The Guyana Boxing Association (GBA) has once again found itself fighting off the ropes a release from the association has indicated. The GBA could not meet a February 24 deadline to pay for accommodation and meals for a team of eight selected to participate at the Olympic Qualifiers in Argentina.
GBA president Steve Ninvalle said that a request to Government for support received a negative response, while the Guyana Olympic Association had pledged US$5,000 to assist in airfares. “The National Sports Commission said it was unable to assist at this time as it has no budget, while president of the GOA Mr. K. Juman Yassin SC, AA had pledged US$5,000 for airfares,” Ninvalle said. Accommodation and meals in Argentina is just over US$11,000. Airfare per person is currently US$1,800.
The GOA and the Government of Guyana combined to send a team of four boxers to Cuba for a three-month preparation leading up to the Qualifiers.
Ninvalle added that he recently dispatched a letter to Mr. Yassin seeking clarification after it was revealed to him that sister CARICOM countries had their entire cost relating to participating at the Qualifiers footed by their respective National Olympic Associations.
“The boxing presidents of Antigua, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, St. Lucia and the list goes on, have confirmed that they are participating based solely on input from their National Olympic Committees (NOCs). In view of this recent revelation, I have asked for a clarification on why Guyana seems to be the anomaly.”
The GBA president, when contacted, explained that his letter to Mr. Yassin was merely seeking clarification and in no way an attempt to shirk responsibility or create a problem.
It must be noted that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) had suspended AIBA, the international boxing body, and had set up a task force to ensure that the various NOC’s were allowed to field their respective boxing teams to the prestigious games.
As such the IOC’s Olympic Solidarity provisions, which provided funding for the athletes based on eligibility through AIBA, were frozen. With the IOC overseeing boxing at this year’s games, they met and decided to unfreeze funding to the athletes.
All NOCs can benefit from Olympic Solidarity support for their boxers as for athletes from other sports preparing and attempting to qualify for Tokyo, through the regular Olympic Solidarity Programmes.
Under the release of funds as directed by the IOC, that money must not transit through the National Boxing Federations. This means that NOCs are able to assist their boxing athletes through direct financial contributions or through the Olympic Solidarity office in Lausanne only.
The Olympic Qualifiers are scheduled for Argentina from March 26 to April 3. The Guyana Boxing Association has selected Colin Lewis, Desmond Amsterdam, Keevin Allicock, Dennis Thomas and Canadian-based Taveena Kum as boxers to represent Guyana. Coaches are: Terrence Poole MS, Sebert Blake and Francisco Roldan.
Apr 06, 2020By Zaheer Mohamed Port Kaituma Football Foundation (PKFF) is one of the leading sports organisations in Region One. The body was formed in 2009 with the aim of developing sports in the area. Its...
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