The Premier’s Social Cohesian Games – 5 March 2017
This new Provincial initiative,“The Premier’s Social Cohesion Games” saw close to 800 players unite to play football in a show of solidarity and social cohesion against xenophobia. Players over 35 years of age, from diverse races, denominations and nationalities played 7 –a -side social football from round robin stages to knockout rounds and quarter finals in the Boksburg City Stadium on the 25th and 26th February 2017, and then the semi-finals and finals were played at the Nike Centre in Soweto on Sunday 5th March.
“There was never a more appropriate time to show the country how we can unite under the banner of football”, said Premier David Makhura. “Football is a common denominator; in Gauteng, on the continent and in the world over. It transcends all differences and serves to remind us that we have a lot more in common than that which divides us”. The Premier, together with the Hellenic Italian and Portuguese (HIP) Alliance and the Mmako Group devised and developed these games in an effort to enhance social cohesion against xenophobia in the Province as well as recognize and acknowledge former players.
“We stand United in Diversity said tournament convenor and Chairperson of the Italian section of the HIP Alliance, Maurizio Mariano, “together with the African Diaspora Forum, the Hellenic, Portuguese, Chinese, Jewish, Muslim and Hindu Association communities we have put together the most diverse group of people in one event. Through these games we will, in a small but significant way, assist in unifying our Province”.