By hosting the World Cup, South Africa has proved during that it possesses all the credentials to compete with the best in the world, President Jacob Zuma said at a closing press conference in Johannesburg.
The president of South Africa also praised FIFA president Sepp Blatter for putting his faith in South Africa’s ability to host the tournament.
(President Jacob Zuma at the closing press conference)
“Our hosting of this historic FIFA World Cup on African soil vindicates Mr Blatter’s strong conviction that we were capable of delivering a spectacular and successful event,” he told journalists at a post World Cup briefing in Sandton, Johannesburg.
(President Jacob Zuma in the SABC studios, Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg)
“It truly is an emotional moment for a nation that had doomsayers warning football fans to avoid coming to South Africa,” he added.
“The world had been told to expect high levels of crime, unfinished stadiums and other infrastructure as well as lack of accommodation.”
(President Jacob Zuma with Graham Cooke, President and Founder, World Travel Awards)
But instead people came and discovered South Africa was a “winning nation”.
“We did it. We did it well, we did it successfully, but we did not do it alone. We did it with Africa and with the support of the world.”
(President Jacob Zuma with Peter Kwele of SABC)
He also said that the passion of the South African people was one of the highlights of the tournament. The support given to Ghana and other African teams displayed African unity, love and solidarity, he added.
“Let us keep celebrating, let the vuvuzelas keep blowing and let the football festival continue at Soccer City and the fan parks. This has been a truly inspiring, moving and uplifting month. Well done South Africa,” he said.
The investment South Africa has made for the tournament will lead to increased tourism, trade and more investment.
“We are sure that the investment we have made will contribute to increased tourism, trade and investment. This will ultimately create new opportunities and bring in the revenue for us to address social challenges,” he added.