Windhoek - The Namibia Sports Commission (NSC) is keeping its head up and will do the best it can to deliver the best possible sporting calendar amidst the new coronavirus pandemic.
NSC administrator Freddy Mwiya told The Southern Times Sport this week that the organisation was positive that the year would not be lost to COVID-19.
“The year 2020 was a challenge starting from the month of March. We had big plans but all sport codes plans where affected and that was the reality. But the good part is we had time to plan and I encouraged all federations last year to take advantage and utilise the time for planning purposes for this year. But as you can see there are still challenges," said Mwiya.
“I remember in the message I gave out, I said there was need for us to have a paradigm shift in the way we do sport business. The sports industry is very big. We can see what is happening across the globe, whereby some sporting activity has resumed.
“We do not know when COVID-19 is going to end and we cannot just shut down everything. What will happen if COVID-19 continues for five years? How are we going to survive in the sport industry?”
He said physical activity was also good for health resilience in the face of the virus.
“I will give a very good example: what happened to the ten Brave Warriors (men’s national soccer team) players who tested positive during camp? They were very healthy with no symptoms, and they were surprised to get positive results. I encourage people to remain active so as to minimise the effects of the virus.
“This is the time for people to help the government and take part in sports activities, though we must continue to take precautionary measures, especially in contact sports.”
Mwiya urged sports administrators to think outside the box in terms of generating revenue during the pandemic. He said virtual contests were viable options for some sporting codes.
“Due to COVID-19 it will be very difficult to get financial support for sports because the money is needed for healthcare… That is why we are pleading with the corporate sector so that they can make some allocations for sports, especially for our less-privileged athletes.”