The year 2009 will go down into memory lane as one of the most historic and controversial year in netball cycles as administrative flaws threatened to throw the sport into disrepute.
The Tanzania Netball Federation (CHANETA) found themselves in local tabloids for good or bad reasons. The current leadership of CHANETA was elected into office on November 28, 2008 and their first assignment was to put the Chaneta house in order and the second was to start organising tournaments at district, regional and national levels.
Achievements of 2009
Districts managed to host the tournament with individuals and companies coming in the last minute to sponsor the tournament and Bonite Botters were the official sponsor.
The tournament was held at Filbet Bayi Secondary school where all districts took part.
At club level, the leadership of CHANETA did their outmost to host the national tournament; it was held in Mwanza with 18 teams competing for 13 days. Sports pundits supported the idea of hosting the tournament in Mwanza, saying many people from upcountry areas would have a chance to watch the game.
At the national level for the first time in the history of the country and Africa, CHANETA managed to host 5 National netball tournaments at the National Stadium.
Although the host team did not perform well, the country got recognition of International Federation of Netball Association (IFNA). CHANETA leadership also hired an expatriate from New Zealand, Cate Carpenter, to train the national team in readiness for the five-nation tournament.
The nation’s representatives, Taifa Queens, travelled to Singapore for a five nation-tournament. They rubbed shoulders with netball power houses like Scotland and Singapore, and they emerged fourth.
And also for the first time since the country’s independence the national netball team got into the top five of IFNA Africa chapter and 22 in the World.
Chaneta failed to send the U-21 national team for the African Youth Netball Championship in Windhoek, Namibia, angering netball enthusiasts who said the U-21 would have been a source of senior national team players.
The critics were claiming that the current Taifa Queens are made up of players who are old and tired and if CHANETA will not be serious on the U-21 the future of netball in the country is doomed.
They also blame the government for not stepping in to bail out the association financially so that it could send the team to Namibia.
Netball critics are also accusing CHANETA of doing less to revamp netball in secondary and primary schools, saying if this trend is not reversed, the game will die.
The critics are also blaming CHANETA for not being involved directly in Secondary Schools Sports Association (UMISETA) games.
CHANETA drew a national wrath when it announced that their elected secretary general Anna Kibira had been fired from the association. This was at the middle of preparations for the five-nation national tournament hosted by the country.
Netball pundits were worried on the timing of the dismissal of Kibira, saying she should have been given a chance to continue serving and be dismissed after the tournament.
The dismissal of Kibira forced Zanzibar Netball Association (CHANAZ) to pull out of the 5-national tournament and also it drew the wrath of the Ministry of Information, Sports and Culture who asked the National Sports Council (BMT) to solve the matter.
The issue reached a the peak when the two Union and Isles ministries of sports convened a meeting to iron out the feud and work together for the development of the game in the country.
The bone of contention on the feud between Kibira and CHANETA up to this year is not known, and the outcome of the BMT Investigation on the misunderstandings of the two parties is pending.
The low profile on CHANETA activities by outspoken vice chairperson of CHANETA Shy-Rose Bhanji also worries netball lovers in the country.
They say Shy-Rose who was active during her early days in the office is no longer seen in the netball circles.