WORLD Football body, Fifa and Coca Cola gave a chance to every Rwandan and African to experience what every football player wants most in life; to win and see the FIFA World Cup Trophy.
This experience has inspired many Rwandans to start working hard to make it to the 2010 World Cup finals.
Rwanda’s hosting of the World Cup trophy has opened the eyes of its football body; Ferwafa.
The hope of Rwandans to be part of the 2010 FIFA World Cup games was set ablaze despite the country’s failure to qualify for the South final show piece in the just concluded qualifiers.
However, the World Cup tour left Rwanda with a lasting legacy. However the most significant moment is when an African Country wins this trophy on the African soil.
Incase this doesnot happen, Africa hosting a violent-free, fun and memorable FIFA World Cup Tournament will still be a legacy.
The Fifa World Cup trophy has added inspiration to Rwanda and African nations, for whom qualification to the world’s major football showpiece has often proved a far-fetched dream.
Coca-Cola being an official partner to FIFA 2010 World Cup, will offer consumers an opportunity to go and watch the World Cup live in South Africa thus a legacy will be left to remember.
Another critical event for African football is Coca Cola’s interests in football development. They have ensured that all the levels of the football pyramids are activated, from the grassroots to the Fifa World Cup finals with Rwanda inclusive.
In Rwanda, they have annually sponsored the COPA Coca-Cola Football Championship that involves steep competition between over 30 football teams from different districts across the country.
The tournament has been a talent-minting project for Rwandan football. Majority of the players that thrive from this tournament have formed the finest of the current Amavubi teams and league clubs.
In the same context, Coca Cola has declared their intention to back the U-17 national team. They are under preparation to host the 2011 African U-17 Championship which will be held in Kigali.
The 2010 COPA Coca-Cola championship which will be built up towards the World Cup by offering Rwandan youngsters a rare opportunity to act as ball boys and flag bearers at the 2010 World Cup.
Nevertheless, hosting the World Cup is a change in perception of the way the world views Africa. Though there is poverty in Rwanda and Africa in general, the continent is a place where there is laughter, healing and is a place where dreams do come true.
This is Africa’s finest hour to let people know and experience the vibrancy, colour, passion and potential that is haboured on the African continent.
The World Cup has positively opened Africa to the world and I anticipate that a well-staged tournament will give Africans a chance to lead and champion other global initiatives in music, arts, medicine, technology and democracy.
For now, Rwandans have started requesting for the tickets to the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa.
Rwanda’s football federation, Ferwafa Chief Executive Officer Jules Kalisa said recently that Rwandans are eager to watch the South Africa finals.
“Many Rwandans have applied for the tickets to watch the World Cup finals,” Kalisa said, without giving figures.
According to Kalisa, Fifa will also allocate World Cup tickets to Rwanda for Ferwafa executive committee members; these are the families of Amavubi players, club honorary presidents and other members involved in the football fraternity within the country.
President’s Kagame interest to watch the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa has also forced many Rwandans to start planning for the finals.
At the last World Cup held in German, Kagame watched the finals and 3rd place playoff.
He said recently that whether invited or not, he will be part of an African World Cup which will be held in South Africa.
“I believe it’s not just the feeling that South Africa is hosting it; it’s Africa hosting and I’m sure that is how South Africans feel as well-- that they are representing us.
Therefore, how well it is organised and how well it is conducted will be a pride for all of us even if it is down in South Africa,” Kagame said, rating Ivory Coast and Ghana to lift Africa’s maiden hosted World Cup.