Greetings ladies and gentlemen!
On behalf of volleyball South Africa, I convey good wishes and a cordial welcome to you on the occasion of our Quadrennial General Meeting (QGM) albeit delayed by a few months because of the covid-19 health and safety regulations that we as a national federation followed very strictly.
In addition, I thank the officials from the department of sports, arts and culture and SACOC for taking time off their busy schedule to grace our elective meeting with their esteemed presence. I thank you all warmly.
Colleagues, as is customary at all our national gatherings of volleyball South Africa you are reminded that this is the forum for healthy and robust discussion on volleyball related matters and finding solutions in an amicable way to challenges and shortcomings that we may have encountered over the last few years. If you think i had four years as your president, review the events that happened, I had only a year and a half due to outside negative influences and COVID-19, the few remaining months I had to try and implement some of the positive plans we had.
I thank you wholeheartedly for making the effort to be at this very important meeting and I assure you that I value your inputs to enhance service delivery to our membership which colleagues is our core function.
Ladies and gentlemen we are currently facing challenging times in our country in the lives of our people, namely with rising unemployment, business failures, COVID-19 infection rate increases and its related deaths, over worked front line workers and in sport in general. It is fruitless to merely state these challenges and their effects, often devastating, without talking of solutions to overcome them.
- In the first instance the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 Pandemic almost paralysed the country during the early lockdown periods. All of us were supportive of the government’s health and safety protocols to save lives. Over the many months of the pandemic the easing of the restrictions was on the horizon. As you are aware we had to compile a comprehensive document on our return to play policy which was presented to the Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture the Honourable Nathi Mthethwa for his perusal and permission to start our programmes in a phased-in approach under strict conditions as per the health and safety protocols. Our well researched and lengthy return to play document was given the go ahead by the minister.
- Like volleyball there are several national federations in our country that depend on funding from the government. An added problem for us is that we don’t have corporate funding to broaden our scope of delivering volleyball in all the far flung areas of our vast country. When government decides to decrease funding for sport because of its own financial constraints, it has a serious effect on the completion of our programmmes iro development, administration courses, coaches and referees courses, schools volleyball programmes and participation at the international level and its related training schedules. As a result, non-participation in African Championships lowers our ranking in our Zone and on the African Continent.
- A mantra that is chanted at all sports federations in our country is transformation which according to the government’s transformation charter is not negotiable and must be implemented at the level of the players, team officials and executive.
- Gender equality is high on the agenda of the transformation charter. Sports federations in our country have been given the time and space to implement the 50-50 ratio among men and women on provincial and national executive levels. This must be implemented in a phased- in approach.
- We are constantly told that good governance is a priority federation must aspire to in order to be credible and sustainable. There must be good governance by the provincial structures. Provinces cannot expect VSA to be doing what you fail to do. We are given public funds for our national programmes which must be accounted for. Provinces must be proactive by submitting their business plans for funding from the Provincial DSR, sports confederation and municipalities. I expect that all provinces must present their audited financial reports to their membership and after approval be sent to the VSA office for verification. You are reminded that provincial executive must hold their AGM which is mandatory to be held by September each year. Provincial EXCO must present their audited financial statement at the AGM each year. I am going to instruct all the provincial mentors to make sure that provinces follow their constitutional processes as I will not accept excuses from them.
- The government’s EPG (Eminent Persons’ Group) document has been designed to track a sports federation’s pace of transforming over a given period of time. It tracks all aspects of the federation’s administration, executive members both male and female, schools included, team officials and playing population taking into account race and gender. Provincial executive members must apply their minds in the collation of accurate information which must be sent timeously to the VSA office for final checking before submission to the sports department. We still have provinces that are still struggling to get this information even after my intervention with provincial presidents, school sport national and associate members, I hope their presence here will assist in getting the message over that everybody involved in volleyball must register online on our website and give information to provincial structures to put accurate information on their returns. National executive structures it is your duty to instruct your provincial structures to assist in this regard.
