‘In NSC’s hands’
The National Sports Council (NSC) must reconfigure its operations to become more creative while generating sports tourism programmes.
According to Minister of Sport Stephen Lashley, the onus will then be on the Barbados Tourism Authority (BTA) to market such initiatives.
“Ultimately, the Sports Council has got to go through a serious repositioning and a restructuring that will make it more relevant,” said Lashley in a wide-ranging address during the NATION’s Editors’ Forum last Wednesday at its Fontabelle, St Michael headquarters.
“I believe the Sports Council has to focus quite a lot of attention on creating a lot of product. I know there is always that grey line in terms of sports tourism but my view is the product required for sports tourism to be effective must come from a dynamic National Sports Council whereas the BTA’s job really is to market that product,” said Lashley.
“I don’t think the BTA’s role is to get involved too much in product sport development,” he added.
Lashley said there was ongoing work at the NSC with the coaches for the various sporting disciplines to ensure “there is the right fit”.
But he made it clear that the restructuring which he envisioned at the NSC?wasn’t within the context of any retrenchment programme for workers at the state-run corporation.
“The process by which retrenchment occurs is a process that has been established by the Ministry of the Public Service and those processes would have to be embarked upon if and when the National Sports Council has to be looked at,” Lashley pointed out.
“But I can’t give you any assurances or comforts. I can’t tell you that anybody is being sent home. I can only say to you what the process is there and once the Sports Council has embarked on that, I would expect that it does so within the context of the law and established practice,” Lashley said.