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Message by His Excellency President Nelson Mandela to the FIFA Congress and Opening Banquet read on his behalf by His Excellency President Jacob Zuma, Gallagher Estate, Midrand

09 June 2010

Photo of: President Jacob Zuma

Dear Friends,

Today marks yet another significant day in the history of South Africa’s democracy as we welcome all 208 FIFA member associations to our continent for the first time.

It is a particularly exciting time as the opening of the FIFA congress also precedes one of the greatest events in Africa’s history.

The 2010 FIFA World Cup is more than just a game: it symbolises the power of football to bring people together from all over the world, regardless of language, the colour of one’s skin, political- or religious persuasion.

We know that as special ambassadors of the 208 countries you represent, you will reaffirm our message of non-racialism, non-discrimination and the importance to strengthen the fight against poverty in our society.

We thank you for your support and we wish you success during your deliberations.

Ke Nako – join us in celebrating Africa’s humanity.

[Signed]

N R Mandela

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