Throngs of worshippers from all walks of life are expected to descend on FNB stadium to attend Enlightened Christian Gathering (ECG) leader Prophet Shephered Bushiri’s New Year Crossover Service on Tuesday , December 31 2019.
The annual event, which was held in Tshwane last year , will be attended by least 120 000 people- 30 000 from different African countries and 90 000 from the church’s local branches.
In a statement issued by the church on Saturday, this year ‘s crossover service—dubbed the ‘Night of God’s Open Hands’—is set to replicate the mammoth attendance that has characterized the event over the years and also boost the Soweto economy as the stadium is situated a heart beat away from the township.
“In an article on CNBC Africa, lecturer at Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) Unathi Sonwabile Henama noted that the event [ECG Crossover Service] is profound considering that Gauteng is not a traditional holiday destination, as the province experiences the greater out-migration as people, who travel to the sea and the rural hinterlands along the century-old migrant labour system.
He noted that this crossover service by occurring in Soweto ensured that it disperses financial expenditure to the township tourism economy, ensures that the residents of Soweto become the leading beneficiaries of the event.
The five different sectors of the tourism economy which includes: accommodation, food and beverage services, recreation and entertainment, transportation and travel services have benefitted from the crossover service( which were held at FNB in 2015, 2016 and 2017) ,” reads the statement.
The statement further said the church is currently in talks with different stakeholders in the tourism industry to help devise mechanisms that would achieve the safety and security of the visitors who will be arriving in Gauteng for the event.
By Ngwako Malatji