Contribution to Sports and Recreation debate

BY
HON P.N MSIMANGO

KZN LEGISLATURE

21 MAY 2021

Hon Chairperson,

As a nation that can play as hard as it works, it is unfortunate that a meagre budget of only R475.6 million is allocated to this department.

Ingqalasizinda yezemidlalo ineqhaza elikhulu elibalulekile ekuthuthukiseni amakhono ezemidlalo kubantu ngabe kusemadolobhei noma ezindaweni zasemakhaya. Ukuba khona kwengqalasizinda yezemidlalo kwenza ukuthi intsha igqugquzeleke ekutheni izimbandakanye nezemidlalo ezinhlobonhlobo ngenhloso yokuqhakambisa amakhono ayo ehlukene.

In view of this the IFP is happy to see that the department plans to build 11 multi-purpose courts in schools which include basketball, volleyball, tennis and netball, and to install 11 children’s play-gyms in Early Childhood Development centres as part of the Learn and Play Programme. In addition, the department will complete phase two of three district fitness complexes in the uMzimkhulu, Alfred Duma and uMhlathuze Municipalities and the completion of phase one of the Newcastle fitness centre in this financial year but more still needs to be done in this regard.  Kufanele kucace kamhlophe ukuthi lengqalasizinda izokwakhiwa kuziphi izindawo. Sinxusa uNgqongqoshe ukuthi umsebenzi wokwakhiwa kwengqalasizinda kufanele unikezwe osonkontileka amanamava emkhakheni wezokwakha ukuze bengazoshiya umsebenzi phakathi ngoba sebephelelwe imali umsebenzi ungakapheli. iQembu leNkatha lifuna ukubona senyuka isibalo sabantu abasha abadlala igalofu, ukutshuza emanzini kanye neminye imidlalo ezindaweni zasemakhaya. Konke lokhu kuzokwenzeka uma behlinzekwa ngengqalasizinda esezingeni yezemidlalo.

Social Cohesion

Kuyiqiniso elingephikwe ukuthi ezemidlalo zibambe elikhulu iqhaza ekuhlanganiseni izinhlanga ezahlukene emhlabeni jikelele. Therefore, the Department must endeavour to maximise access, development and excellence at all levels of sports participation in order to improve social cohesion, nation building and quality of life for all our people.

It is fitting and appropriate that the department’s strategy of participation in sport and recreation aims to improve social cohesion, nation building and the quality of life of all, while sports transformation should be interpreted to denote a rapid and fundamental change in the relation systems and partners in the ownership and control of and participation in sport.

How do you hope to build social cohesion with, on the one hand, a community that has nothing and another that has abundance? Zonke izikole nemiphakathi azihlinzekwe ngengqalasizinda yezemidlalo efanayo naleyo esemadolobheni.

The IFP calls for strategic infrastructure development in rural areas and the appointment of sports coaches and administration back-up. Who knows how many potential sports stars go undetected in these areas? The question I wish to pose is: what has happened to transformation? Is the government saying to us that it is business as usual? I raise these questions because it is not possible to have transformation in the absence of equitable opportunities and facilities.

The quality of leadership and discipline is instilled in young people through sports. Arguably, there is no sport in the world that one can succeed in without discipline. The high rate of drugs abuse and crime would reduce dramatically if sports were made a priority and efforts made to improve it. Instead of idling which would make them vulnerable to a variety of social ills, young people would spend their time playing sports.

The diminishing of sports can be linked with the shrinking of recreational facilities and space for sports activities. For sports to develop, one would need a proper standard stadium, gymnasiums, buildings, and tracks for its activities.

I am appealing to both MECs of Sports and Education that their departments must build schools that have appropriate sports facilities. Ziningi izikole namanje ezingenayo ingqalasizinda yezemidlalo esezingeni elifanele. It is the right time to rally behind sports as a priority sector and consider the potential impact of quality infrastructure on their growth. Proper infrastructural support has an impact on the development of elite sports talent and sports participation at the grass-roots level.

Sports infrastructure assists in the development of world-class athletes and also provides impetus to the youth of the nation to actively take up sports and build a sports culture.

I thank You