Ministry outlines sport shortcomings

THE Ministry of Sports says inadequate trained coaches and sports administrators are among the contributing factors to athletes’ under-performance in international competitions.

Speaking at the two-day consultative meeting to review the 2012 national sports policy yesterday at Lusaka’s Olympic Youth Development Centre (OYDC), director of sports Bessy Chelemu noted that many coaches in Zambia were still at level one which was not competitive to the modern sports technique.

Chelemu said the inadequacy of trained coaches had a negative bearing on the athlete’s performance.

“It is not a hidden fact that we have a limited number of highly trained coaches to inspire our athletes to do well at competitions. Most of our coaches are on level one, and only two or three in a particular sport are higher than level two. This is among the challenges that sports development was facing and we need to find a solution at this meeting,” she said.

She said it was for this reason that the ministry in partnership with other stakeholders such as non-governmental organisations and associations was providing training scholarship to coaches and administrators.

“Through bilateral technical cooperation, capacity building has been facilitated;  for instance the Government secured some scholarships for three athletes from Zambia Martial Arts Association and 12 scholarships for officers in sport management,” she said.

Chelemu said Government was making head ways in ensuring that athletes in provinces such as Muchinga, North-Western and Luapula among others had proper sports infrastructure.

She said the lack of sports infrastructure has seen athletes failing to cope with the modern structures at international tournaments.