The local organising committee (LOC) for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations says they are confident that eight South African cities would agree to host the tournament despite resistance from the city of Cape Town.
JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA (APRIL 13, 2012) (REUTERS) -The local organising committee (LOC) for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations said on Friday (April 13) they are confident that eight South African cities would agree to host the tournament.
Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula said there is no crisis despite resistance from the city of Cape Town, which had previously offered the Cape Town Stadium, a 2010 World Cup venue.
"The government of South Africa has shown that it is prepared to sign the guarantees relating to the hosting of the tournament and will eventually do," Mbalula told reporters in Johannesburg.
"However the reality presented by the time available to the country between now and the hosting of the tournament dictates that certain things be done differently to achieve the same anticipated success.
"South Africa has made a commitment to host the AFCON in 2013, and that's how it will be."
Media reports suggested the cities of Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Bloemfontein were threatening to withdraw hosting the Africa games because of financial concerns.
LOC chief executive Mvuzo Mbebe said no cities had officially withdrawn, but he confirmed Cape Town was among potential hosts not yet willing to sign the hosting agreement. Details of the hosting agreement, including the budget, would be revealed once they had been through government channels.
But potential host cities are up in arms that the draft agreement is too open-ended, exposing them to costs of up to R40 million each (five million USD), according to local media reports.
The LOC said each of the host cities would cater for as many as four teams and stated this will benefit the cities economically.
But local authorities have said they are not happy carrying costs of accommodating and transporting the teams.
Host cities will also have to pay for Confederation of African Football (CAF) officials and referees.
The South African Football Association (SAFA) is expected to announce the host cities on April 20.