Sport & Recreation: Minister's Budget Speech


30 Jun 2009



After South Africa failed to trounce Iraq by at least five (5) goals on the 14th of June this year, one newspaper dubbed Bernard Parker “Parriah Parker”.  His sin, he had accidentally knocked a sure South Africa goal away from the Iraqi net.  The following week the same Parker scored two (2) brilliant goals against New Zealand.  The same newspaper dubbed him this time “St Bernard”.  What can denote the fragility and fickleness of our sport - loving nation more than this?  A nation that easily uses hyperboles declared after the game against Brazil on 25 June 2009: “We outplayed and beat Brazil tonight!” In fact we had lost by one goal to nil via a last minute free-kick.

This is obviously anecdotal.  But it clearly signifies the power of sport in society.  It is capable of evoking national solidarity in mourning.  But it is also capable of lifting the spirit of a nation to unprecedented heights.  Indeed an effective catalyst for social cohesion.

As we celebrate the success of our athletes and national sport teams, let’s do so mindful of the lessons we can get from their participation and the impact they have on our youth. We should also not forget the role played by those who support them through thick and thin. Administrators, coaches, referees, supporters and, of course, the athletes themselves, all of them contribute to the health of our sport and recreation.  As such, they contribute to the wellness of the nation both at the psychosomatic level as well as at the socio-economic level.  Sport is a therapy, a leadership workshop as well as a disciplinarian. Nowadays, sport is a big contributor to the economy of individuals and that of a country. Within this context, we can, without any fear of contradiction, declare South African Sport well and alive!  Not exactly what it should be, perhaps.  But very well, any way.

Major events that our country continues to host such as the FIFA Confederations Cup; the Super 14 Rugby; the Indian Premier League Championship; the Netball Tri-Nations; World Championships in Swimming; Fresh Water Angling and many more in various sport codes, positively contribute towards change and unity.

We hope that as we hold our breath for the announcement of the winning bids for the 2015 and 2019 Rugby World Cup, South Africa will emerge victorious and get an opportunity to once again bring the world together on our shores. Our support to the bid as government is informed by our belief in our teams and people, and also the need for development in our sport. When we win one of the bids, we should do so as a country and not as a specific sector within our country.

The legacies brought about by these championships go a long way towards bettering the lives of our people and for this to continue, we must as a nation also continue to give our time, expertise and where possible, other resources to ensure that our country remains a respected global player.

This year we present this budget vote at a time when one of our sons landed in hospital after a gruesome bike accident. The young BMX Rider, Sifiso Nhlapo, has proven time and again that given a chance, the previously disadvantaged athletes can also rise onto the bigger stages. We wish him a speedy recovery and hope that he will soon be winning trophies again in our name.

Mr. Speaker, let us all congratulate our World Champions.  In Rugby Football, both the seven (7)-a-side as well as the fifteen (15)-a-side teams are world champions! The S.A. Fresh Water Angling are World Champions!  The Blue Bulls are Super 14 Champions!  The Netball Team are Tri-nations Champions! Khotso Mokoena has again out-jumped the world in Germany! 
Team Shosholoza, our Cricket Team, our young swimmers and athletes, all show a resolve to keep our nation at the top echelons of sport.  Our own Bafana-Bafana have also confounded the critics and the world during the just-ended Confederations Cup! This is a good foundation for the World Cup next year.

But we should always be magnanimous in victory and respectable in defeat.  After all, that is what sport does in building good citizens. It teaches us how to handle defeat and how to handle success.  Fair play and the respect of the other are very important ingredients for a rounded sportsperson.

The hosting of major sporting events brings economic activity and employment opportunities into our country.  The significance of the economic and social success of smaller scale sports events should not be overlooked as every year all over the world supporters travel significant distances to watch their favourite sports on a regular basis. Increasingly sports events have also become part of a broader strategy aimed at raising the profile of a city or country and therefore success cannot be judged on simply a profit and loss basis. 

South Africa has demonstrated a capability of staging major events ably supported by willing and welcoming assistance of many volunteers and also support from Government.
It is imperative that South Africa develops a pro-active strategy aimed at hosting more major international sports events post 2010. 
The investment made by the South African Government for the 2010 FIFA World Cup needs to be sustained. This is a legacy we will bequeath to our country and local municipalities. Ethekwini / Durban clearly understands this more than any other municipality.

While we will continue supporting the hosting of major international events in our country, we have realized the need for better Coordination in scheduling such events.  This also applies within sport codes.  We cannot continue having competing events only a stone’s throw away from each other. Neither can we afford to have competing events helping to divide our people instead of uniting them. 

