World Cup For The Rich

I was sent this the other day in relation to South Africa

“Surely not too many people will shell out R15,000 (about ZK10m!) plus VAT for a table at a dinner where the FIFA boss Mr Blatter will offer his views on “The Socio-Economic Impact of the World Cup on SA”. We already know that the answer is “precious little”. One reason for this is that in return for enormous sums of money, FIFA have assured their so-called commercial partners that the obedient South African authorities will close all possible competitor businesses for miles around the sacred grounds and routes. Fans coming to the Moses Basket in Durban for example, will find that the Sky Car which travels up the handle of the basket, the pubs, coffee shops and stores in the precinct all closed and shuttered throughout the tournament. Curio and trinket sellers have been chased away and their stock confiscated. There won’t even be beer for sale.

The “One Light One TV” headline was not a new electioneering slogan but the warning that in order to ensure enough power to keep the stadium lights burning, the rest of us might need to switch off all our other stuff. Reportedly one of the president’s wives is already setting an example in this matter. Actually that might just make the parties go even better. Drink fast before the beer gets warm. We are going to have a great World Cup even if it is a round ball being chased by fragile and overpaid primadonnas.”

Interesting. From our point of view as a small guest house in Livingstone, Zambia, it doesn’t look as if we’ll have a lot of spin off from the World Cup, although we do have one or two related reservations.

I also strongly suspect we’ll have major electricity load shedding during the period, as Zambia sells it’s power to the south to keep the stadium lights burning. Only 2% of World Cup tickets have been sold to non South African Africans – most Zambians may miss a lot of games because of power cuts. As one of my sons said the other day – a World Cup for the rich, not for Africa.