Solidarity takes 'sports quota' case to the Labour Court

06 March 2019 - 06:30 By Ernest Mabuza
Sport and Recreation Minister Tokozile Xasa is one of the parties opposing Solidarity's application to set aside the ministry's transformation charter.
Sport and Recreation Minister Tokozile Xasa is one of the parties opposing Solidarity's application to set aside the ministry's transformation charter.
Image: Wessel Oosthuizen/Gallo Images

Trade union Solidarity said it would ask on Wednesday that the Labour Court in Johannesburg set aside the sport and recreation ministry's transformation charter.

It said that if its application was successful, it would mean an end to the politicising of sport - and that the focus would be on developing and using the talents of all athletes and players.

This application is opposed by the minister of sport, the South African Rugby Union, Cricket South Africa, Athletics South Africa and Netball South Africa.

Solidarity said the application was part of the union and its sister organisation AfriForum’s joint campaign against applying quotas in sport.

The organisations said that in the run-up to the case, Solidarity and AfriForum, by means of the Promotion of Access to Information Act, managed to obtain the specific quota percentages for each of the various sports in May 2017.

This information revealed that the intention of sports authorities went way beyond team selection. The organisations said the quotas even involved the composition according to race of coaches, board and committee members, and support staff.

Solidarity deputy chief operations officer Werner Human said, if approved, this transformation charter would give sports minister Tokozile Xasa almost unlimited power over sport.

Human said should a sport not meet the quota percentage, that particular sport's funding could be stopped.

"The effect of the powers the minister would have is that she could strip the Springboks of their blazers if rugby has not 'transformed' enough," Human said.


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