Encouragingly, we have at least seen some coordination within football, where their PSL matches are scheduled in consideration of the Bafana Bafana matches. What still needs to happen, is to have such coordination across codes through an integrated seasons’ planning. Although this may be difficult in some instances, our Federations should be able to identify major events that they can plan around.

In striving to create an active and winning nation, our Department commits to keep on doing whatever it takes to have a significant and positive impact on the entire South African nation.

Our scope is clearly one of nationwide impact with the implication that despite the delivery of sport and recreation at three different spheres of Government, all of the actions and initiatives within SRSA’s mandate will be optimally integrated and coordinated for maximum impact.  It is sincerely believed that SRSA can achieve this ideal of making a difference in our nation.

We will not tire in our attempt to maximise access, development and excellence at all levels of participation in sport and recreation in order to improve social cohesion, nation building and the quality of life of all South Africans.

The activities of our Mass Participation Programme (MPP) are funded mainly through conditional grants to the provinces.  While MPP is the most supported project of the Department, the problem lies at provincial level, where departments still return money every year.  It is therefore upon us, to ensure that we improve on our monitoring and evaluation capacity so that funds are spent correctly.  Our goal is to see funds used properly and leading to 20% increased participation in sport and recreation by South Africans, with more sport festivals being held and legacy projects supported.

While the hub system has had its successes among them, the creation of employment and skills development for the unemployed youth, it has become clear in implementing this system of sport participation that we would achieve more if the hubs were related to municipal boundaries. Working together with the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) we should be able to sharpen organization and co-ordination in this programme.

SRSA is supporting development in sport through club development, community sport and school sport programmes. In areas where all sectors are involved in sport development, there is evidence of increased participation in mass participation and competitive sport programmes. To sustain the many programmes that have been initiated, an integrated approach to delivery is being developed by the different directorates within SRSA.

In areas where there are no sports facilities, schools are being identified as points of delivery for sports development programmes to the community. The existing infrastructure in schools provides a platform for the launch of sport and recreational activity.
The revival of School Sport and Community Clubs minimizes the loss of talent when learners leave school. This approach also serves to intensify school and community links, thus building stronger communities.

The establishment of clubs and community sport programmes also provides access to learners from schools where there is little or no sport programmes largely due to inadequate resources. We must emphasise that these efforts will not succeed if some of our schools still see themselves as islands in our democratic country. Schools must open their gates to communities that do not have sport facilities. Municipalities should include the maintenance of school grounds and facilities in using the Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG).

Making school sport work
In 2008 we promised South Africa a co-ordinated national schedule for sports activities at school. This, to achieve what we called predictability and consistency. That schedule was produced and implemented from the beginning of 2009.

The success of the School Sport Mass Participation Programme funded through the DORA grant, has increased participation in sport as well as developed sports champions. Many learners from the schools in the Mass Participation programme are now representing their provinces in the Schools National Championships. This now calls for all stakeholders in sport to work together to intensify the development of sport at local delivery points – schools, clubs and communities –  and for Sports Academies and High Performance centers in the country to deliver support to learners who display talent.

To make school sport work, SRSA is intensifying its processes of monitoring, evaluating and supporting the delivery of sport at local level to increase return on investment. The role of Federations in providing adequate coaching, technical training and support in the development of school sport, is also identified as a key driver to creating an active and winning nation.

In terms of scheduling events for school sports, we are already planning for the events that will take place next year, to ensure integration with the school calendar.  In the immediate future, the Department will be hosting the Schools’ Sports Winter Games, to be held in Durban from 12 – 15 July 2009. The following codes will be offered: Soccer, Netball, Tennis and Volleyball. I urge all of you here to support this event.

Unfortunately, organization and participation in the prescribed schedule still sharply displays the “two nations of South Africa”. It also sharply signifies the disparities between rural and urban schools.

Towards a School Sport Coordinating Structure
Different countries of the world have organized sport around code-specific associations who then form a national umbrella structure to co-ordinate sport at school.  Africa is not different in this respect.  Neither is the SADC sub-region.  The only exception is South Africa.  We must correct this during this financial year.

The challenge here is to defeat the temptation to see such a structure in terms of power and jobs.  Our Department is resolute to achieve the goal of having established an umbrella body for all school sport in S.A.  This way there can be targeted funding, monitoring and accountability.  Such a structure must be inclusive, non-racial, non-sexist and democratic.  This is what our constitution enjoins the Government and citizens to do.  There will be no short-cuts by individuals who are bent on taking us backwards.  The President instructed all of us “Vorentoe!”

