NATIONAL Carnival Commission (NCC) chairman Winston “Gypsy” Peters is calling on regional Carnival committees to bring in their accounts.
Responding to decisions by two regional committees to scale down shows this season, Peters said once the information comes to his attention, the NCC will deal with it.
Last week, chairman of the Couva Regional Carnival Committee Ramchand Rajbal said allocation for Couva was slashed by 50 per cent. He also said mas bands have pulled out from the competition because of low prize monies.
Chairman of the Biche Carnival Development Committee Imran Ryan Baksh also said funding has not been consistent and because of the late release of funds, band leaders are reluctant to participate in playing mas. However, speaking to the media on Sunday, Peters said, “The fact remains that our country itself has to reduce a lot of things, something that a lot of people don’t understand. There have to be reductions in some things, some where, some how for us to facilitate other things.”
He also said the regional Carnival committees were responsible for the problem because of lack of accountability.
“We have policies at the NCC that if you did not account for the monies that you got before, then we are not going to give you this one until you do so.
“So some of them, we give them a little bit still, but they didn’t do the accounting that they were supposed to do. So we are asking all who did not do their accounting, please do it and bring it to us and let us look after it and then you’re going to get what you supposed to get.
“But in the mean time, if it is that you have to get a reduction because of the constraint that we have with the finances, then there is very little that we can do for that,” he told regional committees.
Peters said the NCC did not have to apologise to anyone, but was asking them to bear with the commission until things oet a little better and back to where it was.
The NCC finances all the regional Carnivals, but Peters said if they still don’t bring in their accounts, their funding is cut.
“San Fernando complains a lot of times, but they are one of the biggest culprits in not coming with their accounts.”
“I am not blaming any single person. We are all culpable because we have this kind of liaise-affaire way in this country that everything is everything and regardless to what happen, it’s going to happen.”
He said regional bodies have already received some funding and additional funds will be dispersed once they are received by the NCC.