Zuma opens AFCON

2013-01-19 17:35
AFCON Opening Ceremony(Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma officially opened the 29th Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) soccer tournament at the National Stadium in Soweto, south of Johannesburg, on Saturday.

Zuma lifted a flame after the opening ceremony, which had started on schedule at 16:00, with a distinctly African theme, as a heavy downpour subsided.

Structures resembling brick walls were assembled on the pitch with the words "poverty" painted in black and "HIV/Aids" painted in red.

The entire soccer field was covered in rainbow-coloured material. Masses of children danced on the material, and after joining in the centre of the field, the children took apart the structures piece by piece.

The rain began two hours before the ceremony was due to start, but lightened about an hour before the start.

Most of the crowd took shelter behind the stands during the ceremony. The seats were left almost completely empty as supporters waited for the rain to stop.

The majority of fans were dressed in yellow in support of Bafana Bafana, who were set to face Cape Verde Islands in the opening match at 18:00.

Read more on:    bafana  |  afcon  |  jacob zuma  |  johannesburg  |  soccer


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk
Most Read


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Ireland centre Payne out of RWC
Jones: Japan can be 'team of the tournament'
Tuilagi gets punishment cut
As it happened: New Zealand 47-9 Tonga

Bafana Bafana have been drawn with Cameroon, Gambia and Mauritania in the qualification stages for the 2017 AFCON tournament. Where will Shakes Mashaba's men finish in their pool?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


Take a photographical trip down memory lane and remind yourself of how the Springboks fared in their five previous Rugby World Cup campaigns. In addition, pick your all-time Springbok Rugby World Cup Dream Team and you could win R3 000!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.