Ministerial & Departments of Arts & Culture & Sports & Recreation Briefings: Strategic Plans 2009/12

NCOP Education and Technology, Sports, Arts and Culture

30 June 2009
Chairperson: Ms M Makgate (North-West / ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee met with the Deputy Ministers and Departments of Arts and Culture, and Sports and Recreation, to discuss their Strategic Plans for 2009 to 2012. The Department of Arts and Culture stressed that this Department had a serious mission and wide range of activities ranging from promotion of artists and ensuring that they were fairly paid, to heritage and language protection, to using culture to achieve social cohesion and unify the nation. The Department emphasised its work in the last year. This included completing the draft policy on intangible heritage, and an audit of heritage skills and human resources to do succession planning. Freedom Park was declared a cultural institution. 158 new geographical names were approved, and the political complexities around the issue were explained. It had also consolidated the World Heritage Fund, which had raised R68 million. The history and importance of heritage sites was outlined. The Department had assisted Mali to preserve manuscripts dating back to the 11th and 12th centuries, and the findings from those documents had challenged many old ideas about African civilisation and oral / written history. The Department had returned archival material previously held in Pretoria to Namibia, and also acted to recover stolen artefacts. The Department’s past and ongoing work in community libraries was cited as particularly important. It was also seeking to promote national symbols, as part of the social cohesion campaign. The Department briefly outlined the work of its five programmes. In particular, it highlighted promotion of choral music, community arts centres and teaching of arts and culture to prison inmates, and promotion of linguistic diversity. The challenges to this, in particular, were outlined. South Africa had every capacity to develop its own languages, and that must be harnessed for African languages. The Departments’ international relations were briefly described. It was noted that culture and creative industries could be used to alleviate poverty, addressing the second economy in South Africa. The Department was trying to ensure that tourists were made aware of what the township areas of the host cities for 2010 could offer.

Members appealed to the Department to address the dominance of males in senior management.  Members commented that too few flags were available to schools, and stressed that everyone, including very young children, should learn the national anthem. Members were particularly interested in the community libraries, and several questions were asked about the relationship between the Department of Arts and Culture and Department of Education, to focus attention on youth needs in the cultural areas. Members also addressed the language issue in depth, commenting that the Pan South African Language Board’s achievements were not visible, that translation services should be more widely available, including in Parliament, and that Parliament needed in particular to promote African languages. Job creation, the impact of arts and culture in the rural areas, what the Department was doing in these areas, salaries of museum staff, retention of staff, the approach to stolen heritage, and geographical names also were interrogated. The Deputy Minister then commented on many of the questions, saying that the Department needed more time to deal with focus areas. He emphasised that the Department was encouraging the writing of books in African languages, the provisioning of libraries, was collaborating with other departments and that its strategic plan would take account of the national priorities, including rural development.

The Department of Sports and Recreation briefed the Committee. It had worked on building a strong case for sport but felt that there was not enough appreciation of the contribution of sport to the economy. It was the view of the Department that sports tourism represented a potential growth area in the economy, whilst participation in sports enhanced the promotion of good health in the community. South Africa’s participation in international sporting events was also conducive to strengthening good relations with other countries. The Department was mindful of the need to consolidate inter-departmental co-operation, in particular with the Department of Education, in order to enhance facilities for children, especially in the poor rural and urban areas, and to enable them to participate in sport and discover and nurture their talents. The Department illustrated how its strategic plan reflected the priorities set out in the State of the Nation Address. It noted how responsibility and funding for sport cut across the national, provincial and local levels of government. It said that often municipalities, although receiving Municipal Infrastructure Grant funding that included an allocation for sport, would say that the communities had not identified the building of sports facilities as high priority. The Department also outlined how the national federations worked and interacted. There was still much work to be done in transformation. The number of participants in sport at all levels, including spectators, should be increased, and so it was necessary to unlock funding and resources at every level. The work of the 2010 Unit within the Department was briefly described.

