Athletics SA Annual Report ; Fan-Parks During 2010 FIFA World Cup Input by Technical Productions Services

Sports, Arts and Culture

13 November 2007
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Meeting Summary

A summary of this committee meeting is not yet available.

Meeting report

PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON SPORT AND RECREATION

SPORT AND RECREATION PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE
13 November 2007
ATHLETICS SOUTH AFRICA ANNUAL REPORT 2006/07; FAN-PARKS DURING 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP INPUT BY TECHNICAL PRODUCTIONS SERVICES

Chairperson:
Mr BM Komphela (ANC)

Documents handed out:
Presentation: Athletics South Africa
Technical Production Services (TPS) Implementation Presentation

NOT RECORDED

SUMMARY
Athletics South Africa was very disappointed with the performance of the South African Confederation of Sports and Olympic Committee.  This body was not performing by providing the national academy system it had promised.  There were too many small federations in the body that acted in their own narrow interests.  Athletics South Africa had prepared several South African teams and had arranged many national events.  There were several challenges, including the perception that there was a lack of co-operation between the body and the Department of Sport and Recreation.  Mass participation events were being held, but there was a challenge to integrate these activities with more formal sports events.

Members were concerned that there were such different understandings of the current position between the federations and their mother body.  School sport was a major problem, and it was necessary for Athletics to play a major role in reviving school sport.  Development had to come from below.  Some sponsors were still favouring the white community.

A group known as Technical Presentation Services presented to the Committee.  They wished to establish a database of young black entrepreneurs.  Their particular focus area at present was providing the technology that would be used to set up fan parks during the 2010 Football World Cup.

MINUTES

The Chairperson said there had been a misunderstanding with Athletics South Africa (ASA).  Communication from the Committee had indicated that they were to present their financial statements.  The Committee needed to know about ASA’s programs, the preparation of national teams, challenges and the organisation’s transformation agenda.  He appreciated that the second Soweto Marathon had been held.  He noted that not a single person had been robbed.

He said that the South African Roller Hockey Association had also been given incorrect information.  They had done well at an international tournament in Brazil, being placed third after Argentina and Brazil.  Private sponsorship had made it possible to send a squad of 26 to the event.  The driving force behind the sport at present lay within the Portuguese community.

He said that in terms of the rules of Parliament, the President of an organisation should lead the delegation.  He would not read the rule at that stage.  Team Shosholoza was also doing well.  The Premier Soccer League had recently been called to Parliament on the subject of the payment of commissions.  They had gone to the newspapers, stating that they would not respond to the call.  An ugly situation had resulted.

Hearing with Athletics South Africa

Mr Leonard Chuene (President, ASA) asked the Committee’s leave to paint a different picture.  A meeting would be held with the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) on the coming weekend.  Sport was a small circle.  ASA would not be just a spectator in the process.  The current situation was a sad one, and nothing had changed since 2000.  He apologised for sounding like a stuck record, but said that ASA would repeat their position until someone listened to them. 

Mr Chuene said that Athletics had been one of the best examples of integration in sport before SASCOC had been formed.  One of the expectations of SASCOC was that it would coordinate the formation of a national academy system at all levels.  Many micro bodies had been consolidated to form SASCOC. However, the establishment of academies was still to happen.  If the macro body could not deal with the problem, it would be difficult to move forward on this issue.  SASCOC had to be the engine to drive the process.  There was not much obvious effort on the part of national federations to make SASCOC work.

Mr Chuene said there was no indication of any major sponsorship in the near future.  This meant there were no funds available to help the South African team prepare for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.  He felt there was no hope for SASCOC.  There was no preparation for the Beijing Olympics, and sports federations would be called to account by the Committee when the team failed to succeed.  SASCOC had to be helped to help out the federations.

