Gauteng turns to Beautiful Game to defeat xenophobia

Social-Cohesion-gamesBy TINTSWALO BALOYI
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – THE Gauteng Province, a xenophobia hotspot in recent weeks as locals unleash violence against Nigerian nationals, is making the most of the power of sport to build unity among people of different backgrounds.
An initiative by Premier David Makhura, dubbed the “Premier’s Social Cohesion Games”, it has seen the participation of 800 players across nine regions of Gauteng, since last weekend, play football as a show of solidarity, social cohesion against xenophobia.
Matches have been played at the Boksburg City Stadium east of Johannesburg, where knockout rounds and quarterfinals where contested this past weekend.
The semi-finals and finals will be played on Sunday at the Nike Centre in Soweto, west of the city.
“There was never a more appropriate time to show the country how we can unite under the banner of football,” said Makhura.
“Football is a common denominator in Gauteng, on the continent and in turn the world-over. It transcends all differences and serves to remind us that we have a lot more in common than that which divides us.”
Gauteng Member of the Executive Committee for Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture, Faith Mazibuko, said an active citizenry in building social cohesion and nation building could contribute enormously towards the transformation, modernisation and re-industrialisation of the economy and society.
“Through football we can play our part in achieving this,” Mazibuko said.
Included in all the teams are former players from both South Africa as well as the rest of the continent.
Former elite league stars as Roger Feutmba, the former Sundowns and Cameroon international, Innocent Chikoya and Edelbert Dinha (both Zimbabwe), Doctor Khumalo, Frank Makua, Tebogo Moloi, Maimane Phiri and Jabu Mahlangu (all South Africa) will show off their skills at the weekend.
The South African Football Association has endorsed the tournament.
CAJ News

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Posted by on Mar 2 2017. Filed under Africa & World, Football, National, Regional, Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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