Members asked about sport facilities for children in the rural areas, and pointed out the need for the Department to communicate better to enable their projects and sources of funding to become known. They also asked about the relationship with the Department of Education, the work that was being done to try to encourage all races to be spectators in all sports, rather than sticking to their “traditional” sports. Members also asked about how the Department was addressing cross-cutting issues of corruption, what it was doing about job creation, outreach to communities, integration of the sporting codes and provision for disabled persons. The three year plan for clubs was set out.

Meeting report

The Chairperson welcomed the Deputy Ministers of Arts and Culture and of Sports and Recreation. She explained that this Committee was responsible for the Departments of Arts and Culture, Science and Technology, Sports and Recreation, Basic Education, and Higher Education and Training. There would be future opportunities to interact in more detail with the Departments.

Department of Arts and Culture (DAC) Presentations on the Strategic Plan 2009-2012
Mr Paul Mashatile, the Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture, asked Mr Themba Wakashe, Director-General of the Department of Arts and Culture, to brief the Committee.

Mr Wakashe apologised for what he described as ‘the rugby team’. The delegation today was predominantly male, since some colleagues could not be present; but the Department was trying hard to achieve a 50/50 balance between men and women in senior positions, and was making progress.

Mr Wakashe explained the aim of the Department to develop and preserve South African arts and culture, to ensure social cohesion and nation building. He stressed that arts and culture was not, contrary to popular misconceptions, 'the banqueting arm of government', and was not simply to do with entertainment. It was also not concerned with providing artists to perform without charge. All artists had to earn their living. The Department, moreover, had a serious, but often misunderstood, role in building social cohesion and nation-building, especially in the light of South Africa's history, and there were continuous attempts to bring together all South Africans.  The issues of identity and patriotism were essential.

Mr Wakashe described some of the Department’s achievements in 2008. It had completed the draft policy on intangible heritage, which was expressed through traditions, music and oral history, rather than in museums and monuments. It had also completed an audit of heritage skills and human resources in the heritage sector. This was particularly critical since the current staff in South African museums were still predominantly white and were getting older. Skills were also being lost, and not enough young professionals were attracted into the heritage profession, largely because the salary levels were too low.

The Department had completed the first phase of Freedom Park, and had declared it a cultural institution. It had previously been a trust. The Department was now finalising the appointment of a governing council for Freedom Park.

The Department had approved 158 geographical names of townships, mountains and rivers. This was quite a sensitive matter and at times it was over politicised. Mr Wakashe explained that when the Council for Geographical Names was set up, there had been many nominations from the Afrikaans-speaking population for appointment to the Council. Quite a number of nominations also were received from the African population. However, only one self-nomination was received from the Indian community and very few from the white English-speaking population.

The Department had also consolidated the World Heritage Fund. A delegation had just returned from Spain where it had attended the World Heritage Committee, the body that selected World Heritage Sites. Robben Island was a World Heritage Site. In 2005 South Africa had assumed the chairpersonship of the World Heritage Committee, and because it wanted to leave a legacy, it had recommended that an African World Heritage Fund be established. This Fund was a New Economic Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) project that worked continentally, and was based at the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA). Thus far the African World Heritage Fund had raised R68 million. The Department was examining the training of people and the preservation of the sites. It was of critical importance to develop the economic aspect of heritage. He cited the example of Egypt, noting that it illustrated heritage’s role in development. African heritage had thus far not been able to unlock its economic potential.

The Department had conducted a review of its legislation and had decided to amend 11 or 12 pieces of legislation through the General Cultural Laws Amendment Bill to be tabled this year.

Mr Wakashe spoke about the well-known Timbuktu archives and libraries project in which South Africa had helped Mali preserve manuscripts from the 1300s, and also to build a library. There were a number of projects under way to ensure that those manuscripts were being preserved. These manuscripts used Arabic script and, in many instances, African languages in subjects including philosophy, jurisprudence and astrophysics. The manuscripts challenged the general notion that the history of the people of Africa was only in an oral form and that nothing had been written prior to colonialism, since they proved that between 1200 and 1300 Africans were writing, and that they had their own law, jurisprudence, and other scientific knowledge and academic institutions.

In the past year, South Africa had given back to Namibia its library and archives material, including its governmental and public records. These had formerly been kept in the National Library of South Africa since at one time Namibia had been ruled as a colony and did not have its own national library.

