Cape Town 2010 stadium in doubt

Waghied Misbach

Waghied Misbach

The construction of a World Cup stadium in Cape Town is in danger - an environmental protection group has filed papers in the high court opposing it.

Kendal Jarvis, of the Cape Town Environmental Protection Association, confirmed yesterday that papers had been filed in the high court.

The city plans to build a R2,9billion stadium for the Soccer World Cup in 2010. An interdict could derail Cape Town's plan to host one of the semifinals of the event.

Jarvis said he and his organisation "wholeheartedly supported" having the soccer event in Cape Town.

But he said the council was placing an extra burden on traffic and the sewage system in the area. He rejected accusations that the opposition to the stadium was from the racist, wealthy white residents.

Jarvis said a better option would be to build the stadium at Culemborg, which is close to the rail network, or in Athlone, where it could help to uplift poor black communities.

The city council's World Cup spokesman, Pieter Cronje, could not confirm by late yesterday whether papers had been served.

Sapa reports that Irvin Khoza, the chairman of the local organising committee for the 2010 World Cup, confirmed that he had heard the news of the application for an interdict. Khoza said he had asked his legal team to contact the technical team.