He said that federations with large sponsorships were able to fund their own academies, mentioning the examples of soccer, cricket and rugby.  This was not the case with Athletics.  Without an academy, the sport would continue to produce a mere handful of black world-beaters, and the imbalance based on skin colour would remain.  There was no significant sponsorship for development.  That which was given was merely a gesture to sooth guilty consciences if anything was given at all.

Mr Chuene said that a well-structured, co-ordinated national academy system was needed.  An efficient body was needed to drive the process.  This was not the Committee’s responsibility but SASCOC’s.  The Committee could, however, push SASCOC into performing according to its mandate. 

He said that it was not possible to plan on using Lottery funding as the amounts were unknown until eventually paid.  All federations had been heartened by recent statements about improved funding made by President Mbeki.  Robust development was needed, and the President had presented sports bodies with a lifeline.  He asked who would translate this policy into action, and felt that the Committee should do this.

Mr M Malehopo (Development Manager, ASA) said that the presentation had been prepared on the understanding ASA had had.  Details as requested by the Committee would be made available.  ASA had a mandate to take Athletics to all the people.  They were responsible for arranging events, marketing, communication, team preparation and presentation at all levels.  There were areas of governance, mass participation, education and training.

He outlined the events presented during the previous year.  There had been eight national events and many other activities within the seventeen member provinces.  Of these eight events six had been in track and field, one was a youth event and one a senior event.  In terms of cross country, there had been four national events and one national championship.  Road running had benefited from a sponsorship by Nedbank.  There had been three city marathons and four events over shorter distances.  Other championship events had been held.

Mr Malehopo said that teams had been prepared to take part in five international championship events.  Continental championships had been held in track and field in Mauritius, where South Africa had been placed first.  There had been six regional events.  During 2007 there had already been four international championships and two continental events, including the All-Africa Games.   There were six Southern African regional events.  The South African team had undergone eight local training camps and two international camps in Germany and Beijing.

Mr Malehopo said that ASA recognised the importance of the work of the education and training unit.  An enhanced effort was needed, and they were doing well in this regard.  Coaches and technical officials were receiving exposure at the highest level.

ASA had received R2.25 million from the Department of Sport and Education (SRSA) in the 2006/07 financial year (FY).  The total allocation received in the current FY was R1.1 million.  In 2006/07, R1.25 million had been spent on the More People program, which was ASA’s mass participation component, and R1 million went to the More Medals program, which was in essence a high performance effort.  For the current financial year the amounts would have to be reduced to R650 thousand for the More People program and R380 thousand for the More Medals campaign.

Mr Malehopo said that there were ten Rural Accelerated Development programs under way.  Five of these were in the Eastern Cape and the remainder in Limpopo.  A transformation and development workshop would be held to thrash out these important issues.  Two teams were funded under the More Medals component.  In the current FY, there were development programs in the Limpopo and Transkei areas.  They were now starting to see results from these initiatives.  Some money was being channelled by ASA to the long and middle distance squads.  There was a lot of talent in these disciplines.  A talent identification seminar was needed.  ASA needed to go out to scout for talent. 

He said that a mass participation co-ordinator had been appointed during 2006.  They had anticipated co-ordination with SRSA and its Siyadlala program.  ASA was trying to create appeal to all at mass participation events.  To serve this they had introduced 5 km events at these gatherings.  A lot of schoolchildren were attracted, and in fact people from all population sectors were involved.  The mass participation program was driven by the provinces.  ASA liaised with provincial governments in the hope of complementing their efforts.  They hoped that talented participants could be identified who could then be integrated into the main events.

Mr Malehopo listed the challenges facing ASA.  There were no formal links between the Siyadlala program and the national federations.  A lot of money was therefore being spent in the provinces, but this was not going to the federations.  He was not sure if the benefits were accruing to sport.  There needed to be an integrated approach with formal events.  ASA members were not always invited to become involved at provincial level.

He expected that there would be an integrated approach to delivery.  Federations should be seen as partners.  There needed to be linkages between the programs of SRSA and ASA.  Funding needed to be directed to federations so that they could assist SRSA.  He expressed his thanks to ASA’s partners and sponsors, including the Committee.

