By John Tuerijama
NAMIBIANS can expect lesser participation of national sports teams in international events this year. This is because of the funding and sponsorship drought that is currently being experienced by the Namibia Sports Commission and the national sports federations.
The Namibia Sports Commission is the major benefactor of many sports codes who depend on it for domestic and international programmes. Already, with normal funding from Government, the Commission was not able to satisfy all federations as per their wishes and the budget cuts experienced since last year are bound to make matters worse.
NSC chairperson, Joel Matheus admitted that the financial challenges could disrupt the 2017 sport calendar, and that the problems will not abate any time soon.
Said Matheus: “Budget constraints will be an ongoing issue. It seems reasonably certain that the NSC will face additional cuts, although hopefully it will be modest. Should the latter come about, NSC will apply the reduced proportional fraction process to all beneficiaries based on previous allocations.”
Matheus said the Commission has not yet received its budget allocation for the 2017 financial year as the Ministry of Sports is also awaiting communication of its main budget from the Ministry of Finance.
He also confirmed that several sports codes have already submitted requests for funding to host or participate in local and international competitions. Matheus confirmed that those requests have still not been discussed at Commission level.
Despite, the financial constraints and budget cuts, the NSC has appointed a new chief administrator, Freddie Mwiya, who is on a three-year contract. He is the first substantive chief administrator since Rusten Mogane left the position four years ago. In the interim, the position was filled in an acting capacity by Director of Sports, Shivute Katamba; former NSC Head of Finance and Administration, Walter Haseb, and lately, sports commissioner Peter Wilson.
Mwiya is expected to start his duties at the NSC on April 1.
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