Members of the Standpipe community in Liguanea will be staging a 3-on-3 knockout basketball tournament entitled Standpipe Hoop Dreams Basketball Tournament at the Church of St Margaret community playground in the community this Sunday, April 3, from 3 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.The competition is open to community teams, corporate teams and universities. Team members must be males aged 16 years and over.Former national player, Althea Byfield and coach, Nicholas Locke, are part of the organising committee.Standpipe resident, and tournament organiser, Lorna Livingstone, told The Gleaner that the idea behind the event was to reawaken interest in the local courts, which were built in 2003.”The sport of basketball is dying in the area. The space is now mainly used to play scrimmage and futsal or host all-night parties,” Livingstone said.”It’s got great flooring and good hoops and because of bad management and people not knowing how to take care of it, how to use it and people just not being able to get on, no organised sport gets played there,” she added.Local area business, Super Valu, recently repainted the court lines for the tournament, Livingstone said.HOME COURTShe noted that the Jamaica Amateur Basketball Association had intended for the court to be used as a home court for local league play when it was first built, but over time the original plan had been eroded.”The idea is to have an event to remind people that basketball can be played here. The tournament is for 12 teams and it is open so if you are over 16 anyone can play. We have some teams that are registering from the existing Open League which include BOJ, Central Village and in Standpipe, the 39ers and the Liguanea Lions,” Livingstone said.”Support from local businesses and sponsors has been excellent so we are really looking forward to an excellent day of basketball, fun, entertainment, prizes and surprises,” she added.Students of the University of Technology’s Faculty of Science & Sport will also be conducting research on the tournament to help make improvements for future projects.”We have learnt a lot from organising this event and we intend to use this knowledge to make subsequent events even better,” Livingstone said.Sponsors for the tournament include INSIGHT Marketing Strategies Ltd, Emkay Sports & Trophies, Liguanea Liquors & Beverage, Hi-Lyte, Livingstone’s Natural Juice, Super Valu, Sign Craft Ltd, KLAS ESPN, Yardie Sports and JayBones Designs.
The youngest slate in Local Government Elections (LGE) will be on full display today when hundreds of candidates will invade the Centre For Change as the Alliance For Change (AFC) hosts its LGE Candidates Conference at its headquarters at Railway Embankment, Kitty, Georgetown.The Candidates Conference will see AFC constituency candidates for the upcoming November 12 Local Government polls travelling from as far as Bartica, Corentyne, Kwakwani, Leguan and Linden to attend the conference.According to a statement from the party on Friday, candidates from Regions Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara), Four (Demerara-Mahaica), Five (Mahaica-Berbice), Six (East Berbice-Corentyne), Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) and 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) are expected to be in attendance. The party said it will be hosting similar events in other regions on upcoming dates.During the one-day Conference, candidates will be briefed on Local Government Election rules and procedures and will receive a charge by party elder, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo.Furthermore, several candidates will also deliver presentations in addition to presentations by party Chairman Khemraj Ramjattan, Vice Chair Cathy Hughes and Campaign Director David Patterson.The event will also see the launch of campaign jingles and the LGE edition of ‘The Key’, the party’s newspaper.“This event is designed to both energise and educate our candidates. We look forward to the legendary AFC camaraderie and energy tomorrow as the candidates swarm in from all over the country,” party leader Raphael Trotman said.Meanwhile, AFC’s Campaign Director David Patterson said, “It has taken a considerable amount of planning and logistical work to put together this conference but all has gone smoothly and the final arrangements are being put in place for a successful event.”Following failed negotiations with its majority coalition partner, the AFC announced back in August it will be contesting the November 12 LGE separately from the A Partnership for National Unity (APNU).The minority party in the coalition Government had said the decision was reached following the inconclusive negotiations with APNU but noted that the separation applies only for the 2018 Local Government polls and “does not, in any way, affect the APNU/AFC coalition Government, nor does it, in any way, change the AFC’s position on coalition politics at the national level. The AFC remains, and reaffirms that it is, committed to the APNU/AFC coalition.”On February 14 last, the APNU and AFC celebrated their three-year anniversary since signing the “lovers’ deal”. However, the AFC of recent has come under fire for the submissive role it has been playing since joining forces with the APNU. In fact, the top leadership of the AFC had decided back mid-November to revise its governing agreement with its majority coalition partner.The Cummingsburg Accord has a lifespan of a minimum of three years and a maximum of five years, and was focused primarily on the General and Regional Elections. To this end, the AFC had proposed as part of the nine points up for negotiation with its coalition partner that an agreement on LGE be crafted. In fact, the minority coalition partner detailed some of its positions for negotiation in the LGE Accord.The AFC’s National Executive Committee, after a May 1 meeting, had allowed additional time for the two coalition partners to have a definitive written agreement in the form of a Local Government Elections Accord but this was never done.