YOUTH, Sport, Arts and Recreation Minister, Kirsty Coventry, says they have made amendments on the classification of sport codes with an announcement to be made in the next few days.
Coventry said there has been confusion regarding the classification of the sport codes.
However, the Ministry, together with the Sports and Recreation Commission and health personnel, have gone through the different sport for classification, guided by World Health Organisation.
“There has been a bit of confusion, in terms of sport and low-risk sport and categories, and national associations have had a lot of questions and I think that was due to the SI (Statutory Instrument) that came out at the beginning of the week,’’ said Coventry.
“We have since refined . . . I have made some amendments and I will be talking on some of those points.
“The sport codes will be notified in the next few days which classification they are in.
“So, that means whether they are low-risk, medium risk, high risk, the Ministry along with SRC, along with doctors have gone through the different sports codes.
“And, we have been guided by the WHO guidelines in terms of which sport falls into the different categories.
“Once the national associations have received those categories, they will then come to the SRC with their plans on moving and then final approval will be given to the Ministry.
“Our first and main priority is in safeguarding the people of Zimbabwe, and that is our athletes included, and the best way to do this is to be able to classify sports in low-risk, medium-risk and high-risk.
“Obviously, low-risk meaning less contact or no contact because that is how there is less chance of spreading COVID-19,” said Coventry.
National associations will have to apply to the Ministry to carry out their activities.
“The first main change is the definition of low-risk, previously we mentioned specific sport codes, we have taken out the specific sport codes as per the WHO guidelines,’’ said Coventry.
“Low-risk means non-contact sports and low-risk of transmission, so we will follow those guidelines and now that’s what the SI will speak to.
“Secondly, all sports codes need to apply through the SRC to the Ministry or the Minister if they want to train, compete or exercise provided that they meet and comply with all national and WHO safeguarding guidelines.
“If a sport association is found non-compliant they will be asked to immediately cease all activities and they could face criminal sanction.
“The third is all sports facilities and responsible authorities or venues have to keep and maintain a log book of all persons entering and exiting them and they must keep these log-books for a minimum of one month,” said Coventry.
She said there won’t be any competitions or spectators unless authorised and those found in breach will be shut down and could face criminal sanctions.
And, further from the prohibition or the sale of alcohol at the events, no sale of food to be eaten at the venue, and facilities, will be allowed except takeaways.
The Minister called national associations to send in their plans, about how they would like to re-open, to the Sports and Recreation Commission.
They will be then vetted and the plans will be sent to the Ministry for final approval with the WHO and national guidelines being taken into full consideration.