Minister of Youth and Sports, Senator Norland Cox has given assurances that athletes competing at Saturday’s Grenada Invitational Games at the Kirani James Athletic Stadium at Queen’s Park will be paid instantly.
Speaking to reporters in St. George’s, Sen. Cox said that monies are already in place for dispensation to the athletes who have been contracted for the stadium meet.
In the past year, there were constant reports that several athletes and service providers were not paid by Grenada Invitational and that legal action was being contemplated against the outfit.
According to Sen. Cox, measures have now been put in place on the request of the Grenada Invitational Committee to ensure that non-payment of athletes does not reoccur.
“…The estimates of monies that will be allocated for lane fees are basically held and waiting there”, he said.
“As soon as the games are completed it will be dispensed, so as we speak those funds are basically held and waiting to be paid to athletes…” he added.
The meet has attracted a cast of 140 athletes – both regional and international – including big names like Justlin Gathlin, Sherry-Ann Fraser-Pryce, and Asafa Powell.
Sen. Cox said that he expected “a bumper event” at the stadium on Saturday, especially with the involvement of Grenada’s Olympic gold medalist Kirani James who will play the role as Ambassador for the Sporting event.
“Our gold and silver medalist is here in Grenada – he came on Monday. He is going to be the Ambassador for the games and so we expect him to be doing some commentary, meeting and greeting the athletes as they come in. We wish him all the best, he is not actually participating this year but he is here as the Ambassador to the games.
“This is very important news for us, we are always welcome to have our star athlete home here with us in whatever capacity, if he is just relaxing or here for any game, we welcome Kirani home here with us.
“…From our reports everything seem to be on stream and we from the government and the Ministry of Sports (are) providing all the necessary technical support and of course, some financial support to the Grenada Invitational to ensure that this event comes off successfully.
“This is an important event for us, it is being featured on ESPN and last year was viewed by 112 million households and I think that is very impactful for Grenada and of course for sports in general.
“We anticipating that our youths, young athletes from the school is going to come out to interact with some of the international athletes that are there and we hope that this event will continue to inspire our athletes to perform and perform outstandingly.