On Target
August 14, 2015
Is silence still golden?

Local football was hit recently by another blow to its already low status in the pecking order of administration of the sport.

The revelation of a ‘buss-up’ at an executive meeting entered into the public domain after a recording of the incident was leaked.{{more}}

Surely, there will be some division of opinion as to whether the recording should have been shared with members of the press and ultimately the public.

Whatever side of the fence one sits, or for those who are on it, the fact of the matter is that football has become the wash pot of sport.

The details of what happened at that meeting, however, can be looked at as an internal matter and should not have any weighting on the bigger picture.

One may also argue that all organizations have fallouts and it is nothing new, whilst others would look at the content of president Venold Coombs’ language and his tone of voice. But could have that been avoided?

Those who are close to the sport would know that there is a strong current of mistrust among the executive members. As it now stands, there is a divide, with some in Coombs’ corner, which widens the fraction and fractures.

And there is no hiding of this discord, as there have been public pronouncements to support such claims.

Over the years, football administration has taken on a combative form, much to the detriment of the growth of the sport all round.

It is as if there must be the washing of linen in public and it is all good to have all the business of football become ‘stink ah road’.

This may answer the question why persons who have the necessary acumen are shying away from coming forward to lend their expertise to the national good.

Unfortunately, with all the opportunities afforded through ready-made funding and that level of comfort to carry out its programmes, denigration in administrative standards is the best repayment.

No one can deny that the current executive, in four years, is the most destabilized one in the history of national football administration, racking up wrong after wrong.

Never have you had so many public revelations of the inner workings of the football federation.

When Coombs fired one of his selected committee members, Guy Lowe, in August 2012, the latter did not go without making sure that the public knew it all.

Similarly, when then first vice-president Lloyd Small tended his resignation in November 2013, he left with guns blazing, parting by firing 21 shots at the operations of the organization which he served.

Likewise, Small’s replacement, Kenton Ollivierre, did not cover his letter of resignation, informing Coombs that there were elements within the organization who were against his presidency.

This is just the modus operandi of this Venold Coombs led executive, which when all lumped together gives the impression of a lack of professionalism.

Coombs himself, in some cases, is a foreigner to statesmanship, as he is often raucous in his words, irrespective of the occasion or the location. So, to many persons, what came out from the audio recording, albeit at a private setting, would not surprise them.

This type of behaviour is not befitting of anyone who is at the head of a national sporting association.

Those within the organization who were either elected or selected continuously take insults and other demeaning treatment and take no action, except to grin and bear it.

Why? Are their visions clouded by the perks, the status of being part of a conspicuous national organization or are they chained to the comfort of the surety of a stipend at the end of the month? Have they sold their integrity for personal favours, advanced monthly payments and other financial cover-ups?

Whatever the reason(s), none of the above can compensate for one’s pride, dignity or self-worth.

Therefore, the men and woman who are the kind recipients of such outbursts, they are to be blamed for the state of football in St Vincent and the Grenadines.

Similarly, there are affiliates who do likewise and are parasitical leeches of the whole set-up, just content with a few pieces of equipment in exchange for unbridled loyalty.

The current executive continuously self-destructs, as its name is always in the public domain and in most cases, for some atrocity.

This never-ending calamitous operation of the national executive is taking away from the relative successes the sport has enjoyed on the field in recent times.

Affiliates, however, will have a choice soon, whether to maintain the status quo or change the direction of the vehicle which is careening over a precipice.