SOUTH AFRICA: DEPUTY PRES RAMAPHOSA ARRIVES IN LONDON FOR RUGBY WORLD CUP BID

LONDON, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has arrived in London for the presentation of South Africa's bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

Deputy President Ramaphosa is supported by Sport and Recreation Minister Thulas Nxesi and Deputy Minister Gert Oosthuizen. The South African presentation will take place at the Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington, London, on Monday, the Presidency said in a statement.

Ireland and France are the other contenders for the 2023 tournament that will take place 200 years after the invention, according to legend, of the game of rugby by William Webb Ellis.

The rugby delegation that is led by the Deputy President includes SA Rugby President Mark Alexander and Chief Executive Officer Jurie Roux, who will lay out South Africa's technically and commercially compelling case to host the tournament 28 years after late President Nelson Mandela handed the Webb Ellis Cup to Francois Pienaar at a packed Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg.

Deputy President Ramaphosa's participation in this visit and his leadership of the mission to London symbolises and demonstrates government's deep commitment and support to return the tournament to the African continent in the 21st century.

Contractually, this commitment is demonstrated by the fact that the South African government has, as the lead partner in the bid process, signed off on all the requirements stipulated by the World Rugby Council, satisfying more than the required minimum guarantee in the process, the Presidency said.

President Jacob Zuma has requested Ramaphosa to lead Team South Africa, in view of the President's recent participation in the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, and the national celebration of Heritage Day.

Ramaphosa congratulated Team South Africa on its preparations to date for the presentation of the bid and has called on all South Africans to show their support for Team South Africa as the delegation enters the final stages of securing the Rugby World Cup 2023.

The World Rugby will announce the host of the 2023 Rugby World Cup on Nov 15.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK