$8M disbursed to Region Eight villages to improve sports facilities

Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Pauline Sukhai handed over cheques worth $1 million each to eight villages in Region Eight to boost athletic facilities and promote local sports.

The villages that received the cheques were Kato, Chiung Mouth, Bamboo Creek, Kamana, Waipa, Sandhill, Tuseneng, and Campbelltown.

Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Pauline Sukhai handing over the $1M cheque to Kato Village’s Toshao, Elevan James

The ceremony took place during the final matches of the Region Eight Championship Cup football tournament held at the Kato Sports Ground on Monday last.

The Department of Public Information (DPI) spoke with several of the representatives who received funding for their villages.

Kato Village Toshao, Elevan James told DPI that the funds will be used for its intended purpose as the village is focused on advancing young talents in various sporting disciplines.

Around 250 youths are going to benefit from the improved ground funded by the government. Kato also received a floodlight provided by the Ministry of Amerindian Affairs.

“It will benefit the youths because we want a proper ground…You can see the condition of the ground. We will see how best we could work with the million dollars to upgrade our field,” he stated.

Captain of the Kato Football Club, Joshua Brazao shared similar sentiments.

“It’s going to help a lot. It’s not only the football club, there is the cricket club…So, we need a cricket pitch. All of that is going to be upgraded, the light needs fixing and it’s going to help a lot,” the leader asserted.

Waipa’s Toshao, Terrence John said the money came at the right time.

“We are looking forward to upgrading our field with this $1 million. So, we are very appreciative of our government and our ministry for giving us this kind of support,” John added.

Meanwhile, Dominic Phillips, representative for the Tuseneng Sports Club pointed out that this is the first-time funding is being provided to support his village’s sports club.

He stated, “I will use this money for the club to buy lights because my village doesn’t have any lights. This is the first time we get money for the club.”

The provision of $100 million for Amerindian villages to upgrade sporting facilities was announced by Vice President Dr Bharrat Jagdeo at the National Toshaos Council (NTC) Conference held in September, a testament to the administration’s interest in developing sports in the hinterland.

“I want to announce that those villages that did not receive a million dollar in September will be receiving the cheques…We want the young people, team leaders, and members to know that we have not forgotten you. Your request was considered,” Minister Sukhai stated during brief remarks.  

She also urged youths to be on the lookout to ensure that the money is used for the intended purpose.

Chiung Mouth, Kamana, Kanapang, and Campbelltown also received uniform kits from Minister Sukhai.