Discussion

Ms N Ntuli (ANC) said there was disappointment with the records of relationships between ASA and SASCOC.  She was a bit worried about how long the proverbial scratched record would be played, and felt it was time to break the old record and move forward.  There was always an outcry for resources, although much was happening.  She thanked ASA for putting South Africa on the map.  She asked if there was a framework of ASA to assist them in being open to fundraising, and if there was exposure to sponsorship.  The asked if there was any policy driving the process of lottery fund distribution.  In terms of development and transformation, she asked what the ASA overview was, and if they were making a difference.  Resources were an issue, and could be a stumbling block.  She asked if more schools were involved, and if a school sport revival was underway.  She asked if there was communication in all the provinces between government and ASA.

Mr J Masango (DA) questioned Mr Cheune’s statement regarding SASCOC.  The body had appeared before the Committee and said that it had a business plan prepared, and all had looked in line; but now ASA was telling a different story.  He asked if the Committee had been misled.  He said that SASCOC should have a service agreement with SRSA, but did not know how far it went.  There was no instruction to hold SASCOC accountable.  He asked why programs could not proceed because of SASCOC.  On the question of talent identification, he agreed with the principal but pointed out that some athletes only developed later in life.  He mentioned the example of the Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper.  He asked if the Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA) was helping.  Mass participation events were often once-off occurrences.  He asked if ASA was present at these events to identify talent.  The federations should take part.  A lot of money had been allocated to ASA in the previous FY, but less so in the current FY.  He asked how this would impact on the body’s activities.

The Chairperson asked if the allocation of R2.2 million had been on the business plan for the previous FY.  He felt that the allocation should have escalated due to inflation.

Ms W Makgate (ANC) needed clarity on the distribution of funds.  The business plan should be on a long-term basis.  She asked how clubs could be involved and how activities could be spread out amongst all the provinces.  Some provinces were being left out.  It seemed to her that ASA did not know how to fulfil their role of making people aware of the sport.

Mr D Dikgacwi (ANC) said that members of the SRSA responsible for the Mass Participation Program (MPP) should be present.

The Chairperson agreed that the Director-General (DG) of SRSA should be present.  All bodies were accountable to the Department.  He asked how the schools MPP and government programs were feeding into ASA’s MPP.  A service level agreement was needed.  It was unfortunate that SRSA was not represented at this meeting.  The netball team was performing well at the current World Cup, but they had left with a litany of problems.  The Department should always attend such meetings in order to provide guidance.

Mr Dikgawci said that the Chairperson’s remarks had taken the sting out of his argument.  The President’s input had indicated that SASCOC’s national academy plan was a non-event.  He asked what kind of responses there were, as the academies would have to serve many federations.  There was a challenge within SASCOC which had led to failures.  He asked what kind of team preparation was involved, as R10 million had been given.  He asked if the federations benefited, and if so how ASA could say there had been no team preparation.  Elaborate assistance would be needed to revamp SASCOC. 

He speculated on the outcome of the upcoming SASCOC elections.  He wondered if the present management would be re-elected or if there would be new blood.  Statistics were needed on education and training functions to give more information on where these programs were taking place and what the results were.  He asked what ASA and SRSA were doing regarding the MPP.  The question was how to integrate the two programs, as they were well funded.  He asked if ASA could tap into SRSA funding.  They should meet the Department.  A formidable team could be built.  He asked how broad the attendance was at the transformation and development workshop.  He also asked what the outputs were, and if there was any follow-up action.  He asked how many medals had been won at the events mentioned by ASA.

