Sports ministry commends union’s moves for unity


VICE-Minister for Sports Wesley Raminai, pictured, commended the Papua New Guinea Rugby Football Union for its effort to find a solution to bringing certain factions together to have the sport unified in their administrative and development programmes.
Raminai expressed his gratitude to leading sports administrator Syd Yates, who accepted the challenge to assist the sport to reach an amicable solution among the factions that continued to have differences in opinions on who should lead rugby union in PNG.
PNGFRU led by Ben Frame and his executive have been in dispute for the leadership of PNG rugby union with a faction that was formerly led by the late Steven Kami.
The factions went their deparate ways in 2016 with the country’s member association’s splitting to allign themselves with either party bringing the sport’s domestic programmes to a stand still.
Raminai also extended a similar word of appreciation to everyone else involved for the part they played to find a way forward to unify the sport.
“I have said it before and I will say it again, any sport is bigger than an individual or a small group of people, who are mandated to run its affairs,” he said.
“We have to put the interests of the sportsmen and women ahead of our own personal interests,” Raminai said.
“Administrators are there holding those executive positions because Papua New Guineans placed them in those positions.
“Whether it is voluntary or a paid job, the stakeholders of any sport, have placed administrators there through a democratic process.
“And while each sport, is guided by its own constitution or statutes or whatever name is used to call its over arching laws and regulations, if the organisation carries the name of our country, whether we like it or not, the national government is a stakeholder as well.
“I will stress it again,that if a national sporting authority compromises the unity of our people, as a Government which represents our people, we have to be concerned.
“Sports must be mindful that the Government will therefore raise the issue if a national sporting organisation’s unity is being compromised,” she said.
“Our people, especially our youth, must not be placed in a position where they cannot represent their country because unknowingly without understanding the politics in sport they are aligned to a group that is not allowed to be part of various sporting programmes because of difference in opinions.”

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