Government was confident that it had the people and projects in place to ensure a transport legacy beyond the 2009 elections and the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Transport Minister Jeff Radebe said on Tuesday.

Speaking at the 2010 transport project inspection road show, in Johannesburg, Radebe also reiterated that the power crisis would not affect plans of investing about R160-billion in the transport system, as part of the R400-billion investments programme over the next few years.

“We are now 759 days before kick-off of the biggest sporting event, and South Africa is buzzing with excitement and construction activity.

“As we countdown, it is imperative that we take time to look at the progress we are making and share it with the world in order to spread the sense of excitement that is being experienced in the country,” Radebe said.

He pointed out that this is important as South Africa prepared to receive the world in 2010, the world should be given the tools and information needed to make their preparation “to visit us”.

“For any traveller the best trip preparation is to get as much information as possible about the destination and mobility at the destination is one of the priorities. The experience of the visitors during 2010 will determine whether South Africa will become a destination of choice for tourism and business after 2010.”

Radebe cited the R420-million N17 Nasrec Link as a strategic project, as it connected two key 2010 venues, Soccer City, which is the home of South Africa’s football and the venue for the 2010 opening and final match, and Orlando Stadium, which has a rich history in South African football and will be used as a training venue for both the Confederations Cup and the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

The project was designed to provide direct and rapid access to the Nasrec sports precinct. It was also structured to give 20% participation to targeted contractors and create 320 jobs and is scheduled for completion in December, next year.

“It will also transform Soweto by providing the much needed northern ramps to the N1 freeway, improving access between Soweto and areas such as Randburg and Sandton and thereby help destroy the deliberate socio-economic barriers created prior to 1994,” Radebe said.

He added that the mobility barriers were created to enforce a two-economy scenario, one predominantly black and underdeveloped and the other white and developed.