…Sports federations cry for equality
By MICHAEL MIYOBA
DESPITE Government’s pledge to treat all sports federations equally, some senior sports administrators have observed that sports federations do not receive the same attention and support from the National Sports Council and the Ministry of Sports.
The sports administrators who spoke on condition of anonymity said some sports are still deemed as minor sports which is why they don’t receive the same attention footballers get whenever they perform well.
The sports administrators encouraged Government that has promised footballers US$10, 000 each for qualifying for the AFCON to practice what it preaches by ensuring that all sports federations benefit from the “national cake.”
“My encouragement is that we are all under the Ministry of Sports through the National Sports Council of Zambia and there is no minor sport.
“We all bring glory to mother Zambia. It is not just about qualifying it is about bringing medals. The nation needs medals so going forward everyone has to be treated equally and fairly unlike where we always struggle to seek support from the ministry while other federations are favoured to receive more support,” the source said.
On the grants which the Ministry of Sports promised sports federations last year, the source said; “We are still waiting. Hopefully they will deliver as promised.”
“The minister means well for sports but his staff, I think they don’t understand sports because we can’t always go to the minister’s office for us to receive support. Everyone has to go to queue before the minister to receive support yet the rules are clear, we write to the Sports Council three months before the competition but there will be no feedback, the moment you go to the minister’s office, money will be found. It is a bad trend that we have created in the country,” he said.
Last week, Minister of Sports Youth and Arts Elvis Nkandu said Government has supported all sports federations despite the delay to give them the promised grants for this year.
Nkandu said it is not an issue that the federations haven’t been given the grants because the government has been able to assist all federations with resources to participate in international assignments.
Nkandu said Government is yet to decide how much it will give sports federations as grants as it was still contemplating on how best the process can be done.