Nasty tennis issue unfolds
Guardian Columnist/Sales Executive
Readers of this column would certainly be fully aware now of the nasty issue that has come to the attention of the general public, with details (if true) that could taint the Bahamas Lawn Tennis Association (BLTA) forever.
At the heart of the controversy that threatens to totally upend the organization is the decision taken by the BLTA to "terminate the relationship" of First Vice President Dentry Mortimer to the executive board. It is clear that questions put to the BLTA by Mortimer regarding good protocol did not go down well with certain executives.
The end result was a meeting after which, a statement that Mortimer is no longer authorized to "conduct any business on behalf (of) the Bahamas Lawn Tennis Association," was issued.
Well, there is always another side or more sides to an issue. Mortimer has released his very own statement, going to great length to cover the matters of controversy. He lists names and makes his case. He expressed a concern about a certain noted local tennis figure being associated with young players in the national program.
This is a very serious situation facing the president of the BLTA, Derron Donaldson, and the executives who support him.
Now that Mortimer has released his statement, there are many questions Donaldson and those with allegiance to his leadership ought to answer.
In fact, to demonstrate credibility on their part they must defend themselves and ably so.
They need to appear to be competent and capable of being in charge of the large number of young and older players in the fold of the BLTA.
There is one charge in particular, made by Mortimer, that if proven, could result in the mass resignation of the executive group in the BLTA.
Indeed, this is a matter in which all of the entities the BLTA are affiliated with, must, in the interest of honor, give full attention. The Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, through the director of sports, must now examine the situation thoroughly.
The BLTA saga has to be examined by the ministry to determine whether the BLTA is functioning in accordance with the terms that enable the body to be qualified for funding from the government through a grant.
Furthermore, the ministry has to look at the total picture in tennis, to ensure that those players who have been submitted for the subvention program are qualified and still representing this country as expected.
Are there players getting funds applied to their accounts monthly, who are not giving anything at all back to the country? Are there young players who deserve to be on the subvention list, but for some reasons, have been prejudiced against?
Are all of the applications for subventions authentic according to the rules that govern the national funding program for athletes?
There is another question.
Is the BLTA under the present circumstances and make-up in a legitimate position to chart the destinies of our young male and female players?
This is a very serious matter.
* To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 2012 The Freeport News