Briefing by Sporting Federations on Transformation in Sport

Sports, Arts and Culture

17 September 2002
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Meeting Summary

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Meeting report


17 September 2002

Ms N R Bhengu (ANC)

Documents handed out:
South African Hockey Association Presentation
South African Wargames Union Presentation
SARFU strategy presentation

The SA Hockey Association, SARFU, the SA Wargames Union, Athletics, Ballroom & Latin dance and SA Boxing Federations made presentations on transformation of South African sport. Questions were raised about why all sporting federations were not invited but it appeared as if these federations were on the list of prioritised federations to brief the Committee on transformation.

The Chairperson noted that all federations have different roles to play in transformation and are important stakeholders in the process itself. Transformation is an enormous task and there had to be a common and clear understanding in order to help overcome problems.

She pointed out the responsibilities of the Committee, which is to see that the needs of the public are addressed and also to make recommendations to Parliament. She said there must be commitment to transformation and that there are imbalances in sport, but that she acknowledges the efforts of the federations. She said she knows there are problems with the implementation of transformation and that the relationship between local government and the federations is not strong.

The Chair said that South Africa could learn from other countries in dealing with similar problems and highlighted a Cuban visit as an example, arguing that if all parties work more closely, it would also help speed up the process. She said sport must also be used to address social problems like the high crime rate, drugs, HIV/AIDS and so forth. The present meeting was not to discuss problems, but rather to look at how to improve infrastructure and increase the pace of transformation.

Presentation by SA Hockey Association
Mr Charles Smith, president of the SA Hockey Association, together with Mr Gary Dolley conducted the presentation. Their transformation focus includes the following aspects:
-Past player recognition
-Past administrator recognition
-Bias fee structure
-Bias club financial assistance
-Bias player financial assistance
-Quota system in team selection
-Affirmative appointments
Their presentation also included their appointments to their various teams for 2002.

Their focus in 2004 includes the following:
-Inclusive decision making
-Transparent operations
-Progressive development programme
-Accelerated transformation
-Human resources development-
Embracing African hockey nations
-Improving relationships with NOCSA

Presentation by SARFU
The SARFU presentation was opened with a speech by Mr Kananu, an SARFU executive. Four strategic imperatives were identified: financial sustainability, transformation of the game, growing the game and winning the game or high performance. They looked into some of the negative issues and mindsets which drove the SARFU pessimism. For instance, that SARFU does not have the ability to do the job or it does not care about club rugby or that it is more important to transform than develop talent. However, their action plans include developing a rugby development strategy, vision and action plans, creating a blue print representing the development steps and identifying an entry game to increase rugby accessibility.

Presentation by the SA Wargame Union
Mr Webster of the SA Wargame Union then gave a brief presentation. He noted that although attempts were made to form a national wargames body in 1981, it was only on 14 December 1985 that all the wargames clubs in South Africa at that time accepted the Constitution. The South African Wargames Union has participated fairly successfully in international competitions since 1991. He noted that 20% of all gross income is automatically allocated to development.

Presentation by the Ballroom and Latin American Dancing Federation
The Ballroom and Latin American Dancing federation was represented by Ms. Gladys Bullock, who said that people involve in this code was working voluntarily and that they had no sponsorships from either local or provincial government. She said that they also teach the code to disabled people and that facility was a great problem for them and used the regional championships as example where they could not find a suitable venue.
She said that she had come observe that children involved in ballroom are usually not interested in going to disco's and less likely to use drugs and get pregnant. She attributed this to a sense of belonging, a sense of belonging, freedom of movement and a positive outlook on life provided by ballroom. She said disabled people also benefited from this and when where they do not have the muscle for other sport; ballroom provides them with necessary muscle.

Presentation by Athletics Federation
The Athletics representative gave a report on racial integration in his federation saying firstly that on a national level administration was full integrated, but provincially progress is being made. Secondly he said that coaching has two committees, one on an elite level and one on a development level. Thirdly he said that technical officials are fully integrated on national level, but not enough on provincial level. Fourthly he commented on the demographics of teams saying he noticed serious problems coming to provinces and lastly he said that development would have the same problems.