The participation of our partners, Basic Education, as well as that of Provincial Departments and Federations is very critical here.  Sports veterans should also come back and reclaim their space.  We should internalize Albert Einstein’s words: “The value of a man (and woman) resides in what he (or she) gives and not in what he (or she) is capable of receiving.”

On the subject of deracialisation and transformation, some will accuse us of repeating ourselves.  We may even sound pedantic.  Yes, we are all the above things for effect.  South Africa belongs to all who live in it, black or white; rich or poor.  And sport is no sacred cow in this respect.  We cannot live the issue of unequal access to opportunities to chance or the market forces.  If we did, sport will divide, not unite South Africa.  We have been there before. 

Yes, we are unrelenting on transforming South Africa to the country of our dreams.  For some this will be a threat to their privileges.  For others it will be a window of hope.  How we see this will invariably be influenced by what apartheid bequeathed to us.  So, Transformation is a non-negotiable.  How to realize our goals is the vexing question informed by our separate ideological stand points. For the ANC, the state must intervene to ease the burden of deprivation.  Hence, our characterization of ours as a Developmental State.  We must redress the ills imposed on the present by our past.

This is why school sport and community clubs are so important for us. This is why broad participation is important.  The broader the base or catchments, the stronger the apex of the development triangle.  Together with our partners, we will endeavour to intensify the identification and nurturing of talent.  High Performance Centers, Academies and Scientists will play a big role here. Of course there is nothing for nothing and very little for sixpence.  So sponsors and partners are important.

But we must, as we attempt to deracialise and transform our sport, have clarity of mind as to whether we stick to professionalism or economism. What I mean here is that we cannot at the expense of being professional and having our sport contribute positively towards the national priorities, allow the wealthy few to determine the direction of sport at the expense of our people.

Therefore as other agencies join us in partnership, we hope they will do so to further expand on the realization of national priorities instead of coming with a ‘you take it or leave it’ attitude.

Serious nationals and citizens take their national symbols serious. Nation-building and reconciliation in South Africa should benefit from such positive attitude towards our national symbols.  The nation was shocked and appalled when our National Anthem was abridged during the opening ceremony of the Confederations Cup.  We have raised this sharply with SAFA and we hope it will never happen again.

We are pleased to see that the King Protea has now found its rightful place as a national symbol for all our national sports teams.  We should be proud of this.  But Federations must be more rigorous in forcing manufactures to have the Protea where it belongs.  On the heart of our athletes.  This irrespective of which international event they represent South Africa in.  We will monitor this meticulously.

One of the functions of our Department is to assist the public entities under its control. 

South African Institute for Drug-free Sport (SAIDS):
With regards to the South African Institute for Drug-free Sport (SAIDS), the challenge is that there is ever-increasing complexity in its mandate.
This requires that this institution becomes more sophisticated in its ways of testing. Coupled with this sophistication of testing, is the need for more resources.

With our sport tourism taking shape, we cannot afford to be found wanting when foreign athletes visit our shores for training. We need to have capacity to also efficiently conduct tests out of competition. Equally, we must enable SAIDS to respond to the risks posed by the possibility of steroids manufacturing laboratories locating themselves in our country.

We are aware of SAIDS’s resource constraints and the risks that come with such constraints to our country’s reputation. We will do all that we can to ensure that this institution gets the support it deserves and wish to call upon our National Federations and the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC), to do the same. Schools should make use of SAIDS to access the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)’s Education Programmes on the danger of drugs.

Boxing South Africa:
Boxing South Africa continues to be the Achilles heel of our work.  Not only do they have an ineffective Board.  They also have an inefficient management.  South Africa continues to produce good boxers.  But the organization is far from satisfactory. 

We have intervened by seconding a Chief Director to run B.S.A and manage its affairs.  This is a short term intervention until a CEO has been employed, in terms of the Act.  We are also doing a broad inquiry into the source of the ills of Boxing S.A. and how to cure them permanently.  To this end we will conduct a national consultation which should culminate in as Boxing Indaba before December 2009.  This may see us approach Parliament next year for an amendment of the Boxing Act of 2001.

Part of our objectives is to promote the image of South Africa as a winning nation both on and off the field.  The success rate of teams and individuals at high-level competition has to be increased. One tool towards this is the development of a scientific support structure in order to develop successful athletes. 

On this score, our scientific support unit is working closely with the sport science sector and relevant sport organizations towards supporting our athletes even at developmental level.

As we try to instill a sense of fair play in our sport, we see a need to involve sport legends who can serve as role models. Coupled with this, is the need for athletes to adhere to existing code of ethics and this, is where SAIDS’s assistance is critical. We also have to continue with the High Performance Programme and ensure that access to such a programme is widened to better accommodate athletes from rural areas.  

