Spicemas is thinking backwards

Spice Mas Corporation is the body responsible for spearheading everything carnival. While most other contemporary administrative bodies in the region has come to the realisation that you cannot make a profit from monies collected in carnival produced shows we yet to realise that in Grenada.

The problem faced with Pan last year was due to the vexing problem that carnival and Pan have become a financial burden to the administration and by extension Spice Mas Corporation.

These people want to collect in their hands not through other avenues monies. Pan in particular is a failure as a revenue earner in their opinion. That destructive mindset is further demonstrated and even consolidated by an act passed in parliament I would assume by reasonable men that gave Spice Mas the right to charge those that are in the engine room of Carnival itself.

Spice Mas Corporation charge without exception, persons hosting events within the so-called carnival season. You must pay Spice Mas Corporation before you obtain a second set of permission from the police. I can tell you that the RGPF is very upset that they have to implement such unfair and draconian set of laws.

Permit me to highlight the following

1. If you are celebrating your birthday, wedding, anniversary or family reunion that fall within that period and you want to use a sound system you must first pay Spice Mas Corporation.

2. If you are a Short Knee band like the Hermitage Short Knee that has won several pageants in both senior and junior category it does not matter you must pay the Corporation first.

3. The La Fillette jab Jab has travelled to Trinidad with Tallpree and they are as traditional as it gets. This band has been together for more than twenty years yet once they decide to launch their band, Spice Mas Corporation come with their collection plate to collect.

4. Tivoli Drummers has been in existence for the last twenty four years. It is from them that Specky got the inspiration and sang “Who are we”. It is from their work Tallpree came and sang “Trees in the West Indies” and it is from them that Terry Kid this year sang “Capital”.

Tivoli Drummers has represented Grenada on several occasions yet the Parliament is asking Spice Mas to charge them for hosting a drumming event within the season.

5. The St. Andrew Organisation for Development, gazetted and passed in law to host emancipation and Rainbow City Festival is charged by Spice Mas Corporation to host the Emancipation parade.

No administration has ever created any of the foundation of Carnival.

We can name them as Steel Pan, Calypso, Soca, Jab Jab, Shortknee, Apache, the costumes, instruments, reggae and the list goes on. These pillars came from the bowels of the people. The very makers of carnival, the creative bedrock and the practitioners are charged for introducing everything we know today as Carnival. Were we going to pick up arms if it was an English man or French man that was fighting down our Culture that much?

Livingston Nelson

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