President Jacob Zuma declares South Africa ready for the start of the World Cup and praises the world’s sporting event for bringing cohesion to his once divided nation.
Five days from the kickoff Mr. Zuma says that the nation has not witnessed such enthusiasm and excitement since former president Nelson Mandela was released from an apartheid-era prison in 1990.
Mr. Zuma spoke to reporters at the presidential guesthouse in Pretoria Sunday, with FIFA president Sepp Blatter at his side.
He says South African flags have become the most popular item for locals, and applauded the explosion of national pride, saying it was a priceless benefit of the tournament.
Mr. Zuma also criticised those who doubted the nation’s ability to host the first World Cup on the African continent.