by Linda Straker
- State entity led by example by cancelling virtual carnival activities
- As a compromise, go-ahead was given to private promoters
Culture Minister, Norland Cox, has explained that the decision to cancel the virtual carnival activities of the Spicemas Corporation (SMC) was to ensure that a government institution was not violating the policy agreed to by members of the executive.
“It presented itself as a contrast, contrary to what government policy was and this really put us in a difficult position, so we took the decision to cancel those events. It was a difficult decision,” Cox said during the Tuesday, 11 August virtual post-cabinet briefing.
As Minister for Culture, Cox, who serves as a member of Cabinet and as a Senator in the Upper House of Parliament said that the corporation which falls under his ministerial portfolio did not want to cancel the event, but as a state entity, it had to lead by example. “A number of persons were having celebratory events and it was led to believe that what we were doing was causing that,” Cox explained. He said several persons who were invested in the events were not happy, but the government did receive some positive feedback after announcing the cancellation.
The Culture Minister said several persons were happy when the decision was made to cancel all the SMC events and as a compromise, the go-ahead was given to private promoters. “As a government we pulled back and allowed the private events to take place,” he said, pointing out that a number of virtual events were already taking place before the SMC virtual carnival experience which started on Thursday, 25 June 2020.
The weekly Thursday event was held for 3 weeks. The location was the National Stadium and the only persons physically allowed at the event were the technical production team and artistes invited to perform at the 2-hour show which began at 7 pm.
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