Tue | Jan 19, 2021

Golding clears the air - 'I have not joined the football board of Boys' Town'

Published:Wednesday | January 10, 2018 | 12:00 AMLivingston Scott/Gleaner Writer
Marvin Morgan (left) of Arnett Gardens and Boys' Town's Daemion Benjamin in a battle for possession during a recent Red Stripe Premier League match.

St Andrew South Member of Parliament (MP) Mark Golding has strongly denied that he has joined the football board of Boys' Town Football Club, after falling out with neighbours Arnett Gardens Football Club.

Golding, who was in line to become chairman of Arnett Gardens FC, replacing former MP Dr Omar Davies, has had some disagreements with the current executive over the direction the club should take. He has, therefore, not taken up the chairmanship which is usually reserved for the parliamentary representative in the Arnett Gardens community.

Reports have since surfaced that he had joined the Boys' Town football board, but Golding said those reports were not correct. According to him, he has accepted an invitation as the MP for the constituency to be a part of the over-arching board, which oversees the various aspects of the Boys' Town institution.

"I am not joining the (football) board of Boys' Town. Boys' Town was started by Sir Hugh Sherlock and has been around for about 60 years, and it deals with the whole person: sport development, education and culture, etc.

"So it is an important organisation in the constituency, and they have various development plans they want to pursue, like training for young people, and they have asked me to attend board meetings as the MP. I told them I would not be coming on the board but would attend meetings from time to time," he explained.




Although his proposed takeover of the chairmanship at Arnett Gardens FC fell apart, he insists that his involvement at Boys' Town has nothing to do with his disagreements with Arnett.

"The present (Arnett Gardens FC) management did not want to work with my vision, but instead wants to stay on and run it in the way it has been run in the past. But if I am not going to have the authority to make the changes I see necessary, I won't be involved at all. So I withdrew and I wished them well," he said.

Golding said the current organisation lacks accountability, transparency, and sustainability, and he finds it difficult to be associated with such an organisation.

"There are opportunities to improve the revenue for the club with things like merchandising and billboards ... so they need to focus more on those things so the club can sustain itself," he reasoned.

"Given my position, I can't be involved with an organisation unless there is proper accountability. But I am not involved with Boys' Town Football Club. Boys' Town is a part of the constituency and the old boys asked me to help, and I have been doing that for some time. It has nothing to do with the Arnett Gardens football situation," he declared.