Deputy sport minister Emma Kantema-Goamas said the outbreak of the coronavirus has had both negative and positive effects in the world of sports.
Speaking during the daily discussions held at the Covid-19 Information Centre in Windhoek on Saturday, Kantema-Goamas said while the lockdown has had an adverse effect on sportspersons due to loss of income, this period has also opened opportunities in terms of restructuring the sports sector.
“As much as we face these challenges, we have also seen opportunities to enhance our policies to respond to the needs of the athletes. We were in the process of reviewing our sports and recreation policies,” she said.
The deputy minister said this pandemic has given the ministry an opportunity to see how they can deal with challenges faced by athletes, such as the provision of the social protection to them.
“We are looking at how we can provide that safety net to the athletes through the provision of insurance, whether it’s short term or long term. We are also looking at the possibility of a relief fund,” Kantema-Goamas explained.
She within the Sports Act 12 of 2003, which regulates sports in Namibia, there is provision for a Sports Development Fund, which is likely to assist athletes with the loss of income in future.
She added that during this period, the ministry will, through the Namibia Sports Commission, make sure that federations are adhering to the lockdown measures as announced by the Head of State 17 March.
Kantema-Goamas said contact sports remain under lockdown and they will await the announcement that allows for the resumption of training and competition to be made.
Her views were echoed by Joan Smit, the secretary general of the Namibia National Olympic Committee (NNOC), who said while the sports world is living under uncertainty, the organisation is looking at using these extraordinary circumstances to come up with extraordinary measures.
“Every one of us has to do their part so as to adapt to the guidance which we get from international sporting organisations, governments and the World Health Organisation (WHO). By the end of this pandemic, everything will be new,” she concluded.
2020-05-05 09:31:28 | 3 months ago