Question NW2768 to the Minister of Sport Arts and Culture

Share this page:

26 October 2023 - NW2768

Profile picture: Hendricks, Mr MGE

Hendricks, Mr MGE to ask the Minister of Sport Arts and Culture

(1).whether he will intervene to prevent any similar future incidents from happening, by issuing a directive with regard to the incident on 8 August 2023 in which a 16 year-old girl, Naqeebah Fredericks, who represented the Republic in the 2023 Commonwealth Judo Championships hosted by the International Judo Federation in Gqeberha, was not allowed to receive her bronze medal on the podium because she was wearing a hijab that she did not wear during fighting or competing; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details; 2). whether he intends advising international sports associations hosting events in the republic that the specified act of denying any girl or woman athlete her right to wear her hijab at sports events, is against the constitution of the republic, 1996; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?


(1). Whilst many international events are hosted in our country, these are hosted in accordance with the International Federation Rules and Regulations. In this case, The Commonwealth Judo Association has the prerogative to ease certain rules, but this must be discussed, agreed upon before the event and communicated to all participating countries. The case in point is the judo suits - should only be IJF approved suits. This rule was eased, and it was communicated to all before time. At this point, all international events hosted in the country will be held in accordance with the International Federation Rules.

(2). As the Minister of Sport, Arts and Culture I do not have the powers and authority to change the Rules of International Federations. However, Judo South Africa has indicated that there is a possibility to initiate discussions with the International Federation on the matter and other related matters. To this end the Federation indicates that post the event they discussed the issue, and they further intend making a submission at the Paris Congress in 2024 for possible review of the said rules.

Source file