… Declares Danny Jorddann at ‘AIMS’ meet
By: Kofi Owusu Aduonum
The Chairman of the 2010 World Cup Local Organising Committee, Danny Jorddann, has said that last June’s soccer festival went down in the history of the competition as recording the lowest crime rate.
Mr. Jorddann stated at the final day of the Africa International Media Summit (AIMS) in Durban, South Africa, on Saturday, that it also changed the negative perception that hitherto nearly blighted Africa’s maiden World Cup.
He indicated that the successful hosting of the World Cup had shown the whole world that Africa was capable of hosting a world class competition, saying, “Before the World Cup, the perception was that Africans do not have what it takes to host such a world class competition, but the reality afterwards, is that it has set high standards yet to be equaled.”
In terms of financial gains, the LOC Chairman said that the 2010 Mundial raked a mouthwatering $3.5 billion, far more than the $2.8 billion realised in the Germany 2006 World Cup.
The LOC boss said, unlike previous world cups which nearly suffered shipwreck as a result of the exit of its host, the entire African continent threw their weight behind the tourney, cheering all the teams on, from start to finish.
According to Jorddann, the continent also went into the competition’s books as the first to finish ahead of time, equipment and infrastructure wise.
“The success story of the World Cup has enhanced and changed the negative perception about the continent. It is now referred to as a continent of hope.
“The perception before the World Cup was that African’s do not have it takes to host it, and so the Western world suggested we take away the African World Cup slogan, but we stuck to our stand, and maintained it,” added Jorddann in plain words.
He noted that the Mundial presents the continent an opportunity to rebrand and reposition itself, despite the challenges it may encounter, but urged all to put hands to the wheel to realise that goal.
He however, decried the performance of the five African representatives, saying, “It is only Ghana that made an impact, finishing in the last eight, the other five failed to go past the group stages.”
The evening also saw the presentation of certificates to persons who excelled in diverse ways, as well as sponsors like the Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS), and the Durban Manor Hotel, which contributed immensely to the summit.