Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
POORLY administered sporting associations are driving away potential sponsors from investing in the industry, according to PPC Zimbabwe.
PPC Zimbabwe managing director, Kelibone Masiyane, said failure to adhere to tenets of corporate governance affected sponsor-sporting association’s relations.
Speaking at the launch of the 2018 edition of the PPC Matopos Ultra-Marathon set for March 24, Masiyane said PPC Zimbabwe had in the last two months invested heavily in cricket and athletics. They unveiled a $100 000 deal as development partners with Zimbabwe Cricket as the official shirt sponsors for the national team at the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018.
PPC will also build 60 concrete wickets around the country.
The company has also made a giant leap by getting the Matopos Ultra-Marathon classified as a qualifier for the Comrades Marathon after enlisting the services of leading sports timing company Championchip Africa.
Engaging Championchip Africa means this year’s PPC Matopos 33 Miler (53km) and half marathon (21.1km) will be electronically timed. Runners that clock qualifying times for the Comrades Marathon in the 33 Miler will automatically book places for the gruelling race, which draws participants from all over the world.
On whether PPC Zimbabwe would spread their wings to other disciplines, Masiyane reiterated his company’s commitment to supporting sport.
“There are other partnerships that we’ve done with rugby, but I think what really stops us or restricts us is generally around management. You see why we engage with cricket; the management of that sporting category is completely different from the other areas. So as PPC we would like to be involved in much more categories, but obviously it’s depending also on the professionalism around running of those sporting areas. So we’ve touched a bit on rugby, we’ve also touched a bit on soccer, but we haven’t really gone to a level where you see particularly with this marathon and cricket,” said Masiyane.
The Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) as well as the Sports Leaders’ Institute of Zimbabwe (SLIZ) are some of the bodies that continue to highlight the importance of upholding good corporate governance in order to attract fruitful partnerships.
SLIZ noted that retrogressive administrators hamper progress in the country’s sports industry and should not be allowed to lead associations.
It noted that for the country to realise full benefits from the sports industry, which has the potential to create numerous job opportunities for many, knowledgeable leaders should be trained.
“SLIZ is committed to capacity development of administrators because we believe the foundation of a strong sporting nation is having people that understand fundamentals of leadership and the subject that they’re at.
“You get worried when you see illiterate people holding key positions in serious associations. There is a strong need to have literate people that will understand or interpret simple things like the constitution. Applying the tenets of good corporate governance helps an institution become credible and also attracts sponsors,” said SLIZ director Russell Mhiribidi.
Acting Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) director-general Joseph Muchechetere, is on record saying they are worried that most associations were only functional at national level, but dormant at the grassroots because their leaders were failing to set up structures.
“We’re at a time where Government is committed towards building the sport industry.
“You can see that sport is being taken seriously as an industry through the introduction of physical education and sport as an examinable subject. It’s time that we have competent people leading our sports associations,” Muchechetere said.