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NLCB to spend $4m on Carnival

Sunday, January 7, 2018
North Stand being constructed at the Queen’s Park Savannah for Carnival 2018.

The National Lotteries Control Board (NLCB) is expected to spend $4 million towards the sponsorship of Carnival events and activities this year–a 50 per cent cut from last year’s figure.

There is, however, a $50,000 cap per request, including selected schools for their respective carnival fetes.

The Sunday Guardian was told that since the Ministry of Finance is still in the process of selecting a NLCB Board, the state-owned enterprise is being steered by its director, Michael Jogee. For the first time in 49 years, the NLCB in 2017 made a profit of $315 million and recorded $3 billion in sales.

According to a reliable source, the NLCB recently bought Soka in Moka fete tickets amounting to $18,000 however, those tickets were recalled by Jogee and returned to the promoters of the event. The move came after an instruction from Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley that state funds were not to be used to purchase fete tickets.

When asked about schools receiving sponsorship, the source said that all schools can ask for sponsorship but it does not mean that they all will be entitled to funds.

“With respect to schools' sponsorship the requests will be sent to the ministry and it's according to the directive from their that the NLCB will disburse the funds, and this does not mean that they would get the maximum which is $50,000… sponsorship can be from $500 to $50,000,” the source said.

One of the schools to receive the maximum sponsorship so far, a source said, is Trinity college.

Just last week, the Chutney Soca Monarch competition initially received a $300,000 subvention.

However, Minister of Finance Colm Imbert, who carried out his own personal investigation, increased that figure to $1 million. That figure, though, a decrease from last year’s, is still enough to keep the competition on track, according to its promoter George Singh (Southex).

According to reports, this year’s International Soca Monarch is also reportedly under threat. However, the source said that the Ministry of Finance is still negotiating the sponsorship figure. Once a figure is reached, the ministry will then inform the NLCB about disbursement.



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