National Lottery Board and Ussasa: briefings

Sports, Arts and Culture

17 August 2004
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Meeting Summary

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Meeting report

PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON SPORT AND RECREATION

SPORT AND RECREATION PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE
18 August 2004
NATIONAL Lottery BOARD and USSASA: Briefings

Chairperson:
Mr Kompela (ANC)

Documents handed out
National Lottery Board submission
USSASA submission
School Sport Function (contact info@pmg.org.za)

SUMMARY
The National Lottery Board explained the different agency categories and policy guidelines required for fund distribution. They identified a priority short-term goal as the training of trainers and coaches as many of the ground structures were no longer in place. In the medium term, the organisation's goals would be to increase infrastructure and co-ordination with the Department. They presented financial statistics and described the uneven distribution as a direct result of the ratio of applications received. Bridging the rural-urban gap was also a priority.

Members expressed concern with the distribution of rural versus urban grants. During the deliberations, Members were concerned that funds granted were not reflected on the ground. The Committee expressed major concerns with the monitoring of the funds granted. The Board assured the Committee that the rural areas would be prioritised and promised to forward a list of all that was done with these funds.

The USSASA delegation then presented a brief history of the organisation. USSASA had been formed from 18 organisations to form a voluntary organisation run mainly on donations and therefore no funds were available. A summary of the organisation's funds was highlighted and it was explained that with such limited funds, the objective of bringing equality to sport would not be realised as 20 000 schools still lacked sport facilities. During deliberations, the Committee questioned if USSASA was the right organisation to bring sport to schools and whether USSASA funds were mismanaged. This was defended by the delegation as they carefully explained their funding model to the Committee.

MINUTES

National Lottery Board submission
Mr Bennett briefly explained the organisation structure and listed the policy guidelines for the distribution of funds. He also highlighted the short and medium term goals of the organisation. He then explained the financial statistics of the last three years and listed the problems experienced by the organisation .

Discussion
Mr B Holomisa (UDM) asked if the NLB had received good co-operation from the Department of Sport and Recreation (DSR).

Mr Bennett responded that it was indeed necessary to have had a close relation with the DSR as they had the infrastructure to advise them on various issues such as costs.

Mr Louw (ANC) stated that the lottery was giving out huge amounts of money, however this was not reflected on the ground. He asked if there were systems in place to monitor what was done with this money. He enquired about the fact that money was granted to federations however little was being done about transformation.

Mr Bennett answered that sport councils as well as the South African Sports Commission (SASC) would be responsible for monitoring on the ground. He felt that federations should also be held responsible.

Ms D Morobi (ANC) asked if money was granted to school sports facilities for children with disabilities.

Mr Bennett responded that money would be allocated to school sports for the disabled and that the organisation was called DISSA.

Mr L Reid (ANC) asked if the money allocated by request was allocated to the provincial departments or the individual municipalities or clubs. He also enquired about the provincial spread of facilities, as these facilities were mostly concentrated in the urban areas whereas talent existed in the rural areas too.

Mr Bennett answered that money would be allocated to both federations and clubs. He also responded that the Act does not allow the Lottery Fund to give the provincial entities anything. He agreed also that the rural areas were a priority and that this would be reflected in the monetary outlay as 70% of funds would be granted to the rural areas.

Prince N Zulu (IFP) asked if South Africa would prepare for sporting events without having taken our youth aboard. He asked what the criteria would be in terms of the financial provincial spread. He questioned the lack of facilities in the rural areas and stated that in Kwazulu-Natal no sporting academies were visible. He also asked how many people would benefit from scholarships. He enquired why consultants were receiving such huge sums of money.

Mr Bennett agreed that very few federations could claim to have worked in rural areas. He stated emphatically that in the absence of physical education in schools only USSASA would be able to bring sport to the youth. He responded that in terms of the rich sport in this country such as cricket was concerned scholarships would be granted to have developed black talent. He agreed that more top schools would be required in the black areas and highlighted that they would be working towards this. Consultants would be required because the smaller municipalities would not have the human resources to provide the expertise to build these facilities.

Mr T Lee (DA) requested a list of each project that would be undertaken and a list of the criteria required to be granted money. He asked if the money would be regulated. He enquired if the 2010 World Cup would influence the allocation of money to soccer.

