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President’s Voice – Gideon Sam

Following SASCOC’s Annual General Meeting at Olympic House, the road ahead for our Federations is quite clear.
We have to align our activities with the National Sports and Recreation Plan and stop complicating the running of sport in South Africa.
We now accept a couple of things that we cannot change. One of them is that the funding model for South African sport must still be agreed to and from what I hear in the corridors of power, it will happen soon.
The infrastructure debate carries on, but with the South African Local Government Authority, we are making progress and soon district municipalities will  be working with our district sports councils to ensure that this matter is addressed. Our mandate is very clear and we must give effect to the outcomes of the discussions of that sport indaba.

The four areas that we are going to assist our Federations with are:
Alignment with the Coaching Framework
The establishment of academies in the provinces
Identifying talent for high performance programmes under Operation Excellence
Encouraging provincial affiliates to be part of our Provincial Sports Confederations

While focusing on the above, the Federations must also play an overseer’s role in school sport, club development and university sport.  If we stick to this, then we will have fewer challenges in sport.
The key to all this is to sit down and talk without fearing that SASCOC is interfering in the affairs of the Federation.
Our recent engagement with SAFA was an eye-opener and the willingness of the leadership to build football in this country is not  to be doubted.
Boxing South Africa is on the road to ensuring that all those in professional boxing comply with the dictates of the statutes guiding them.
At the recent Hockey Strategic workshop in Pretoria, I heard about the determination of the Federation to improve strategic guidelines set in the past. These are all encouraging encounters and more of these will happen before we end this year.
It’s been busy time on the field of play. Well done to the Springbok rugby team for putting one over our traditional rivals, the All Blacks at Ellis Park.
Our swimming icon, Chad le Clos continues to excel every time he dips his foot into the pool – six golds at the Moscow leg of the FINA World are testimony to this.
On the soccer front, Banyana Banyana are already in Namibia for the African Women’s Championships and our boys U-17 and U-20 soccer sides have also been hugely impressive in qualifying for their continental competitions.
I also saw that 2012 Olympian Stephen Mokoka kept the athletics flag flying proudly when he won the Great Scottish Run half-marathon and Rene Kalmer must be congratulated for a personal best at the Berlin Marathon and para-athlete Ernst van Dyk is in the United States to defend his Chicago Marathon title. Right now our gymnasts are also on the road, in China for the World Artistic Championships and the very best of luck to them.


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