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SA's sports bodies face bleak future if lockdown persists

16 May 2020 12:29 PM
Tags:
SASCOC
Department of Sport and Recreation
COVID-19
SA lockdown
sports federations
SA Sport Day Zero

A Sascoc survey shows over 80% of sports federations will only survive for 6 months under current lockdown restrictions.

A survey by the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) has found that 83.7% of member respondents won't survive longer than six months (from the March lockdown start date) if the current lockdown restrictions persist.

The SA Sport Day Zero survey was conducted by the so-called War Room set up by the umbrella body to address issues arising during the Covid-19 crisis.

49 out of the 76 sport-specific Sascoc-affiliated bodies responded, as well as a further two provincial sport confederations.

Sascoc: SA Sport Day Zero survey

Sascoc chief operating officer Patience Shikwambana says the survey was done so that in engagements with government about current challenges, they would have the facts at hand.

Paddler Andrew Birkett navigates a rapid on day one of The Unlimited Dusi Canoe Marathon 2013. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN

She expressed Sascoc's appreciation for the relief government is providing for sports people during a difficult period but the challenge, she says, is the running of national federations.

To this end, the umbrella body met with with senior officials from the national department on Friday.

We are looking at saying we will not allow our national federations to die, but we will come up with a strategy as a collective in terms of how we are going to assist this federation.

Patience Shikwambana, COO - Sascoc

One particular focus of the survey was to find out the various federations' main source of income.

Most of our members are so dependent on affiliation fees, and also on the funding we get from the department in terms of the annual grants... The best way to do it is for the department to give us a sense in terms of its own budget on how they think they'll be able to approach this issue.

Patience Shikwambana, COO - Sascoc

Our view is, please can you [the department]... immediately give our federations their funds so that it can help them to function operationally. You must also be aware that some funding that we get from the department it's very clear that you can't pay for the operational running of the organisation but now we are proposing, give us that funding so it will allow them for the next six months to be able to manage their affairs.

Patience Shikwambana, COO - Sascoc

The reason really for us asking our federations to be part of the [War Room] team is because they are the people that deal with their issues day to day and they can be able to give us the correct perspective in terms of how should we approach this thing.

Patience Shikwambana, COO - Sascoc

Discussing the future in terms of a drop in revenue due to spectator-less events, she says federations will have to go back to the drawing board and also take note of the strategies of international bodies.

For more from the Sascoc COO, take a listen:


16 May 2020 12:29 PM
Tags:
SASCOC
Department of Sport and Recreation
COVID-19
SA lockdown
sports federations
SA Sport Day Zero

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