Enjoying political protection from the African National Congress leadership could be a possible indication that corruption or bribery to FIFA to host the 2010 World Cup in South Africa is a reality. Corruption is uncontrolled in South Africa and current events rolling out this week over the high corruption and bribery within the world governing body FIFI may well prove that South Africans are in fact guilty of such.
Amazingly when the FIFA scandal hit the headlines around the world, Thabo Mbeki said that the South African government did not pay any money in bribes to host the world cup game. How noble of Mbeki to remind the South African people of how gallant the ANC government performed. Days later, a statement emerged that South Africa had indeed donated $10 million, toward the soccer association of North America, Central America and the Caribbean Islands (Concacaf).
South Africa officials first went from no involvement to denial, and as pressure mounted up against the staff, somebody owned up to a donation, not a bribe. Now the blame game begins and hopefully, admission to corruption will ultimately be spilled over the media. However, hanging on to honor might delay the record while officials try to figure out who is best to take the rap for the bribery or donation.
South African sports and recreation minister Fikile Mbulula issued a statement confirming that Mbeki made the decision to donate the money. Of course Mbeki’s decision to give such large amount of money without telling government or voters is peculiar. Usually when the ANC party makes donations, such as a week before voting, and giving sacks of mielie meal to voters in exchange for a vote, the state television and media are informed to expand on the generosity of the ANC party.
It has emerged that former FIFA executive Charles Blazer admitted in a court testimony that bribes were taken to secure the South African 2010 World Cup. Blazer made this confession in November 2013. South Africa denies the bribe but confidently confirms a donation. The integrity of South African officials is on the line as new stories emerge about this vast FIFA corruption disgrace.
Bribery and corruption are nothing new in South Africa and staying on the topic of the 2010 world cup, one of the stadiums built for this spectacular event was surrounded by a massive corruption scandal. The Mbombela stadium cost ZAR1.2 billion to complete, and the approved tender to Lefika Emerging Equity was at the center of a corruption charge. The three directors were charged and subsequently released on bail. A fraud charge so significant that a councilor Jimmy Mohlala, who pushed for the investigation, was assassinated. Enjoying political protection by provincial ANC leadership, who failed to respond to the compelling evidence against Lefika and who blocked legal prosecution for three years, the case was struck off the roll. Two years ago the National Prosecuting Authority confirmed this and said the case was not dismissed and could be reinstated. So bribery is not immoral when the protecting ruling party is involved.
Is this why the ANC are still in power, they have the stadium, they have the corruption. The ANC need to realize that it is the FBI investigating the FIFA corruption and not some ineffective alliance. There is a real possibility that the corruption charges will not disappear, and the ANC will not be able to talk their way out of this one. Appearing before the International Criminal Court is becoming a reality. All the lies and pointing fingers will not stop the FBI investigation, and the real character of the ANC will be exposed.
Opinion by Laura Oneale
Sport23 – Mbeki decided to donate the $10m to FIFA – Mbulula
Photo Courtesy of Shine-2010 Wikimedia/Flickr Page – Public Domain License