Honourable Chairperson, Minister and Members
The United Democratic Movement supports budget vote 40.
• Sports and partisan politics have always been uncomfortable with each other in South Africa since the old days of Peter Hein in apartheid times.
• A careful balancing act has to be found by either party in order for equilibrium to be struck. Between the two there are gladiators, spectators, administrators and sponsors (either potential or actual) because each party is in it for its own selfish purposes. It then becomes necessary that there should be absolute co-operation, otherwise the game suffers.
• Parliament has to play its oversight role. This is why it is absolutely necessary for Minister to attend regularly the portfolio committee meetings.
• Transformation: for this important programme to be effected it is necessary that all parties should understand its purpose, politically, socially and economically.
• While some of the codes are doing well in this regard others are lagging behind. Of the major codes, SA Cricket appears to be dragging itself into this fold. Its transformation targets reflect an institution that is neither poised nor paced for transformation. It lacks all the necessary specifics like current status, programmes and dates. This is just not Cricket.
• SA rugby has demonstrated its commitment to the committee, although there is still a long way to go to 2019. We hope nothing will be kicked-out to touch.
• South Africa needs to reach a stage of development where some people stop thinking that the inclusion of players of colour automatically translates to poor performance.
• Codes need to have strong development programmes. This is where parliament has to play its oversight role, effectively.
• Often the social element, so necessary for national cohesion, is left out of the equation in pursuit of winning.
• During apartheid years it did not matter whether teams lost or won as long as they were pure white.
• Amongst other important pillars of a successful sporting nation, is appropriate sport infrastructure. This requires that we ensure appropriateness of our sporting facilities with serious commitment from Local Government, Public Works Department as well as cooperation with all other relevant departments like education.
• National government and other agencies, continue to budget and transfer monies to municipalities for rolling our sports infrastructure. We call for the Minister to apply regular monitoring of the use of these resources so that they are able to achieve their intended objectives.
I thank you