We cannot continue to lament the poor Olympic performances. What we need is bold action to prepare and ready our athletes for the rigours of international competition. We are therefore encouraged by SASCOC’s commitment to measurable targets and systematic programmes towards the Road to London 2012. We commit ourselves to support such efforts and give guidance where it is necessary.

I must hasten to say that as we applaud such initiatives, we must also be realistic in prioritization of sport codes. The first prize should be on codes that have a potential to fly our flag high.

With regards to international relations, we wish to increase the probability of success of South African teams and individuals in international competitions.  Ten bilateral exchanges are planned for the 2009/10 Financial Year.  This would be a way to contribute to peace and social cohesion as it is hoped to increase the number of sports tourists visiting our country. 

We will in this regard, as we have already done with the Indian Premier League and many other events, be providing assistance to four international events linked to SA Rugby; Triathlon South Africa; Swimming South Africa; and Cricket South Africa, in terms of logistics and finance.

The events are: British & Irish Lions Tour (currently underway); All Africa Triathlon Championships (in July); FINA Swimming World Cup (in October); and the ICC Champions Trophy (September-October), respectively. Once the decision has been made on the hosts of the IRB Rugby World Cup for 2015 and 2019, we may find ourselves supporting SA Rugby on preparations for one more event.

In November last year, our Department successfully hosted the UNESCO African Region Conference on anti-doping, for 53 African Sports Ministers.

We also hosted the 40th Session of the Executive Committee of the Supreme Council for Sport in Africa (SCSA) in April 2008.  This was followed by a meeting of the SCSA Zone VI Council of Ministers, chaired by South Africa in Tlokwe in December 2008.  We will be succeeded by Swaziland as Chairperson of the Zone VI of SCSA.   

Also in December last year, South Africa hosted the 2008 Zone VI U20 Youth Games in the North West Province. At the Games, athletes from Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe competed in eight sports codes.

South Africa continues to serve as the African representative on the Executive Committee of WADA.  We chair the governments’ component of this Agency but we plan to relinquish our WADA positions at the end of 2009.  The African Regional Office of WADA will not be affected by our intended exit.  It will remain in South Africa.

Football for Boys and Girls Project: Youth Development Against Violence Through Sport
Our Department in conjunction with the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW) which is a German Bank of Construction and Development are in the process of establishing a Football for Boys and Girls Programme.  The programme will have the following as its key components:
Construction of approximately 120 kick-abouts (smaller sized football pitches).
Improvement or rehabilitation of approximately 30 football pitches as well as the provision of certain basic football equipment.
Training and educational activities including coaches, referees and grounds maintenance courses, the promotion of football for girls, first aid, conflict resolution, HIV and AIDS as well as violence prevention.

Depending on the community needs, other types of sport and recreation facilities will be constructed.  The programme will be implemented in conjunction with the local municipalities as well as football and other sports structures. 
The municipalities will have to apply to be included in the programme.  It is envisaged that some soccer pitches will be completed before June 2010.

In this vein, we appreciate the support from our international donors who unselfishly support our course. Organisations such as GTZ (a German agency) and the European Union also play a critical role in the development of our sport.

During the FIFA Confederations Cup, our country has been able to show the world that we are ready to host the best FIFA World Cup ever.  

In support of our capabilities, the FIFA President, Sepp Blatter, called upon the world to,” Trust Africa, they will deliver a great tournament in 2010. People don’t trust Africa and its wrong. Africa has given so much to the world, not only in football.”

Speaking at the same event, the FIFA Secretary-General, Jerome Valcke, said, “We want to thank the South African government – the world has seen that South Africa is able to host the tournament”.

A major milestone was the completion of all four 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup stadia, namely, Ellis Park, Loftus, Mangaung and the Royal Bafokeng, within the set schedule.

The rest of the stadia for the 2010 FIFA World Cup are progressing well and within the FIFA set target dates.

As the preparations towards the World Cup intensify, SRSA through the 2010 Government Coordinating Unit will continue to interact with all Departments responsible for the implementation of the 17 Guarantees made to FIFA. Government is able to make assessments of all infrastructure, safety and security, legacy and economic impact projects, through regular reports to the 2010 Technical Coordinating Committee and Inter-Ministerial Committee. Government will continue to support and monitor the programme so that the 2010 Organising Committee is able to discharge its responsibility to FIFA effectively and efficiently. 

The Department, through the 2010 Unit, will intensify its coordinating work across all Departments and Host Cities so as to meet the deadlines Government committed to, for a successful 2010 FIFA World Cup.

