No friction between Ministry of Sport and GOA
… K. Juman-Yassin lashes out at Director of Sport By Isaiah Chappelle
Guyana Chronicle
September 16, 2002

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PRESIDENT of the Guyana Olympic Association (GOA), K Juman-Yassin, told table tennis coaches that as administrators they would be open to criticism and they should know when to reply to unfounded ones.

Delivering the charge to participants of GOA/Olympic Solidarity-sponsored Level 1 coaching course at the GCC pavilion, Saturday night, Juman-Yassin used the occasion to respond to what he dubbed “hogwash” Sportsview by Director of Sport Neil Kumar in another section of media.

“Once you are professional and objective, you have nothing to be afraid of,” Juman-Yassin said.

The view dealt with the welcome accorded Commonwealth Gold medallist Aliann Pompey, in which Kumar said there was a “fight” in the committee.

“There was no friction at all between the Ministry of Sport and the GOA,” Juman-Yassin said.

Kumar declared that the “big boys” backed off from organising the welcome by going on their “usual” overseas trips and returned in time to be at the public events which were captured in a photo album presented to the athlete.

But the GOA head pointed out that himself and the GOA General Secretary, Ivor O’Brien, went to an important meeting of Pan-American sport organisations in Mexico City, which was fixed since last year, long before Pompey had won the medal.

Kumar accused the GOA of becoming “political” because it invited PNC General Secretary Oscar Clarke to the appreciation dinner. Clarke had referred to Pompey as a “Dark Horse” in the 400 metres final because she was never the favourite.

“I have never been a member of any political party,” Juman-Yassin declared.

However, Juman-Yassin disclosed that President Bharrat Jagdeo and PPP/C General Secretary Donald Ramoutar, Clarke’s opposite, were also invited and did not attend. Minister of Sport Gail Teixeira was invited and Kumar represented her, while Minister of Tourism, Manzoor Nadir, went and offered remarks at the function.

“That is hogwash,” Juman-Yassin said.

Juman-Yassin pointed out that Kumar has to be careful because he cannot be a politician and be a Director of Sport.

“His position of Director of Sport may not be tenable,” Juman-Yassin contended.

Juman-Yassin declared: “What disturbs me most is I do not know what is his agenda. Is it to cause confusion or sow discord and acrimony among sport associations?”

The GOA boss agreed with Kumar’s view that sports administrators must do more for the development of sport.

“But the government must do much more,” Juman-Yassin contended.

Juman-Yassin said he used the first opportunity to reply as a lesson of what sports administrators must face.

“As an administrator, you must consider when to respond, keeping the interest of organisation,” Juman-Yassin said.

Course coordinator Roman Plese of Croatia, an international table tennis expert, gave a course review and disclosed that he would be keeping in touch with the Guyana Table Tennis Association on the progress of the game here.

GTTA Vice-president Linden Morrison made the closing remarks, while Carmelita Jameson made a response on behalf of the 22 participants who came from Bartica (one), Linden (three) and Georgetown.