Presentation by Boxing Federation
The SA Boxing representative talked about the challenges in transformation in boxing and said that he had identified a few of these challenges and they are:
Low entry barriers, making for cheap licenses
Remuneration of officials
The whole question of amateur v professionals
Venues and gymnasiums
The illiteracy level among boxers
Lastly he said that travel is also a problem for boxers, with no concession from role-players like the SAA

The Chair asked that the meeting move away from blaming and pointing fingers. They had to remove obstacles and appreciate that everyone comes from a different background and experiences. She pointed out that they do have one common ground and that is to live together and enjoy the freedoms of this country and that could only be achieved if they discuss challenges with the aim of solving them.

Mr TD Lee (DM) first commended the Hockey, Rugby and specially Ballroom for their presentations and then asked Ms Bullock what is being done about the rest of the South African talent. He complimented the rugby representatives as to their approach of making the country a winning country again and acknowledged that the problem is money for implementation. He finally asked what the single biggest problem preventing federations making their sport big in South Africa.

The Chair replied that is not expected today for members to ask federations questions, she said today only comments to the approaches of federations must me made. She said questions might be asked later at a subcommittee level.

Mr MB Ntuli (ANC) commented that he appreciated the hard work done by the federations, which are present.

Dr. EA Schoeman (ANC) said he think that every one said object of the day was to amplify their unity of purpose. He said that all was committed to transformation in achieving their goals. He said that he had identified that when it comes achievement, if you are part of a winning team, the public is behind you. In the interaction between subcommittees and federations, the latter should not see the interaction as interference, but as a common goal. He pointed out that the Portfolio Committee has an oversight role.

Mr HP Chauke (ANC) said that it is not only government's responsibility to fund the federations, but also the federations as well. He then identified three areas as problem areas:
-television broadcasts
He said the focus of the meeting should be on those areas, he also said that R 90 million has been set aside for facilities, but it is the duty of the federation to maintain the facilities. He commented that only the key federations get sponsorship and others do not. He finally said that every federation faces the problem of development and that it should be discussed during the next round when the Sports Commission is involved.

Mr L Reid (ANC) commented that SARFU should never strike the quota system, as it is the biggest transformation tool. He then said that the country is losing because it is not broadly represented and finally he advised ballroom to seek help from companies and local government for disabled and disadvantaged people.

Mr JT Louw (ANC) commented that he was impressed with SARFU's development strategy and their focus and expressed his wish that other codes will follow their example.

Prof. Hendricks (Department of Sport and Recreation) said that he also would like to see the Sports Commission present next time round for they are the ones responsible for working directly with the federations. There is a need to involve local government.
He asked why there were only nineteen federations on the Prioritised Federations list, whilst there were 123 identified federations. What would happen about the other federations?

The Chair replied that after long debate it was decided to prioritise federations to make things more manageable. She said that the criteria which was used was to look at federations with high and low profiles and then to put them together. She pointed out that the plan was to let the weak learn from what the strong was doing right and the strong learn from the problems experienced by the weak.

Ms. MA Molebatsi (ANC) commented that she saw a television broadcast of people dancing and it got people in her area dancing too.

Mr EJ Lucas (IFP) congratulated the federations on the top class atmosphere. He said that transformation is not done fully, but when it is, it will make a good case at the South African Revenue Services. He said that Town Planners do not talk about facilities when they are planning and that they should be advised to include facilities in their plannin.

The Chair commented that the building facilities are the responsibility of the Department and government should discuss issues of principle that relate to the provision of facilities. She said she is not clear on the priorities of providing facilities and there is no information available to the Portfolio Committee by the Department on how facilities are going to be provided.

Mr Charles Smith (SA Hockey) said that SA needs a united effort to put it back on the world-sporting map. He disagreed with the statement that South Africans are passionate about sport. South Africans are passionate about winning, whilst it should be the other way around.
He also said that since it has been ten years since unification, he believed that the time was right for South Africa to host a sport summit.

Mr Wilson (SA Wargames Union) commented on not forgetting to make a special point to include rural areas.

Mr H Chauke (ANC) commented on the role of the Portfolio Committee, which is not develop programmes, but one of oversight.

Finally the Chair asked if there was any comments on the guidelines given to federations.

The Boxing federation's representative said more people means more participation and more places means increased venues. He said lastly that intervention in federations should be addressed, specifically when it should take place and when it is better left as an internal matter.

The Chair ended off by saying that the purpose of the meeting was for federations to give information on their programmes to avoid clashes.

The meeting was adjourned.


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