The Confederation of African Rugby (CAR; (French) "Confederation Africaine de Rugby") is governing body for rugby union within Africa. The Confederation currently has 37 member nations and is responsible for running various rugby tournaments within Africa, especially the Africa Cup, and CAR Super 16.
The Confederation was officially launched in January 1986 in Tunis. The inaugural members at the meeting were Ivory Coast, Kenya, Madagascar, Morocco, Senegal, the Seychelles, Tanzania and Tunisia. A meeting was held in July 1992 in Casablanca with the view of integrating the SARFU into the confederation. South Africa had been denied entry until this time because of the government policy of apartheid (South African rugby had been governed by the mainly white South African Rugby Board and the mainly black South African Rugby Union). In March 1992 these were formally combined to form the South African Rugby Football Union (SARFU). The Confederation now has 37 member nations.
The African Rugby Charter was signed by the President of CAR, Abdelaziz Bougja, the then President of the South African Rugby Union (SARFU) Brian van Rooyen, in the presence of former South African president Nelson Mandela, and the South African Minister of Sport, Makhenkesi Stofile. It states:
We, the undersigned, hereby confirm our commitment to realising the potential of African rugby...
THAT, on this day, the creation of the African Leopards, Rugby Union in Africa will develop its own heroes and heroines;
THAT, developing rugby nations throughout Africa will be assisted with adequate human and physical resources to develop their playing potential at all levels;
THAT, every African boy and girl may soon have the opportunity to play the sport of Rugby Football;
Signed on this 23rd day of July, 2005 at Johannesburg, South Africa.
The African Leopards are a representative team from Africa which aims to promote the sport throughout the whole of Africa. The Leopards played their first ever match in July 2005 at Ellis Park as a curtain raiser between Springboks and Australia.