Sports policies soon – Kumar

Minister for Youth and Sports Parveen Kumar. Picture: FT FILE

THE Minister for Youth and Sports, Parveen Kumar has reaffirmed the Fijian Government’s commitment to a clean sporting industry, with an anti-doping and sports and physical activity policy being formulated.

Kumar said this would be completed later in the year.

“As a nation, we believe strongly in sports partnerships,” he said while opening the Council of Europe’s inaugural Pacific seminar on Keep Crime Out Of Sports (KCOSS+) in Nadi yesterday.

“There are many types of manipulations that exist in various sports and many types of criminals who take advantage.

“The one we hear most about is match-fixing. This is what happens on the field of play.”

The ministry and Fiji National Sports Commission are putting in place a new National Sports Policy and incorporating several new policies to protect Fijian athletes and sports; a Drug Free Sports Act, Safety in Sports Policy, Protection of the Athlete Policy, Child Protection Policy and Sports Governance Code.

He said other forms of manipulation included the falsification of age to participate in competitions, manipulating transfers between clubs to have a certain type of team and threatening athletes to lose a game or creating a penalty for an undue financial gain.

Commission chairman Peter Mazey noted the call for training more top level coaches.

Over the past seven years, the Fijian Government has increased the sporting budget from $400,000 annually to over $20 million, Mazey said.

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