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Regional Annual Sport Awards postponed, says AUSC

Regional Annual Sport Awards postponed, says AUSC - Sports Leo

The African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 has postponed the fifth edition of the regional annual sport awards (Rasa), which was to be hosted in Eswatini on 23 May.

This follows the AUSC region 5 troika of ministers’ decision to put all activities planned for the first six months of the year on hold. The decision was made at the first-ever troika of ministers virtual meeting on 2 April via a digital platform.

A new date for the event will be considered once the pandemic is declared over.

CEO of the AUSC Region 5, Stanley Mutoya said: “The troika of ministers took a decision to halt all activities of the region in the first half of the year due to the crisis caused by the coronavirus in the world and in particular in our region.

“With most of our member countries having introduced responsive measures that include strict social distancing and travel restrictions, the ministers complemented government efforts by postponing all sports activities of the region, which includes the Rasa.”

The Rasa celebrates excellence and outstanding performances by sportsmen and sportswomen. It aims to motivate and celebrate the iconic contributions by our sportsmen and sportswomen to the development of sport every year, the AUSC said.

The event is open only to those countries that host their own national annual sports awards as winners of these national awards become automatic nominees for the Rasa.

The region said it was pleased that all 10 its member countries now host their own national awards.

The inaugural edition of Rasa was held in 2016 in South Africa, which went on to host the first three editions of the event before the awards moved to Namibia, Windhoek in 2019.

The event, which has grown in popularity over the years, has stimulated the spirit of excellence throughout the sports delivery system in the region, AUSC said.

It said sports icons such as the current Zimbabwe minister of youth, sports and recreation, Dr Kirsty Coventry, Caster Semenya and Wayde Van Niekerk were some of the stars that have gone on to win gongs at the Rasa since its inception.

Karabo Sibanda of Botswana, coach Gilbert Nyamutsamba from Zimbabwe, sports journalists such as South Africa’s Batho Bareng Kortjaas – also known as BBK, Ferai Machamire from Zimbabwe and OG Molefe from South Africa are also recipients of Rasa awards over the years.

Nominees for the fifth edition of the Rasa were being received in readiness for the voting process that was due to commence on 15 April after verification by the awards audit firm.

“Given the postponement of the event and the fact that the voting process had not yet commenced, we will have to reconsider the event delivery roadmap to recast the process once we have a clearer picture of the status of the novel COVID-19 pandemic,” Mutoya said.

The event involves a very stringent three-phase selection process that ends with a selection by a voting college of carefully selected sports journalists from each member country, who vote for the winner and runners up for each of the 12 Rasa categories.

In partnership with ANA and Sports Leo

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