President's Voice ÔÇô Gideon Sam | SASCOC - SASCOC

President’s Voice ÔÇô Gideon Sam

I’ve just returned from the Caribbean where the Commonwealth Games Association of St Kitts & Nevis hosted a very successful Commonwealth Games Federation elective congress.

It was quite extraordinary to have the congress held so far away and being hosted by a small CGA. The leadership of St Kitts & Nevis did very well and all the functions hosted on the island were well received by the delegates. The Congress was able to execute its set business and we came away with a clear vision about the way forward from here for the CGF.

It will start off by reviewing the entire organisation to reposition it in world sport. All CGA’s will be involved in the process and by the time we get to the next Congress that will be hosted by the Uganda Commonwealth Games Association, lots of work would have been done.

The review will be quite extensive and by the end of the process it is hoped that all the CGA’s will know what is expected of them. This congress also elected new leaders and I was elected as one of two vice-presidents with the task of┬á overseeing the sports programme of the Commonwealth Games.

It is a very important aspect of the Commonwealth Games, because all sports believe they should be on the programme but we all know that this is simply not possible.

How you decide to include a sport in a Games event then becomes critical for the development of certain sports.

I will be heading a committee that consists of several members with a good background in sport.  We also take on board broadcasters to ensure that we position the Games in such a way that they remain attractive to athletes and spectators. I must say that I take my appointment in this position as an absolute honor for me and the country.

This weekend we will sign off the Coaches Framework for South Africa and we feel pretty chuffed by this achievement. The process started many months ago and many people have given up hours of their time to make a success of this project. It is an attempt to ensure that all our coaches are well-serviced and at some point we want to ensure that they are also regulated by law.

The provinces will have coaches associations and the structures from district level upwards will be set up and coaches will be registered. We have great partners on this programme to enable the sustainability of the programme.
We have Cathsseta on board as well as SRSA and the buy-in from many stakeholders has been complete. The outcome of this launch will be a perfect forerunner for the Sports Indaba set for next week.

Sports administrators and all other stakeholders in sport will gather in Midrand to seek answers to some of the issues bedevilling sport in SA. The Indaba which is the brainchild of Minister Filkile Mbalula, hopes to determine once and for all, what our priorities in sport should be.

The process so far has been well received and the two days set aside next week, will be to consolidate positions taken and debated in various structures across the country.  Many people still remain sceptical about the outcome, but there are also those who believe that the Indaba should be supported for the sake of SA sport. I am keen on all these processes unfolding because I remain firmly convinced that as South Africans we can become world beaters.

With the correct structures in place and a development system understood by all and the proper resources, we as a sporting nation should stand back for no other country.

Mark Etheridge
Mark Etheridge

Hi there ... please see SASCOC CEO Tubby Reddy's response to this issue on the CEO's Chair column on the home page of this website -- kind regards. Mark Etheridge (Managing Editor, Road to London 2012)


(hey media person who writes these articles, please pass this message onto Gideon) Dear Gideon, SA womans hockey team draws 5-5 against the top team in the world. and you don't want to send them to the Olympics even after they qualified through the FIH criteria by winning All Africa Championships. All you are doing is breaking the olympic dream of 32 top athletes (men and women) and for what ? Such hypocrites, your own charter says: "the main objective (of SACOC) is to promote and develop high performance sport in the Republic of South Africa" So how does not sending the teams to the Olympics do that ? Have the guts to respond.....