President of the Lusignan Golf Club (LGC), Jerome Khan yesterday confirmed that he will not be seeking re-election this coming Saturday when the association holds its Annual General Meeting and election of office bearers for the year 2014.
Khan, who served as LGC president for two years, told Stabroek Sport during an exclusive interview yesterday that he believes that it’s time to usher in a new executive who can take the LGC and its agenda into the future.
“When I took over the presidency my main aim for the first year was to ensure that the fairway, compound and other elements of the club’s infrastructure were fully developed,” said Khan.
The second phase as the club’s president saw Khan placing emphasis on what he termed as “A recruitment membership drive” which, he declares, was a great success as it saw a 30% increase from both individual and corporate legs of Guyana. This new flourish in membership also resulted in more jobs for caddies from around the East Coast of Demerara (ECD) area, most of whom are now full-fledged golfers attached to the LGC.
From a financial point of view, Khan stated that his biggest accomplishment as president over the years was that of ensuring the club had the best “Transparency, Accoun-tability and Governance” when handling various monies they would have received from the sponsors for the weekend tournaments and major competitions. The Attorney-At-Law boasted that the club was “In excellent financial standing” and that they are by no means in debt. Khan said that when he took over the leadership of the LGC, the club was approximately six million dollars in debt which they soon rectified and in return spent approximately three million dollars in order to facilitate a new roof, balcony and to relocate the club’s sports bar upstairs to the second floor.
Khan said the club received sponsorships from corporate giants such as Digicel, Ansa McAl, Scotia Bank, Banks DIH, MACORP, Hadi’s Worldwide Inc., COURTS and others adding that tournaments such as the President’s Cup tourney and the Guyana/Open Digicel Cup have been largely successful. He also pointed out that players were able to travel abroad to places like neighboring Suriname to compete in tournaments.
A project which targets the grass-roots aspect of teaching interested persons the basics of golf can be utilized at the club’s Thomas Lands location, another one of Khan’s desire to make the world-class sport an integral part of Guyana.
He noted that while every association faces problems he was fortunate that none of his problems grew out of hand and were successfully and responsibly contained and corrected. Khan pointed out that another huge challenge was that of managing executives and players who fell under the club’s umbrella that come from huge commercial companies and firms that bring their own style of customs and leadership attributes to the board. He, however, credits the good “off-course” relationships he shares with the club’s members as an important cog in the wheel that makes the LGC move from one strength to another, while adding that the future of the club is bright in every aspect due to the committed and dedicated members who will be a part of the movement.
The female influx of golfers in stalwarts; Christine Sukhram, Shonella Webster, Joaan Deo and Juliet Prince, heartened his spell as President as he wishes to see more females become more involved in the sport for the future.
Khan said his departing wish is that the Government of Guyana, who he said “Paid lip-service before abandoning things,” gets more involved in the club’s affairs in terms of the outer maintenance of the surroundings. He said the road leading into the club was shared by the Prisons, Remand Magistrate Court, Garbage Services and Guysuco, while stressing that lights should be erected along the roadside.
Khan said that while he has no plans to be “executively” involved in the club’s affairs he will seek to remain a bridge which links the golf fraternity to the corporate world of Guyana.