T&T Olympic Committee president Brian Lewis emphasised that constitutional reform to reflect good governance principles, like one member one vote, would assist a long way in bringing sport in this country to a commercially viable sport industry.

Lewis said while the potential is huge, a critical success factor is strong sport governance systems and procedures.

“Many of the existing Constitutions under which national sport organisations and national governing bodies operate need to be modernised and amended to include basic universal principles of good governance,” Lewis said.

Lewis added the Ministry of Sport, Sport Company of T&T and the T&T Olympic Committee( TTOC) must cooperate and work together to foster, facilitate and enable the necessary changes and reform.

“We can’t sweep the issue of poor sports governance under the carpet. It’s not about making cosmetic changes. There is need for reform.

“Some sports are operating in an undemocratic manner and aren’t conducting their affairs in a transparent and accountable manner.”

Lewis reminded that at their 67th AGM last April, the TTOC ushered in constitutional changes when they successfully moved a motion to stop outgoing executive members from having an automatic right to vote.

That motion received the unanimous support of the national sport organisations and the TTOC executive Committee members in attendance back then.

To be eligible to vote at the TTOC AGM, starting from the 2017 term, outgoing elected executive Committee members must now be a duly accredited delegate representing a financial and voting member affiliate.

“The change removing the automatic right to vote is a significant one with respect to sport governance and the notion of free and fair election of sport leaders,” said Lewis.

“The ultimate victims of bad governance and badly structured sport bodies are the athletes, children, youth and young people and the best interest and sustainable development of sport.”

“Constitutional reform is a priority in T&T Sport,” he concluded.


Experienced Trinidadian football administrator Richard Groden has been appointed general secretary of the embattled Guyana Football Federation (GFF). The development was announced through a letter from CONCACAF’s Normalisation Committee to associations on Wednesday. Groden will take up the position from March 2 and will have as his assistant local business executive Diedre Davis. She will take over as general secretary following Groden’s tenure.
“CONCACAF recommended Groden and he will serve as general secretary of the Federation during the tenure of the Normalisation Committee and will demit office on the completion of the Committee’s mandate,” said Clinton Urling, chairman of the Normalisation Committee. “Ms Davis will serve as assistant general secretary of the Federation and will work directly with Mr Groden in the coming months and will assume the functions of general secretary on Mr Groden’s departure.”
Groden is a veteran administrator who served as general secretary of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation until 2013. He has served on several FIFA and CONCACAF committees, and has led several organising committees to prepare T&T for several international tournaments, including their historic outing at the 2006 World Cup in Germany.
“We have no doubt that with their exceptional qualifications and experiences they will contribute to the success of the Federation and to the growth and development of football in Guyana,” Urling said in the letter to associations. The Normalisation Committee was instituted late last year to quell the upheaval in the strife-torn GFF, and restore stability.

The decision of Edmonton to withdraw from the bidding process to host the Commonwealth Games in 2022 is a reflection of the loss of status and impaired relevance of the Commonwealth Games.

One city bidding to host the Games is a blow to the image of the Games.

The Commonwealth Games Federation(CGF) and its member Commonwealth Games Associations can't simply engage in public relation spin .

This is a serious situation that has been developing for sometime years now.

It can't be business as usual.

The Commonwealth Games is in danger and if the organization and its members rationalize this situation away as due simply to falling oil and gas revenue then the eventual demise of the Games is near certain. Edmonton's withdrawal is a symptom of deeper and far reaching issues that the CGF has been ignoring for some years now.

The future of the Commonwealth Games after Gold Coast 2018 is not a positive one.

A Games without a vibrant bidding process is not in the best interest of the Commonwealth Games .

The Commonwealth Games deserves better.

Marketing, promotion and branding efforts require specific and focused attention.

It is an unacceptable situation .

The CGF and its membership must adopt a dynamic, proactive and forward thinking vision and strategic  approach to addressing the threat to the future of the Commonwealth Games.

Brian Lewis


Trinidad and Tobago Commonwealth Games Association(TTCGA) and Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee(TTOC)

FIFA Presidential candidate Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein says the accusations that Sepp Blatter's legal adviser altered a key report into reform recommendation are "deeply worrying" and that the Michael Garcia report could also have been interfered with.

Prince Ali, who will stand against Blatter in the upcoming election alongside former Portugal international Luis Figo as well as head of the Royal Dutch Football Association Michael van Praag,claims recent developments provide another indictment of the way the world governing body is currently run.

"There does appear to be evidence of interference in the drafting of the so-called independent Pieth report by FIFA," the Jordanian FA President said.

"This is deeply worrying and suggests something is not right at the heart of FIFA governance.

"Media reports over the weekend are a reminder of why we need Michael Garcia's report into FIFA's World Cup bidding process to be published in full.

"Without publishing the Garcia report in full, FIFA faces the ongoing public suspicion that interference may also have occurred in that case."

The allegations surround a report which Blatter commissioned to Swiss professor Mark Pieth back in 2011 in order to repair some of the damage done by a miasma of corruption allegations during the Swiss' tenure as head of world football's governing body.

The report was supposed to put forward firm proposals of how FIFA can improve its image, but only a few of Pieth's ideas have come to fruition, with German magazine Der Spiegel claiming criticism of Blatter was removed by FIFA's director of legal affairs Marco Villiger.

The magazine is reportedly in possession of e-mails which purport to suggest that Villiger saw a 15-page draft of Pieth's report and then opted to make changes in order to reflect better on Blatter, who will bid to earn a fifth term in office in this year's election.

