Media Statement by the Minister of Sport and Recreation South Africa, Mr Fikile Mbalula, MP, on the occasion of the joint press conference with the South African Institute for Drug Free Sport (SAIDS) on drug-free sport
14 Jun 2011
Dr Shuaib Manjara, Chairman of Board Directors of SAIDS
Mr Khalid Galant, Chief Executive Officer of SAIDS
Representatives of the South African Rugby Union
Officials of the Department of Sport and Recreation South Africa
Ladies and gentlemen of the Media
Good morning and a warm welcome valued media guests to this pioneering and quintessential launch signaling a positive change in sport in South Africa. We would like to extend our salutations and congratulations to the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS) for launching this initiative to combat doping in sport and to instill ethics above all in sport.
We are delighted that you correctly so chose the month of June, which is popularly known as the Youth Month in the South African Calendar. In just two days our country, under aegis and leadership of various youth formations will be celebrating the 35th Commemoration of the Soweto and nationwide youth uprisings on 16 June 1976. As part of the on-going changes in our nascent democracy, South Africans from all walks of life have now the pleasure to celebrate and commemorate this historic day officially designated as the National Youth under peaceful and pleasant circumstances.
We must continue to draw lessons from our painful and shameful past with a view to never allow this beautiful mother land be a bloodbath. These initiatives should inspire young people, many of whom are children of the war, not to resort to weapons of destruction. Through these initiatives and campaigns we must high light the immediate necessity for young people to desist from using and abusing drugs neither for pleasure nor performance enhancement. Young people must play and must enjoy life and youthfulness through positive, natural and constructive means and ways. The antidote to natural, constructive, and positive means and ways is destruction and death.
We further invite SAIDS to play an active role and make meaningful contribution in the processes leading to our provincial izindaba culminating in the National Sport and Recreation Indaba. We must use every platform and opportunity to heighten awareness and increase access to the scientific body of knowledge at your disposal to the communities at large. Through proper and focused dissemination of knowledge we will collectively lay the seeds for the germination of a mass of “I play Fair, Say No! To Doping Ambassadors!”
We support the Institute for Drug-Free Sport’s aim in this regard to aggressively tackle doping in sport and spread the message of ethics, fair-play and anti-doping in sport and with this initiative and create a culture of anti-doping in sport.
We call on all South Africans for their support and ongoing participation in this initiative as we launch it through every sport in South Africa and commit ourselves to ongoing education on the issues we are face with concerning doping in sport.
It is our intention that the messages should reach every nook and cranny throughout the length and breadth of country. That means SAIDS have the responsibility to devise innovative and creative ways of ensuring that the awareness campaign reaches the youth and all sportsman and women of our country wherever they are found: in schools, in communities, clubs, universities, workplaces, public transport, villages and towns. The messages must be simple and straight forward for all to understand.
We will from our side also ensure that we use our forthcoming events to drive the message home. We are looking forward to joining you at the rugby games on 18 June 2011. The Deputy Minister will be highlighting the significance of the Campaign at the game between the Cheetahs and the Stormers at Vodacom Park in Bloemfontein. I will be spreading the same message on the same day at Loftus Versveld when the Blue Bulls meet the Sharks in Pretoria.
As the Minister of Sport and Recreation I am officially declaring the 18 June ‘I Play Fair’ day and hope all South African sportsmen, women, coaches, the youth and fans of every sport take the pledge to Play Fair and Say No! To Doping!
The Department of Sport and Recreation have endorsed this campaign because we feel that this will tackle the very real challenges of doping in sport and provide a platform for SAIDS to educate our sports heroes and heroines on the under-pinning values of ethics in sport and the importance of camaraderie and the spirit of sportsmanship.
Thank you very much
Source: Sport and Recreation South Africa
Issued by: Sport and Recreation South Africa
14 Jun 2011
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