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Smith promises new hockey turf foreign clubs and universities target aquatic centre
Saturday, October 8, 2016

Minister of Sports Darryl Smith outlined his manifesto plans for the forthcoming year during debate of the 2016-2017 Parliamentary budget on Thursday night. 

Looking ahead to 2017, he said that items on the agenda would include the laying of a new hockey turf at the Eastern Regional Sporting Complex in Tacarigua, establishing naming rights for the country's sporting facilities, setting up a database analysis team for effective decision making and making the national aquatic centre available to foreign clubs and universities, who he said had already contacted the Ministry. 

Smith, who took up the post in September 2015, said he had wanted to take a different approach to the job than his predecessors. 

"There was an ivory tower approach from the former ministers that got them into a lot of trouble. You all know the history with regard to Life Sport... In the last year, we were a sponge. We came in with a foundation of being in the community, being well educated. We also knew that we were naive in certain things. We listened to the people and what we realized is that we have to do little things that make big differences."

He pointed out that although he had entered the position during a chaotic period for sports administration in T&T, he had managed to create a sense of stability and optimism during his time in charge. 

He attributed this to having met with all the national sporting governing bodies within his first 100 days in office, gaining the necessary feedback to perform effectively. 

He provided a detailed list of his Ministry's accomplishments in the past year, among them the completion on time and budget of the Eastern Regional Multipurpose Sporting Faclity in Sangre Grande, extending the opening hours of the country's community pools, maintaining the lights and tracks at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, improving the sewage and lighting facilities at the Eastern Recreational Facility and creating youth camps for the underpriviledged.

He also extended a hand to the opposition to set aside their political differemces to work together for the benefit of the country's youth.


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