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Christie willing to intervene in Junkanoo dispute

Former Prime Minister Perry Christie said yesterday he is “disappointed” that the Valley Boys found themselves in a position where they had to resign from the Junkanoo Corporation of New Providence (JCNP), noting he is “prepared to get involved” to help bring resolution to the matter.

“I’m disappointed that they’ve found themselves in a position where they decided that this has to be done,” Christie, who has rushed with the group, told The Nassau Guardian.

“And so, until I’m able to receive a full briefing on the matter, I don’t want to go beyond the fact that whenever a group has to make a major decision of this kind, it goes to the very root of their existence and the existence of the Junkanoo we all love.

“And clearly, this cannot remain to be the position. Something has to be done to address this and I will be one of those who will be prepared to get involved.”

On Monday, Valley Boys Chairman Brian Adderley revealed that the group will no longer participate in Junkanoo parades organized by the JCNP.

The decision followed the announcement by Parade Management Team Chairman Anthen Mortimer that the Shell Saxons Superstars were the official winners of the 2019 Boxing Day Junkanoo Parade.

The nearly 62-year-old Valley Boys, who were declared the unofficial winners on Boxing Day, dropped to second place with 81.44 points, after a three-point penalty.

“We will continue to participate under the management of any other organization, but we no longer have any confidence in the JCNP to manage fair parades,” said Adderley on Monday.

He added, “We don’t expect to win all the parades, you know, but we don’t expect to be cheated and robbed out of the parades that we won or should have won.”

Yesterday, Christie described the incident as “a serious matter”.

“…It is not good for Junkanoo when you have what really is one of the premier groups — if not the premier group of heritage — take such a decision and it is not good at all,” the former prime minister said.

“Therefore, I’m hoping that those who are responsible and in positions of authority will do whatever they can to ensure that this position is addressed.”

He added, “But, I do know how very disappointing it is when you lose a Junkanoo competition. It becomes ostensibly bad when results are reversed; and that if you feel that there is an injustice, obviously, you must make some demonstration.

“As to the extent to which the leadership has gone, I’m sure they will be briefing me to their reasoning and I have not had any discussions with the leadership of the Valley Boys in terms of making their decision.”

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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