Sports ministers want relaxation of visa requirements for global events

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Sport and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula -- who attended the 6th Commonwealth Sports Ministers meeting at the Banqueting House in London on Wednesday -- said ministers discussed principles and policy options to maximise the contribution of sports to human and social development, including capitalising on the potential of the Commonwealth Games and major sports events.

"The drive for international omnibus regulatory framework has gained a lot of momentum and credence amongst the delegates," said Mbalula.

He also said South Africa was commended for driving the strong balance between autonomy and accountability within its sports bodies and federations.

The meeting, according to Mbalula, also urged governments to ensure good governance did not end within government but must cascade to regional, continental and international bodies like the Confederation of African Football (CAF), FIFA and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to ensure the same principles were embodied by sporting bodies.

Sports development in various Commonwealth countries was also tabled, with Mbalula giving a presentation on the National Sport and Recreation Plan.

"South Africa is fortunate that Cabinet has already approved the National Sport and Recreational Plan, which will see sport development and peace linking up, and taking shape at an elementary level to high performance, through thorough hawk-eye talent identification and nurturing process," he said.

Mbalula also hinted that there were discussions within South Africa (with Sascoc and other stakeholders) to look at the "Sports Economy" in line with the BRICS objective, wherein SA, Brazil, Russia, India and China can help each other in all spheres of sport development, broadcasting and telecommunications.

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