PPP/C, PNC/R blamed for problems affecting local sports By Michael DaSilva
Stabroek News
February 2, 2003

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Guyana Olympic Association's (GOA) president Juman Yassin laid the blame for the major problems affecting sports in Guyana on the two main political parties - Peoples Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) and the Peoples National Congress/Reform (PNC/R).

Speaking at the GOA's Appreciation Evening, held on Friday at the Le Meridien Pegasus Hotel, Yassin chided the PPP/C and PNC/R for the main problems and the lack of development of sports in Guyana.

Yassin said, he hoped good sense would prevail and that the parties recognised the true power and potential which sports has in unifying and bringing peace and prosperity to Guyana.

The former Chief Magistrate pointed to the large volume of bloodshed during last year and the turmoil that has continued this year. "Despite all the negativity, sports was able to be the positives experienced" Yassin stated.

Yassin highlighted the success of Guyana's Common-wealth Games gold medalist, Aliann Pompey, world boxing champions, Wayne `Big Truck' Braithwaite and `Vicious' Vivian Harris, Central American and Caribbean Games bronze medalist Nyota Peters and middle distance athlete Cleveland Forde among others.

Yassin contended that the political directorate has totally failed in realising the value of sports to solve problems in society and hoped that they (government) would heed his call and place more emphasis on sports development.

He noted the aptitude of sports to eliminate many social ills including sexual diseases, crime and illiteracy among others and said government should focus more of their financial resources on sports development.

The GOA head man noted the economic benefits the annual Kashif and Shanghai Football tournament gave the Linden community, and called on Director of Sports Neil Kumar, who was also present, to reconstitute the National Sports Commission (NSC). "Government lapsed by not appointing a body to administer sports in the country" Yassin stated.

Meanwhile, Pompey in a brief address, attributed her success to "a remarkable support group, who has stood by me throughout".

Pompey said her father, who is the main stay of her support group and family, has been instrumental in her success. She also highlighted the good work of her coach Joe Ryan, who, according to Pompey, recognized her talent and helped her to strive for the top.

Pompey considers herself extremely blessed to have such a supportive family, "a blessing many athletes don't possess."

She publicly thanked other persons who have been, as she described them, "angels on earth", citing Neville Denny, vice-president of the Amateur Athletic Association of Guyana among others, who have offered every possible assistance and encouragement.

Pompey however gave full credit to God for bringing her this far. She thanked God for blessing her with the talent, determination and supportive persons to help her to achieve outstanding results.

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