Fri | Jul 20, 2018

Presidential candidates point to staff development at JOA

Published:Saturday | June 24, 2017 | 12:42 AMRachid Parchment
Christopher Samuda
Vishu Tolan

Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) presidential candidate Vishu Tolan has said that if elected, more staff will be employed to meet the needs of the association.

Tolan, who is the current JOA first vice president, will be running against the body's secretary general Christopher Samuda on Tuesday, to replace outgoing president Michael Fennell.

"The first thing we're going to do is we're gonna employ a general manager/CEO, along with staff to meet the federation's needs," Tolan told The Gleaner. Samuda made similar promises to Tolan's regarding the association staff, in his manifesto. He said that he has plans to restructure and enhance the competence of the JOA staff for greater output.

However, Tolan said that his tenure, should he win, will not be a complete departure from how Fennell operated the association as president. He said he intends to continue the work done by the previous administration.


Excellent foundation


"We will build on the excellent foundation that previous boards, headed by the Honourable Mike Fennell, OJ CD, have established and will seek to ensure that every sporting organisation affiliated with the JOA realises their full potential," Tolan said in his manifesto.

In his manifesto, Tolan also said that he plans to create a long-term strategic plan which will see Jamaica qualifying 100 athletes across 12 sporting disciplines for the 2024 Olympic Games. He also plans to support increased opportunities for development and training for local sport administrators.

Samuda, on the other hand, said in his manifesto that "any successful organisation has at its core, a strong and viable corporate governance structure", and that the JOA is no different and must lead.

He said that he intends to achieve this by affirming the JOA's board of directors as the primary policymaking body for members; strengthening the board's secretariat as the implementation arm of the board of directors;

Samuda also stressed transparency as important to him, should he win. He said that he intends to "enforce the obligation of directors and staff members to make full disclosure, to declare conflicts of interest, to observe confidentiality and to be professional in conduct."

He added that he would ensure that all member association will be treated equally, with regard to monies given to them. This will be through enforcing board policies focused on funding.

Apart from the presidential race, other sports administrators in Jamaica would be involved in elections against each other for positions within the organisation. Tuesday's election will take place at the JOA's headquarters on Cunningham Avenue, in Kingston and 36 of Jamaica's sporting associations will cast one vote for each position.