Mega-events and citizens

I came across this interesting conversation (although somewhat patchy) between Jay Naidoo and Danny Jordaan (former head of the 2010 FIFA World Cup Organizing Committee), where they discuss a potential relationship between (if one exists) mega-events, and human rights or development. Naidoo challenges Jordaan as to whether a link exists, and the impact when mega-events are awarded to controversial cities and countries with “unacceptable” records of human rights.

We were all elated when Sepp Blatter made the announcement that South Africa would host the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup. We built stadia, welcomed international guests and we were all in a state of euphoria for a month.

Then Bafana Bafana failed to proceed beyond the initial phases, our local street vendors were kept away from trading outside the arenas and serious questions around sovereignty arose. Beyond the euphoria, the sense of national pride and the camaraderie, how did ordinary South Africans benefit from the 2010 World Cup?

I facilitated a conversation with Danny Jordaan, organised by the Legal Resources Centre, which interrogated these very same issues. Should mega-sport be concerned with the economic, social and human rights legacy of a country and how do the people at grassroots level actually benefit?

Source: Jay Naidoo –