Sport and Recreation budget speech by Deputy Minister Gert C Oosthuizen National Council of Provinces
20 May 2010
Twenty-one days from the opening of the World Cup, our country is abuzz with excitement! Our media have dedicated programmes and space to showcase the build-up to the tournament. The private sector is fully behind all campaigns such as Football Friday, Fly the Flag, and the 2010 countdown programme we see South Africans united in hosting the best ever FIFA World Cup. In fact, we have united in our diversity!
We have no doubt that the socio-economic impact of the FIFA 2010 World cup will be felt long after the event. During the construction phase of our preparations we were clear that low income households should benefit from the infrastructure development programme.
We now know that more than 100 000 workers have been employed either directly or indirectly through the 2010 construction programme. We also know that many workers moved from being unskilled to semi-skilled and from being semi-skilled to skilled. We now know that more and more women have entered the construction industry. With the games being hosted in 10 venues, we were able to spread the benefit of this investment, reaching far and wide in society.
It is to this end that the African six pack project requires strong support from all corners of our country and the rest of the African continent. Each of the six African countries that participate in the tournament must treat and feel each of the stadia as their home ground. As South Africans, we must provide home crowd support to our brothers and sisters in our quest to restore the dignity of our continent’s people.
It is in this context that we have to caution those who are using the World Cup as a bargaining stick for benefits and service delivery. The vision should not be what is in it for me, the attitude should rather be, what is in it for our country and our continent and what are the long term prospects and benefits to us as Africans. KE NAKO is not to introduce challenges; KE NAKO is to celebrate Africa’s Humanity; KE NAKO is to live the spirit of UBUNTU – that for a better future for all!
Sport, at the elite as well as at community level, is increasingly being used in a wide variety of ways to promote social inclusion, prevent conflict, and to enhance peace within and among nations. In this regard the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) has adopted a series of resolutions on Sport for Development and Peace.
Although sport alone cannot prevent conflict or build peace, it can contribute to broader, more comprehensive efforts in a number of important ways. Sports equipment provides a positive and accessible alternative for the guns of internal conflict. As a strategic initiative our department will carefully look at ways and means to use sport and recreation as a tool in promoting development and peace.
Chairperson, our work with the United Nations goes beyond sport for peace and development. One other initiative in which we are working with them is the one goal for cooperation on the establishment for an African Fund for Education. The UN, through its Office for Drugs Control, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the International Organisation for Migration, has also been working closely with the Office for Sexual Offences under the National Prosecutions Authority on issues of human trafficking. This includes the ‘red card’ campaign, which is aimed at discouraging foreign visitors from getting involved in activities that may get them in trouble when visiting the country.
In line with the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the UN involved eight African artists to write a song titled ‘Eight Goals for Africa’, authored and recorded by the 8 artists who each sing about one specific goal. We launched this project on 14 May in Alexandra. This we did, mindful that the FIFA World Cup presents us with an ideal forum to globally renew our commitment to the MDGs. The song can be downloaded free up to the end of the World Cup. We are grateful for the support we are receiving from our partners, who give generously to enable us to better the lives of our people.
The existing relationship between our Department and the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ) has been a good catalyst that encouraged the EU to support our development programmes. Amongst the areas of agreement is Capacity-Building, Developing a Toolkit for Sport as a catalyst for development and peace as well as skills in project management.
We have recently signed the implementation agreement on the Youth Development through Sport programme, with the GTZ. The project is in line with our Mass Participation Programme and supports three of our key strategic objectives: namely:
1. To contribute to a healthy nation by increasing the number of participants.
2. To raise the profile of sport and recreation through addressing issues of National importance.
3. To contribute in making the 2010 FIFA World Cup the best ever.
The programme will take physical activity to poor disadvantaged communities across South Africa and help promote both ownership of and leadership in beneficiary communities. Empowering the youth in rural areas, will without doubt contribute positively towards the improvement of our school sport, which is in most cases still being dominated by urban schools.
Another partner with whom we directly impact on grassroots sport through the Youth Development against Violence through Sport Programme, is the KfW, which is a German Development Bank.
The overall objective of this programme is to use sport, specifically football, as a catalyst for transmitting life skills to children and youth in order to reduce violence and social ills. The children get off the streets, learn about rules and fair-play and practice conflict resolution without violence.
Within the framework of the programme it is envisaged to construct or rehabilitate over 100 kick-abouts (modified small size pitches which could be used for various codes) and full-size pitches as well as to provide basic football equipment to children in the townships and poor rural areas. On request of the municipalities and communities, the kick-abouts and pitches can also be designed as multipurpose sites for various sporting codes.
In addition, the concept of the programme foresees the involvement of non-governmental organisations and other development partners to provide training and educational activities for the children, who participate in the programme. The training will cover among others, life skills; specifically with regard to violence prevention and conflict resolution but also with regard to HIV and AIDS.
An accelerated construction of seven facilities would be completed before the World Cup. These facilities are in Ikwezi Local Municipality, Jansenville; King Sabata Dalinyebo Municipality, Qqunu; Mangaung Local Municipality, Batho Location; City of Tshwane, Winterveld; KwaDukuza Local Municipality, Melville; Polokwane Local Municipality, GaManamela; Rustenburg Local Municipality, Lekgalong Village.
