The Minister must step in now!
Where Community Sports Committees have emerged and sustained themselves it has had much to do with the leadership at the ground level in the area and has had nothing to do with the NSC.
The North Leeward and the Barrouallie Sports Associations have perhaps distinguished themselves over the years. Mention must, however, be made of the leadership provided in North leeward by Julius Anthony and in Barrouallie by Oswald Robinson. They have committed themselves and stuck to the task of elevating the organisation of sporting activities in their respective areas. In both cases they have had their fair share of problems in respect of the capacity of the NSC to involve them in any way in the decision-making process.
One is nonetheless left to wonder whether the large amount of work done to complete the Pavilion at Keartons and the construction of the Netball Courts at the same venue would have been accomplished in tandem with the NSC had Barrouallie’s Lance John not been the Chairman of the Council at that particular juncture and not been so closely aligned to the ruling ULP regime. The politics of the day impact the decision-making in sport in far too many ways and this in turn impacts the rate of genuine development in sport in the country.
Political partisanship has perhaps played more of a role here in St Vincent and the Grenadines in determining the sporting fortunes of the respective sports associations than should otherwise be the case in any given society. Far too often it is the case of members of associations having to seek out the Prime Minister of the day to get what is necessary for the advancement of the organisation at this or that point in time. The protocol that is in place according to the Public Service norms does not work. The minister and the Prime Minister are the preferred options if success is to be guaranteed in terms of any organisation’s request for assistance. The politics of the proposed national stadium stands as perhaps the greatest indictment of this reality in St Vincent and the Grenadines.
When Mike Browne was the Minister of Education, Youth and Sport, he fashioned (God alone knows on whose advice) what was called an Advisory Committee on Sport.