The UNESCO Memory of the World Programme was the other aspect of the World Heritage Sites. The Department had submitted for recording the records of the Rivonia Trial. This was completed successfully and gained recognition as part of UNESCO’s memory of the world project. 

The Department had acted to recover stolen South African cultural artefacts. This theft of South Africa’s heritage was a growing problem, and usually the artefacts would move from South Africa via Florida, to the auction houses of London. Some objects had originally been taken from the Port Elizabeth museum. The Presidential Visitors’ book, signed by all heads of State who visited while Nelson Mandela was President, had been recovered after the Department had obtained a court interdict in London.

The Department hoped to give a separate presentation to the Committee on the critical subject of community libraries, to which R3 billion was allocated over a period of three years. The establishment of these libraries was directly linked to an improvement in matriculation results, since in the absence of the libraries it was unlikely that a culture of literacy would be established. Without libraries, people would always be turning to the State for assistance.

The Department sought to promote national symbols. Mr Wakashe said that the Deputy Minister was quite passionate about the programme to fly the flag in every school in South Africa. He was pleased to have seen South African flags being waved during the Confederations Cup. However, South Africans generally did not understand what the flag meant, and how they should behave when the national anthem, a prayer, was played. All South Africans should also know the lyrics. 

The Department would be conducting a conference in Durban on the subject of building a caring nation to ensure social cohesion and would, in the lead up to this, have social mobilisation campaigns. The Department of Education and the DAC had worked on the national schools pledge, to give schoolchildren a sense of national identity. 

Mr Wakashe outlined the Department’s organisation into five programmes. The first programme was administration. He highlighted developing an enabling environment for the Department to achieve its objectives, and the Department’s implementation of a risk management strategy. This involved the management of tenders and the examination of the daily operations of the Department. 

The second programme was arts and culture in society. At present the Department was working on a strategy for choral music in South Africa; this was important because there was no community in South Africa, rural, peri-urban or urban, that did not have a choir. South Africans could sing very well, like other people in southern Africa. The Department had also been successful in rolling out the community arts centres, but had been challenged in maintaining sustainable programmes for them. The Department was additionally bringing arts and culture to the inmates of correctional facilities.

The second programme also addressed national language services to enhance linguistic diversity. Some languages, of which Mr Wakashe gave examples, were dying out because they were not being spoken nor taught. The Department was often asked what it was doing about the overriding dominance of English. The reality was that African language-speaking children were encouraged to speak English, since this enabled them more easily to attend Model C schools where they would be taught in English, and their second language might even be French. If they learned an African language, it would be from a teacher who taught English as a second language at university. Mr Wakashe was passionate about the subject. He gave the example of his nephew who could not read or write isiXhosa, but could speak it impeccably. It might be expected that since 1994, white South Africans would become more aware of African languages, but this had not been the case, and their children, for want of an African language, would feel excluded from social cohesion. Parents and children failed to see an economic value in African languages. In addition, the inability fully to appreciate the nuances of their own African languages resulted in less effective communication between Africans. For all these reasons, African languages must be developed. South Africa, as proved by the successful development of and investment in Afrikaans between 1948 and the 1990s, had every capacity to develop its own languages. That skill could be harnessed to develop the other African languages. It was necessary to be practical and unsentimental in the approach. For example, Japanese, whilst not spoken anywhere else in the world, was recognised as the language of law in Japan. Mr Wakashe spoke of the national centre for human languages technology and the need for such technology to develop the African languages.

The Department sought to leverage international relations through global and national partnerships. There were three kinds of cultural agreements with other countries. The first was commercial in nature, with countries like Canada, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and other developed countries, in co-production of films. Secondly, there were cultural agreements that were important for diplomacy, and brought goodwill, but no commercial benefits. Thirdly there were strategic cultural agreements with countries such as India, Brazil and other countries in southern Africa.

The Department hoped to give a separate briefing to the Committee on investing in culture with a view to alleviating poverty, including developing the talents of men and women in crafts through grants and assistance in setting up some small businesses. This was a realistic chance to address the second economy in South Africa. The creative industries, such as the music and film industries, also played a role. On 03 July 2009 the Minister and the Deputy Minister would be talking on this subject.

