South Africa has won the right to host the 2010 World Cup finals after holding off the challenge of Morocco.
The announcement of the vote by Fifa president Sepp Blatter in Zurich
was greeted with delight from the South African bid delegation including former
president Nelson Mandela.
The favourites beat Morocco 14-10 in the final vote to become the first African country to host the event.
The decision will make up for the disappointment suffered by the South Africans after
they lost the vote to stage the 2006 tournament by a single vote to Germany.
Fifa president Sepp Blatter made the announcement following a secret ballot of Fifa's 24 executives.
Libya were disqualified before Saturday's voting started and Egypt did not receive a single vote.
In making the announcement Blatter said the decision to send the event to Africa was a victory for the entire continent.
He said only one round of voting was required to produce a winner.
The South African delegation, including former president Nelson Mandela, erupted in noisy celebrations after finally overcoming the disappointment of losing to Germany by a single vote in the race to
host the 2006 World Cup.
Morocco failed in its fourth bid, despite hoping to become both
the first African and the first Arab country to host football's
Libya had earlier been disqualified after insisting on a joint bid with Tunisia who had pulled out of the race the previous day.
South Africa had been seen as the frontrunner to host the event from the outset and their hopes were boosted even further last week when Fifa released its technical report.
South African fans celebrate in Johannesburg
The Fifa inspection team rated South Africa's facilities as the best
of the five competing countries.
South Africa's bid was described as "excellent", while those
of north African rivals Egypt and Morocco were "very good".
Morocco, who were seen as the main rivals to South Africa, suffered a major blow by having questions raised about the country's lack of infrastructure.