Mr Chuene noted that all the questions dealt with SASCOC as a structure.  The former National Olympic Committee of South Africa (NOCSA) had contributed 90% of the staff of SASCOC.  SASCOC was the only body supplying funding.  It was a difficult situation for outsiders.  Because of the structure, small federations had control of SASCOC.  This made it a challenge for the bigger federations to deliver on their mandates.  Many of the constituent federations were not part of the Olympics, but found themselves in a position of making decisions on matters which did not concern them. The challenge to SASCOC was this tendency of member federations to act in their own interest.  The SASCOC executive first had to be transformed before it could transform sport.  There was be a transformation committee, but it had only met once in four years. He served on this Committee.  R10 million had been budgeted for team preparation but he did not understand how this had been distributed.  However, it would be unfair to talk about SASCOC in their absence.

The Chairperson said that the Committee could not prescribe to these bodies.  The Committee had been sent a letter questioning the integrity of Parliament.  A letter was sent to the Premier Soccer League in good faith, but they had not realised all the factors involved.  The Committee had written to SASCOC three weeks previously, and the reply, dated 8 November 2007, had only been received on 9 November at 13h15.  This was the Friday before the current meeting.  SASCOC had apologised for being unable to attend the meeting as their President was out of the country.  A new date had been requested.  This development had been accepted in good faith, and the Committee had been careful to ensure that all role players had been invited.  The Committee had to decide how to deal with the issues involved.  He agreed that it was not right to talk about SASCOC in their absence.  Key federations should always be in attendance.

Mr Chuene said that ASA consisted of an executive and seventeen provincial bodies.  There were more than one body in the larger political provinces.  The debate on transformation had been delayed due to the situation which the sport had inherited.  He cited the example of the Harmony mine which sponsored a team, but it was mainly white athletes which benefited from this.  Provinces did not intervene.  There was resistance to change.  Mr Price was another example of a similar sponsorship. 

He said that development was not about achieving 1st, 2nd and 3rd places.  It should be seen in the formation of new clubs.  School sport was dead whereas it should be a nursery or feeder system.  They had looked at the Jamaican model where there was no school sport, and all junior sport was arranged by clubs.  At present in South Africa development only applied in schools.  There was no training afterwards.  The continued development was only happening thanks to white coaches teaching white children at the former Model C schools.  It was up to the teachers to train children at school level.

Mr Chuene said that most of the member federations of SASCOC were falling apart.  There were some projects at SASCOC which did benefit ASA.  The needs of athletes had to be considered.  SASCOC was taking teams to major events, and so had to play a role in team preparation.  They refused to account to SASCOC as a mother body.  Events in the provinces were pilot projects and were conducted with limited resources.  There was in fact a deliberate effort to avoid staging events in the richer provinces.  They would rather hold them in poor provinces with potential.

Mr Malehopo said that the talent identification process should not discourage those who did not show immediate potential.  A scientific approach was followed, but there was a chance to impress a second time.  Talent could be captured based on physical factors.  ASA had a linkage with the Tourism, Hospitality and Entertainment Training Authority (Theta), but there were challenges.  They were in the process to linking to international courses.  There was an allocation or R1.4 billion.  Additional funds had been given.  Money was channelled to the More People and More Medals programs.  ASA was trying to live within its means.  A database of qualified people was being maintained.  They expected to run programs in the provinces.

The Chairperson said that ASA could save the detail for the present.

Mr A Mlangeni (ANC) said that ASA was getting money without asking for it.  There would never be a need to complain in this situation.  He asked what had happened to the South African Amateur Athletics Union, and if it was different to ASA.

Mr T Louw (ANC) said that ASA must tap into the talent available.  He asked what was being done to evaluate the athletic abilities of the San and Khoi communities.  Research was needed to see if their physiques were suitable for running.

Mr M Solo (ANC) asked about the development program within institutions.  He felt it would not work.  Every person must be encouraged to engage in athletic activity.  Outcomes Based Education was hindering school sport.  Lottery funding was not happening.

Mr Masango recalled the Soweto marathon, and asked why it was that athletes from Lesotho had been so successful.

