Mrs Zanele Mbeki departs for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games
5 August 2008
Pretoria: Mrs Zanele Mbeki will, tomorrow, Wednesday, 6 August depart for Beijing, where she will officially represent South Africa at the 2008 Olympic Games scheduled for 8 to 24 August in China.
In this regard, Mrs Mbeki will be joining a number of Heads of State and Government who will be representing their countries and thus leading their respective national teams to the world's most beautiful spectacle, the Olympic Games. This follows South Africa's decision to respect the right of China to host the 2008 Olympic Games.
Mrs Mbeki's participation in this regard has enabled the South African National Olympics Team to secure the highest diplomatic accreditation to the Beijing Olympic Games.
In this regard, South Africa will be represented by a team of 220 athletes including team managers, technical staff and coaches. The South African Olympic Team, which departed South Africa between 27 and 28 July, has been training in Korea to assist the team with its acclimatisation process before proceeding to Beijing.
Mrs Mbeki has previously represented South Africa at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games as well as the Athens Olympic Games held in 2004 in her capacity as the patron of the South African Olympic Team.
The Government joins all South Africans in wishing the South National Olympics Team well in its endeavours in Beijing and expresses its conviction that it will represent the country with dignity and honour and like all other sporting codes continue to bring glory to the country.
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Issued by: Department of Foreign Affairs
5 August 2008