Athletes Commission host Athletes’ Roundtable Talk
Updated: Dec 14, 2020
The need for local athletes’ views on the challenges they face as they pursue their various careers in sports could not be overemphasized as they met at OYDC – Sports Development Centre for a Roundtable discussion Saturday 3rd October 2020.
The discussion brought together athletes from various sporting disciplines that included Basketball, Tennis, Judo, Boxing among others that attended.
Among the issues they tabled included the impact of Coronavirus on the athletes with some of the athletes sharing how they have not been able to improve their form due to limitation in access to sports facilities during the near-partial lockdown that the country had experienced.
For some, it was about how they have missed international competitions that they were supposed to take part in during the course of the year.
Athletes’ Commission chairperson Suwilanji Mpondela who was also chairing the discussion set the tone of the meeting by statistically highlighting the country’s performance ranking at International tournaments and how pivotal the Athletes’ Commission is for all Athletes.
The presentation proved a good icebreaker for the athletes as many called for the improvement in sports facilities and their better maintenance.
When almost all the views were, shared Mpondela then took the opportunity to remind the athletes on the need to stay away from doping which she said was a danger to the sports fraternity.
“Don’t engage in doping, it is not worth banned for” she emphasized during her presentation the Doping in sports.
After the event, Mpondela described the event as a success while she also gave special recognition to Zambia University Sports Association (ZUSA) for being present at the event.
“It’s a good start, we got some vocal people and it is nice that Universities and Colleges were here because that is where talent comes from”.
She also pledged to see to it that the views raised in the discussion are given attention by presenting them to the relevant stakeholders.
“We have gotten everything we needed and what is left now is to compile the report and give it to the relevant authorities so that something can be done about it”.
“My main interest is that of the athletes and I’m going not going to omit whatever has been said because that is what is going to protect them especially if we are to be a podium performing country”.
Midlands Basketball Association representative and Matero Magic player Thanzo Msundwe was also elated by the discussions held adding that it was a good platform for all athletes to be heard.
“NOCZ has done a good job to bring the athletes together because what is important right now is the affairs of the athletes because on a daily basis the people that face challenges is us”.
“This platform is good to get out a lot of things,” she said.
University of Zambia (UNZA) Physical Education and Sports Programmes Coordinator Ms. Katongo B. Moonga moderated the meeting, which saw 23 athletes attend, with each of them representing a particular national sports federation.