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THE Department of Sport and Recreation says it has convinced the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to contribute money towards hosting the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) in SA next year.
SA agreed to host the tournament after the initial hosts, Libya, pulled out owing to political turmoil.
Sport and recreation director-general Alec Moemi said CAF would for the first time contribute money towards the tournament since South Africa was a back-up plan.
The football confederation would contribute about R32 million towards the hosting of the tournament, due to start in January.
CAF had also agreed to release broadcasting rights for the tournament, and host cities would make money from gate-takings and advertising rights in stadiums, he said.
“It has been a painful exercise raising money for this tournament because provincial and national government had not budgeted for it.
“But we have managed to raise the money. Details will be revealed when everything has been finalised, he said.
“Originally CAF does not pay for the tournament, it is usually paid for by the African governments.
“South Africa has previously helped other African countries to carry the costs.
“When the tournament was held in Mali, we (contributed) about R68 million when they ran into financial difficulties,” Moemi said.
Rustenburg, Port Elizabeth, Durban and Nelspruit have been selected as the official host cities, but the opening and closing matches will be played at the FNB Stadium in Soweto.
“We have asked host cities and provincial governments to help us with other aspects of the tournament like fan parks through their departments of tourism.
“We are moving with speed for the finalisation of all issues pertaining to the tournament. We are confident that we will deliver a successful tournament.”
Among the interventions by the department to ensure the success of the tournament was to make the matches “double headers”.
This will see two matches played in one stadium on the same day to ensure that there were four sets of spectators for different countries so that stadiums would be full.
Moemi said details of the security budget would most likely be the last to be known as the security profiles of participating teams differed.
However, all details of the budget would be made public as soon as they were finalised, most likely by November.
“We will tell the public how much it cost us to host the tournament. We have always disclosed how much it cost us to host previous tournaments, including the last Afcon that was held here and the World Cup as well,” Moemi said.