Thursday 20th June, 2019-Government is remaining optimistic that through dialogue issues with the Pan Association will be resolved ahead of carnival 2019.
A request by the Steel Pan Association for an advance of $100,000 for this year’s competition has been denied, with Cabinet concluding it is excessive and beyond the Festival Commission’s ability to meet that demand.
Last week in a statement, pan executives said a failure by festivals officials to complete payment of all 2018 monies 10 months after carnival and two months before the start of Carnival 2019 was untenable. Calling it a blatant disrespect towards the pan fraternity, a threat was issued to withdraw all member bands from the 3rd August, 2019 Panorama Competition. But that was short-lived after monies were made available.
Information Minister Melford Nicholas, while acknowledging the position taken by the pan association on this latest development said it simply isn’t realistic.
The association also rejected an offer by the Festivals’ Commission to construct a platform from where bands will perform this year. This will prevent the removal of the roof over the carnival stage, an arrangement that was put in place in 2018 after concerns were raised that the canopy was affecting the sounds that emanate from the instruments.
The minister believes dialogue between both sides may lead to a solution to that particular point.
The government has re-affirmed its support for panorama and wants a resolution to the obstacles that are threatening to affect the staging of Panorama 2019.