Barbados vs England Net Ball – 58 spectators including players’ families
A quick thought before bed about the Delhi Commonwealth Games. In a country of a billion people, 58 spectators showed up to watch Barbados and England play net ball. 20 people occupied 5000 seats for the first tennis match and on Tuesday no more than 100 people sat in the 19,000 seat MDC field hockey stadium.
Lately these mega events are missing the mark in many areas. As we saw ourselves in Barbados with Cricket World Cup, the organisers always wildly over-estimate the spectators, economic and social benefits that the mega-events will bring. They always grossly exaggerate their capabilities and resources available to bring it off successfully.
The host country’s taxpayers end up paying for the mistakes – sometimes for decades. Always the same. In Barbados the hundred million dollars plus that could have been used for a new hospital instead sits in our Cricket Palace. Even former Tourism Minister Noel Lynch after a rum or two would have to admit that Cricket World Cup would have been just fine at the old Kensington just the way it was, wouldn’t it?
Where is our new hospital?
But the companies who built everything at Cricket World Cup got paid. The organizers, advisors, consultants and service companies got paid, didn’t they?
Don’t talk to me about the great leaders of business and industry because mostly just like Parris and Duprey and a host of others they are bailed out and subsidised at every turn. The risk is ours, but all the profits are theirs.
The motto of the elites on this island and most everywhere is “Privatize profits, socialize losses.”
Something to think about the next time our glorious leaders want to spend our money on big and flashy instead of maintaining and bettering the foundations of our society.
“I don’t know how much the government spent on Cricket World Cup, but every time I go past that big white elephant Kensington Oval I think of my son and all the tears and fear over that filthy, falling down slum we call our hospital.
BFP, please print the photos of the QEH toilet next to the hundred million dollar Kensington Oval, and let people decide if our government made the correct choice on how to spend that hundred million dollars…”
Washington Post, October 5, 2010: More troubles for Commonwealth Games: Empty seats in stadiums and arenas across New Delhi
Mail Online, October 4, 2010: Spot the spectator at the Commonwealth Games