Jun
16
2007
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CAF (Confederation Africaine de Football)

The African Union and the Confederation of African Football (CAF) launched the international Year of African Football in Adis Abeba (Ethiopia) on 29 January 2007. The launch ceremony took place as part of the 8th Summit of African Union heads of state. The ceremony also paid homage to CAF, which was founded in Khartoum (Sudan) on 8 February 1957 and this year celebrates its 50th anniversary. The FIFA and CAF presidents made speeches before the 53 African heads of state and government, with FIFA President Josaph S. Blatter reaffirming his confidence in South Africa’s organization of the 2010 FIFA World Cup TM: “For FIFA, plan A is South Africa; plan B is South Africa and plan C is South Africa.” The South African president, Thabo Mbeki, affirmed that the 2010 FIFA World Cup TM in his native South Africa, the first to be staged on African soil, should benefit the whole of the world’s poorest continent. “We have to make absolutely sure that 2010 will benefit Africa and the African diaspora,” said Mbeki.

At a special ceremony in December 2007, CAF, in collaboration with Globacom, will present awards to the ten best African footballers of the last fifty years. Internet users have already selected Cameroon legend Roger Milla as the best player for the period 1957-2007 ahead of Egyptians Mahmoud El Khatib and Hossam Hassan; Milla received 2,246 votes. The voting was organized as part of the festivities making CAF”s 50th anniversary.

The confederation also organized a two-day workshop from 10 to 12 January 2007 for member association’s education officers. The question of finance, without which projects of this scale could not be carried out, has not been ignored. In 2005, the sum of USD 1.3 m was allocated to thirteen member associations, including Botswana, Malawi, Cape Verde, Gambia, Togo, Central African Republic, Sao Tome e Principe, Djibouti, Eritrea and Rwanda. In 2007, thirteen other associations will receive further aid of USD 1.3 m, which will then be extended to all CAF members.