SRSA, Government Communications (GCIS), Provinces and the Organising Committee (OC) are conducting 2010 Mass Mobilisation Roadshows across the country. The programme seeks to galvanise and inspire communities to support the hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Let us come out in big numbers to arrange similar activities in our communities so that the spirit of 2010 permeates every facet of our South African society.

African Cultural Villages will be set up alongside Fan Parks and Public Viewing Areas to afford artists from the African Continent to exhibit the authentic cultural way of life to the football fans who will be in our country.

The 2010 FIFA World Cup preparations have ensured that more than 103 601 people are employed at the ten stadia and 82 799 people are employed in other sectors supplying goods and services to the stadia construction programme. The impact on small households is estimated over R2 billion.

The first legacy of the 2010 FIFA World Cup has already been delivered – the successful hosting of the FIFA Confederations Cup.

We have done it before with the Africa Cup of Nations, Rugby World Cup, All Africa Games, the Cricket World Cup, Cricket Twenty20 and the Indian Premier League (IPL). We will do it again in 2010 and many years thereafter.

After 2010, some host cities will use the stadia to generate income or even to bid for future events.  With the support of National Treasury, we have agreed that municipalities could approach the Development Bank of South Africa (DBSA) for favourable loans.  Some cities have already taken up this offer.  SRSA will pay the interest on these loans for the first two years as we cannot cater for ever-increasing costs.  We hope that with falling prices of cement and steel, the host cities will also be able to save some money as a result.

Our national team, Bafana Bafana, needs the support of the more than 46 million South Africans. Let us continue to stand behind our boys in Green and Gold all the way. Their performance in the Confederations Cup has exceeded our expectations. As we intensify the support for our team, let’s also be ready to welcome the more than 450 000 football fans we expect to be in our country during the time of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Confederations Cup
The Confederations Cup that has just ended has if anything, showed us how impatient we are with lower standards. The organizers had set such high standards, that when we experienced even the slightest of challenges, we easily saw them as serious and worthy of immediate attention. This is natural in a country that has succeeded in hosting many international events before and is gearing itself towards hosting the best ever. The fact that the Confederations Cup was a trial tournament ahead of the World Cup was forgotten soon after the start of the tournament.
We must acknowledge our appreciation towards the many South Africans who supported the tournament by among others, attending the matches and volunteering their services. Our transport agencies also come on board to make sure that our guests reached their destinations safe.
The organizing committee need however, to ensure that proper logistics are put in place to ensure that complaints on the park and ride are not heard anytime during or after the 2010 World Cup. I must say that even though there were challenges, the system assisted in reducing traffic congestion as thousands of people flocked to the stadia.
Equally, South Africans showed that Ke Nako to Celebrate Africa’s Humanity by creating a memorable experience for our visitors from all over the world.
And part of creating this experience, was the blowing of vuvuzelas to cheer on Bafana Bafana and other favourite teams. A form of cheering unique to South Africa.
While there has been concerns raised about the feasibility of using the vuvuzela to cheer on our footballers, South Africans once again overwhelmingly said this is our own initiative that separates us from the rest of the world. It was encouraging to hear the FIFA President clearly reminding the world that we are building towards an African World Cup that will be held on an African continent and nowhere else in 2010. If we are to take a decision on vuvuzelas ahead of 2010, we should do so as South Africans and not be dictated upon by anyone else.

As we said last year for our efforts to succeed, we must have sport facilities and a conducive environment in society. This is why we continue to insist that sports infrastructure funds be taken out of the Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG) so that together with our share of the National Lottery funds, these resources can assist our development plans according to national plans.

Einstein calls upon all of us to be change agents in our sport instead of being the opium of the people. We cannot expect to be progressive change agents when what we are concerned about is gathering power to ourselves at the expense of progress.

As we gain contacts locally and elsewhere, we need to use them to better the lives of our people so that the value of humanity that resides in us becomes bare. As a community of sport we must not forget that we have the power to either elect our leaders into positions or not. It is therefore imperative that we elect into positions, leaders that have the welfare of our sport at heart – Not plutocrats but democrats.

I wish to thank the co-operation received from Deputy Minister Oosthuizen, Members of the Portfolio Committee for Sport and Recreation; the Select Committee; MEC’s from the Provinces and their Premiers; Leaders of the Sport Movement; NGO’s and the Media. But above all, we thank our Managers and Administrators; our Foot Soldiers and Implementers. In the word of our President: “Voorentoe!”

I Thank You.

1 JULY 2009

Honourable Speaker
Honourable Members

I stand here as one part of the team which has been appointed by the President, to the sport and recreation portfolio.  I am honoured to be continuing to support Mfundisi Stofile as we march not only to 2010, but beyond.  I am also delighted that another key part of the team is in place and congratulations to the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on sport and recreation.

