Sports Minister Nathi Mthethwa has asked the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) to comply with the Zulman Committee's recommendations urgently. Photo: Ian Landsberg/African News Agency/ANA

Sports Minister Nathi Mthethwa has asked the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) to comply with the Zulman Committee's recommendations urgently. 

Mtethwa said the ministry had urged Sascoc to implement changes at South Africa’s Olympic body after he had met with its board in Fourways on Monday.

But the minister could not give tangible examples of what ‘changes’ he wanted Sascoc to make.

“Changes have to be seen, and faces have to change, the Zulman Commission the issue of governance and individuals in some of the instances,” Mtethwa said.

“Some have to be dealt with by Sascoc because it touches on the constitution of Sascoc, for instance, the election of the president. We need to deal with all these negativities around Sascoc. One of the things the compliance team has put format is that we should have earlier processes that usual.”

Change at board level could happen sooner than Sascoc had initially thought with the body’s vice president Barry Hendricks suggesting early board elections could be on the cards. 

“There is no conflict with the IOC charter based on the current report we have in front of us, so we are quite happy that we comply with the IOC regulations,” Hendricks said.
“We have the November AGM, and we have quite a few issues we need to resolve and then the necessity of looking at early elections in the first quarter of 2020.”

The Sascoc elective conference is supposed to take place in November next year but could be brought forward to the first quarter of the new year. This meant Sascoc could have new leadership before the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. 

Hendricks stressed the changes the ministry had insisted on would comply with the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) charter. 

“We are in constant communication with the IOC, IPC and Commonwealth Games Federation around issues of potential conflict,” Hendricks said.

“We want them to stay friends, and we will continue to abide by their charters.”

Among the key Zulman Committee recommendations was that the Sascoc president must be independent and without any affiliation to any sport and recreation body while an independent committee should appoint the person. 

Sascoc initially opposed the recommendation arguing the general assembly must elect the president.

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