Safa backtracks‚ says Afcon bid has not yet been submitted

SA Football Association communications boss Dominic Chimhavi.
SA Football Association communications boss Dominic Chimhavi.
Image: Philip Maeta

The SA Football Association (Safa) have hastily retracted a previous statement that they have submitted documents to bid to host the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon).

Safa communications manager Dominic Chimhavi told TimesLIVE on Friday morning that a report by news agency AFP‚ quoting him saying the association have “submitted our bid documents”‚ was incorrect.

He said the report came about as a result of a “miscommunication”.

Chimhavi said Safa’s senior leadership‚ including president Danny Jordaan‚ are still to meet Sports Minister Tokozile Xasa and Department of Sport director general Alec Moemi on Friday to obtain a final go-ahead on whether to submit a bid.

“No‚ we didn’t submit documents. The [Confederation of African Football‚ or Caf] deadline is midnight tonight [Friday]‚” Chimhavi said.

“We haven’t submitted. That is the position.”

Chimhavi said the AFP report was incorrect.

“It was a miscommunication. The thing is we have expressed interest but we haven’t submitted the documents as yet‚” he confirmed.

Chimhavi said Friday’s meeting between Safa and the Department of Sport will finalise whether the country will submit a bid.

“Meeting the government will shape our decision as to whether we will go ahead or not‚” he said

Late on Thursday night AFP reported that South Africa had submitted a bid for the tournament‚ the hosting of which was stripped by Caf from Cameroon late last month due to readiness issues.

They quoted Chimhavi‚ by email‚ saying: “We have submitted our bid documents. [It] is now up to Caf to decide [who hosts the 2019 Cup of Nations].”

Egypt are reportedly considering a bid for the tournament‚ which runs from June 15 to July 13 next year and has been expanded from 16 to 24 teams.

Morocco have reportedly backed out of a bid.

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