Minister Anroux Marais' speech at Peace through Sport Conference 2018
WESTERN CAPE MINISTER OF CULTURAL AFFAIRS AND SPORT, ANROUX MARAIS
PEACE THROUGH SPORT CONFERENCE 2018
20 SEPTEMBER 2018
Good morning, goeiemôre, molweni nonke,
I thank you for the opportunity to address you at the 5th Cape Town International Sport and Peace Conference in our beautiful Mother City today.
With the release of the recent crime stats, it is incredibly easy to fall into a state of despondence when considering our efforts to increase peace through mass participation, skills development and talent identification in sport. The despondence settles in when we become mindful of the empowering nature of sport to uplift our communities and to offer a constructive alternative to the social ills plaguing our vulnerable areas. Yet, our crime stats are on the rise despite the measures put in place by us as sport stakeholders. To add salt to the already open wound is the weakening of our fiscal environment in which we are to function. Our budgets continue to be constrained while our clientele is now jeopardised.
With all this in mind, it is easy to lose hope and fall into despair, but as Mahatma Ghandi reminds, “You may never know what results come of your actions, but if you do nothing, there will be no results”. Now is not the time to become despondent. Now, more than ever, each one of us has to take into introspection why it is that we got into this industry. We have to reignite the passion we started with to dedicate our capabilities and resources to the betterment of a peaceful society through sport. We have to become innovative in our business to do the very best with the very little that we do have, not for recognition or praise but to increase peace, trust and positive development programmes to enable a safe environment in which our youth can flourish.
We also need to come to the realisation that our socio-economic context is an ever-changing environment. The nature of community development through sport is a continuous effort and not a one day, overnight solution to bring about a peaceful society. We then also have to realise that problems cannot be solved with the same thinking that created them because Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over, hoping for a different result.
It is for these reasons that our department strategically plans to review our funding policy, the federation model and establishing and strengthening already standing partnerships to respond more proactively and relevantly to the current needs of our communities under threat by crime. As sport stakeholders, we have to better understand the contexts in which we are to function to optimise our service delivery.
I trust this 5th Cape Town International Sport and Peace Conference will create the foundation for an effective and far reaching local and international cooperation to reach the common goals of all those who cherish the values of Sport and Peace. Let us continue to advocate for the benefits of strengthening a Sport for Peace movement through the development of a global Sport and Peace network in commemoration of our late great Nelson Mandela. Be his legacy and remember as Benjamin Disraeli once said, “The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example.” Be the legacy and be an even greater example.
I thank you.