WITH effect from today, a number of sporting disciplines, considered low risk by the Government, can commence their activities provided they get clearance from the Sport and Recreation Commission.
The sporting disciplines will also have to strictly comply with the Government directives meant to stop the spread of Covid-19 in this country.
The SRC will be strict in their enforcement and inspectors will be dispatched to various sites to ensure compliance with the conditions and the law and those caught offside will face sanctions.
The inspections will be carried out without any notice.
In the case of cricket, matches will not be permitted while field events in athletics are also prohibited.
The sports codes which have been given clearance, provided they satisfy conditions laid out by authorities are — the Zimbabwe Golf Association, Zimbabwe Aquatic Union, Cycling Zimbabwe, Triathlon Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Cricket, Zimbabwe National Bass Federation and the National Anglers Union of Zimbabwe.
The others are the Polo Association of Zimbabwe, the Polocrosse Association of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Archery Association, the National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Equestrian Federation, Zimbabwe Shooting Sport Federation, Rowing Association of Zimbabwe and Tennis Zimbabwe.
“The Sport and Recreation Commission (SRC) hereby gives notice of the decision by the Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation (Kirsty Coventry) to the following qualifying low-risk sport disciplines to commence activities, with effect from Monday, June 1, 2020, subject to the following provisions,” the Sports Commission said in a statement.
“Zimbabwe Golf Association — to provide a list of all golf courses to be used, to reset the time-lines for golfers, no caddies and accompanying family members.
“Zimbabwe Aquatic Union — four persons allowed in a lane at any given time; a maximum of 32 people in a standard pool; levels of chlorine should be according to the required standards.
“Cycling Zimbabwe — avoid riding slip stream; Triathlon Zimbabwe — avoid riding or running slip stream.
“Zimbabwe Cricket — no game situations, no spitting on or shining of the ball; Zimbabwe National Bass Federation — no intercity travel, use of log books compulsory.
“Polo Association of Zimbabwe — approved as proposed; Polocrosse Association of Zimbabwe — contact scrimmaging prohibited; Zimbabwe Archery Association — approved as proposed.
“National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe — only track and field approved, no field events at this stage, no relays; Zimbabwe Equestrian Federation- no competitions, one accompanying parent permitted.
“Zimbabwe Shooting Sport Federation — no use of indoor facilities; Rowing Association of Zimbabwe — four men and eight men not approved, sharing equipment and apparel prohibited; Tennis Zimbabwe — balls to be stored on site; balls to be sanitised before us.”
The Ministry of Sport on Friday released a list of several sporting disciplines considered to be low-risk but said they first had to apply through the Sports and Recreation Commission for approval to resume their activities amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Golf is among those sporting disciplines and it appears there was a misunderstanding of the procedure to be followed on the resumption of their activities by some individuals who went on to play.
An email seen by The Herald showed there was activity at some golf clubs in Harare at the weekend and people had to be forced off the golf course.
“Management is on site getting people off the course, if you have a tee time for later today, please do not come to play and share this information with anyone in your group who may not see this email.
“Tee sheets for Sunday 31st through Friday 5th June will be left as they are, however, the tee sheet for Saturday 6th June will not be opened until such time as we know when we are allowed to officially re-open.
“Our sincere apologies for any inconvenience, but we hope that this will be resolved shortly,” read an email from a general manager at one of clubs.
However, yesterday’s communication from the Sports Commission, led by Harare lawyer Gerald Mlotshwa, provided clarification.
Such activities, said the SRC, were not allowed as authority was not granted and investigations will be carried out and those clubs found to have done so will face possible sanctions.
“The above sports disciplines shall, in addition to the above conditions, adhere strictly to the provisions of Statutory Instrument 115/2020 and related legislation concerning the containment of Covid-19 in Zimbabwe, as well as any additional guidelines that may be issued from time to time by the SRC, the Ministry or their respective national sports associations (NSAs),” read the statement.
“Multi-disciplinary sports clubs are strongly encouraged to seek the guidance of the SRC, or relevant NSA, in implementing the above approval and conditions from the Minister.
“The approved sport disciplines are reminded that when intending to hold a competition, they must apply for EACH and EVERY such event individually through their respective NSA.
“No approval will be granted to to a monthly or yearly competition.
“The ministry may consider new applications, on a weekly basis, provided that these meet the requirements set out in the legislation.
“NSAs or sport disciplines or clubs, to the extent that they have not done so already, may apply for such consideration through the SRC.
“All applications will receive written notice if the ministry’s decision from the SRC and the public shall be notified accordingly as well.
“Enforcement officers will monitor compliance with the said conditions, legislation and any future guidelines.
“Full cooperation from the respective NSAs, sport facilities and clubs is expected. Inspections will be conducted without notice. if any NSA, sports facility or club is found to be non-compliant, immediate enforcement, including the shutdown of the facility concerned, or withdrawal if authority granted to commence activities, will occur.”
The SRC said they were also carrying out investigations into reports that some golfers were back on the courses at the weekend.
“To this end, the SRC is carrying out investigations that certain golf clubs had commenced sporting activities without obtaining prior authority of the ministry as required in terms of the legislation,” read the statement,
“In the event that these allegations are proved, the sports clubs concerned will be disciplined accordingly, including the imposition of penalties or the suspension of the authority granted by the a ministry, above, in respect of any such club.
“In conclusion, affected athletes, institutions and the general public are encouraged to seek guidance directly from the SRC, in writing, regarding the provisions of the legislation it the implementation thereof, taking into account that the nature of the Covid-19 pandemic and its containment may, at times, require the issuance of pronouncements, directives and other instruments of law with little or no notice to the affected parties.”