Mogul Gumede thanks helpers for 'incident-free festival'

MPUMALANGA-BORN and bred self-made millionaire Robert Matana Gumede says the province is ready to host the 2010 soccer World Cup.

This was part of his speech at a spontaneous gala dinner on Tuesday evening to thank "all persons who helped in making the weekend event an incident-free festival".

Gumede, pictured, invited the police, private security, traffic cops, journalists, businesspeople, musicians and many others to the Mataffin Soccer and Cricket Oval open venue near the 2010 Mbombela Stadium on Tuesday night.

This was the same venue where he had hosted a multi-million rand festival over the past weekend.

He hosted the free event, aptly entitled "If you dream it, you can achieve it", as a thank you gesture for the people of Mpumalanga.

Gumede is the executive chairman of the Guma group of companies, which is the majority shareholder of the JSE-listed company GijimaAst, Guma Group and Smart Card Technologies, Tourvest, Spectrum Valuation Services and Sechaba Valuations.

Gumede donated R1 million towards the establishment of a university in Mpumalanga. He also made donations to his former schools in the region.

The festival was attended by more than 40 000 people from all parts of SA.

The highlight of the festival was a surprise birthday message for Gumede from President Jacob Zuma.