South African President calls on “progressive humanity” to act on racism in sport24 November 2014

SouthAfricanPresidentJacobZumaonFridayurged“progressivehumanity”todoeverythingpossibletoend racismin sport.

“We have experienced it, we hate it, and we are determined to fight racism wherever it rears its ugly head, because we know its impact,” Zuma said in an address delivered at the ‘Global Watch Summit against Racism in Sports’ held at the Emperors Palace Hotel near Johannesburg.

Global Watch
Global Watch is a civil society initiative founded and led by former South African cabinet minister and anti-apartheid activist Tokyo Sexwale. 

Zuma warned that racism, if allowed to persist, could destroy nations and people. “We are therefore proud today to add our voices to the billions others throughout the world that are determined to do everything possible to say ‘no’ and to put an end to racism in sports,” he declared.

The summit featured a host of speakers from the world of South African politics, with former President Thabo Mbeki opening the event and former UN ambassador for Human Rights Navi Pillay also taking the stage.

Pienaar, Semania, Barnes speakers
From sport former South African Rugby captain Francois Pienaar, 800 metres World Champion Castor Semania, former Liverpool and England winger John Barnes, FIFA Executive Committee member Jacques Anouma, Amadou Gallo Fall of NBA Africa and William Gaillard, advisor to UEFA President Michel Platini and Fare Executive Director Piara Powar, all spoke.

This year, South Africa marked the passage of two decades since the end of the country’s white minority regime, which had discriminated against black citizens.

Zuma continued, “As was observed by our departed world icon, former president Nelson Mandela, sports has the power to change the world. It is this understanding that makes us even more determined to jealously guard against the emergence of racist tendencies in sports.”

The summit adopted a Global Watch charter which will form the basis of future action.

From Global Watch

Caster Semenya

Caster Semenya