Updated: May 14, 2018
Gauteng Premier, David Makhura launched the second instalment of the Premier's Social Cohesion Games at a media briefing today, under the theme: "Unity in Diversity".
The games are an initiative of the provincial government, the Hellenic Italian and Portuguese (HIP) Alliance and the Mmakau Group and are aimed at promoting social cohesion, nation building and mobilizing citizens and communities against racism and xenophobia in the Gauteng Province.
The 2018 Games have already kicked off with coaches from the Serie A and European Champions League contenders AS Roma, holding clinics for children and coaches in Ennerdale, Randfontein and Alexandra in the last weekends of March.
This coming Saturday, ih & Sunday, 8th of April will see a congregation of Nationalities, Football Legends, Super Stars, Politicians and Celebrities club together in an effort to remind masses to say "No to Xenophobia" and "No to racism".
The Games have attracted almost 4 000 participants including players over 35 years, from diverse races, denominations and nationalities, playing -a-side social football from across 11 regions of Gauteng.
The Last 16 stage will be held at the Westbury Stadium on Sunday, 8 April, with the ultimate final scheduled for the Ace Ntsoelengoe Stadium in Randfontein on Sunday, 15th April 2018.
The final will see 18 teams participating with 9 matches to be played. Six Ladies teams will also participate in the Women's Tournament.
Not to be outdone, other entertaining matches to be played on the day will be
the "Gogos match", where two senior citizens female teams "fight it out", as well as the much anticipated Premiers Exhibition Game, featuring the Premier and many more well known former players and celebrities.
"There was never a more appropriate time to show the country how we can unite under the banner of football", said Gauteng Premier David Makhura. "Football is a common denominator; in Gauteng, on the continent and in turn the world-over. It transcends all differences and serves to remind us that we have a lot more in common, than what divides us."
Gauteng MEC for Sports, Recreation, Arts & Culture, Ms. Faith Mazibuko is extremely excited with the games: " Social Cohesion is one of the key drivers of the change needed in our country, and in tum our Province. An active Citizenry in building Social Cohesion and Nation Building can contribute enormously towards the transformation, modernisation and re-industrialisation of our economy and society. Through football we can play our part in achieving this."
Included in all the teams are former players from both South Africa as well as the rest of the continent.
Players such as Roger Feutmba, former Mamelodi Sundowns and Cameroon International, Innocent Chikoya, Edelbert Dinah, Doctor Khumalo, Frank Makua, Tebogo Moloi, Maimane Phiri, Portia Madise, Jabu Mahlangu and Steve Lekoelea, to mention a few, will show off their skills on the day. Celebrities Arthur Mafokate, Walter Mokoena, David Kekana, Thomas Mlambo and DJ Cleo will also grace the occasion to put up a good show.
"We stand United in Diversity" said tournament convener and Chairperson of the Italian section of the HIP Alliance, Maurizio Mariano.
''Together with the African Diaspora Forum, the Hellenic, Portuguese, Chinese, Jewish, Muslim & Hindu Association communities 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"
For further Information please contact:
Phumla Sekhonyana - Spokesperson of the Gauteng Premier Mobile: 071 860 4496
Baleseng More - Optimize Mobile: 066 013 6763