Namibian Sport : My Perspective
I have written before that until such a time that sport administrators consider and embrace the sports industry as a business, we will continue to live in a dream world. It defies basic logic that institutions that have been in existence for a very long time, take time to pause and reflect, based on strategic documents developed to provide direction; a model that our sports has not heeded.
Namibia as a country have continuously development medium term plans based on the NDP models based on Vision 2030, which in recent days have been augmented by the Harambee Prosperity Plan. This documents provide a direction of the country and it shows that the leadership of this country need to be in a position to measure progress, fix what did not go well and take into consideration the situation on the ground. Is it not about time that sports in this country, ring the bell at the doorsteps of government and say (a) sports can contribute to the stimulation of the socio-economic of the country; (b) sports need the support of the government and the private sector, that it needs to be prioritised in line with NDP5 and the HPP.
For an athlete to perform, there is a need for a conducive environment that takes into consideration all the factors that contribute to their wellbeing.
When embedded in a pedagogical concept, sport can achieve more than just improving physical abilities; sports can be used as a tool for education, health and empowerment and has a positive influence on the physical and psychological health of children and young people. As an economic activity it has the potential to contribute to the Harambee Prosperity Plan, in areas of education, job creation and the healthy wellbeing of the Namibian nation.
Although the Namibian sports environment has not evolved into an industry due to it being small, the possibility exists for the evolution into an industry of note. Which potential can offer job creation and career option for a variety of professionals?
For any development to flourish within an institution, there is a need for a clear leadership, but also leadership is about individuals. If these elected/appointed officials cannot be able to provide the necessary drive, then what do we expect.
It is a pity that as a country the citizenry does not know or have direction of where we want to go or achieve in terms of sports. Or is it our nature just to go and participate and hope that ones in a while will stand on the podium by chance? We need clear directions where we want to go and what we want to achieve. Athlete training development should be comprehensive so that even a coach in rural areas, knows, what standards are required. Administrators involved in nurturing youngsters must know, what the right programme for training and nutrition are. Coaches must not be forced to work with the bare minimum because the administrators did not do their job in securing resources on time.
Mathew Haikali is the Managing member of Just Imagine Sports a Sports Consultancy in Events, Communication, Administration and Management.