AS WE reported previously, Durban will no longer host the much talked about Commonwealth Games in 2022.
According to chief executive of CGF David Grevemberg, the city did not meet the criteria set by his organisation, and the search for a new host city had already begun.
The tourist’s favourite city Durban was awarded the Games in September 2015 and was due to be the first African city to host the event, which was first held in 1930.
The bone of contention is the large financial budget estimated to be around billions to host the 10-day games.
As a result, through the minister of sport Fikile Mbalula, hinted SA will not host the games.
“We gave it our best shot but we can’t go beyond. If the country says we don’t have this money, we can’t,” he said.
Grevemberg said: “We are disappointed but it does not diminish our commitment to the African continent.
“We have had to postpone these ambitions to a later time. We all share disappointment that this ambition needs to be postponed right now.
“We remain committed to the inspiring potential of a Games in the continent.”
Grevemberg said the South African government had never signed off on the decision for Durban to host the Games.
“We have a host city contract,” he said. “It was signed by all parties on the day except for the South African government.
“We have engaged with the government to really try to work with their current circumstances but also uphold the commitments that were outlined in their bid. They were unable to do that at this time and we have had to look after the citizens and communities that our events serve.”
Grevemberg said an announcement on a new host city would be made by the end of the year.
“Discussions with a number of interested parties are under way,” he said. “I am confident an alternative host city will be found and that we will have an inspirational Games for the athletes and fans across the Commonwealth.”
Liverpool and Bermingham has shown keen interest in hosting the games.
On Wednesday Mbalula, province of KZN and eThekweni Municipality will address a media briefing at Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban.