Fifa bribery scandal: “The World Cup showed that we are a corrupt country”

In light of the Fifa bribery scandal – in particular, the allegation that South Africa paid $10-million to host the 2010 World Cup – SIHLE NDEBELE asked people in Durban their views on our hosting of the event. Can or should we still feel proud of our soccer World Cup moment, or is it nothing more than an embarrassment? And if the allegations prove true, then what further action should be taken?

Mohammed ASmalMohammed Asmal, student, 24, Glenwood

If those bribery claims are true, that does not mean it was a tainted event. The 2010 World Cup brought many job opportunities in our country, so it was not a tainted event. I am proud we hosted it: it gave us exposure. Now we are known, since we hosted it. People must be charged: if it is true, those who are responsible should go to jail.

Chrissy van RooyenChrissy Van Rooyen, shopkeeper, 27, Berea

Even if the allegations are true, that does not mean the World Cup was a tainted event because it brought a lot of people to our country and our businesses were boosted by that. It was a proud moment for the country, as it brought about togetherness among South Africans. I think we should not be embarrassed, because we hosted well. The future hosts should learn from us because we had a great World Cup!

Royal GwalaRoyal Gwala, taxi driver, 58, Umlazi

Even if we paid more than that, I do not care, because it is history now that we hosted the World Cup. Proud, no; why should I be proud, because I did not benefit. It was a tainted event because they took our money as taxpayers and gave it away; now they want us to feel sorry for them. No, they must be arrested, end of story. It would be better, if that money was used to develop football in townships.

Mohammed MoolaMohammed Moola, soccer player, 21, Chatsworth

If we bribed, it means that it was not meant for us, but it helped because it left good stadiums and other sport facilities that can be used for developing young talent. I am proud because after hosting the World Cup, we became a better country. People started talking about South Africa as we proved our critics wrong; other countries did not trust that we could host a world-class event like we did. I feel like those people who are responsible for the bribery should be fined because they did not play according to the book.

Sethabile BhekiswayoSethabile Bhekiswayo, radio presenter, 32, Ntuzuma

Although it created jobs, the World Cup  was a tainted event because it showed that we are a corrupt country. Corruption is everywhere in South Africa. We cannot be proud knowing that we got it because of bribing FIFA. I was proud before, but now it is another story. The Local Organising Committee must tell us what happened because now we do not know who to believe. Those who are responsible should be brought to justice, and they must pay pack that money.

– Featured image: By Akidjoh via WikiMedia Commons.