Sunday 11 April 2021
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Until when will we rely on Cuban coaches? – Tjongarero

Deputy Minister of Sport, Youth and National Services Agnes Tjongarero has registered her disappointment over the administration of the local Paralympic team.
The deputy minister said this when she sent off 39 para-athletes to South Africa, Bloemfontein where the locals were due to participate in a classification competition.
The team was led by Cuban international coach Barbra Fernandes because local guru Michael Hamukwaya had other commitments.
This irked Tjongarero who lamented that it is unacceptable for Namibia’s pool of coaches to remain as shallow as it was at independence.
“This is really bad. 28 years after independence and we are still relying on Cuban nationals to coach our teams. That is totally unacceptable. I understand that the Cubans are here on a bilateral agreement, but they are not here for free.
We are paying them handsomely,” said Tjongarero.
She questioned the administration, especially the Namibia Sport Commission, on the manner in which they are handling sports affairs in the country.
“Until when will we rely on the Cubans?
We keep importing the Cubans ,  why is there no understudying taking place?
Where are the local coaches that must shadow the foreigners to ensure skills transfer?
I personally have no problems having the Cubans here but we need to take away something from them.
What if Michael gets sick? This is a serious issue.”
She added: “I raised this issue in one of the meetings with the directors earlier this year but it seems no one is listening.
This is why we don’t have coaches in this country, because we just rely on foreigners to do everything and not learning anything from them.”
The scarcity of local coaches comes a long way in the entire sport fraternity and Tjongarero linked it to the lack of talent development across the country.
“There is talent in the regions but we will not see it because there are no coaches there to nourish the talent.
In the end, we will always have kids from the nearby towns and the city because no one goes there,” she said.
The country only has four active classified para-athletes.
At the same occasion, Hamukwaya also received his blessings for his trip to the United States of America for an internship program focussing on disability sport.

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