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2011-06-28: Ubuntu Calabash - Rand Stadium

THE City of Johannesburg facilitates a year long counter xenophobia programme aimed at addressing the social attitudes to xenophobia and the effects of human trafficking with the aim of ensuring that xenophobic attacks on migrants to Johannesburg are eliminated and tolerance of migrants is increased.  The proposed campaign Ubuntu Calabash focusing on Afrophobia fits well with the array of programmes that the City of Joburg's Health and Community Development Departments are organizing.

The Southern African Women's Institute for Migration Affairs (SAWIMA) in partnership with Show Me Your Number and other Civic Organizations have been mobilizing for Ubuntu Calabash – a campaign against xenophobia. This year's campaign is a follow up to the 2010 Ubuntu Derby campaign that involved a soccer match between Highlanders F.C (Zimbabwe) and Jomo Cosmos F.C (South Africa) where over 20,000 spectators attended at the Rand Stadium.

Given the success of the campaign in 2010, the organisers have recognised a need to move away from emphasizing the soccer game so that other aspects related to the campaign can be highlighted.

The Ubuntu Calabash is now an Annual event that celebrate being African and eradicating tendencies of xenophobia and the theme for this year is "Youth Taking A Stand Against Xenophobia" and the key objectives includes:

Mobilising resources for the upkeep and expansion of a skills development programs and repatriation
Improving the relationship between refugees and the locals through sports
Helping young refugee mothers seeking help with humanitarian assistance
In order to achieve the set objectives the campaign has been designed around three concepts

1. Soccer Match – that will involve Orlando Pirates FC (South Africa), playing against Harare Dynamos from Zimbabwe, these top teams will battle for the trophy, the Ubuntu Derby 2. The game is planned for the 2nd July 2011 here at the Rand Stadium.

Soccer is an integral part of many communities worldwide and is being used to raise awareness of social issues that negatively impact on peoples' lives and tear communities apart. The intention of the match is to bring nationals and foreign nationals together to initiate dialogue around tolerance and co-existence, better understand the plight of refugees and support various initiatives that campaign against xenophobia.

2. Community dialogues – with this, we are trying to heal the wounds of the 2008 attacks, and demonstrating ground-breaking work being done, dialogues form an integral part of building bridges between the South African nationals and the non-nationals. In this regard, the City of Joburg is a strategic partner with community members and other civic organisations to learn from them in terms of work being done in communities to promote tolerance and co-existence between all the people, irrespective of where they come from. The dialogues are currently taking place in various communities, especially those areas that were affected by the 2008 xenophobic attacks. The dialogues started on 21st of June and will end today on 28th of June 2011.

3. World Refugee Day – all these activities are aligned to the United Nations' (UN) World Refugee Day which is observed on June 20 each year. This event honors the courage, strength and determination of women, men and children who are forced to flee their homeland under threat of persecution, conflict and violence.

Joburg is currently hosting its second conference on migration from 28 June with the emphasis on business. Expert consultants from around the African continent will engage on issues affecting refugees and migrants.

South Africa currently faces a shortage of highly skilled labour and with Joburg being the economic hub of the country having the highest number of immigrants, it is forced to recognize and tap into the pool of foreign talent.

It is therefore in the interest of the City to support and initiate programmes that promote social cohesion and inclusion of migrants, deal with challenges faced by migrant businesses and continuously ensure a safe and welcoming environment.

This international game will take place here at the Rand Stadium and will feature Orlando Pirates (South Africa) and Harare Dynamos from Zimbabwe.

We are inviting football lovers and all local and foreign nationals to this important international event on Saturday, 02 July 2011


Issued by:
Nthatisi Modingoane
Deputy Director: Communications
Tel: (011) 407 7354
Fax: 403 3494
Cell: 082 467 9228