Digitisation was very important as a precaution against irretrievable loss through theft, since it assisted in the tracking of objects. It also served to make images of documents accessible to a much wider audience, regardless of their distance from the original. 

Tourist literature available in and around Cape Town told the visitor little about townships such as Langa, Crawford and Athlone. The Department was reviewing the 2010 host cities and examining what such townships could contribute to the social history of Cape Town, to ensure that visitors would know the wider culture of the country. 

Mr Wakashe said that corruption would be fought by having a paper trail. Therefore, archives and libraries were very important, as they had a record of how communities were governed. Black history in South Africa’s archives was very sparse, apart from records of birth, marriage, divorce and death. The Department appealed to Members to remember that the notes that they took in their meetings would be seen in the future as an important part of South Africa’s historical record.

Mr Wakashe said that documentation detailing the budget allocations had already been circulated.

The Chairperson, although noting Mr Wakashe’s apology for the male-dominated team, appealed for better gender balance at senior levels.

Mr Wakashe said that the Department was advertising a range of senior posts from the Deputy Director-General level downwards; it was likely that the position would have altered by the time of the Department’s next visit.

The Chairperson said that the Department was not doing enough with national symbols. It was very important to promote these. She felt that 10 000 flags in schools were too few, and she felt that not enough was being done by officials to provide the materials. It was also embarrassing when so many people did not know the national anthem, since all children should learn it from a young age. She asked what was being done for the current generation in this regard. She also asked why some, such as members of the AWB, were still flying the old flag without anything being done about it to protect the current culture.

Mr M de Villiers (Western Cape / DA) noted that if libraries were set up in communities, then children could be encouraged to go to the library to read materials not available to them elsewhere. He asked for details of the Department’s programme to build community libraries.

Mr P Kekana, Director, DAC, responded that the project was to build libraries in formerly disadvantaged communities, as informed by the national policy on rural development. The Division of Revenue Act allowed provinces to identify where they wished to build libraries, and the office would approve the business plan if it was in line with government priorities. The Department was presently building two libraries in Langa.

Mr De Villiers said that there must be a good relationship between the DAC and the Department of Education (DOE) to set a programme, including definite programmes in schools, to ensure a unity in South Africa. The youth was important for building new communities for the future.

Mr De Villiers said that he had heard nothing in the presentation about the Khoisan languages and asked if the Department had any policy in that regard.

Dr Mbulelo Jokweni, Chief Director, National Language Service, DAC, responded that the Department’s focus was on the 11 official languages. This did not mean that other languages were not important. The Constitution categorically assigned the promotion of the Khoisan languages to the Pan South African Language Board, as the latter’s mandate.

Mr De Villiers, with reference to a Member’s appeal (below), said that he respected a Member’s right to speak in his or her own language, the problem was that owing to the unavailability of translation services, he and others could not understand that Member’s message. Perhaps the Department should consider this problem and consider introducing translation services.

A Member said that there existed no effective promotion of the languages of the black people of South Africa. He thought it was the role of Parliament to promote all languages, particularly African languages and appealed to the Chairperson and Deputy Minister to see this was done.

Dr Jokweni acknowledged Mr Wakashe’s and the Chairperson’s observations that African languages were too often taught by persons who did not have these languages as their mother tongue. He drew Members’ attention to two national policies on languages. The National Language Policy Framework was approved by the Cabinet in 2003, and administered by the Department of Arts and Culture.  The Language in Education Policy was administered by the Department of Education, and it was this policy that informed the teaching of languages. He acknowledged that languages were the concern of the whole nation, irrespective of which Departments administered the policies. He suggested that the DAC and DOE should discuss the matters to raise awareness of what was happening in schools and to ask what the policy was achieving, as well as to question why so many schools were using an English medium of instruction, which was a shortfall in the implementation of the Language in Education Policy.
Ms B Mncube (Gauteng / ANC) said that she wondered how far the Department had examined job creation. She echoed the need to give preference, when selecting candidates for vacant senior positions, to women. Beyond the creation of jobs at the level of senior management staff, she asked what the Department’s strategy was towards creating the 500 000 jobs spoken of in the State of the Nation Address.

