Modern, Growing, Successful Province

Provincial Sports Indaba Speech


Tabernacle- Kimberley

19 August 2011 (09:00)

Members of the Executive Council present,
Honourable Members of the Provincial Legislature
Honourable Mayors,
Honourable councillors,
Sport and Recreation leaders in the Province,
Educators responsible for schools sport,
Government departments present here,
Stakeholders and strategic partners,
Delegates from all corners of the Province,
Ladies and Gentlemen.

We are gathered here today to mark and signal an important chapter in the sport and recreation sector, which highlight the coming of age and the intention to reposition sport and recreation in the Province. For the past few weeks we have been engaging and consulting with all relevant structures and stakeholders in the Province, through the hosting of District Izindaba which paved the way for the hosting of the Provincial Indaba that we are attending today. Key to this process was the sharing of information on the approved Provincial Sport, Growth, Development and Transformation Strategy, which was initiated in 2008 and concluded in 2010.

I must say the district Indabas came as an eye opener to me as the political head in this department. Through the indabas I together with my delegation have leant of concerns raised about too much red tape in the Sport Council regarding access to funding in the sporting fraternity. We have heard concerns around lack of access to practise or sporting facilities for most of the sporting codes, especially the Dance Sport Sector. The sector stated that they are expected by the Municipality to pay a lot of money for the use of community hall that they used to access for free in the past. The representative of the Blind Cricket Sport made an appeal for the sport to be supported with equipment and coaching, especially for the women teams. I have personally queried the absence of the Private sector and the white communities at the Indabas.

Ladies and gentlemen

We must always try to work together both as the public and private sectors to do more in the sporting fraternity.
We have deliberated on the Provincial Sport, Growth, Developmenbt and Transformation Strategy. The strategy is amongst others aimed at achieving the following objectives:

  • To ensure maximum participation in sport;
  • To restore and revive the culture of sport;
  • Re- positioning sport as an economic vehicle;
  • To access facilities which will lead towards the creation of an enabling environment for the development of sport;
  • To develop a sport data base which will assist in better planning and resources allocation to the sector ensuring the delivery of skilled and competent Administrators, Coaches and Technical Officials;
  • To formalize partnerships through PPP’s that will ensure the implementation of sport and recreation programmes and associate strategies.

Ladies and gentlemen:

Overall the strategy seeks to provide leadership and direction to the sport and recreation sector in the Province, further serving as a blue print in the promotion of sport development. On the opposite the development of the strategy has been informed and influenced by the material conditions on the ground in the Province.

We have concluded that Sport and recreation is the bedrock through which the principle of transformation can be achieved and advanced in our country. Its importance and strategic impact cannot be over emphasized; we need to critically take stock of our collective achievements as a sector over the past 17 years in our Province. I can conclude that the analysis can present itself with numerous challenges that we had to grapple with and still do as we march on towards excellence in the sector.

Ladies and gentlemen:
Allow me to quote from the words of our former President Dr Nelson Mandela. As a former sportsman himself, Dr Mandela once said "Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to unite in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than governments in breaking down racial barriers. It laughs in the face of all types of discrimination."

Ladies and gentlemen:

The development and promotion of Sport and Recreation in the Province is and has been a process driven and managed without a clear plan, strategy or policy. That has resulted in the Sport sector been regarded as a lesser priority and as such receives the least resources whilst its impact and importance in the achievement of social cohesion is regarded as key and strategic. This has further been exacerbated by the drop in numbers of Federations, clubs and participants in competitive, structured and affiliated sport in the Province, resulting and contributing towards moral degeneration, crime, drug abuse and apathy amongst young people.

This scenario has produced poor performances by most Provincial development teams at national competitions and championships. Despite this situation there has been some glimpses and pockets of excellence by some of the elite athletes in their different codes at National and international competitions and championships. What is it that we are doing as a collective to respond to such state of affairs in our sector?

