Lobby groups to study documents on planned transformation in sport

AfriForum and trade union Solidarity received the documents from Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula’s office on Wednesday.

FILE: Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – Lobby group AfriForum and trade union Solidarity say they are now studying documents received from Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula’s office regarding planned transformation targets in the industry.

The organisations say they received the information on Tuesday, a day before they were expected to ask the High Court in Pretoria to grant them access to the papers.

Mbalula announced last year that sporting codes which failed to achieve transformation targets would no longer be permitted to host international events.

The minister singled out four bodies which he claimed did not meet the requirements.

The sporting bodies include the South African Rugby Union, Cricket South Africa, Netball South Africa and Athletics South Africa.

Solidarity’s Anton van der Bijl says they received information from the sports minister on Tuesday afternoon.

“After we’ve proceeded with documentation, we’re currently looking at information and we’ll decide as to whether we’ll proceed with the main application.”

AfriForum, which is closely linked to Solidarity, says this course of action will also be used to garner international support, as merit should be the only criteria when selecting sport teams, not race.

Last year, CSA President Chris Nenzani told EWNSport the new transformation targets need to promote equality in the long run.

The targets require the national team to play an average minimum of 54% black player s and an average minimum of 18% Black African players over the season.

Nenzani said whatever plans they put in place, need to be sustainable.

“It could’ve been easy for us to be ambitious and say we want 80%, but are we going to be able to sustain this? We want to sustain it continuously. In 2015 we set targets in the provincial and franchise setup so that you build a pool to sustain yourself at national level.”

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)