The Cricket World Cup woes loom large

“We can’t allow the cost to run away” (Dr Ralph Gonsalves, quoted in The Vincentian Friday 24 March 2006).
It seemed rather interesting and perhaps a little scary to have read the aforementioned words of Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves after his recent visit to the Arnos Vale Playing Field to inspect the progress of work at the facility relative to the preparations for the Cricket World Cup 2007 (CWC 2007).
Rather disturbingly, the aforementioned document also quotes Dr Gonsalves thus: “some of the numbers have ballooned so large that we are satisfied that savings can be made also in those areas”.

Déjà vu or what?
It seems almost déjà vu to learn that the Prime Minister is now expressing his apparent concern for the costs involved in this Caribbean region’s hosting of the prestigious CWC2007.
The recent comments attributed to the Prime Minister are even more particularly disturbing when one acknowledges that Dr Gonsalves is also the Minister of Finance.
One is forced to ask however, on whose advice did the Minister of Finance make his initial comments and suggest budgetary allocation in respect of the Vincentian component of the CWC2007 of approximately $20m?
Was it the officials in the Ministry of Finance?
Was it the people within the local Committee responsible for the CWC2007 warm up matches scheduled for this country next year?
The Minister of Finance’s recent statements now seem to suggest that the overall costs related to the preparatory exercise here at home may well reach an exorbitant $56m or something close to that.
The gap between the initial $20m and the whopping $50m plus, is astounding and leaves many wondering about precisely where full responsibility lies.
Indeed, many may well be wondering whether it is all a matter of gross incompetence and at what level(s).
Whatever about the responses to expressed concerns and/or questions, that do not appear to be forthcoming, it certainly does not make the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Dr Gonsalves, look good, despite his seemingly upbeat stance in respect of our readiness for our component of the CWC2007.

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