‘Bring back the sports ministry’

Federations rue sports board’s poor response.


Natasha Raheel August 17, 2011

KARACHI: Various sports federations in Pakistan have called for the re-appointment of a federal sports minister to make full use of the country’s sports board, which they feel has been not fully productive recently.

The distribution of funds and management of affairs among the 40 federations is now conducted by the Ministry of Inter Provincial Coordination (ICP) after the federal ministry was dissolved in June.

According to the Pakistan Swimming Federation (PSF) Secretary Majid Waseem, the Pakistan Sports Board’s lack of organisation had almost left the swimming squad stuck in Lahore before they managed to participate at the World Swimming Championships in China last month.

“It’s extremely confusing for all the federations especially when it comes to foreign tours,” Waseem told The Express Tribune. “We used to get the NOC from the sports ministry but now we need to deal with the PSB, which is run by two director-generals. Since the ICP don’t know their work, the sports ministry is required to keep an eye on the PSB.”

Table tennis

Meanwhile, Pakistan’s table tennis squad was supposed to participate in the junior championship in India this month but had to cancel their plans after facing a visa delay due to non-issuance of an NOC in time.

Snooker issues

While most bodies continue to lament the state of affairs, the Pakistan Billiards and Snooker Association (PBSA) has given up hope of becoming a centralised national federation.

According to the PBSA President Alamgir Sheikh, the body has the support of the Pakistan Olympic Federation (POA) but since they need the PSB’s approval, their hopes are not high. The PSB, citing a lack of funds, has been unable to process the PBSA’s request in the absence of the sports ministry.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 18th, 2011.

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