… Athletes cry foul
The National Olympic Committee (NNOC) has announced a strong team to represent Namibia at this year’s Commonwealth Youth Games at Nassau, Bahamas in July.
Veteran sports administrator and former national senior team netballer Joan Smit has been bestowed the distinct honour of leading the delegation as chef de mission.
Well-known local academic and socialite Clive Gawanab will be doubling as coach and team manager for the tennis discipline.
Other notable names on the list of the travelling entourage are Lucky Gawanab (athletics), Hans Du Toit-Moolman (cycling), Gerson Petrus (boxing) amongst a strong contingent of officials accompanying the Namibian team.
Meanwhile, a chorus of discontent has reared its ugly head over the composition of the athletics team. At the centre of the storm is the rather surprising last-minute omission of sprinting sensation Sade de Sousa from the list.
De Sousa’s name was submitted by Athletics Namibia (AN) but was strangely removed to make way for Natalie Louw, while Albertus Smith was also added to the list of the travelling entourage.
Both athletes’ names were not printed on the list of the initial three athletes submitted to the NNOC with De Sousa, Ivan Geldenhys and Theron Human the only nominated representatives.
According to Joan Smit, the nominated athletes’ good showing was recorded late, but she fell short of explaining why the changes were effected by the NNOC instead of AN.
Questions are also being raised why the Commonwealth Games are suddenly run by the NNOC as opposed to the tradition of this august gathering being under the stewardship of the NSC.
The full delegation is as follows:
Joan Smit (chef de mission), Lucky Gawanab (coach/manager), Danny Geldenhuys, Natalie Louw, Albertus Smith (athletics), Gerson Petrus (coach/team manager), Tangeni Nampadhi, Tryagain Ndevelo (boxing), Moolman du Toit (coach/manager), Charles du Plooy (technician/mechanic), Pierre du Plooy, Alexander Schuster (cycling), Clive Gawanab (coach/team manager), Schalk van Schalkwyk, Carlize Moolman (tennis).