Fri Oct 20 21:36:55 CAT 2017

Sascoc gears up for 2016

2012-11-26 10:15:17.0 | CHUMANI BAMBANI |

GIDEON Sam, flushed with the success of being unanimously re-elected president of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc), said he was now focused on the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

But he also had harsh words for Athletics South Africa, saying one medal from track and field - Caster Semenya's silver in the women's 800m race - was unacceptable.

There were no changes in the top three positions of Sascoc, but there was a surprise when Kirsten Nematandani, president of Safa, did not get a vice-presidency post.

Hajeera Kajee was re-elected first vice-president and Les Williams second vice-president.

The two new members of the board are North West Athletics president Keikabile Motlatse and judo's Themba Hlasho. They join Mark Alexander, Kobus Marais and Mubarak Mohamed.

Sam said lack of finance had affected the performances of athletes and was the reason for poor achievements on the world stage such as the London Olympics. But he said this would not be an excuse for the games in Brazil.

He said priority would be to negotiate with the Lotto board for more money. He added that not all member bodies of Sascoc would be financed in the same way.

"We must look at, for example, financing our top five federations," he said.

Sam said preparations for 2016 were already under way.

"We have learnt that you cannot prepare for the Olympics in four years - it takes about 12 years," he said.

Sam criticised infighting and lack of unity and hard work from the federations. He singled out Athletics SA, which failed to live up to expectations at the Olympics.

South Africa won six medals at the London Olympics.

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