Our journalists were once apparently characterized by the Prime Minister, before some of their own members, as chattering nabobs. When one peruses the print media of Friday 13th January, it is easy to see why the Prime Minister may have allowed himself the political latitude to so refer to members of the nations journalist fraternity.
The News, The Vincentian and The Searchlight newspapers all seemed anxious to break the news of high-flying billionaire, almost maverick, Donald Trump, with him million-dollar Gold Tournament set for the Grenadines isle of Canouan. Each of the newspapers made an interesting presentation.
The Vincentian newspaper simply carried the text in full as a story coming from Manhattan, New York. It changed nothing and gave no credit to the source.
The News newspaper used exactly the same piece and gave no credit either. It did appear to switch around a paragraph here and there, but nothing much.
The Searchlight newspaper also used the same piece, referred only to a press conference, as though the organization was represented (as also did the other two weeklies here). This newspaper was the only one that appeared to have considered re-writing parts of what was obviously produced in Manhattan by some as yet undisclosed source.
It has long been said that our journalists are lazy and spend little time being appropriately investigative and analytical. The articles on the Trump Invitational is a case in point. Little or no effort appears to have been made of the information provided since the local media was too enthusiastic about the announcement.
There are several issues of importance relative to our whole claim to possession of a sports tourism focus. It seems pertinent to raise a few questions that may serve to highlight this:
- Did the persons involved in the organization and promotion of the Trump Invitational establish contact with the Ministry of Tourism and Sport here in St Vincent and the Grenadines?
- Did they establish contact with any of our Missions abroad?
- Did they officially invite anyone from St Vincent and the Grenadines to any discussions relative to the Tournament in light of the implications it may have for boosting the international image of our country?
- Has the new Minister of Tourism and Sport been involved in any preparation or discussion of the Tournament?
- Did any of our media receive an invitation to the press conference at which the Tournament was announced?
- Has this countrys Ministry of Tourism and Sport put in place any mechanisms for establishing contact with the organizers and/or Raffles Resorts authorities since learning of the Tournament?
- Have we done anything at all to make capital of the proposed Tournament to highlight St Vincent and the Grenadines as a sports tourism destination?
If the answers to the foregoing questions are in the negative then we must admit that we are not in any way on top of our self-proclaimed sports tourism thrust.