By Carlos Kambaekwa
The country’s football authorities were left with egg on their faces after the beleaguered and forever bungling association acted in violation of the Namibian Sports Act by awarding national colours to its foreign coach Arie Schans at the official farewell dinner for the Brave Warriors at the Windhoek Country Club Resort and Casino on Tuesday evening.
The 65-year-old Schans, a Dutch national, was drafted into the Brave Warriors setup following the health deterioration of Benson Bamfuchile, who eventually succumbed to his illness at a local hospital near his home town of Kitwe in Zambia last month.
According to the Namibian Sport Act of 2003, all national colours can only be awarded to nationals, which makes Schans a non-starter because of his Dutch nationality.
However, the permanently bungling Namibian football directorate had a different interpretation of rules and regulations and showered the new Brave Warriors coach with a brand-new blazer with a full badge embroiled with the Namibian emblem.
Alerted on the blunder, the Brave Warriors Chef de Mission to Ghana Titus Kunamwene was adamant the association was within its constitutional right to award national colours to their foreign import, but a seemingly irritated Stanley Simataa, the Chairperson of the National Sports Commission would have none of this.
“It’s a blatant violation of the National Sports Act and we will definitely request the association to reverse that decision with immediate effect,” fumed the articulate sport official.
Simataa also expressed disappointment with the association for not inviting any executive members from the country’s supreme sports body.
Agnes Tjongarero attended the dinner in her capacity as President of the National Olympic Committee, while no official invitation was extended to the Chief Administrator of the National Sport Commission, Rusten Mogane.
The gala evening was infested with a significant number of bungling with the sequence of protocol in total disarray after the line minister’s address was incorrectly scheduled, whilst confusion also reared its ugly head as to who should have the honour of dishing out national colours to the players and officials alike.
Approached for comment, a clearly embarrassed Acting Secretary General of the beleaguered association Barry Rukoro acknowledged the error but could not elaborate further as to how such a blunder could occur, or what action would be taken against the culprits, rather saying that the matter has been put to rest.