In the SONA- President Zuma said:

"Sport is a powerful nation-building tool. Working together we must support all our national teams from Bafana Bafana to the Proteas and the Springboks; from Banyana Banyana to Paralympians...”.

In this time of relative depression, sport has become a panacea for our people who remain sports-mad.  We have had the privilege of being exposed to a surplus of sport taking place recently at an international level with our cricket team giving a more than creditable performance losing to the eventual winners of the ICC T20 World Championships; the Springboks outperforming the British and Irish Lions – not once but twice - and Bafana meeting their destiny against Brazil, the hosts of the 2014 FIFA World Cup and Spain in the 3rd-4th play off in the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup. 

Let me say- We are all proud of Bafana-Bafana!

However, we are also preparing for the Deaflympic Games, the Global Games where our Deaf and Intellectually Impaired athletes will compete later this year, the World Games in Chinese Taipei where we hope our team will perform strongly and the World Student Games currently underway and a host of other events in which all our federations participate on a regular basis. 

As the President said:  Our teams can only do well with our support...” Let me add; with the invaluable role played by the media in getting the information out to the South African public, we will support our teams fully, confident in their ability to deliver.

In recognising our teams, we also need to pay tribute to the other quieter successes, which have taken place.  We have hosted a number of successful events in recent months, which have almost taken place back to back. Tribute must be paid to the security sector for ensuring the safety of spectators and teams alike. This is one part of the Government support system brought to bear in hosting major events.

Taking but one example, the IPL brought an estimated 50 000 spectators into the country and injected in the region of R1 billion into our economy with, among other things, over 25 000 bed nights being sold which otherwise would not have happened.  6 000 flights were booked locally over the 40 days of the event. The fact that this is happening in the midst of our recession, can only be good news for our economy.  59 matches were broadcast with a cumulative total of television coverage of 177 hours of positive images of our country with the most wonderful backdrops of mountains and seas to an international audience with ratings being 11% higher than the inaugural event held in India.  800 000 people watched the matches in the stadia, 40% of whom were doing so for the first time. 

There is no doubt that many visitors who visited us for the first time will be back!  Not only was this event a boost economically but it also reinforced the good sporting, trade and international relations between South Africa and India. 

The good news continues with Cricket South Africa undertaking to put much of the surplus they made on the event to development and, in line with Government policy, I sincerely hope that the majority of this funding will be used in rural areas.

We also had the privilege of hosting the Supreme Council of Sport in Africa Zone VI U20 Youth Games in Potchefstroom/ Tlokwe from 3 to 12 December 2008.  600 volunteers were trained; over 700 children of North West province were trained for magnificent gymnastraeda displays in both the Opening and Closing Ceremonies. Local economic development was given a boost because many teams purchased what was available in the shops to take home.

Local infrastructures, particularly sports facilities, were upgraded through a much-appreciated grant from the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund.  I would like to thank our colleagues from other Ministries who contributed to the success of the Games and to enabling South Africa to lift the bar on the quality of organisation. 

I hope sincerely that the Chairperson of the Zone VI Council of Ministers was duly impressed by South Africa’s performance, on and off the field!  Team South Africa topped the medals table with 56 gold, 40 silver and 14 bronze medals.  I am particularly indebted to former Deputy President Mbete for presiding over the Closing Ceremony.

This is what we need to encourage more of through our sports tourism strategy which is being developed in close cooperation with the Department of Tourism and South African Tourism.  I look forward to the strategy and policy being delivered for implementation next financial year.  This will ensure that our economy benefits from increased hotel occupancy, more internal transport being booked, more purchases being made and invaluable word of mouth marketing bringing more tourists to South Africa for sports events and the myriad of other activities and sights we have to see in our wonderful country.

However, there is life after 2010 and the FIFA World Cup and we are delighted that Cabinet threw its full weight behind the bid by the South African Rugby Union to host the IRB 2015 or 2019 Rugby World Cup.  I would like to acknowledge the cooperation received from National Treasury. With Government’s full support, we hope that the IRB will announce that South Africa’s bid is successful on 28 July 2009.

As we move towards that decision, it is appropriate to expand on why this is an important bid for South Africa.  We have spent billions of rands on accelerated infrastructure expenditure, significantly on stadia. Hosting the Rugby World Cup will provide additional high profile opportunities to use those world-class stadia with all the ICT and other investments, which more than meet the requirements of the Rugby World Cup.  This is where we need to ensure that there is a continuous, planned and sustainable return on the investment made by South African taxpayers.  Hosting major events can provide integral support to this endeavour.

