NATION

Commission looking At Scholarships For Athletes

Finance Minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said the Sports Commission was looking into the provision of scholarships for athletes as a means of developing professional sports in the country. “We have setup
11 Jun 2016 11:01
Commission looking At Scholarships For Athletes
Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

Finance Minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said the Sports Commission was looking into the provision of scholarships for athletes as a means of developing professional sports in the country.

“We have setup a Sports Commission to look at various ways to develop professional sports in Fiji. The Sports Commission is also looking into scholarships,” Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said at a budget consultation in Labasa on Thursday.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum was responding to a question from Labasa College headboy, Isaac Kafoa, who queried if the Government was looking at the possibility of setting up training centres for young people to achieve their dreams.

“Our country has produced sports heroes such as Waisale Serevi, Roy Krishna, Vijay Singh, Banuve Tabakaucoro. Is it possible for the Government to setup training centres for sports such as rugby, soccer and netball?” Isaac asked.

“So that those students who have talents in these areas are able to achieve their dreams instead of relying on overseas scholarships which are limited in numbers and cater for elite athletics only.”

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said the Government had an allocation in the sports budget where the nation was paying for overseas coaches to come to Fiji.

“We have even given $2 million for the first hosting of a Super Rugby match which will take place in Suva between the Crusaders and the Chiefs,” he said.

“Now for the first time they will come to Fiji.

“Those people who are keen to play rugby will get to see first hand. This will also promote Fiji as a tourism destination.

“With the sports development just to let you know that we have zero rated duty on all sports equipment.

“Moreover, there are many of our rugby players from countries like France, Australia and Japan have been sending money to their families in Fiji.

“So you see there is not only sports individual development, but also the economy grows as they contribute.”

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum thanked Isaac for his submission.

Edited by Rusiate Mataika

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