Natal, quickened with clampdowns on
striking workers and then last week’s murder of service delivery
protesters in Etwatwa (East Rand) and Protea South (Soweto) and of two
young men in Phoenix, Durban which catalysed a demonstration against
The necessary U-turn would include a cease-fire by a police force which
is now aiming guns at the people, their backs to Fifa. A genuine
‘turn-around’ strategy would point fingers and detective investigations
at the real tsotsis, those from Zurich.
(Patrick Bond directs the UKZN Centre for Civil Society.)
Amathikithi ayisithupha abomvu ngoFIFA
(Six red cards for Fifa)
Yahunyushwa nguFaith kaManzi
Kungenzeka kubekhona ukuzisola ngamaphutha amakhulu enziwe ngomasipala kanye nohulumeni kazwelonke, bengaphansi kwengcindezi yeFIFA?
Ukuphephezelisa amaflegi, kanye nokufutha amavuvuzela ngeke kushintshe cishe izinto eziyisithupha iNdebe Yomhlaba egxeka ngazo:
1.) Ukubanezinto ezihambisa phambili ezingacacile kanye nokuxhaphaza izimali
2.) Ukwenza inzulu kakhulu kweFIFA kanye nokukhwabanisa ngezombusazwe
3.) Ukwenyuka kwezikweletu zamazwe angaphandle kanye nokuthengwa kwezinto emazweni angaphandle kodwa kube kwaziwa ukuthi isimo somnotho sibucayi;
4.) Ukophulwa kwezithembiso eziqhamuka kongxiwankulu phezulu zehlela ezansi kwabanhlwempu;
5.) Ukumiswa okwesikhashana kwamalungelo entandoyeningi; kanye
6) Nokucindezelwa kwemibhikilisho evelayo.
Akesibheke kanzulu lamaphuzu ayisithupha. Okokuqala, ukuxhaphaza imali ikona okugqma kakhulu kulezizinkundla.
Ngabe imuphi umcimbi ongagcwalisa lezizinkundla emave komdlalo wokugciina webhola ngoNtulikazi? Zingaki izikhulu nazo ezinokuzikhohlisa njengezaseThekwini – njengokuthi-nje ubani ongakhankasela ukuthi imidlalo yamaOlympics ezayo ize kulelidolobha? Lezizizinkundla zibize uhulumeni izigidi ezingu24 zamarand ngokuxhaswa.
Inkundla ebize kunazozonke ngoR4.5 wamabhiliyoni, iGreenPoint yaseKapa ibe ubuphukuphuku ngoba ikhona inkundla yebhola eAthlone Park futhi eyayingakwazi ukuthi kudlalwe kuyona imidlalo yebhola eyandulela umdlalo wokugcina kwakufanele-nje kwandiswe ngezihlalo. Kodwa akeanzekanga ngoba uFIFA wathi “izigidigidi zababukeli bakamabonakude abafuni ukubona imijondolo kanye nokuhlupheka okungaka.”
Inkundla yaseThekwini iMose Mabhida ehlala abantu abangu70 000, edle uR3.1 wamabhiliyoni, noma kuthiwa yinhle kakhulu yona yayinqunyelwe ukulungiswa ngoR1.8 wamabhiliyoni, kodwa kusho ukuhti kufanele sifihle futhi sikhohlwe ukuthi kunabantu abaningi abaswele izindlu, amanzi kanye nezendle, ugesi, imitholampilo, izikole kanye nemigwaqo.
Futhi uma kukhona eneye inkundla esobala engumakhelwane iAbsa Stadium, ikhaya leqembu lombhoxo iSharks, ehlala ababukeli abngu52 000 ebingaxhunywa kalula (ikakhulukazi mawubheka ukuthi izihlalo ezingu15000 zizobhidlizwa eMoses Mabhida emva kukaNtulikazi.)
Ukuthola uxolo kulelikhadi elibomvu lokuxhashazwa kwezimali kungaba ukunciphisa inzuzo eyenziwe izinkampani ebezakha lezizinkundla leyomali bese iyiswa ezidingweni zabantu abahlala emalokishini ngisho nezinkundla ezinothuli, namatshe abazisebenzisayo.
Ikhadi lesibili elibomvu elingakhishelwa uFifa, umkhuba wabo wokukhohlakala kanye nokuphila ngobukhazikhazi eNingizimu Afrika, izwe eemhlabeni elaziwa ngokungalinani kwabantu. Imibiko yomkhonyovu kubadlali, onompempe kanye nezikhulu ilokhu ivela.
ULord Triesman, owayengusihlalo weEngland Football Association futhi owayehola umkhankaso weWorld Cup ka2018, ngenyanga edlule wabika ngenkathi ekhuluma ocingweni oluqophayo ukuthi iSpani neRussia bazimisele ukukhokhela onompempe ukuze benzelele ngakubo.
Kodwa kunezinkinga zenkohlakalo ezijulile, njengokufa kowaxwayisa ngenkohlakalo eMpumalanga: lapho abayisishagalombili ababulawa kusolakala kanye nohlu labazobulawa elikhombisa ukwehlakana okujilile kwiqembu elibusayo lezombusazwe.
Kodwa inkinga enkulu yenkohlakalo, njengoba umbhali wencwadi iFoul! uAndrew Jennings esho, ukuthi “Indlela abangalawuleki ngayo abenza ngayo benzela ukuletha lomdlalo ezidingweni zomnotho zomhlaba – ngapahndle kokulawula kanye nokucophelela. Kuphela-nje imali.”
