Sport And Recreation - Budget Vote Debate 19

 

By Hon. BW Dhlamini MP
 

22 April 2010

 

Honourable Speaker,

 

Sports and Recreation are fundamental for healthy and balanced lifestyles. A nation that can play as hard as it works is a successful and joyful nation. The Department must endeavour, in both a practical and sensible manner, to maximize access, development and excellence at all levels of sports participation in order to improve social cohesion, nation building and quality of life for all.

 

Children that are raised in a culture of sports participation are children that grow up in a balanced and healthy manner, from early on they learn to appreciate the fact that what you put in is what you get out and later in life this lesson translates into a work ethic which engenders success and is a significant factor in nation building.

 

In 2001/2002 Sport and Recreation South Africa (SRSA) received a grant from the National Treasury specifically for the construction and upgrading of sport and recreation facilities through the Building for Sport and Recreation Programme (BSRP).

 

This was a programme aimed not only at creating employment and assisting with poverty relief efforts in rural areas but also a programme which provided sporting facilities to poor communities in the rural areas.

 

During the period 2001 to 2004 the Building for Sport and Recreation Programme successfully completed 364 projects in the rural communities.

 

During March 2004 the grant was transferred to the Municipalities in terms of the Municipal Infrastructure Grant. Municipalities were tasked to continue the work of the Building for Sport and Recreation Programme. This has been a dismal failure!  From 2004 to date the municipalities have only completed 45 projects. This is totally unacceptable and the IFP wishes to see the Municipal Infrastructure Grant taken away from the municipalities and returned to the Department of Sports and Recreation in order to ensure that funds allocated are directed to building the necessary sporting centres and not for other purposes.

 

Sports development at schools is another issue. We are not doing enough!  We must aggressively tackle this area. Every child deserves the pleasure of kicking a ball, swinging a racquet or sprinting a 100m on an athletics field. More must be done to take sports to the children, to our children, they deserve nothing less. In this vein we urge that the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Department of Sports and education be implemented forthwith.

 

We are 49 days away from the biggest sporting event ever held in South Africa, actually on the African Continent. We are ready!   And the IFP salutes the Minister and the Department, the Local Organizing Committee leadership and the Host Cities for what promises to be one of the most magnificent sporting events of our lifetimes.

 

We are indeed a blessed generation having borne witness to such historic events such as the dismantling of apartheid, the release of Nelson Mandela, the birth of a free and Democratic South Africa and now as the hosts of the very first FIFA World Cup upon African soil.

 

I ask the house to join me as I close in wishing Bafana Bafana all the best for the World Cup. May you do our country proud.

 

The IFP supports the vote.

 

I thank you.

 

Contact: Mr Bonginkosi Dhlamini MP, 083 254 8576.