Ms Ntuli commended those codes which had attracted sponsorships.  She asked how ASA linked with education, as athletics events were not being held as in the past.

Ms Makgate asked about the distribution of lottery funding.  She asked if there was a business plan in the short term, as funds were not being allocated.  There was a lack of continuity.  She asked if funding was orientated towards events.  She asked if the lack of sponsorship was due to a lack of skills in those tasked with raising sponsorships, or if this was due to racial reasons.

The Chairperson said that there was a perception that an organisation needed a white Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to be credible.  A Norwegian had been chosen to succeed Mr Trevor Phillips as CEO of the PSL.

Mr Mlangeni noted ASA’s refusal to account to SASCOC.  He asked to whom they were accountable.

Mr Dikgacwi said that one of the challenges was that there were no formal links between ASA and the Siyadlala program.  If there were not, then he asked what was being done to address the situation.

Mr Chuene said that ASA did apply for funding.  They were only one body.  ASA would like to know to whom they were accountable.  This was not a contradiction.  Some federations had refused to endorse NOCSA decisions. Members who had joined SASCOC had decided to fight from within.  They must account to SASCOC but would keep on fighting to ensure delivery on their mandates. 

Although Lesotho athletes had impressed during the Soweto marathon, people should remember that Hendrik Ramaala had finished third at the New York marathon.  It was rare that a local athlete won any major event.  This made the local athletes aspire to achieve success. 

On the question of skills, Mr Chuene said that ASA was doing well.  They had a white CEO, and sponsorship had been attracted from white business.  Good deals had been done, but there had been some challenges.  The CEO was paid a salary and commission on sponsorships, which had led to a conflict of interests.  The CEO had resigned.  Mr Sidane had been seen first and foremost as a struggle comrade, and all the sponsors had withdrawn.  Soccer was different as athletics was an individual sport.

Mr Chuene said that athletics was the flagship of the Olympic Games.  All skills in the different sports were based on athletic ability.  They would have to go to the agencies to get sponsors, but then the executive would have to step down.  Soccer was different.  He felt that if the Springbok symbol was lost then the leadership would also disappear together with sponsorship deals.  Resources were still in the hands of the few. 

He said there were serious issues with school sport.  Another forum was needed.  All talent came from the schools.  Outsiders were used as coaches rather than teachers.  It was a complicated issue.  Federations should deal direct with school sport.  There was a choice between ASA and school events.  A national debate was needed.  There was a linkage with the MPP, and he believed there was enough capacity to execute the program.

Mr Malehogo said they were making progress with development and transformation.  He mentioned an eighteen-year old girl from the Free State who had achieved a silver medal at the All Africa Games.  There had been three gold medals won at the Junior African Championships.  There had also been other successes.

The Chairperson asked about a boy from Mpumalanga who had attracted the interest of the Minister.  This was the kind of development that was needed.

Mr Malehogo said that ASA was doing its bit to revive school sport.  There were a lot of challenges, and a forum would help.  Schools had been invited to participate at a district level.  He was still not sure of the direction that was being taken.  He hoped that this situation would improve.  Provincial government was willing to help.  Gauteng had taken people to the Soweto marathon.  These were the kinds of intervention which was needed.  There were plans for an event in Mpumalanga.  ASA would try to get as many people as possible involved.  ASA was the first federation to discuss the Khoi and San communities.  The program had been revised.  Initiatives had been taken in Upington and Springbok was the next area to be covered.

Mr Malehogo said that lottery funds were needed for stadiums.  There was a business plan.  SRSA also had a business plan.  There was a monitoring and evaluation mechanism.  The business plan normally ran from one Olympic Games to the next.

There was a formal link to the Department.  There was a document which described how funds were channelled to the provinces.  Some people had their own interests.  Resources were needed.  Blockages did exist, and some people and organisations were out to advance their own interests.  Discussions would be held, and the results would be presented to SRSA.

Mr Chuene said that all federations had programs.  A collective answer was needed.

