The Herald (Harare)

14 February 2013

Zimbabwe: Coltart in Cricket Indaba

THE Minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture, David Coltart, was last night expected to meet the chairman of Zimbabwe Cricket, Peter Chingoka, to discuss problems bedevilling the sport in the country.

Coltart yesterday indicated on his Facebook wall that he was going to hold a meeting with Chingoka "to discuss Zimbabwe Cricket".

In the meeting with Chingoka, the two were expected to discuss mostly the thorny issue of the implementation of the controversial directive by the Minister which stated that only people who have represented the country at national level, in those sporting disciplines, would now be considered for a position on the panel of selectors.

But this was not received well, with some sections of the sporting associations, especially cricket where convener of selectors, Givemore Makoni, claimed that black technical staff could systematically be driven out of the game's key structures, which deal with the selection and coaching of national teams, triggering another split along racial lines.

Furthermore, ZC went on and indicated that they would not follow the directive as it was in violation of their constitution, in breach of their contractual obligations and in conflict with the International Cricket Council's Articles of Association.

However, the Sports Commission went on to amend the directive where they stated that "not less than 50 percent of the selectors shall have represented Zimbabwe as athletes/players at the senior level in the particular sport discipline provided that all chairpersons/conveners shall be former national team players/athletes".

And still the ZC found that this was not in the best interest of the game. Meanwhile, yesterday marked four years since Coltart assumed office as Minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture and he said that "we have done a lot to stabilise this sector but there is so much still to be done".

Yesterday saw Coltart visiting Harare's Magamba Hockey Stadium for an inspection of the facility which was built for the 1995 All-Africa Games.

Magamba Hockey Stadium is now in a dilapidated state and it needs major refurbishments ahead of the World Series tournament which the International Hockey Federation would like it to be staged there in 2014.

"Today (yesterday) has been very much a sports orientated day. It started off with an inspection tour of Magamba Hockey Stadium which we are starting to rehabilitate. This is in preparation for the FIH World Series Hockey tournament scheduled for 2014 that the president of the FIH promised me he would allocate to Zimbabwe at the Olympics last year if we rehabilitated Magamba," Coltart wrote on his Facebook wall yesterday.

After inspecting Magamba Hockey Stadium, Coltart went to hold "a series of meetings" yesterday morning, including one with Paul Nenjerama, the new chairman of the Zimbabwe Boxing Board of Control.

He, however, did not disclose what was discussed during this meeting.

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