An official from the Department noted that the Department also took interns. It had had two intakes, the first of 60 interns, and the second of 89, in the past three years, targeting unemployed graduates and placing them within the Department or its institutions. This programme was a success. More than 85% of the programme’s graduates had secured permanent employment, some within the Department, some within the private sector, and some in other government departments. 

Ms Mncube also asked about the impact of arts and culture in the rural areas. Many talented individuals would move from the less wealthy provinces to Gauteng or Western Cape. She asked what the Department’s outreach strategy was to identify this talent and nurture it. 

With regard to the development of the indigenous African languages, Ms Mncube said that almost all Members would have something to say on the subject. According to the Constitution, South Africa had 11 official languages. Sign language was a twelfth language. However, most schools and pre-schools across all nine provinces were predominantly using English-based instruction. The Department must promote the language policy. She appreciated that the languages of the economy were predominantly English and Afrikaans, and there had been little change in the status of the languages since 1994. Of course, the question was how a child taught in isiXhosa or isiZulu would later compete in the employment field. It was important through outreach programmes to educate parents and governing bodies of their right to choose the language of instruction. Another problem was that because African languages were not well supported by schools, publishers were reluctant to publish in them, and this lack of textbooks limited the capacity of teachers. She complained that not much value had been visible from PANSALB since its establishment in 1996.

Dr Jokweni responded that the Department of Arts and Culture had the responsibility to assist provinces to formulate their provincial language policies. Thus far, the Western Cape, the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Free State and Limpopo, had managed to formulate their language policies. Recently it had also assisted Mpumalanga.

Ms Mncube asked about some almost empty schools in Pretoria that had refused to accept more pupils, despite the fact that their next-door school, separated only by a fence, was full to capacity. These schools also insisted on teaching only in Afrikaans.

A Member asked about the age profile in the Department. She asked how the Department planned to deal with it, in view of the high level of unemployment in South Africa. She asked if the museums were not providing a living wage.

Mr Wakashe replied that the salaries for museum staff constituted a living wage, but they were not a competitive wage. The museums could not compete with other employers, such as the universities, as was exemplified by the museum at Pretoria, which lost an eminent employee to the University of the Witwatersrand.
The Chairperson asked what the Department was doing to retain such staff.

Mr Wakashe replied that Department had just completed its skills audit for the heritage sector, and the costing, so the Department now knew where it had to make some interventions. He said that the Department would be glad to visit the Committee later to present on this subject for consideration before it began implementation. He said that he could not give exact figures for South Africa’s contribution to the World Heritage Fund since its contributions were subsumed by its subscription to UNESCO, the parent body. He undertook to supply the information in writing.

The above Member asked also about the Department’s approach to stolen heritage.

A Departmental representative said that the first step would be to ensure that the security systems in the museums were adequate. However much these might be strengthened, thieves would always find a way to bypass the systems. Because the materials being protected were cultural objects, they should not leave the country. The National Heritage Resources Act clearly stipulated that any cultural object coming to or leaving the country must be declared at the port of entry or departure. Nevertheless, some items did escape the vigilance of the security staff at airports. There were also international instruments. South Africa was signatory to the 1970 Convention on Prohibiting the Illicit Import and Export and Transfer of Cultural Property. If a South African cultural object had left the country, the Department was able to use the inter-governmental forum to lobby for those objects to be recovered and returned to South Africa. With regard to cultural objects stolen within South Africa, the “object ID” system could be used, and the Department was able to contact Interpol and other structures in the country that were responsible for tracking such objects. A committee comprising representatives of the DAC, the South African Heritage Resources Agency, the endangered species unit in the Department of Police, and Interpol South Africa, co-ordinated information-gathering on lost items. 

Prince M Zulu (KwaZulu-Natal / IFP) asked about geographical names.