The economic impact study done for the Rugby World Cup bid indicates that the total economic impact will be in the region of R9,5 billion of which direct expenditure equates to R5,2 billion of that total. SARU and we hope that there will be at least
110 000 foreign visitors for the event who will spend, as they predict, at least R2 000 a day. 

Our colleagues from SARS will be happy to note that there will be an estimated R740 million additional tax revenue accruing to the State. 

The value that is more difficult to estimate is the goodwill generated by South Africa in our interaction with visitors and with visiting teams. Add to that the media impact of the tournament being broadcast across the world.  Another significant aspect which is intangible is the contribution the tournament will make to the development of the game of rugby with funds being contributed, focusing on South Africa, Africa and rest of the world in priority order.  This is yet another contribution South Africa can and must make to the development of sport on the continent.

I am able to report that we have finally been able to implement an initial pilot project for sport for peace and development.  The Minister and I were approached by colleagues from Burundi late last year requesting South Africa to contribute a variety of sports balls.  We worked closely with the SANDF and our Mission in Burundi and the balls were finally handed over to the Minister of Youth, Sport and Culture as part of our Freedom Day celebrations in April this year by Ambassador Lembede who, at the handover ceremony, referred to the work South Africa has done in conjunction with others to bring peace to Burundi with the focus appropriately moving from our military support to our support through sport as the respective federations promote reconciliation through sport. 

Their Minister indicated that “sport is life”. That is a powerful statement from someone who has experienced division in his own country.  He said that, according to the youth of Burundi:  “when I play, I live”.   

This is a contribution that South Africa must continue to make to our brothers and sisters in Africa.  We are obliged to do this for those who supported our struggle for a free, democratic, non-racial and non-sexist society. 

We must go further by ensuring that our Defence Force personnel and national federations are empowered to leave a lasting social legacy in nations who have overcome war.  We need to promote sustainability of sports clubs and federations when we leave that particular country.  Most of all, we need to contribute in whatever small way to an integrated society which values all its citizens, men and women, those with and without disabilities often caused by internal strife, as well as those who have opposed each other over a barrel of a gun rather than on the field of play of their chosen sport.

As Mfundisi Stofile has said, it is fine for us to contribute to sport for peace and development in other countries but we also need to refine that concept here at home. 

I am delighted that our Department has now taken this message on board and is working closely with the SAPS on what SAPS calls “sport for safety”. 

I have to acknowledge our thanks to the pioneering work done by our partners from the UK:  the British High Commission, British Airways, the Metropolitan Police (specifically the Southwark police station in London) and Charlton Athletic Football Club.  They have been partnered by Ajax Cape Town with the SAPS stations in Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain; by Bidvest Wits in Hillbrow and in Alexandra; and AmaZulu has recently joined the programme in Kwa-Mashu. 

With the focus on schools, it is imperative that we work with both SAPS and the Department of Basic Education in close cooperation to ensure that we collectively meet our Government’s commitment to reducing crime, particularly among the youth.

This is a national imperative and we are committed to working in this collaborative way to ensure the programme takes root. We hope that we can roll it out in the near future with additional partners in the shape of our provincial colleagues; the nascent provincial sports councils and local government. 

Indeed, research in the UK by the Association of Chief Police Officers indicates that for every GB£1,00 spent on youth leads to a saving of GB£18,00 on future criminal justice activities.  With this “return on investment” evident in the UK as a developed country, South Africa can expect at least the same benefits. 

This, Honourable Members, bears out what we have been saying for years:  the full value of sport is underestimated and with increased investment from the State and private sector, we can at present only imagine what an enormous impact we could have on the fabric of our society. 

This developing relationship between SRSA, SAPS and the Department of Basic Education is something we will be monitoring closely and for which, with the assistance of the Portfolio Committee, we will provide budget and other resources for this and future financial years.

The President, in his State of the Nation address stated:  “… It is clear that we need to invest on a large scale in sports development.  We will speed up the revival of school sport and ensure that it forms part of the school curriculum. In addition we will ensure that the provision of sport facilities in poorer communities receives priority …".

The Minister has spoken eloquently on school sport and its importance to the health and future welfare of our nation and the transformation of our sport, teams and federations.  It goes without saying, but I will nevertheless address this, that we need basic sports facilities in our communities, particularly in our rural areas to enforce our commitment to rural development. 