- I have deployed VSA Executive Members to mentor provinces and make sure that provinces meet all required administration standards as prescribed as part of good governance. I am mindful that all of us volunteered to serve as volleyball administrators both at the provincial and national levels. As such we are duty bound to serve in the best interests of those who voted us into power. All executive members are going to sign performance agreements which will be evaluated quarterly. The time of just being here has passed. No one will be here to push his or her own agenda rather than the mandate of his or her portfolio and the mandate given to us by the congress. I will not account alone to this membership and the minister.
- I have instructed the Media Director to cover all community related volleyball events, school volleyball fixtures and associate membership activities to be posted on the VSA website. The Media Director will apply his mind over the next three months to ensure that this project is up and running. Your Media Directors must work on daily basis with the national Director.
- As an incentive for all our elite players every effort must be made for us to participate in international events starting at our Zonal level (Zone V1). It is incumbent on the VSA Executive to engage with DSAC and NLC for funding to realise this initiative that is crucial to our growth as a volleyball playing nation. All qualified coaches in both categories of volleyball will be given the chance to coach all categories of our national teams, it is however a requirement that every qualified coach must be coaching a club on daily basis, a provincial team and participate in tournaments. No inactive coach or administrator will be appointed nationally.
- I am pleased to inform you that we started the process to qualify for the 2021 Tokyo Olympic games in beach volleyball. With our country being blessed with pristine beaches, beach volleyball has given us over the last 20 years’ top ranking in our Zone and on the African Continent. Given the huge cost of international travel and restrictions placed on flights from South Africa in several European countries we chose to go via the route of applying to the FIVB for homologated events played in South Africa to allow our players to obtain the mandatory 12 FIVB events that make a team eligible to participate at the Olympic games provided that they win the Continental Cup in Africa. I am proud to announce that we have secured FIVB Homologated Tournaments for Cape Town and Durban. All players in the country from all the provinces must support these tournaments. The provincial structures must on time approach the departments to assist with transport, conditioning and other logistics and stop referring their challenges to VSA. I need to tell you that I talk to all officials and confederations within your provinces and you failed to even reach minimum requirements that would have enabled your assistance. This need to be rectified now. The Continental Cup is set to take place in Morocco. We are hopeful of winning the continental cup and representing the African Continent at the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games.
- We will always strive to run a clean administration and we are united as an organisation to address challenges facing us.
- We have decided to focus on our mandate as a national federation to deliver volleyball to the masses of our people and the executive must embark on a mission of meeting all the MECs in all nine provinces with all stakeholders and provincial structures to build good relationships with them and source much needed funding from them to conduct empowerment programmes for our membership. VSA has decided that the president will be the real face of the organisation in all such interactions with macro structure personnel.
As you will hear later our track record speaks for itself of the tremendous work done by VSA, our provincial affiliates and our associate members when the sg reads the comprehensive activity report.
As I mentioned earlier i want to focus on the good work that we have done and discard the negativity at the door of the mischief makers. Before i do that let me address the Facebook/WhatsApp presidents/coaches/analysts/best administrators in SA and the world; own a club, affiliate to a province, be elected to town/district and provincial structure and come and argue your best at this level, myself and VSA will never engage with faceless people or unstructured individuals who are afraid to administer a structure. This is the last I will talk about this. Children need to be developed and volleyball need growth.
Before I conclude with my annual address I want to draw your attention to what the membership can look forward to in 2021-2022 season: I will lift all suspensions based on each merit, will never ever waste monies on legal matters that are not volleyball developmental:
- Region 5 Games will be held in Lesotho for girls & boys in the U20 division in December 2021. We will be participating in these Games.
- Zone 6 Club Champs will be held in Mozambique in January 2022
- African Men’s Club Championship will be staged in 2022. Zimbabwe is to bid to host the event.
- Zone 6 to bid to host the World Beach and Indoor Regional Qualifiers. SA to consider to bid to host.
- The National Volleyball League (NVL) will be staged in September 2021 over 3 weekends in the North-South format based on the levels of Covid 19. The final will be held in Bloemfontein.
- Our “new look” National Inter Club Championship which may be rebranded will be held in the latter part of 2021.
