Thu | Apr 19, 2018

Interim JFF - president soon - Training centre renamed in honour of Captain Horace Burrell

Published:Tuesday | June 27, 2017 | 12:00 AMMarc Stamp
Zuri Piggott (center), granddaughter of Captain Horace Burrell is helped by Sports Minister Olivia 'Babsy' Grange to unveil a mural of the UWI-JFF Capt Horace Burrell Centre of Excellence. Persons involved in the unveiling are (left to right) Dr Damani Piggott, Burrell's son in law, Dr Tiphani Burrell- Piggott, daughter, Romario Burrell, son, Professor Archibald McDonald, Pro Vice Chancellor, UWI Mona, and Garfield Sinclair, Vice President of the Jamaica Football Federation. The ceremony took place yesterday.

The Jamaica Football Federation's (JFF) board of directors is expected to make a decision on whether an interim president will be named, at a meeting on July 1 at the body's headquarters in New Kingston.

"The process is straightforward according to the constitution. We will have a board meeting on July 1 to decide the way forward," JFF's vice-president Garfield Sinclair said, at a press conference at the Council Room of the Senate Building on the Mona Campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI).

"At the board meeting, a decision will be made on a date for the AGM (annual general meeting) for the presidency. Before that, the board can appoint an interim president of the three vice-presidents to run the JFF also on an interim basis. The idea is not to leave an interim situation for too long," he informed.

The passing of president Captain Horace Burrell last month has left the position vacant.

Sinclair is one of three vice presidents, along with long serving Raymond Anderson and Bruce Gaynor.

Meanwhile, an announcement of a name change to the technical centre located at UWI in honour of the late Captain Burrell was made. It will now be known as the JFF/UWI Captain Horace Burrell Centre of Excellence.

Professor Archibald McDonald, Pro-Vice Chancellor and principal of the UWI Mona Campus spoke of the partnership between the institution and the JFF.

"UWI welcomes the partnership with the JFF in order to improve sport. The faculty of sports will commence operation on the new school term, beginning on August 1," Professor McDonald said.


Future opportunities


"It will provide opportunities for athletes as they will be able to pursue academics if required at their own pace. With this partnership, UWI will make one more step to place Jamaica higher in football," he also said.

He praised former principal Gordon Shirley and Captain Burrell for the initial agreement of a lease to the JFF at UWI for 49 years.

Sinclair, who spoke on behalf of the JFF, described the moment as bittersweet.

"It is a tough morning, but bitter sweet. Ambition combined with vision. In 2001, JFF was granted funding for a technical centre and in 2008 on this exact date (June 26), UWI granted JFF a 49 years lease," Sinclair, who is also a former JFF treasurer, recounted.

"We will have a one-stop facility with the dormitory for players to be completed, and artificial turf field, stands to accommodate 10,000 persons, and lights which will upgrade the facility significantly. It was the vision of Captain Burrell to partner with the premier institution," he shared.

Romario Burrell, a son of Captain Burrell, said that the family will be forever grateful that the JFF and UWI added his father name to the centre.

"This is truly stunning and amazing. We will be grateful for what everybody has done to assist my father in making Jamaica stand out in football," Romario said.

Meanwhile, Sports Minister Olivia Grange said that there will be a public viewing today at the National Arena, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. There will be no photos allowed.The thanksgiving service for the life of Burrell will take place tomorrow at the same venue. There will be an entertainment programme starting at 10 a.m. to be immediately followed by the church service. The internment will be private.