Last year, I reported on the failure of MIG to address the need for basic facilities. I can report that we are making slow but inexorable progress towards getting funding allocated to our Department to fund this dire need.  More than this, we need to ensure that the Department of Human Settlements incorporates sport and recreation facilities in new housing developments, failing which, we will continue to have “inhuman” settlements – “if we play together, we stay together” as the saying goes.  Similarly, any new school needs to have sport and recreation facilities not only incorporated in the designs but actually built.  For too long now, we have not delivered and this must change.  We are no longer able to address this issue piecemeal by placing 5 or 6 mobile gyms in areas of need when we know that this is not even the tip of the proverbial iceberg.

We will be presenting to National Treasury a bid for new funding for facilities for the 2010-2011 financial year of R440 million and I implore the Portfolio Committee to support us in the last lap towards achieving this aim.  We intend to increase the amounts for facilities incrementally each financial year. 

We cannot hope to support rural development or sports development and transformation without adequate sports facilities in places of need.  We must contribute to poverty alleviation and the “Building for Sport and Recreation Programme” has a proven track record on this.  This is fundamental to our ability to deliver on our mandate.

One part of our mandate, which still has to materialise, is the amendment to the Lotteries Act to restore to our Department its responsibility for funding for sport and recreation while also relieving the Department of Trade and Industry of an activity which is not part of its core business.  This we will attend to this year together with the appointment of new members of the Distribution Agency to avoid clear conflicts of interest.

If we are to increase spending on sport and recreation, we need to provide tangible evidence of the benefits we can expect in return.  We have spoken about this previously, but we have made significant progress in providing that evidence through the “Case for Sport”.  This is about sport’s social and economic value to South Africa.

he benefits that come from high levels of physical activity are numerous and well documented - long term health benefits, stronger and more secure communities, closer family units, breaking down social and cultural barriers, bringing people from different backgrounds together, providing venues where people can meet and interact, providing an opportunity to volunteer in the community, teaching people about respect for other people and property, getting people of all ages involved in their communities, giving people a sense of purpose – and the list goes on.

There is ample evidence to demonstrate that sport and recreation do make a difference to people’s lives as well as the larger communities in which they live.  It has been shown that for every unit of monetary investment there are multiple returns in terms of national, regional and local community development; community regeneration; health; disease prevention; psychological well-being; learning and productivity improvement; poverty alleviation, social policy areas (women, youth at risk, marginalised youth and the aged) and employment opportunities. 
Emerging evidence highlights the impact of sport in relation to creating stronger communities and addressing issues of community safety, including reductions in anti-social behaviour, in the propensity to commit crime, and in the ‘fear’ of crime amongst the wider community.

Early experience of sport, particularly in schools, is crucial in winning hearts and minds. Promoting sport and physical education in school is important in creating motivation for, and commitment to, life-long participation in physical activity. People who exercise regularly in their youth are more likely to resume exercise in later years.

Additionally, sport can have wider benefits for the education sector. Research in the UK since 2002 showed that Specialist Sports Schools and schools with physical education and a sport focus, have demonstrated improved grades and reported reduction in truancy.
It has also been suggested that playing fields at school contribute to better learning with less disruption.

Learning within a sports environment has proven to be more comfortable and less threatening to persons who have not participated in learning for some time. 

A report on sports participation trends released in 2008 by BMI Sponsortrack which is part of a series published annually since 1986 tells a story of juniors in the 13 to 18 year old category, in terms of sports participation;
The total number of 13 – 18 year old sports participants exceeded 8,1 million in 2007 but this includes those who participate in more than 1 sport.
The top five sports codes on the list account for 48% of all participants, while the first ten account for 67% of all junior participants. 
There are four sports (soccer, netball, athletics and cricket) with more than 500 000 participants (all categories), a further six sports with over 200 000 participants, and a further 11 sports with over 100 000 participants.
White juniors (13 to 18 years) account for 50% or more of participants in 9 sporting codes, while there are 18 sporting codes where Black juniors account for 50% or more participants. 
The overall junior sports participants profile is 61% Black, 19% White, 14% Coloured and 6% Asian. 

These statistics are important because the Department and our federations have to ensure that young athletes with potential receive proper support to reach higher levels of performance. Ultimately, they must ensure representative teams who return victorious!

Our strategy outlines our approach to fulfil our responsibility in such a way that we contribute to transforming South Africa into a country that truly reflects the diversity of our people. We can make an important contribution in realising the vision as expressed by President Zuma on 3 June 2009, namely to create “an inclusive society, a South Africa that belongs to all, a nation united in its diversity, a people working together for the greater good of all.” 

To succeed in this, we have a responsibility to use sport and recreation to transform and develop all parts of the country and people equally, in line with the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa.

As per our electoral mandate, working together we can do more to build a better life for all.  Our people not only demand and expect it, they deserve it!

I thank you.


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