Former regional MPs say Greene should bow out of NOC presidential race

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Two former government minister of the region said Sports Minister, E. P. Chet Greene should not have thrown his hat in the ring again for the presidency of the National Olympic Association.
Speaking on the Big Issues yesterday, former Minister of Tourism in Barbados, and CEO of the Barbados Cricket Association, Noel Lynch said the minister would have an unfair advantage.
Lynch, who was president of the athletic association in Barbados when he became tourism minister, said after discussing with then prime minister Owen Arthur, it was felt that there would be a conflict of interest, so Lynch resigned from the post.
“There are social and economic issues that are taken care of by private sector organisations that fall outside of government, but, there is nothing that happens in a country that doesn’t relate to government. And he thought that if there was ever something that came to Cabinet in relation to sports development or any type of social development, he couldn’t see how [I] could totally declare an interest and not be in a biased position or be in a position to influence Cabinet’s or government’s decision,” Lynch noted.
Former Minister of Sports in St Lucia, Shawn Edward, who has served as secretary of the National Cricket Association there as well as manager of the St. Lucia and Windward Islands Under 19 Cricket Team, added that the ideal situation would be for a government minister not to head such an association.
Edward said there must be a working relationship between the sports ministry which is tasked with overseeing sports development and the NOC.
“I don’t want to pronounce on what works for Antigua, but, looking in from the inside I think the ideal situation would be for somebody else to be at the helm of the Olympic committee, instead of the minister himself,” he said.
Admitting there are strong bonds between politics of the region and sports, Lynch added, sports is an integral part of social and economic development of small island nations.
The sports minister is at the end of his third tenure and had said earlier that he would not seek a fourth term as president of the NOC on December 20. However, last week Monday Greene flipped the script and said he will be seeking re-election.

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