Mr Bennett stated that the requested reports would be made available to the Committee. He stated that the World Cup would be a Government initiative and Government would have to take responsibility. Funds would probably be made available but only through consultation with various Departments.

Mr C Frolick (ANC) asked for clarity with regard to the statement dealing with the lack of a co-ordinated approach as he felt it was a loaded statement. He also questioned the logic of granting scholarships to top schools rather than funding schools in black areas. He enquired as to what had informed their decision to grant such huge sums of money to federations.

Mr Bennett answered that the huge sum of money granted was so that rugby facilities could be built for the disadvantaged. He agreed that money would be spent on developing black sports in black schools.

Mr T Meyshivhambe (National Lotteries Board) stated that the requirements were that the organisation would need to have a constitution and a bank account as well as audited financial statements. Assistance would be granted in this regard. Furthermore there would be an adjudication process that would look at the criteria set out in the Act.

Ms Morobi (ANC) asked if funds would be made available for sports people to attend sports events.

Mr Bennett responded that no money would be set aside for overseas trips as there would never have been enough money for this. He stated that the funds that were available could have been accessed if proper procedure was followed.

A Committee Member expressed concern with the fact that most sport councils were predominantly white and would still receive most of the money. He asked why township schools had received access to traditionally black sports such as soccer and white schools received funds for traditionally white sport such as cricket. He also remarked that black talent should be developed where they where found.

Mr Bennett agreed that black schools needed to be upgraded and that the lottery would be working towards that end. He stated also that assistance would be given to black schools to gain funds to facilitate the development of these sports.

USSASA submission
The USSASA President of the organisation presented brief background on USSASA where he mentioned that USSASA was a volunteer organisation formed when 18 sports organisation had combined. USSASA covered 24 sporting codes and little funds were available. Another member of the delegation stated that huge amounts of money were required for USSASA to reach its objective for bringing sport to 20 000 schools which lacked the facilities. A further objective would be to bring equality to schools. He stated that regardless of USSASA imperfections many success cases could be mentioned, for example, Hestrie Cloete, the high jump World Champion. The major problems faced by USSASA are lack of funds, the fact that physical education no longer formed part of the school curriculum and the fact that USSASA was not sure if it fell under the jurisdiction of the Department of Education or the Department of Sport and Recreation.

Discussion
Prince Zulu urged USSASA to use this opportunity to ask for funds as he felt all sports started in school and compensation would improve the success rate of this important work. He stated that there were no facilities in the rural areas of his province.

Mr Holomisa stated that he sympathised with USSASA because they had attempted to do the work that should have been covered by state Departments and suggested that the Committee assist them in receiving assistance from the Department of Education and the Department of Sport and Recreation. He then asked the delegation which department they thought they should report to. Mr Lee concurred.

A delegation member suggested that the new Minister may be sympathetic to readmitting physical education to schools and that USSASA should attempt convincing her.

Mr Frolick asked if USSASA as it was currently structured was the appropriate vehicle to have implemented the school sports program. He also asked which changes would have to be made to USSASA in order for them to spread out their influence to all schools even those schools which perceived themselves as separate entities. He requested that the USSASA delegation explain what its funding model looked like. He asked if it was correct that within the leadership of USSASA were members who no longer had any role in school sport. He stated that he heard that large amounts of money would be spent on grant honorariums and asked what these amounts were.

The delegation leader answered that USSASA was indeed the right organisation to have brought sport to schools. He answered that it was not correct that large honorariums were granted. He stated that USSASA constitutions required that its members would be involved with schools. He admitted that USSASA was not perfect but was open to advice on how to improve.

A delegation member admitted that funds were received from Government; however these funds would be used for administration purposes. He stated that it is important to note that USSASA had a huge wage bill of R1.8 million per annum that barely covered their administration cost. He stated that other funds received would be paid on invoice and that it would not be money granted to USSASA. He answered that the honorariums were amounts granted to cover the transport costs of members and this had usually not covered the cost of their travels. He added that a document that would explain these funds would be made available to the Committee.

The Chair stated that the Committee received information that funds were used to build a stadium, which was never built, and that this would be a matter of concern. He also mentioned that MPs had stated that USSASA members were buying cars with USSASA funds. He considered this to be a serious matter.

He stated also that he appreciated the opportunity taken by USSASA to air their views and that future co-operation would be required to move forward together.

The meeting was adjourned.

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