Soccer star Radebe to attend Tourism Indaba

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Pretoria - Former Bafana Bafana and Leeds United skipper, Lucas "Rhoo" Radebe, is expected to be the centre of attraction at the national Tourism Indaba in Durban this weekend.

"We are going to ignite the travel industry behind the 2010 FIFA World Cup and we can't wait to get started," Mr Radebe said in a statement on Thursday.

He will also be joined by FIFA's consultant for the World Cup, Horst R. Schmidt.

The Indaba, which will kick off on Friday, with the announcement of this year's Emerging Tourism Entrepreneur of the Year Award (ETEYA), is also an opportunity for the tourism industry to come together and discuss ways of using the World Cup as a platform to attract more visitors to South Africa.

Acting Chief Executive Officer and South African Tourism Chief Operating Officer, Didi Moyle said they were delighted and proud to host Mr Radebe and Mr Schmidt.

"They collectively bring iconic status and management depth of experience that gives global credibility to this football-focused Indaba. It's great that men of Lucas's and Horst's stature are celebrating with us at the Indaba this year," she said.

Mr Radebe will be participating in the ETEYA Awards on Friday, on Saturday he will be at the Global Media Face Off as well as at the Welcome Awards on Sunday.

According to Tourism SA, he is well-known for his field footwork and his captaincy of South Africa's national soccer team Bafana Bafana and Europe's Leeds United. He participated in Bafana Bafana's victory in the African Nations Cup Final in 1996.

He also led his nation into its first ever World Cup in 1998 and again in 2002.

Off the field of play, he has also achieved wide-spread acclaim and two honorary doctorates for his work in the community, in both Leeds and for his country.

Mr Schmidt, according to Tourism SA, is well-known for the immense contribution he made as vice-president of the German Local Organising Committee of the 2006 FIFA World Cup.

He spends in average seven days per month as the coordinator of FIFA's 2010 World Cup project, using his extensive experience to serve as FIFA Secretary- General Jerome Valcke's "extended arm" in South Africa.