The Chairperson said the issues had been raised.  It had taken a long time to finalise the board of SASCOC.  Since the last meeting the Medium Term Expenditure Framework had been made public, and indicated how funds would be disbursed over the next three to five years.  Budgets should be based on this.  Policies were not in place at present.  Even sponsorships were granted over fixed terms.  Funds were restricted.

Mr Chuene said that he did not know if the Committee had any influence over the Lotteries Board.  It was critical to understand the process of their funding.

The Chairperson said the issue had been raised with the Minister, and it had been discussed at Cabinet.  The lottery had been created as a vehicle to fund sport, but was now used to fund all sorts of good causes.  The matter was being dealt with.  Associations would never survive without resources.  Lesotho’s budget was nowhere near that of South Africa, while Kenya was also producing world-beating athletes despite their own restricted funding.  Research was needed to address the under-performance of South African athletes.  It could be a question of nutrition, or some other reason.  If the problem was located then the Department could work on the solution.

Mr Komphela said that a golden opportunity had been presented to sport.  The President was leading the issues.  Federations had to use the fertile ground.  Sport had to be built on the basis of central policy.  A central issue was how a non-racial society could be created through sport.  The question was how to achieve this.  Many had died without the chance of seeing how the economy was now blooming.  People had suffered in jails and had not had the opportunity to be sports leaders.  No one could accuse the government of spending the family money.  Antagonistic language had to be avoided.  Government was doing the right thing.

The Chairperson congratulated Mr Chuene.  For the first time, an African had been selected to the International Amateur Athletics Federation controlling body.  He praised the body for its support to the people of South Korea.

He said that partnership with the Department of Education was a subject of constant discussion.  Meetings would be held to finalise the MPP.  One matter which had not been raised was that of life orientation and life skills.  Winners should have these skills.  HIV/AIDS awareness was of paramount importance.  Theta was poised to help in all aspects.  It was correct to resist sponsors meddling in sport.  Rugby leadership was blackmailing the country.  Obese children were a major problem, and ASA had a role to get them running.

Submission by Technical Productions Services

The Chairperson praised the involvement of young people in the North West.  All South Africans had a role to play in the success of the 2010 World Cup.  With that he introduced the Technical Productions Services (TPS) delegation.

Mr Tebogo Sithathe (CEO, TPS) said his organisation was actually based in Gauteng.  They were happy to be at the Committee, which had an oversight role, while other people might be intimidated.  He felt that the Committee had a role in supporting young entrepreneurs.  There were many young people in disadvantaged areas.  There were still some challenges.  Young black people had to become part of the mainstream economy.  Some were skilled and qualified but had no jobs.  There were young people with technical skills for festivals and events in the fields of stage, sound, lighting and screen management.  Young people were getting into the events industry.  He asked if a white face was needed to ensure credibility.  He believed that young black entrepreneurs could rise to the challenges.  There was a need for government to play an oversight role through the Committee to ensure that the youth were given a chance.

He said that there were looking at recruiting qualified people, but they were also looking to develop skills in the fields of stage management, audiovisual effects, sound and lighting.  The focus was on the youth.  It was important to develop skills locally or foreigners would take charge.  Quality was needed, as was learned from the event at the Union Buildings where a tent had collapsed.  South Africa was a big destination.  Resources were expensive. 

Mr Sithathe said that TPS had achieved various milestones.  Their program was aligned with SETA and was sustainable.  Training included life skills.  They were looking at providing the services to operate the fan parks envisaged for the World Cup.  They wished to target poor communities.  To do this they were engaging with the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), the municipalities and FIFA.  There would have to be a partnership with FIFA to make it happen.  There was a whole industry involved, including managers, technicians and entertainers.  Only FIFA could give rights.  He showed an example of a portable screen with a self-contained power supply.  Partnerships were essential, one of which was the Committee in its oversight role.  A problem was the lack of a database.  TPS already had over 200 members, both professionals and semi-professionals.  They wanted to ensure empowerment, as many foreigners would want to come into the country for the World Cup.  The youth of South Africa had to be in the mainstream.

