I am delighted to extend heartiest congratulations to all athletes, sports administrators and other key stakeholders whose performance in sports has commanded national attention which is worthy of recognition at the 2015 National Sports Awards.
Having worked very closely with key stakeholders at all levels of the sector as a sports medical practitioner and a sports administrator at the highest national level, I am fully siezed with the challenges that many face in striving for excellence in sports. This therefore means that any outstanding performance by an athlete or administrator would also be a reflection of the tremendous personal discipline, hard work, dedication and ability to make the best use of limited resources. This deserves a further round of commendation!
The Ministry of Sports must also be commended for hosting yet another National Sports Awards Ceremony. Our athletes and sports administrators need as much support and encouragement as we can give and this must be achieved through a public- private partnership which has long term goals of increasing participation and performance in not only sports but recreation. While Sporting Organizations declare organizational independence, there is also acknowledgement that the role of Governments and other public sector entities is an essential one in enabling sporting entities to realize their goals. I therefore encourage continued partnership while maintaining independence of operations between both entities.
Let us all continue to support the development of sports at the national level. Nelson Mandela once said that “Sport has the power to change the world…it has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than government in breaking down racial barriers.”
Let us celebrate the outstanding performance of those among us who have embraced this philosophy!