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South Africa: Country to Spend About R5 Billion on 2010 World Cup ICT

South Africa will spend between R2 billion to R5 billion on Information and Communication Technology (ICT) infrastracture required to host a successful 2010 FIFA World Cup. Zakes Mnisi of the Local Organising Committee said last week that the country would provide all the technologies needed to execute the event.

Mnisi said the LOC would also establish an International Broadcasting Centre (IBC), which would be the central hub of all broadcasting activities during the World Cup. "All telecommunications transmissions from or to venues or non-venues will end and start at the IBC," he explained, adding the IBC centre would be a point of delivery for multilateral or unilateral signal broadcasters.

Encompassing 30,000 square metres, the IBC would also provide space for broadcasters to set up temporary newsrooms. The Director for 2010 in the Department of Communications, Padiso Makolo, said reliable back-up power would be supplied for the IBC.

FIFA will allocate 3 million tickets for the World Cup but ICTs would enable those without tickets to watch the games in fan parks by sending live feeds to high definition big screen TVs. "This event also provides an opportunity for government to accelerate the provision of robust, state-of-the-art ICT infrastructure in the country."

Further to this, Makolo said the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), which has been granted the broadcasting rights for the event, is now assessing the involvement of local and continental broadcasters in the event. In terms of the legacy projects, the ICT infrastructure to be put in place for the FIFA 2010 World Cup would be used for other events after the soccer spectacle in June of that year.

BuaNews Tshwane, 8th May 2007

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