Its worth all the trouble. Time is valuable. We have to spend it wisely and focus on the things that really matter.
We can unlock the haven of human potential that is abundant in T&T if only we believed in ourselves enough to concentrate on what we must do rather than focusing on what we like to do.
Its 3 a.m as the packed mini bus travels through the streets of Paramaribo, already buzzing with market vendor activity. Sport leaders heading to the airport to catch a 4.30 am Caribbean Airline flight to Port of Spain. United in a singular commitment and determination to make a positive difference through sport and Olympism.
That the Trinbagonians will head straight from touch down at 5.30 a.m to their respective workplaces is a reality that often gets lost in the incompetent, self serving sport administrator narrative. The stush life story line of FIFA and other international federations is not the lot of the average Joe and Jane sport administrator. But truth be told, changing the negative narrative will only come against the back drop of good governance.
There has never been a better time. The enormous potential and opportunity for growth in sport places needed pressure on every single sport leader and administrator to get off their high horse and come down to earth. Be it the TTOC, the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees (CANOC) in the respective Caribbean countries, now is the time.
Driving good governance is the most important priority. The foundation for sustainable growth and development must be built on good governance. The 13th general assembly of CANOC took place in Paramaribo, Suriname on Sunday while the Olympic Solidarity Forum theme this year was resource allocation.
Two long days that could turn out to be nothing more than a talk shop if the importance of the deliberations in principle constitution amendments are allowed to drown in the in the river of failed implementation and lack of focused attention. The words good governance was mentioned so many times that keeping count became a futile exercise.
Obviously the concerns about poor governance is now at critical mass proportion. Or are they? Time will certainly provide the acid test.
The fact that the CANOC executive and the general assembly supported a proposal made by the TTOC that the regional umbrella Olympic Movement body undertake a process to create a Caribbean Good Sport Governance code is cause for optimism. The CANOC general assembly agreed in principle to amend the organisation’s constitution to include among other things term limitations. This is a significant step. The wind of change is coming.
Term limitations for office holders is not a small step but a huge step forward for CANOC. Its now 5.08 am and the Caribbean Airline flight is beginning its descent into Piarco Airport. Across the aisle, the head of the Jamaica Olympic Association is in pensive thought, as is CANOC secretary general, two seats ahead.
Former CANOC and TTOC secretary general Elton Prescott, senior counsel and member of the CANOC Juridical Commission is ready for his day’s work. The inconvenience is a small price to pay in a collective effort to make a huge difference for Caribbean athletes and the region’s Olympic movement.
Good governance is not a slogan but a deep commitment. But the battle to make good governance the rule rather than the exception has only just begun. Rome wasn’t built in a day.
Brian Lewis is president of the T&T Olympic Committee. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the Olympic Committee. Support #10 Golds24 Athlete Welfare and Preparation Fund make your donations to any branch of Scotiabank account number 171188.