The Department responded that normally the focus in consultations on geographical names was on academics and professors. However, the names that were recommended often came from communities. Therefore the Department tried to ensure that there was participation at various levels. At provincial levels the Department encouraged traditional leadership to become involved because it had powerful influence. The Department was currently conducting public hearings in the provinces to ensure that there was participation in matters of policy, procedures and guidelines, to minimise the number of cases taken to court by communities who objected that they had not been consulted. The matter of building the nation was more urgent than court cases. Name changes should not be seen as a unilateral process driven by certain people to the disadvantage of others. There needed to be constant engagement among various communities.

Mr T Mashamaite (Limpopo / ANC) said that he would have preferred to hear more information. He appreciated that this was the first interaction with the Department, and he looked forward to more presentations to help in the Committee’s oversight role.

Mr Mashamaite asked for the names of the entities and where they were located. He also asked where the community arts centres were located. He also asked which cultural agreements were politic, and which were strategic. He also asked about appointing executive management to ensure compliance in corporate services with the Public Finance Management Act, and the timeframe. He also asked in which provinces the Department facilitated provincial language policies.

Deputy Minister’s address
Hon Paul Mashatile, the Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture, said that 27 institutions existed and to do proper oversight Members needed to do oversight of all of them. The Department needed more sessions with the Committee with specific focus areas. In the next five years the Department would ensure that it would encourage writing books in African languages, as there was certainly a gap. Many books on African history were written by non-Africans. The Department did not just encourage reading but would make sure that libraries were widely provided, with a focus on the rural areas. The Department also wanted people to write about their communities.

Mr Mashatile agreed with the Chairperson’s comments about flags and said the Department was going to intensify that campaign by producing materials explaining the meaning of the flag. Ignorance of the national symbols was not limited to children alone, as exemplified by cutting of the national anthem during the FIFA Confederations Cup. The Department had written a strong letter to FIFA that the situation must not happen again.

Mr Mashatile agreed with the view that promoting languages could not be done by the DAC alone. Parliament’s assistance was needed too. All institutions must have adequate facilities for translation, since speaking a language was not just a matter of talking, but of ensuring that the message was clearly conveyed. The Department must assist people to learn each other's languages and help with translation by training translators. Translators were available in the National Assembly and National Council of Provinces; it was important to ensure that they were properly trained and available for committees too.

The Department was collaborating with other departments. Its strategic plan would take account of the national priorities. Rural development would be its biggest target. There were other industries that fell within the Department’s sphere of work, such as technical services and sound engineering. Since this was an R8 billion industry it represented high potential for job creation, especially for the young, but as yet showed no transformation.

The Chairperson noted that all Members were representatives of the people. She asked the Deputy Minister to encourage the Department to use Members to obtain information about their areas in which they had specialised knowledge. 

Department of Sports and Recreation (SRSA) Presentation
Mr Gert Oosthuizen, Deputy Minister of Sports and Recreation introduced his delegation. He tendered the apologies of the Minister, who was attending a Cabinet meeting.

Mr Vernon Petersen, Director General, Department of Sports and Recreation said that his Department (SRSA) looked forward to further interaction with them. He apologised that hard copies of the strategic plan were not available, due to time constraints. He noted that the Department had also briefed the Portfolio Committee on Sport and Recreation.

SRSA had been inspired by former President Nelson Mandela’s belief that sport had the power to inspire the people and change the world. It was also mindful of the United Nations’ encouragement that countries make sport available to all people and increase the level of participation as well as success in sports. Finally it was mindful of the constitutional imperatives.

The Department gave importance to identifying and nurturing talent in order to achieve success in sports. The Department emphasised the President’s emphasis on the significance of school sport to ensure facilities particularly in rural and disadvantaged communities. The Department included women and persons with disabilities, and was following the Department of Public Service and Administration’s instruction to implement gender equality. SRSA felt that it was in a position to contribute to at least six of the ten national priorities identified in the 2009 State of the Nation Address. It was also aware of the emphasis in that Address to the development of the rural areas and the strengthening of human resources skills.
The South African Institute for Drug-free Sport reported to the Department, as did Boxing South Africa. Sports tourism represented a potential growth area in the economy, whilst participation in sports enhanced the promotion of good health in the community. South Africa’s participation in international sporting events was conducive to strengthening good relations with other countries.
The Department had a major focus on the 2010 FIFA World Soccer Cup and a special unit devoted to it.

