Dept warns sport bodies

2016-04-22 10:13
MEC Ntombikayise Sibhidla-Saphetha

MEC Ntombikayise Sibhidla-Saphetha (Lungile Chili)

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Pietermaritzburg - Sports federations that receive funding from the provincial Sport and Recreation Department will soon have to report the progress they have made in meeting the targets set out by the national transformation charter for sport.

The department funds various sports federations, including rugby, cricket, canoeing, aquatics and athletics.

MEC Ntombikayise Sibhidla-Saphetha announced yesterday while delivering her budget speech that the department would conduct transformation audits of 12 federations.

“This year, moving forward, we are going to be unapologetic. It is either they deliver or not. We want to see transformation in the sports,” she said.

The department would also adopt 12 disadvantaged clubs in townships and provide them with coaches, equipment and logistical support.

With R234 million having been allocated to the municipal infrastructure grant in the last financial year, concerns over underspending of the grant were raised.

Sibhidla-Saphetha conceded that some municipalities were failing to use the funds appropriately.

DA MPL Hlanganani Gumbi said by August 2015, it had been reported to the sport portfolio committee that of the R234 million, KZN municipalities had only amassed R2,1 million in approved expenditure for sports facilities.

“At that time, the entire Amajuba District hadn’t approved any facilities on the MIG funding.

“To add insult to injury, another 20 municipalities over and above those in Amajuba had not been approved for any expenditure,” he said.

Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula had also said in a parliamentary reply to questions that only two provinces were spending the grant funding appropriately, being the Western Cape and the Free State.

“This is an indictment on municipalities in this province. All these municipalities are rural and peri-urban, lack infrastructure and with predominantly young black South Africans negatively prejudiced as a result,” he said.

“Without the infrastructure, school sports only favour those who go to model C schools, [and] sports academies [therefore] have a small pool of talent to choose from, and federations will never transform in the way we all support them to.

“And when the Commonwealth Games come to Durban in a few years, it will be nothing more than an entertainment spectacle for the rich, with the poor and rural communities completely sidelined with all its raw talent.”

Sibhidla-Saphetha said the department had set up a joint task team with Cogta to monitor expenditure.


SIBHIDLA-SAPHETHA raised concerns over the dismal performance of football teams in the province.

Out-of-sorts Maritzburg United are at the bottom of the Premier Soccer League, with the team’s chances of avoiding relegation getting slimmer and slimmer with each passing game.

Should United be relegated, KZN would be left with only one team in the top flight — Golden Arrows — who were promoted at the beginning of the season.

Although the prospect of Royal Eagles being promoted to the Premier League was promising, the same could not be said for Ama­Zulu and Thanda Royal Zulu.

This is the reason that the department had held a sports indaba, Sibhidla-Saphetha said.

“We will soon be implementing the resolutions of that indaba.”

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  sport

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