OVER the years, the have been continuous gripes that the country’s netball leadership has had the tendency of favouring players hailing from the Khomas region, when come to national team selection, at the expense of some more talented players elsewhere in Namibia.
This has, in the past, dented the image of netball in the country.
In fact, Deputy Minister of Sport, Youth and National Service, Agnes Tjongarero, warned the Netball Namibia (NN) leadership during the Debmarine Namibia sponsorship announcement a few months ago, to refrain from only selecting players from the Khomas region to represent the country, while neglecting demographic representivity.
When I interviewed NN President, Lydia Mutenda, recently, she told me that one key area was the establishment of regional structures, which would be affiliated to the mother body.
It’s important that the netball leadership undertake regional visits, and come up with a blueprint that will drive the ultimate growth of the sport.
The Debmarine Namibia sponsorship agreement is geared towards Netball Namibia establishing regional structures and leagues, but the question that is on everyone’s lip is whether the national netball leadership is truly visiting the country’s poorer regions.
There are developmental hiccups in the regions, and after 27 year of independence there are regions that don’t even have a single sporting facility, including netball courts, soccer fields, basketball courts and swimming pools. Why has this been allowed to continue?
I also want to push the blame for this on the various governors, who I doubt has any developmental sport agenda for the young sportsmen and women of this country.
Do these governors receive any grants to construct sporting facilities and what is the relationship between them and the sports ministry, as well as local authorities in the various towns?
Another important question being asked by many within the sport fraternity is: Whose responsibility is it to ensure that sporting facilities are constructed in the affected regions?
In terms of netball, I think that the various regional leaderships need to be proactive in the development of the sport, because they have been sitting on their laurels, waiting on Netball Namibia to come to their rescue.
It takes two to tango, and there should always be a two-way traffic, to ensure maximum development.
Another important factor is the role of ministry sport officers.
The Erongo region is very active, compared to most regions, and it has the much-needed facilities that are needed to host a variety of sporting events.
In most regions, one cannot even find a proper soccer field to even host a Brave Warriors international friendly.
Now is the time for each sport code to design a national developmental plan that will, among others, include how to source for sponsorship.
Regional structures must pull up their socks and stop depending solely on the various national sport bodies. They must equally play a pivotal role in the development of their respective sport codes.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015