I’M very glad that Skorpion Zinc corporate affairs manager Nora Ndopu took the bull by its horns and warned the organisers of the NFA Women’s Super League not to fight their battles in the local media, but to rather resolve their disagreements discreetly in their boardrooms. It’s not often that we see representatives from the corporate sector expressing their disappointment with the manner some sport administrators fight their personal battles through the media. Therefore, I’m extremely proud of the uncompromised character and leadership shown by Ndopu to warn the organisers of the Women’s Super League to always be professional and never to emulate the manner in which their male counterparts have handled footballing affairs. Such expression from the corporate world must come out often, because at the end of the day it’s the image of the sponsoring company at stake and it is therefore sensible to guard against unbecoming behaviour from sport administrators. So, I guess the writing is on the wall and I must congratulate Jacky Gertze and Jacqui Shipanga for promising never to emulate their male counterparts, but to create a successful women’s league that will yield positive results. I have observed throughout my career that only MTC’s Tim Ekandjo speaks frankly and openly criticises unprofessional behaviour, especially from sport codes that benefitted and still benefit from MTC sponsorship. In the past sport codes that have made themselves guilty of racism or who lack transparency in the manner they handle the sponsorship were eventually omitted from consideration for further sponsorship and were left with nothing but egg on their faces as reward for their poor administrative skills. I therefore urge sport administrators to refrain from airing their dirty linen in public and to instead concentrate on building the individual sport codes by implementing programmes that will primarily benefit the athletes – as intended – rather than the administrators of the sport. I heard through the grapevine that sport federations will soon be legally required to have a business arm, like the Namibia Rugby Union (NRU), to source funding and to run their affairs professionally, but one wonders if the corporate sector will be willing to inject funding into sport codes, where administrators are seen battling out their differences through the media. I’m glad that Ndopu was honest and frank both with the leadership of women’s football, noting that they have had their differences with the NFA secretary general, but never opted to resolve their differences through the local media. Rather they sought to resolve these issues in the boardroom. In the same breath, I must give credit to the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Sport, Emma Kantema-Gaomas, who also warned sport administrators against the unbecoming and unprofessional manner in which they have tended to resolve their disagreements in the media. Sport in Namibia can only grow if funds are injected into the development of the various sport codes, but who truly has the interests of our athletes at heart? Surely what we as stakeholders want is to see Namibian athletes excelling regionally and internationally by being competitive at all times. And just as many complain that there are only a few youthful parliamentarians, it is also time that we see more young people volunteering and taking up positions of responsibility in the various sport codes affiliated to the Namibia Sports Commission. As I always say: Let athletes be the winners!
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015