Judging rules were not observed in Senior Panorama Competition

Dear Editor, 

What were the judges looking for when deciding the winner for the Senior Panorama Competition 2018? Favouritism and a disregard for the judging rules of the competition were on full display. The judges were officials of the Department of Culture, and the rules and guidelines of the competition clearly state in Section 5 that during the process of judging the event, all officials are expected to conduct themselves in a proper manner. Judges shall not communicate with any of the competitors, and/or their sponsors, supporters, or members of the media for the entire duration of the competition.

This was not case on the night of the competition. The coordinator was supposed to be Mr Xavier, but Mr Tyndall who works for the same office as the coordinator of the Mash Committee and past leader of a band which won, was seen mingling with the judges. This brought the results into question, since there was a clear case of conflict of interest because the National School of Music Band is owned by the Department of Culture. Now if I own this band and all the judging officials come from me, what would people assume? It can also be noted that the judging outcome for the past few years has been the same. This is not acceptable, because the outcome seems always to be in favour of the National Band.

There is no way in terms of my music knowledge or on the basis of listening to steel pan music and soliciting the views of others, that the National Band could have emerged winners in front of the Guyana Police Force Band. They were definitely the crowd pleasers, playing well with a clean sound, good balance and with a proper melody and audio coming from all sections of the band. At no time did they break the rules of the competition unlike the National Band, whose members gyrated in front of the judges in a clear violation of the rules and standing orders of the competition, and yet who still emerged victorious.

Where are we going with competitions and judging in Guyana, if injustices like this keep occurring? There were other bands who were eliminated for violating competition rules, but this was not the case with the National Band. This attitude is not only bad for pan music lovers, but also for the players who try desperately to keep the art alive. If this is allowed to continue, sad to say steel band competitions are heading for a doomsday. We would like Mr Tyndall and others to recognize that fair and neutral judges are what we need, avoiding conflict of interest and keeping the art form alive and well.

Yours faithfully, 

Neil Cort   


Lowe’s conclusion on case before CCJ was spurious

Dear Editor, In reaction to Mr Sherwood Lowe’s letter  captioned ‘Mendez has shifterd the CCJ gaze from Article 1 to Article 9 of the Constitution’ appearing in the Stabroek News of the 20th March, 2018, I would wish to submit that in my respectful recall the learned counsel for the Respondent in Richardson v Attorney General and Trotman asseverated that, in the absence of a credible definition of the terms “democratic” and “sovereignty” in Articles 1 and 9 of the Guyana Constitution, the court was required to construe these terms.

A stint in Parliament does not prepare anyone for proper management of a government ministry

Dear Editor, Our system of government is supposed to be the Westminster system, but it is not in use in Guyana today.

This society needs to embrace more liberated and progressive thinking

Dear Editor, Milton Bruce’s letter ‘The Editor-in-Chief makes all the decisions’ (SN, March 20) refers.

Realistic solutions not rhetoric are needed to bring relief to the sugar workers

Dear Editor, Regional Executive Officer of Region Six, Ms Kim Stephens, is reported in the March 19, 2018 Stabroek News, during her remarks at the ceremony to honour the Rose Hall Martyrs on March 13, 2018, “that that severed sugar workers are ‘timid and afraid’ of diversification”.

Government did not provide $68M in the national budget for the IDPAD conference

Dear Editor, It would be remiss of me not to address the Guyana Times article of March 9, 2018: ‘Govt yet to receive report on $68M IDPAD conference’, since it is either a malicious article or one in which the author is wallowing in ignorance.


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