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LOBAMBA – Budget estimates for the Financial Year 2020/21 reflect that Eswatini Sports and Recreation Council will receive an increased allocation.

According to the estimates which were tabled in parliament by Minister of Finance Neal Rijkenberg yesterday during the Budget Speech 2020 yesterday, ESRC were allocated E7 724 710 while in the previous year it was E6 724 710.

Grants to the development Zone Six, Sihlangu and Commonwealth Youth Exchange programme remained at E279 456, E5 million and E442 536, respectively. In total, the national budget stood at E24.08 billion and the Ministry of Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs received an increased allocation of  E52 287 909  as compared to the E45 912 274 they were allocated in the financial year 2019/20.

“Interviewed after the speech, Minister of Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs Harries ‘Madze’ Bulunga said the figures were promising and they had to work with what they had been allocated to them as a ministry.

Firstly we want to thank His Majesty’s government for the improved allocation. We could have not asked for much as we all aware of the fiscal challenge the country is facing.  We will have to prioritise on where we channel the funds,” the minister said.


He went on to say that Sihlangu allocation will remain unchanged as they will get E5 million while noting that only the ESRC will receive an increased E1 million.

“We are positive that the increased package in the ESRC will go a long way in developing sport in general in the country,” he said.
Meanwhile, ESRC CEO Darius Dlomo said this was a welcome change.

“Like we had highlighted previously that we had a lot on our plate this year, it being an Olympics year. The budget could not have been better than this and we want to appreciate His Majesty’s government. We will do the necessary adjustments to ensure the funds are utilised correctly,” Dlomo said.


He went on to  say that it was a relief since some of the funds would be channelled  to Africa Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 Under 20s Youth Games in Lesotho in December, funding the 29 associations and the Regional Sports Awards in May, among other programmes.

Meanwhile, the budget allocation for the ESRC was decreased last year. In the past budget (2018), the country’s sports supreme body was allocated E7 million which was a decrease of E5.5 million as compared to 2017, when they had received over E13 million.

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