Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

South Africa: Ivan Gazidis - Arsenal's Mandela Connection

analysis

Arsenal's CEO, Ivan Gazidis, was born in apartheid-era South Africa and his dad spent two years in prison for his association with the ANC. It's another small reminder of how far South Africa's influence stretches and just how great this country's potential is.

Over the course of the last 12 days or so, everyone who is anyone who has some sort of connection to South Africa has spoken out and shared their story. It's just natural, it happens. When a country, and the world, is grief-stricken, everyone scrambles to try and relate and offer sympathies.

Ivan Gazidis, CEO of Arsenal, is one of those people. Any Arsenal fan worth his or her salt will know that Gazidis was born in South Africa. Regardless of how you feel about him as a businessman or as Arsenal's head honcho, it's a fact South African Arsenal fans like to reiterate because South Africans like to see their own making an impact on the global game.

The story becomes more interesting, though. Costa Gazidis, Ivan's father, was a political prisoner and spent six months in solitary confinement in a jail near Johannesburg. He wasn't even allowed to attend the funeral of...

Ads by Google

Copyright © 2013 Daily Maverick. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.