NASSAU, BAHAMAS- Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Lanisha Rolle moved to address speculation over her relationship with the Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations (BAAA) today, insisting she has no “bad blood” with governing body.
“As it stands with the BAAA, they are a federation and I represent them in government, so in that regard there can be no direct conflict,” Rolle said.
“I will not entertain that sort of thinking because we are here to serve on behalf of the Bahamian people and I remain focused on that task. I am here to hear their concerns as it relates to sports and I will assist them as I assist any other sports association.”
Speculation of a rift between the BAAA and the Ministry of Sports amplified earlier this month when Rolle stated that she wasn’t invited to a Heroes Day ceremony, which honored International Association of Athletic Federations (IAAF) medalists Steven Gardiner and Shaunae Miller-Uibo.
In the House of Assembly, Rolle said: “I understand we are coordinating with all members of the team, not just two or three, but all members of the team who qualified and put their best foot forward. we want to celebrate all of them.
“As for the event just passed, I have no knowledge of it and if I don’t have knowledge, I’m not able to attend. I’ll be very clear on that. But we wish our athletes all the best and the sooner we can stop playing politics with these matters is the better we’ll be for it.”
Yesterday, Rolle said there is no outright conflict between the two sides; however, she admitted that a better line of communication would be helpful moving forward.
“It would be great to have clearer lines of communication between us all, but life is not perfect,” she said.
“I realize that it doesn’t happen all the time, but the ministry has a responsibility to its athletes and we must carry out due diligence in this regard.
“The department is ran by the director of sports (Tim Munnings) and a very experienced sports team, and I know that they will do a good job of putting things together. I will continue to stay more within my role of making policies to benefit sports in the country.”