The strategic plan was founded on various other strategic documents, on legislation, and most importantly the Constitution. It also reflected the priorities indicated in the State of the Nation Address.

The Department was conscious of the expectations of the Auditor-General of a high standard of consistency and accuracy throughout all documentation issued by a department with regard to financial estimates, figures and statements. 

The Department shared responsibility for sport with the provinces and the municipalities. It valued its participation at this level, and had been conducting assessments to ensure achieve service delivery outcomes. It felt that there was need for improvement by formalising service level agreements with provinces and municipalities.

The Department had worked on building a strong case for sport but felt that there was not enough appreciation of the contribution of sport to the economy. The national Department dealt with critical issues through providing oversight. However, it was constrained by municipalities and other stakeholders who did not take direct responsibility for implementation. The national Department played an enabling role, but not to the exclusion of delivery. It expected everyone to play their role and ensure empowerment of all stake holders and capacity of staff and volunteers. It would prioritise the national federations in the key roles that they played, and would further the National Mass Participation Programme (NMPP) in sports. The sports federations and drug- free sport organisations played a major role. The Department wanted taxpayers to get their money’s worth. There was still much work to be done to achieve transformation, together with access to support, community development, social cohesion and quality of life.

The Department had a major aim to increase the number of participants in sports. It wanted to support the sport and recreation clubs and prioritise the national federations. Sports in schools had already been highlighted.

The Department sought to ensure good organisation in sport. It acknowledged that sports tourism was a major economic driver in South Africa’s economy. It was necessary to unlock resources at every level of government. The Department was extremely proud of South Africa’s national football team. The Confederations Cup had given all concerned a good training for the 2010 World Cup. Agreements had been signed with FIFA in the special 2010 unit in the Department, which sought to use 2010 to establish a legacy not only by way of buildings but also of social aspects such as a new spirit of interest in football and volunteerism in sport. It would ensure that 2010 would be an African event with the full participation of the African continent.

The Department stressed the importance of technology in its work and its proposed acquisition of information technology.

Ms M Boroto (Mpumalanga / ANC) said that she represented a very rural area and asked about sport facilities for children there. She asked if there was a document that could assist Members to help learners reach the projects of the Department in the rural areas. She asked about communication with the municipalities. She said that many Members were unsure of the acronyms used. She also asked if there was a relationship with the Department of Education, and any promotion of sport or physical education as a subject in schools.

Mr Petersen said that at national level there was a branch in SRSA, headed by a Deputy Director-General. The Department worked very closely with the Department of Education at national level.

A Member said that there was a common perception that soccer was a game mainly for blacks and rugby a game mainly for whites. The same applied to spectators. She asked how the Department would change this perception. It was not possible to undo the work of decades but it should be possible to make a difference. She would like to see the Department presenting to the Committee in full on the development of rural sport. A detailed interaction on the Confederations Cup would be welcomed.  She asked to what extent the Department was dealing with cross-cutting issues such as corruption.

Ms M Rasmeni (North West / ANC) complained that Members had not received the documents being presented, but something else.

Mr Bernardus van der Spuy, Director: Strategic Management, SRSA, explained that there were two separate documents. Hard copies had not been available to Members on account of time constraints.

Ms Rasmeni asked for more details on programme 2, in regard to job creation and rural development. She asked about how strategic plan aimed to empower the communities in the rural areas, pointing out that people in these areas did not know what the Department intended to do, nor how to access funding that might be available. She therefore enquired how the Department would reach out to the formerly marginalised communities. She asked about the integration of the sporting codes and provision for persons of disability.

Mr Mashamaite said that he was aware that an agreement on school sport had been signed by the Minister of Sports and Recreation and the Minister of Education. He asked if this agreement had been implemented, and, if so, if it covered the local municipalities. It was important to be able to produce players.

The Department responded that this agreement was a highlight. It was important to have a schedule of activities to develop predictability in school sport. The Department valued the co-operation of the Department of Education. The Department would expect funding at both provincial and national levels. The Department’s role was to ensure training of school coaches and physical education teachers. With regard to budget issues it would be necessary to look closely at the provincial departments of sport.

