I AM extremely appalled by crocodile tears being shed by sports ministry policymakers and administrators of national sport bodies who are unashamedly playing the well-orchestrated blame game after the country’s poor showing at the recent Summer Olympic Games held in Rio, Brazil.
We are very good at playing the blame game when the country performs poorly at global sporting events. We have recently heard about a call made to federations to start preparing for the next Olympic in 2020.
Asking the federations to start preparing for Tokyo 2020 will be unrealistic if the sports ministry’s budget is not attuned to the current needs of the different codes.
First of all, let the Ministry be upfront and honest with the federations and tell them, or rather promise the sports administrators that indeed the Ministry has plans of putting millions aside to assist the federations in preparing athletes for major sport events.
I’d like to go back to 2004, when Namibian athletes participated rather than competed at the Athens Olympic Games. That’s the year that track legend Frank Fredericks retired from active athletics.
Since then there has never been a post-Olympic Games review and reports on Namibia’s performance and how best the country can be prepared for future events, not just the Olympic Games but Commonwealth Games and the All Africa Games. Without such post mortems, the country will forever be a participating nation instead of a competitive country.
If such reports does exist then somebody please tell me where those documents are hidden and whether discussions were held and recommendations proposed on how to do better next time.
I do not want to point a finger to any sport federation since we all know who the prime suspect is, and if Government cannot prioritise sport and invest heavily in sports’ infrastructure there is no way that Namibia will become a force to reckon with.
Since Independence, Government has done little to invest in the building of sport facilities. And I don’t mean sub-standard facilities. I’m talking about state-of-the-art stadiums.
If Government wants Namibians to qualify for the Olympic Games, it is high time that money is invested in infrastructure and on the preparations of athletes. We have four solid years to do that. Let’s get to work and pay less lip service to sports development.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015