As government we have responded to this situation accordingly through the development of a strategy, and as such signalled our intention to fulfil our Constitutional obligation as enshrined in schedule 5: Functional areas of Provincial competence (Sport and Recreation). We would have failed our people and athletes if we did not approach sport development as a Province through a collective effort in unison, and that is what these izindaba seek to do.

Nationally the Minister of Sport and Recreation Honourable Fikile Mbalula initiated a process through which as a country we need to rekindle and reposition sport and recreation to what it is suppose to be, producing elite athlete and creating the vibrancy amongst our communities and our people. Optimal Performance and Functional Excellence in sport and recreation, better known as the National Road Map is what the Minister has pronounced to effect the necessary changes and impact in the sector.

The focus of the Road Map is to address the following strategic areas which will assist in broadening the base of Sport and recreation in South Africa namely:

  • Participation of the masses in Sport and Recreation activities;
  • Importance of offering Sport and Recreation in all schools and ensuring that physical education is compulsory and implemented in our schools;
  • Organizing of annual National Youth Camps (keep youngsters active, increase their self- esteem, promote patriotism);
  • Grassroots sports programmes (with a focus in rural areas);
  • Contribute to job creation in the Sport and Recreation sector.

Sport and Recreation must further serve as a medium to contribute to National unity and increase in International Sport success and thereby contribute towards the promotion of a common sense of belonging through the following:

  • A well developed Sport Academy system in the country;
  • Identification and development of talented athletes through the country;
  • A leading edge sport science system in the country

The above mentioned strategic focus areas must be supported by the following enablers:

  • Tertiary Institutions
  • National Institutions (military & police services)
  • Education and training
  • Sporting clubs
  • Quality coaching at all levels ( Functional coaches association)
  • Athletes centred approach ( Well established athletes association)
  • Strong and coordinated Sport councils
  • Role of Volunteers
  • Facilities (backlog to be addressed)
  • Well resourced sports information centre’s
  • Institutionalized funding models

The National Sport and Recreation plan will be developed within the policy framework addressing the following critical areas:

  • Transformation which must be informed by a clear, articulate and contextual framework;
  • Prioritizing sport codes in the country to give maximum support towards optimum results;
  • Adoption of a National emblem and a national colour for South African Sport;
  • Promoting and advancing Sport Tourism and its contribution to the Gross Domestic Product of the country;
  • Supporting international initiatives that seek to promote Sport for peace and development, entrenching the role of South Africa within the global world;
  • Promoting the Code of ethics within the Sport and Recreation sector (including drug- free sport);
  • Clear definition of authority, responsibility & accountability between different role players within the sector;
  • Issues of amateur versus professional sport;
  • A communication & marketing plan for sport in the country.

The hosting of the Sport and Recreation Indaba as an all inclusive, widest, broadest possible consultative process seek to stimulate robust engagement and brutally frank exchange of ideas with the people and structures at grassroots level which are based on the following objectives:

  • To clarify and action the strategic directives outlined in the Provincial Sport, Growth,
  • To integrate the six priority areas identified in the SRSA 2011 Road Map into the implementation document of key stakeholders.
  • To facilitate collective buy-in from all stakeholders in the Provincial Sport, Growth, Development and Transformation Strategy to the National Sports Plan.
  • To streamline implementation towards common objectives.
  • To elevate public awareness of the National Sport Plan by means of an effective and targeted media campaign.
  • To commence with updating the case for sport.

The process of hosting izindaba must not be viewed as a once off approach in the achievement of social cohesion within our communities, it should encourage a more profound understanding on how best we can work together to ensure that continuously we advance our collective responsibility as leaders in this sector. This process of the Indaba will be an annual process through which the sector needs to evaluate the gains we have made.

In conclusion, the Journey of a thousand miles starts with one step. Be part and make your mark and input in building a better tomorrow for our children, participants and athletes. The people shall govern!

I thank you,
Baie dankie,

Issued by the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture

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