COMMONWEATH GAMES A TEETHING PHASE
By: Sandile Lukhozi
South African citizens have shown mixed reactions about the 2022 Commonwealth games coming to Durban.
The city was named the host of the games last week at Auckland, New Zealand.
Durban won the bid uncontested, this happened after Canadian city of Edmonton pulled its bid in February 2015, citing high costs to stage the event.
When the eThekwini Mayor, Cllr James Nxumalo and commonwealth games delegation arrived at King Shaka International Airport, Nxumalo described the win as victory for the
whole African continent.
Nxumalo told reporters that an Athletes’ village will be built with R1.5 Billion and the money will be funded by the Department of Human Settlement.
Since then, a lot has been said about the games coming to South Africa.
Democratic Alliance Provincial Leader, Zwakele Mncwango, described the country as being unfit to host the games, citing the current economic state of the country as a major factor.
“The event will cost South Africa money around R6.8 billion. We as the DA feel that the money that will be generated will deliver short-term benefits. This money could have been
used better for urgent service delivery,” Mncwango said.
Mthandeni Zungu, a member of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), believes that these games will not benefit poor South African residents, but they will benefit already developed
“We as the EFF don’t appreciate the arrival of these games. We remain worried about the people who live in shacks. The first priority should be poor people,” Zungu said.
He added that the building of the Athletes’ village will benefit people living in urban areas, rather than people living in rural areas.
Nosipho Gcaba, a street beggar from KwaMashu, said that she sees positivity from the games and she hopes to be the beneficiary of the games in terms of employment opportunities.
With just seven years to go, Mchunu said the construction and upgrading of facilities would begin as soon as possible.