Discussion

Mr Solo said it had been an inspiring presentation.  He assumed that they were in operation already.  He was impressed by their innovation.  Safe events were important.  He had heard nothing about disaster control and crowd management. Nobody had pinned down until this meeting.  Crowd control had to be part of the industry.

Mr R Bhoola (MF) echoed the sentiments of Mr Solo.  It was gratifying to hear from the youth.  Interaction was necessary within municipalities, and workshops should be held in the disadvantaged communities.  They had worked to the extent of bringing rural communities on board.

Mr Louw said that this Committee was not the only oversight Committee which would affect the activities of TPS.  The Portfolio Committee on Trade and Industries would play a role in the technical area.

Ms Makgate said that South Africans were competing with foreign companies.    Satellites would have to be used to provide signals to rural areas and the cut off farm areas.  She said that there was a challenge in events management in encouraging the youth to take up the profession. 

Mr Sithathe said that safety was the key.  It had been a concise presentation.  The Events and Technical Task Team reported to the Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture.  Country-wide workshops were held regarding safety.  Structural engineers would now be responsible to inspect all constructions.  Skills training should go through the municipalities.  This was an issue, which applied to both host cities and non-hosting cities.  Broadcast rights could also be a problem.  It was a good point to consult with the Committee’s counterparts on Trade and Industry. This might need some more investigation.  More departments were involved, including Arts and culture, but SRSA was the biggest. 

Mr Sithathe said that they had chosen this Committee because it had direct links to the Local Organising Committee (LOC).  Rural areas were often the victims of neglect.  It was not just the cities that must benefit.  They were aware of the challenges.  There was a lack of capacity in the rural areas, and staff had been imported from other parts of the country in the past when events were staged in the rural areas.  Black Economic Empowerment principles were not always observed on these occasions.  People were not taking advantage of their opportunities.  SETA was running courses.  TPS was arranging various types and sizes of event.  They were working with municipalities.  There were areas where the signal was poor.

The Chairperson said the timing was good.  The issue must start receiving attention now.  The focus was good.  There was a need to discuss the Department of Trade and Industry’s (the dti) involvement.  Communication was needed with the SABC on world rights.  The key thrust was that the deep rural areas had to benefit.  Ticket and transport costs would be too expensive for many South Africans, and even so only a small percentage of the people would have a chance to attend matches. 

Technical skills were needed.  He was impressed by the concept of using the newly qualified as well as developing personal skills.  SETA and the Umsobomvu campaigns were bringing home the goods.  Data had to be gathered.  It was not FIFA who would make the decisions about fan parks but the municipalities.  FIFA would pay for the screens in the country and would need to tap into a supplier database.  The Committee would write to the SABC and recommend TPS’s services.  They had presented to the right Committee, but decisions were taken at LOC and municipality levels.  The emphasis would be on a deep rural bias.

Mr Louw said that the dti had a ministerial committee which dealt with the detail of the industry.  Preparations for the 2010 World Cup would start with the African Cup of Nations in 2008 and the Confederations Cup in 2009.  Both these events would be used as tests.  The dti had a database with all technical service providers.  TPS should talk to them and the municipalities.  The Committee would have limited effectiveness.

The Chairperson said that he was not opposed to contact with the dti.  This would enrich TPS’s circle of contacts.  If it was difficult to interact with them, then this Committee would pass on their concerns. 

Mr Sithathe said that he appreciated the Committee’s time.  Referrals were a key aspect.  It would not be a case of doors closing to them.  It would help to get a formal endorsement.  He asked if the policy would allow this.

The Chairperson said that he would speak to the Chairperson of the dti Committee, or he would send a formal letter.  This was still not a licence for TPS to go in every door, but at least they would get a hearing.

The meeting was adjourned.


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