Jordaan red cards Euro 2012
Danny Jordaan (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - SA Football Association (SAFA) vice-president Danny Jordaan has decided not to travel to the Euro 2012 finals as a sign of protest against the racism reports that have emanated from the two co-hosting nations Poland and Ukraine.
According to the SuperSport website, Jordaan along with his family, who have attended every Euro Championships since 2000, have decided to miss the 2012 edition following report of racism and violence against Africans and Asians from Ukraine and Poland.
This decision, Jordaan said, was based on the principle that all humans must be treated equally and that race and colour should not be the basis for determining the worth of an individual.
The SAFA vice-president said he discussed the matter with a few individuals within the FIFA executive, who indicated that there were others from other parts of the world who had expressed similar reservations about going to the Euro 2012.
"The problem is not with UEFA but consistent with supporting the idea that racism is a discredited and outdated basis on which to treat people. And football indicates that all those teams, England , France, Germany, Netherlands and many others would have both black and white players and the basis for their inclusion is not skin colour but their ability.
"If the host country acts in contrary to the spirit of the game, then one must take a principled decision," said Jordaan.
Italy star player Mario Balotelli has already said he would walk off the pitch should he be subjected to any racism taunts. This move, Jordaan added, could send out a strong message against racism. Netherlands players were also subjected to such treatment with monkey chants from the crowd at their training session at Wisla Krakow's stadium this week.
"I heard in the media that when England trained there were racist chants. We must not support or celebrate such outdated philosophies. The strange thing is that Auschwitz in Krakow in Poland which stands as a testimony of what race ideologies can bring about. It is sad that there has not been any strong condemnation by the two host countries,” Jordaan said.
Meanwhile, Jordaan said the upcoming international friendly between South Africa and Poland scheduled for Warsaw could be in jeopardy. Bafana played Poland in SA in the build-up to the 2010 World Cup and as part of that agreement, there was to be a return leg in Poland.
"It will depend on what happens during the Euro finals. If these problems persist, we similarly cannot expose our players to such treatment. We will have to discuss it at the level of FIFA because Poland played us here in South African but if we are not able to meet that obligation based on the problems in that country, we will have to bring this to the attention of FIFA," said Jordaan.