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Just four months before the Merry Monarch parades the streets for Carnival 2018, the National Carnival Commission (NCC) is without a board. As of Wednesday, the term of the last board came to an end.
Headed by Kenny DeSilva, that board has been at constant loggerheads with the three Carnival interest groups. Under an act of Parliament (No 9 of 1991) the NCC is mandated to make Carnival a viable national, cultural and commercial enterprise. The NCC must also provide necessary managerial and organsational infrastructure for efficient and effective presentation and marketing of the cultural products of Carnival.
The board must consist of nine people, the first three being a representative from the steelband movement (Pan Trinbago), one from the Carnival bands (NCBA) and the other from the calypsonians organisation (TUCO).
The other six people are those the Minister of Community Development Culture and the Arts will appoint as he or she sees fit. The first three board members from Pan Trinbago, NCBA and TUCO are always eligible for reappointment. The three members of the interest groups have not been attending board meetings nor can they remember when last they met with the Minister of Community Development, Culture and the Arts.
There is also said to be a lack of finance to carry out the necessary functions to make Carnival 2018 successful. No interest group has received any funding to date.
But Minister Dr Nyan Gadbsy-Dolly says despite the absence of an NCC board, which she hopes to install in two weeks, plans for Carnival 2018 have been ongoing and the new board will not have to start at zero.
Pan Trinbago’s president Keith Diaz says the first Panorama event kicks off on January 4, 2018 and the juniors get their first taste of calypso on January 14. The first calypso tent will be opened on January 13.