Transformation impossible before RWC

2015-11-05 20:05
Fikile Mbalula

Johannesburg - Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula said it was a well known fact that the Springboks would not be racially transformed in time for the Rugby World Cup in London.

"I said on May 18 that the national team will not be able to make [transformation] targets," Mbalula said. 

He highlighted that there had been a lot of criticism about the composition of the squad. 

Addressing a media conference at the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) offices in Johannesburg, Mbalula reminded the media that the SA Rugby Union (Saru) had signed a document stating they would implement the 50/50 transformation plan in the next five years. 

"Every year, they should account for what they have done," Mbalula said, denying claims that he was softer in his approach to rugby transformation than to cricket.

If Saru failed to implement the 50/50 plan, there would be consequences, he insisted. 

This included the deregistration of the team, withdrawal of their permission to use national colours, and a lack of support for sports bids.

Mbalula said transformation should start at grassroots level, especially in public schools. 

He said currently, black sportsmen who had made it into national teams came from private schools where sports was promoted. That needed to change, he said. 

What was needed was a financial boost for the ministry in order to develop sports infrastructure. 

Mbalula said approximately R10bn would be needed over a 10-year period.

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