RIYADH — The government has set up a ministerial committee to consider allowing and regulating women’s sports clubs, a senior official has said.
Abdullah Al-Zamil from the General Presidency of Youth Welfare, the top Saudi sporting body, was quoted by local media as saying that the committee was formed to end the “chaos” surrounding women’s sports clubs which are unregulated.
“The mission of the committee is focused on building a system for these clubs,” Al-Zamil was reported as saying.
Last week, a public girls’ school in the Eastern Province introduced physical education to its students by installing basketball hoops for them to use at break time.
The school in Al-Khobar thus became the first public school to openly encourage sports for girls. “The school administration is hoping to raise more awareness about the benefits of sports for students, as well as allowing them to partake in something beneficial and active,” said Amina Bu Bsheit, who is training the students at the school. The General Presidency of Youth Welfare only regulates male sports clubs and its head was recently quoted as saying he would not endorse Saudi women athletes for the 2012 Olympics. – SG