THE Local Organising Committee has bowed to pressure from local artists - agreeing to meet on Monday over the line-up for a pre-tournament concert.
A task team, including Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi, Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale, Safa president Kirsten Nematandani and LOC chief executive Danny Jordaan, was announced yesterday to deal with the dispute with local artists concerning participation in the June 10 Fifa concert in Soweto.
Local artists are angry that the concert will be dominated by foreigners including top acts such as John Legend, Alicia Keys, Black Eyed Peas, Amadou, Mariam and Vieux Farka Touré, Angelique Kidjo, Juanes, Shakira, Tinariwen
South African acts that have been billed for the Orlando Stadium concert are Vusi Mahlasela, The Parlotones and BLK JKS. But local artists want 80percent representation at the gig.
Addressing the media after the LOC's board meeting yesterday, LOC chairperson Irvin Khoza said the task team would meet local artists on Monday. "There is a report on this issue presented by Danny Jordaan. It (the concert) is a Fifa event, but we're confident the matter will be resolved.
"We are aware Jordaan met with Minister of Arts and Culture Lulu Xingwana and the Communication Workers Union of South Africa."
Fifa secretary-general Jerome Valcke said: "It is not true that Fifa wants to make money using the concert, instead we are spending a lot of money to organise it.
"There will be 26 football teams from other parts of the world and six from Africa during the World Cup. The concert must have international figures, otherwise no one will broadcast (it) or attend."
Valcke said Fifa was happy with preparations for the World Cup, saying he would now "close his eyes and ears going towards the June 11-opening match".
Jordaan, who was commended by Khoza for a job well done by his administration to date, said: "With 63 days to go before the kick-off of the World Cup, we are ready."
lKhoza also sent the LOC's condolences to the family of the late Deputy Minister of Health Molefi Sefularo, who was to be in charge of health matters during the cup.