Another positive development is that we have 11 students who are involved in a four-year degree in physical education and sport, as part of our exchange programme with Cuba. Three of these students are females from Gauteng, Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal, respectively. Northern Cape, Western Cape and Limpopo have one student each, while Eastern Cape, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and Free State have two each. Two students were set to graduate in 2009 (one failed), two in 2010; one each in 2011 and 2012; and five in 2015. The provincial departments can thus benefit by employing these students when they are home on vacation and after successfully graduating.
Chairperson, we have always reported to this House that we are meeting a brick wall in being able to influence the distribution of lottery funds and how they contribute to the national agenda of reconstruction and development. It is encouraging that the Minister of the Department of Trade and Industry and the Chairperson of the National Lotteries Board seem to share our vision.
We must all support them as they try to bring the National Lotteries Act on the right track. We must encourage them to introduce the required amendments so that the Sport Distribution Agency resorts with Sport and Recreation South Africa (SRSA).
Our fight to access the sport and recreation portion of the Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG) seems far from over. The stark reality presented by the delivery records of our Building for Sport and Recreation Programme (BSRP) in comparison to those of the consolidated MIG, motivate us to continue the debate which will see SRSA receiving our share of the MIG funds.
Since the inception of the MIG in 2005 until the end of March 2010 (five financial years) a total of 155 sport and recreation facilities projects have been completed compared to 364 projects implemented over four financial years through the BSRP.
This in essence means that the MIG projects over five financial years represent only 43% of the BSRP projects over four financial years. Chairperson, we are not willing to give up this fight, even if it makes us a lot of enemies. Our concern is also that sport and recreation facilities’ projects in the top spending provinces are concentrated in the bigger municipalities.
The cumulative amount committed to sport and recreation facilities’ projects since 2005 until the end of March 2010 is R2,6 billion. This relates to projects that are either completed, under construction, being designed, on tender and registered.
The highest share of this amount goes to Gauteng at 40% and the lowest to Northern Cape at two percent. KwaZulu-Natal for example, spends R482 million on 105 projects while Gauteng spends more than double the amount on only 68 projects. The implication is that while some provinces are for wider reach and accessibility, others are for big projects such as stadia, which may not necessarily be easily accessible to grassroots sport.
The 2008/09 Annual report shows a significant decline on the number of audit queries and a reduction from three to one qualification compared to the previous financial year. In our determination to further improve the internal control environment a Risk Management Policy was approved. A Risk Committee became operational introducing a new vibrancy in the department to the identification, assessment and mitigation of identified risks.
Chairperson, we have come a long way since staff of the department amalgamated with staff of the South African Sports Commission. But it is time that we re-examine how we are organised.
We are about to commence with the public participation process to review of the White Paper. This must culminate in a national sports plan. All sectors must buy-in to the plan and commit to the strategic direction that will emerge from this process. To gear the department to respond to these developments we have started a parallel process to develop a functional organisational structure.
We must admit that the previous structure did not sufficiently take into account the mandate and specific functions of the national department. We envisage that the process will be followed by job evaluation, competency assessment, and where needed, the retraining of staff. Let me assure staff that we do not anticipate that any staff member will become redundant. These processes are necessary to ensure better results and outcomes for the sport and recreation sector.
As we consolidate the work of the department we must reassert the importance of our partnership with South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC). SASCOC is the key co-coordinating structure that must deliver on improving our international performance. The energy displayed by SASCOC, we trust, will translate into better results.
But we cannot pursue international competitiveness at the cost of development, transformation and good governance. The constituent parts of SASCOC, the national federations, are fundamental in securing delivery on these outputs. To this end, we must sharpen our instruments and enhance accountability. In short, we must enhance our development and transformation and Governance programmes.
We are putting greater emphasis on participation. Collectively therefore, we must commit to the development of Olympic and non Olympic sport and recreation. So, we expect that in the revised White Paper greater emphasis will be placed on recreation. To this end strategic partnerships will be formed with other sectors.
In our quest to develop sport on all levels we need to address current inefficiencies. Why is it that smaller federations continue to be bedeviled by poor governance and perennial administrative challenges? Why have we not been able to embrace the best practices that flow from shared services models in sport? It is now time, that jointly with SASCOC, we must implement cooperation strategies and look at a Shared Services Model.
In conclusion, I wish to place on record the ground-breaking work done by Minister Stofile in the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) board. After five long years, South Africa will be succeeded by Tunisia. No doubt, we can be proud of the contributions and the role played by Mfundisi at this level. We also know that he will use the extra time to take up the responsibilities in Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the African Union (AU) these are leadership roles we have to play to the benefit of our region and continent.
I wish to thank the following entities for their support and cooperation: The select committee; MECs; leaders in the sports movement; non-governmental organisations (NGOs), as well as the media.
A big thank you also goes to our managers, staff and administrators, the foot soldiers and the implementers!
Working together, We do more!
Ke nako, let us celebrate Africa’s humanity!
Issued by: Sport and Recreation South Africa
20 May 2010
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