Der Spiegel allege the main changes came in reference to the ISL bribery scandal, where Brazil's former FIFA President Joao Havelange and other leading FIFA members were paid bribes in exchange for the award of World Cup marketing rights, with Blatter's role being questioned by Pieth.

Pieth wrote that Blatter may have been complicit in the scandal before Villiger returned the report two weeks later having made 37 notes and various other deletions.

Villiger was also at the centre of the Garcia report furore as he persuaded the FIFA Executive Committee not to publish the report into possible corruption involved in the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bid process, won by Russia and Qatar respectively, and one that Prince Ali has constantly campaigned to have published in its entirety.

A redacted version of the American's report is due to be released later this year.

The development has been heavily criticised by UEFA as the gap between football's two main governing bodies continues to widen.

"The latest revelations regarding the Pieth report show that FIFA's independent governance committee was anything but independent," UEFA President Michel Platini's spokesperson Pedro Pinto said.

"UEFA has always wondered why it was criticised by Mr Pieth and wrongly accused of blocking FIFA reforms.

"Now we understand why and where it all came from."

The news may be music to the ears of the rest of the Presidential candidates ahead of the election in Zurich on May 29 as they are all attempting to oust Blatter from a role he has held since 1998.


The potential for a commercially viable Trinidad and Tobago sport industry is huge. However a critical success factor is  strong sport governance systems and procedures.

Many of the existing Constitutions under which national sport organisations and national governing bodies  operate need to be modernized and amended to include basic universal principles of good governance.

The Ministry of Sport, Sport Company of Trinidad and Tobago and the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC) must cooperate and work together to foster, facilitate and enable the necessary changes and reform.

We can't sweep the issue of poor sports governance under the carpet . Its not about making cosmetic changes. There is need for reform.

Some sports are operating in an undemocratic manner and aren't conducting their affairs in a transparent and accountable manner.

The ultimate victims are the athletes,children, youth and young people and the best interest and sustainable development of sport.

Constitutional reform is a priority in Trinidad and Tobago Sport.

Edmonton tonight withdrew its bid to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games because of economic problems caused by the drop in worldwide oil prices, claiming that they wanted to focus on 2026 instead.

Since Edmonton announced its intention to bid the Alberta Government has seen their fiscal programme go from a CAD$500 million (£260 million/$397 million/€351 million) surplus to a CAD$7 billion (£3.5 billion/$5.5 billion/€5 billion) deficit due to world oil prices, Canadian officials said in a statement.

This drop will have significant impact on the economy, affecting most sectors throughout Alberta Province, they added.

The decision leaves Durban in South Africa as the only bidder for the Games, putting them in pole position to become the first city in Africa to host a major multi-sport event.

Edmonton had estimated that it would cost CAD$1 billion (£520 million/$795 million/€702 million) to host the Games, which it had last staged in 1978.

Of that, the City of Edmonton was expected to pay 20 per cent with Alberta making up the remaining $800 million (£417 million/$636 million/€562 million).

The decision to pull the plug was taken following a meeting involving City of Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson and Reg Milley, the President of Edmonton 2022.

They decided they could not continue to justify the bid, which was estimated to have cost CAD$7 million (£3.5 million/$5.5 million/€5 million), with half that amount coming from Alberta.

"In light of this, we determined that we could not in good conscious put forth our bid for the 2022 Commonwealth Games," said Milley.

"We strongly believe in the values of the Commonwealth Games and all that they stand for.

"Which is why this has not been an easy decision for us, as our team has been working tirelessly these last months to put together an extraordinary bid.  

"But we believe that at this time it would not be right to move forward with our bid when cuts are being made in our communities to programmes like in education and health."

Edmonton 2022 notified the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) earlier today it would not be submitting a bid but is instead shifting its focus to 2026.

"We have spoken to the Commonwealth Games Federation CEO David Grevemberg and he expressed his disappointment that we are not proceeding with our bid, noting all the hard work that has gone into the Edmonton 2022 bid," said Richard Powers, President of Commonwealth Games Canada.

"He reaffirmed that the Federation was committed to working closely with us as we refocus our efforts to bring Games back to Canada in 2026."

The decision, which no-one had predicted, means Edmonton certainly lived up to its bid logo of "Expect Extraordinary".

They had been considered the clear front-runner to host the Games due to Durban's lack of activity and organisation since they launched their bid last March.

But, unless another city steps in at the last moment, which appears unlikely, the CGF will now have no choice but to turn to Africa for the first time since the Games was first held in Hamilton, Canada, in 1930.  

"We are obviously disappointed to hear Edmonton will not be part of the host city bidding process for the 2022 Commonwealth Games," said Grevemberg.

"The Edmonton bid team, in collaboration with their partners, has worked hard to lay the foundations of a great bid and we will work closely with them as they focus all efforts on bringing the Commonwealth Games back to Canada - where the Commonwealth Games first began - in 2026.

"We now look forward enthusiastically to working with the Durban 2022 Bid team and their partners through the evaluation process so, together as a Commonwealth sporting movement, we can realise the ambitions of delivering Africa's first Commonwealth Games."

The CGF is due to officially announce the host city for 2022 at its General Assembly in Auckland on September 2.

Edmonton had been in the final stages of putting together its final Bid Book which was due to be presented to the CGF at a special ceremony in London on March 2.

"We are of course very saddened by this decision, but we know that this is the right one for the future of our city, Province and country," said Simon Farbrother, the chief executive of Edmonton 2022.

"The Commonwealth Games have strong roots in Canada and we plan to be able to come back for the 2026 Games should the economic status allow.

"Of course, we are committed to supporting all sport events coming to our wonderful city and especially look forward to welcoming the FIFA Women's World Cup this summer."