Confederation of African Football (Caf) president Patrice Motsepe has donated $200,000 (about sh 21 million) to the Catholic church in Cameroon.
The South African billionaire is in the country to oversee the organization of the 33rd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations, (AFCON).
He announced the donation during a mass he attended at the St Joseph Anglophone Parish of the Catholic church in Mvog-Ada, Yaounde on Sunday and clarified it was made by the Motsepe Foundation.
Motsepe was accompanied at the service by Caf Secretary General Veron Mosengo-Omba.
Local media reports indicate the continental football chiefs attended the church service so as to seek God’s favour over their mission in the central African country and Motsepe said it was an honour for him attending the church service that was officiated by Jean Mbarga, the Archbishop of Yaounde.
“For the Catholic church in Cameroon, the Motsepe Foundation will donate USD 200,000,” Motsepe announced, throwing close to a thousand worshippers into excitement.
Though he asked CAF scribe to get the account details of the church, the CAF boss clarified that the cash was not from the continental football body, but from the Motsepe Foundation.
Archbishop Jean Mbarga had earlier led an interreligious service to pray for peace during 33rd edition of Africa’s most prestigious soccer tournament that kicked off in the country on January 9 and expected to run till February 6.
“I am excited to hear that the Bishop organised prayers for the success of the competition in his Basilica,” Motsepe said.
During the interreligious service at the Mary, Queen of the Apostles Basilica in Yaounde on January 5, Archbishop Jean Mbarga described football and the current competition as a veritable source of unity to the people of Cameroon.
And in what looked like a repetition, perhaps for emphasis, the Archbishop of Yaounde again restated in his homily on Sunday that football is the sport which easily unites Cameroonians. He then prayed for a hitch-free organization of the soccer fiesta.
“It is a privilege to have you pray together with us,” Archbishop Jean Mbarga told the CAF president and SG before invoking the Holy Spirit to guide and direct the CAF leaders and especially for the success of the ongoing tournament—Motsepe’s first since he became CAF president last year.
Motsepe boasts business interest in mining and real estate in South Africa and also owns top football side Mamelodi Sundowns.