- SASVA is to implement its RTP document in all our schools, it must also start to show itself up in all provinces and all schools.
- I have declared 2021 as the “Year of the Development of Female Referees” This programme will begin immediately after the QGM. The referee’s commission working with provinces and the department must identify female referees and hold level 1 VSA course in each province and register all successful candidates on FIVB website and make sure that we host an FIVB course to qualify them.
- The Presidential Development Legacy Programme: 9 towns will be identified in SA where there is no volleyball activity to start this programme. I will visit each of these towns to kick start these programmes and leave equipment behind for them to continue the programme. The province will adopt these towns to continue with the programme. This Programme will begin after the QGM.
- Information I gathered from provincial audit and engaging with provincial leadership is that provincial Manco members need to be empowered with admin workshops to be more effective in managing the affairs of the province. Such programmes will be held soon. Thereafter districts will benefit from such initiatives. It is disappointing to have noticed the challenges they are facing. TD and Treasurer must speed up this process.
- I have revived the following commissions and placed a convenor to head each one to operate optimally. Together with my Manco and exco members we will oversee their functioning on an ongoing basis. The following commissions will be operational:
(a) REFEREES; (b) COACHES; (c) MEDICAL & SPORTS SCIENCE; (d) LEGAL; (e) WOMEN & YOUTH; (f) COMPETITIONS; (g) BEACH VOLLEYBALL, the TD work will be to make sure that this commissions are operational and he will report as per his job description.
- After this QGM all VSA Manco and Exco members will be obliged to sign a Performance Agreement that will be monitored on an ongoing basis. This will ensure that work is done in all the portfolios to effectively serve our membership.
- All VSA programmes viz development, administration, referees, coaches (indoor & beach volleyball) will be directed through the VSA office together with the relevant portfolio holder.
- Despite being forewarned about gender equality and transformation before provinces held their respective AGM I am disappointed that many provinces have let us down in this regard. Every effort must be made to bring women on board as provincial executive members.
- I am pleased to announce that during the period January to March 2021 VSA Manco was actively involved in 8 meetings via the Zoom platform to take care of administrative matters and prepare for the QGM and for the 2021 season.
- I want to welcome Attorney Jay Reddy who joins us as the Head of our Legal Commission. Welcome, Sir.
Finally, I want to place on record my gratitude to the late Siven Samuel who was the head of our legal commission. I commend him for his untiring efforts despite his heavy work load as an attorney to come to our assistance whenever we needed him. This he did for free. His good work was recognised by CAVB who appointed him to head African Continental Body’s (CAVB) Legal Commission. He also served as the Secretary of the FIVB’s Legal Commission. Sadly, Siven Samuel passed away through COVID-19 complications on 31st December 2020.
Ladies and gentlemen my gratitude goes to my MANCO & Executive and Thierry Mabeka in the VSA office for a job well done. I am informing them now to get ready to enhance service delivery to our membership in 2021.
My heartfelt gratitude goes to the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture and the Lotteries board for their funding that makes possible our work to deliver volleyball to our people. I commit myself as the president of VSA and my executive to work tirelessly in serving our people in both urban and rural areas in our vast country
Colleagues, please take note that COVID-19 is here to stay for a while and the only way we can over-come the dreaded pandemic is by strictly adhering to the health and safety protocols as stipulated by our national department of health and department of sports, arts and culture. This i will never compromise and advice all of you to do same.
Ladies and gentlemen namely, the provincial & associate member delegates you are reminded that as the QGM is an elective process I trust that you have a mandate from your respective membership to make the right choices of personnel to serve the best interest of volleyball in our country bearing in mind transformation and gender equity. I beg of all nominees to understand this. I want to further warn that transformation and gender equality is a must. I beg of you to give your members information because I know that you partially do so. Make sure that a local child know what is going on in VSA.
Once again I thank you for attending this crucial elective meeting.
Stay safe, observe all the health and safety protocols at this meeting.
God bless you and your families.
Have a safe journey home.
Released by Volleyball South Africa
PR & Media Director
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