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Media Release: SANParks and FNB launch a uniquely African football icon in support of conservation

Date: 2009-07-15

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South African National Parks (SANParks) and First National Bank (FNB) have unveiled a truly African icon that they believe will become synonymous with football and other sports in South Africa.

South African National Parks (SANParks) and First National Bank (FNB) have unveiled a truly African icon that they believe will become synonymous with football and other sports in South Africa. The “Kuduzela”, a wind instrument in the shape of a kudu horn, was launched at a press event held in Pretoria yesterday.

According to the Chief Executive of SANParks, Dr David Mabunda, “Traditionally, in some African communities, the kudu horn has been used as an instrument to call people together for gatherings at the royal house or for a community imbizo but most importantly as a call to battle. Now the Kuduzela will fulfil the same role. The Kuduzela will call all South Africans, international guests and soccer fans to South Africa for what is set to be a spectacular tournament in 2010 and appropriately it will be calling the ‘warring parties’ to the symbolic battlefield of soccer.”

“Describing the atmosphere in a stadium packed with thousands of fans blowing their Kuduzelas will be difficult to explain. The Kudu horn, which the Kuduzela is modelled on, emits a sound that some have called the ‘true sound of the savanna’. However the Kuduzela, up close and solitary, sounds like a trumpeting elephant and en masse the sound is more like a massive herd of elephants trumpeting and when there's action near the goal mouth you will hear the Elephants going really crazy,” says Dr Mabunda.

The Kuduzela name and product is subject to intellectual property protection. Dr Mabunda adds that a percentage of the manufacturing cost of the Kuduzela will go to a conservation project – Kids in Parks.

Cheque received from FNB
L-R Gary Immelman, Dr David
Mabunda and Michael Jordaan
with the cheque from FNB

“It is evident that South Africa is capable of hosting amazing international events, as displayed in the recent FIFA Confederations Cup 2009. The Kuduzela will not only give visitors a South African experience but a truly African experience as well,” says Michael Jordaan, FNB CEO.

“The manufacturing of the Kuduzela shows that the entrepreneurial and partnership spirit will always prevail in South Africa. The Vereeniging-based Kudu Kudu Manufacturing plant where the Kuduzela is produced, manufactures injection moulded vehicle parts. However, the downturn in the economy and the subsequent slowdown in vehicle production, led the owners of the plant to look for innovative ways to keep the plant operational and their staff employed. Through innovation and lateral thinking, a section of the plant was adapted and a new business established to manufacture the Kuduzela, using as much recyclable plastic as possible,” adds Jordaan.

“In the tripartite contract between the three parties, FNB has ensured that 6.24% of the cost of every Kuduzela produced will be contributed to SANParks for the Kids in Parks project – this will equate to more than R600 000 from the Bank’s order alone,” adds Jordaan.

“Because the Kudu horn is steeped in African tradition, and sport is loved by so many, we believe that the Kuduzela will take pride of place in many a South African home, as well as at the centre of many South African future celebrations,” concludes Jordaan.

To get out the right sound requires lip flexibility and lung capacity - in short, a fair amount of technique. So be sure to get in some practice before attending an upcoming football match.

FNB customers stand in line to win one of 150,000 Kuduzelas if they make three or more Prepaid airtime purchases per month by dialling *130*321#.

Media Enquiries:
Reynold "Rey" Thakhuli , South Africa National Parks, (012) 426 5170,
Kirsten Edwards, FNB Corporate Communications, 076 191 4878,
Vanessa Baard, Fleishman-Hillard, 082 331 8158,
Gary Immelman, Kudu Kudu Manufacturing, 082 777 1082,

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