Lokhu kungesinye isizathu sokuba banikwe ikhadi lesithathu elibomvu: izinga elikhulu lezimpahla elikhokhelwe ezivela ngaphandle kanye nezikweletu zamazwe anagaphandle esizikweletayo, njengoba kwenzekile naseGreece. Ngokusho kweMail&Guardian, uFifa ngeke ukhokhe intela, ngakho-ke lenhlangano yezicebi zaseZurich iyakwazi ukuziba imithetho yaseNingizimu Afrika ehambisana nokushintshwa kwezimali.
Njengoba inzuzo yeFifa iqagelelwa kuR24 wamabhliyoni (emva kokuba bedayse amalungelo kamabonakude wodwa ngo2.8 wamabhiliyoni amadola, kodwa ukuhanjiswa kwezimali zalapha ziye phesheya kuzolishaya kanzima kakhulu iphokethe lethu lasebhange. Okokuqala silephansi uma siqhathaniswa namazwe asafufusa, okungenza irandi liwe khona maduze-nje.
Okubi kakhulu, ukuthi ukwakhiwa obekugcwele yonke indawo ikona obekuphethe ezomnotho zethu, njengoba kwenzeka naseMelika ngaphambi kokuhti iwe. Izindlela ezibizayo zokuthutha abantu, ngekwesibonelo nje, ukugembula kwabantu abacebile, njengoba isitimela iGautrain esibize uR25 wamabhiliyono, futhi esibiza abagibeli izikhathi eziphindwe kasishagalombili futhiokungeke kuhlakanise abagibeli baseGoli nasePitoli kuleziteshi ezintsha njengoba netraffic inkulu kanye nendawo yokupaka izimoto ingekho.
Njengoba umholi wabasebenzi uZwelinzima Vavi, echaza, iGautrain “ayenzi lutho kulabo abazihluphekelayo izinto zokuhamba – ikakhulukazi abagibeli abasuka ezindaweni ezifana noSoweto and Diepsloot. Esikhundleni salokho, lokhu kuthatha izidingogqangi ezingathuthukisa izimpilo zezigidi zabagibeli.”
Ngabe kwakungukuhlakanipha ukwakha iKing Shaka International Airport ebize uR8 wamabhiliyoni eThekwini, njengoba lesisikhumulo sezindiza esidala bengakwazi ukuqhubeka kuze kube ngu2017, ikakhulukazi mawusubheka ukuhti isphindwe kabili indlela eya khona uma usuka maphakathi nedolobha laseThekwini.
Ikhadi lesine elibomvu indlela engabangakhona ngayo yokusuka komnotho phezulu wehlele ezansi ebantwini, lokhu okubonakala njengokumosha amathuba akade ekhona, njengoba lonodoli omelet iFifa uZakumi enziwe ezweni laseChina, hayi lapha eMzansi kanye nokuphazamiseka kwendlela abantu abaphila ngayo. Abadayisa emigaqweni badinwe kakhulu ngokungavunyelwa ukudayisa kulamadolobhakazi, njengoba kunjalo nakumadobi baseThekwini.
Ezobuciko, ukuvakasha kanye nezinkundla zebhola zasemalokishini bekufanele zizuze nazo. Kodwa-ke njengokusho komongameli wesifundazwe saseKapa we SA Football Association, uNorman Erendse, waphawula wathi, okwehlela abantu kuvela kuFifa bekufana nemvuthuluka.
Futhi, lelikhadi akudingeki linikwe omasipala, umangase batshele uFifa ukuhti indawo yokudayisela ingaphakathi kwezinkundla hayi ngaphandle kwezinkundla, ukuze abadayisi basendaweni kanye nabadobi bakwazi ukuqhubeka nezimpilo zabo.
Ikhadi lesihlanu likaFifa ukuthatha ukubuswa koMzansi. Ngenkathi zinhlangano ezimele umphakathi zihlanganisa umbhikilisho ohambisana nentuthuko yemfundo ngesonto elidlule zimashela ePitoli lathola ukuthi “ yonke imibhikilisho kanye nokuhlangna, ngisho nokwethu, akuvumelekile eMzansi ngenyanga yonke kaNhlolanja kuze kube zingu15 kuNtulikazi.
Isizathu salokho, ukuhti njengengxenye yenkontileka phakathi kweFifa neNingizimu Afrika, “Amaphoyisa kanye nezinye izinhlanga zokuvkela bayobe bevikela malungelo okuhweba kaFifa kanye nozakakwabo.”
Ikhadi lesithupha elibomvu liya kumapholyisa aseNingizimu Afrika ngokugcindezela, ngenkathi kuqala uJenene Bheki Cele ngo2008 ethi ‘Dubulelani ukubulala’ ngenkathi esengungqongqoshe wezokuvikela esifundazweni saKwaZulu-Natal, lokhu kwadala ukuhlukumezeka kubasebenzi uma bebhikilisha kanye nokubulawa komuntu Etwatwa kanye naseSoweto kubantu ababebhilishela izidingogqndi kanye nokubulawa kwezinsizwa ezimbili ePhoenix, eThekwini okuqhqkqmbise ukubhikilishela isihluku samaphoyisa.
Ukulungisa lokhu kungadingeka ukuthi amaphoyisa angesheshi ukudubula ahlale ebhekise izibhamu kabantu, begade iFifa. Ukushintsha kwangempela kuyoba ukukhomba iminwe futhikwenziwe uphenyo kotsotsi bangempela, abaqhamuka eZurich