It was clarified that the Department of Education had the primary responsibility for sports facilities in schools, while the Department of Sports and Recreation had the responsibility to ensure that community facilities were established. There was budgetary provision for sports facilities incorporated in the Municipal Infrastructure Grant programme, but the SRSA did not control this grant. The municipalities had told the Department that because the local people did not agitate for sporting facilities, these were not regarded as high priority. SRSA wished to earn a defined place in the list of priorities for the municipal infrastructure grant programme.

A Member asked how the Department monitored the system for school sports funding to ensure that it was used in a correct manner. He mentioned that it was a problem if a child must pay to participate. Even if there was talent it could not be exploited because of the imposition of participation fees.

A Member asked for documentation on when sports facilities would be provided at schools in disadvantaged areas. 

Ms Thokozile Mkhonto, Director of Legacy and Community Sport, SRSA, said that Mr Petersen’s responses reflected the work of the Department in the movement for Mass Participation in sports. However, in regard to community development, she noted that some of the facilities built in the past were located too far from the communities for whom they were intended, thus limiting their usefulness. The Department had therefore modified its approach and had begun to identify sporting activities that could take advantage of existing conveniently-located facilities: for instance, wherever there was a river or dam, the Department introduced learn-to-swim programmes. It thus exposed communities to as many activities as possible. The Department encouraged all age groups to participate, but had an added focus on youth, with a view to possible careers in sport.  The programme had grown from strength to strength.

The Department then elaborated on the contribution to job creation. There were some provinces, like KwaZulu-Natal, which were receiving a substantial conditional grant, and the Department was confident that it would enhance conditions for job creation. Unfortunately some provinces were failing to utilise those opportunities and were under-spending the resources allocated to them. 

Mr Petersen said that the Department had prioritised five major sports codes. He said that to the Department aimed to cover some gaps in school sports to ensure that more codes were introduced. The Department had prioritised the five major, or most popular, codes. He agreed that in some areas, people would play only one sport, but the Department reorganised some sports that it wanted to see at every school. Contrary to perception, he said that whites did support soccer, but tended not to support South African soccer, and so there was a need for a concerted drive to encourage greater and wider support for South African soccer teams. The Department was starting to see results. Likewise, rugby was becoming more popular in other racial groups. There needed to be active development of a basis of support from fans. Co-operation with the Department of Arts and Culture in developing support for South African soccer might be fruitful.

Mr Petersen said that the Department would assess its experiences with the Confederations Cup so that it could learn from them.

With regard to cross-cutting concerns, Mr Petersen said that the money that the Department transferred to the provinces for compensating volunteers with stipends enabled many people to be exposed to the world of work for the first time, and helped to enable them to compete for jobs in the sports sector.

Mr Petersen said that it would be foolhardy to say that the Department was untouched by corruption, but it recognised the need to create an enabling environment to reduce the chance for fraud. The Department had instituted a risk management strategy. The Department compelled managers to take action in cases of dishonesty. This also applied to service level agreements with the municipalities. The Department’s monitoring and evaluation system enabled it to review its interactions with the associations. Senior managers were required to submit financial disclosures. It was recognised that corruption could begin with small transgressions and progress to more serious violations, thus the Department had a policy of zero tolerance.

Ms Alison Burchell, Chief Director: Client Support, SRSA, said that the Department was assisting with a strategy of cultural change in schools. The Department had a three year plan through which it sought to assist clubs to become self-sustaining. Multi-sport clubs were encouraged, rather than clubs only for soccer, rugby or netball, which not everyone wanted to play. She said that the Department of Basic Education now insisted that sports facilities should be integral to new school building projects.  The problem of ensuring sufficient sports facilities in existing schools remained. The issue of training teachers in sports, other than in coaching and event organisation, was unfortunately not the responsibility of SRSA.

Mr Makoto Matlala, Chief Financial Officer, gave financial details of the Department’s strategic plan (see attached document). He noted that conditional funding for football stadiums would decrease as the stadiums were completed.

The meeting was adjourned.


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