SPORTS

PM Tells How Country’s Sporting Industry Grew After Many Years Of Missed Opportunities

The commitment by the Fiji First Government to invest in the country’s sporting industry has paid off. This was the gist of Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama’s message while speaking at the Fiji National Sports Commission conference in Suva, today.
23 Apr 2022 16:16
PM Tells How Country’s Sporting Industry Grew  After Many Years Of Missed Opportunities
Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama during this morning’s Yellow Ribbon Walk in Suva. Photo: Supplied

The commitment by the Fiji First Government to invest in the country’s sporting industry has paid off.

This was the gist of Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama’s message while speaking at the Fiji National Sports Commission conference in Suva, today.

He said prior to 2011, sports in the country stretches back to many decades but Fiji was not a sporting powerhouse it should have been.

This was, Bainimarama says, was due to lack of vision by those at that time to direct the sporting industry forward.

“In 2011, Government produced a national sports policy which recommended the formation of the national sports commission,” Bainimarama, who is also the Fiji Rugby Union president said.

The formation of the Fiji National Sports Commission came about two years later.

“No more working in silence and no more missed opportunities,” Bainimarama said.

He highlighted the aim behind this was for sports in the country to become a professional and profitable industry.

“Also, a respected and world renowned powerhouse in the Pacific,” he added.
The Prime Minister said the conference was where government, commission, sporting federations and athletes come together and look at the way forward.
“Government has invested more than $7 million into sports and this does not include the $6m to the Fiji Rugby Union.
“Government has ensured the building of parks and improve (sporting) facilities. Also, the empowering of girls and women to have a rewarding career in sports.”

Bainimarama said this reflected in the two Olympic Games gold medal wins in sevens rugby and one gold medal at the Paralympics.

He also mentioned about the Fijian women’s rugby sevens team winning the Olympic bronze medal as well.

“Then we have Fiji Drua in Super Rugby and the Fijiana Drua in today’s Super W final. We have athletes from yachting qualifying for the Olympic Games on merit.

“We have seen the rise of chess, hockey, table tennis, karate, boxing and cricket.”

Forward thinking and what’s next, Bainimarama said apart from rugby the focus in on the success of other sports internationally. Also, the transition of athletes into coaching.

Feedbacks: leonec@fijisun.com.fj



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