I can’t help but wonder why sometimes obscene money is spent on things that I believe could matter less. Like a game for example. Yes, I said it. It might be the World Cup, but at the end of it all, it is just a game.
In 2004 when South Africa had just landed the 2010 world cup, it was estimated that costs would be around $ 300 million. That is a figure that can’t quite fit in my head because it is just too big.
Right now I find it hard to believe that the cost went up to $3.7 billion to host a month long tournament, a sum more ten times the original estimate!
Now, the FIFA World Cup might be important for high powered people and the likes but it means nothing to those on the street. Don’t you think that a sum like that could be put to better use?
Africa is the world’s poorest inhabited continent. There is poverty hovering over Africa like a nimbus cloud. To think that all this money is just being injected into a game is just simply ridiculous.
South Africa is not necessarily rolling in money. In fact, according to a press release, impoverished South African’s living in Cape Town claim that local authorities forcibly moved them out of the city to present a good image of the nation during the World Cup.
That is hardly the issue at hand. I think that some of that money could do a lot for those who actually need it. Like the people in Ethiopia and Eritrea who by some miracle, haven’t turned into cannibals yet due to the lack of food.
If you take a look at those pictures of kids whose heads are bigger than a giant pumpkin and his rib cage literally poking out of his skin, you will understand what I am talking about.
Sometimes I get hungry and feel like my stomach is in knots, and that’s just about five hours after I had breakfast. I can’t even imagine what it’s like starving to death.
According to World Bank statistics, a child dies every three seconds from AIDS and extreme poverty often before their 5th birthday. Another one billion people do not have access to clean water and every year, six million children die from malnutrition.
In Sub-Saharan Africa, measles takes the life of a child nearly every minute of every day. An effective measles vaccine costs as little as $ 1 per child. Another 30,000 die from disease infested water.
Imagine what a third of that World Cup money could have done for these children.
It could have been used to provide safe water for vulnerable children as well as some decent food and clothes. The money doesn’t necessarily have to be thrown at these people or their nations because it just ends up being misused by corrupt officials.
Investing in infrastructure like schools, hospitals or teaching sustainable irrigation and farming technique is what can help for years.
There are thousands of charities in Africa and the world over that could really benefit from just a bit of this money. Providing proper education for the children in orphanages and getting children off the street by setting up more homes for them where they can be safe and try to live even a fraction of a decent life.
I believe we have misplaced our priorities and lost perspective on what is really important. How people can spend billions of dollars in just one month on a game that involves eleven men running after an inflated leather ball is beyond my understanding.