The way the islands of The Bahamas stretch out from just below the southern tip of Florida all the way down the line almost to the south-eastern tip of Cuba has a particular uniqueness when compared to other nations in the region.
We suffer though because of the fact that the capital is not physically part of one land mass. As a result over the years, many of the national growth factors have not been driven throughout the archipelago.
In particular, committees of authority, appointed to monitor the Bahamian society as a rule have had much more of a concentration on New Providence (in which sits the capital, Nassau) than the other islands, including the second city of Freeport in Grand Bahama.
The country’s sporting landscape has been hit hard by this imbalance. As highly rated as the nation is “per capita” around the world, the achievements would be greater if the potential of the islands ever gets fully tapped into.
Recently in Grand Bahama an issue surfaced that clearly proves that the way forward to capitalize on sporting opportunities is for central administrations to ensure that a general focus on all of the islands is heightened.
There is a promotional entity in Freeport that came up with an interesting sports/entertainment scheme. Some readers will remember the old “battle royal” segment that was featured on professional boxing shows decades ago.
Promoters would put in the ring, a group of young lads with their eyes covered, who would simply go to war. The action constantly thrilled onlookers and they heaved coins and paper bills into the ring.
The youngsters often were able to snatch up a good bit of funds once the blinders were pulled away. The battle royals primed the crowd for the main bouts.
In Freeport, the “battle royal” one-on-one participants are ladies whose eyes are not covered. An event was held and the attraction was amazing. With Grand Bahama’s economy still struggling, the event is viewed positively. The participating ladies were paid.
There is one problem.
All boxing events for which money is paid to the contestants come under the jurisdiction of the Bahamas Boxing Commission. To this end, commissioners traveled to Freeport last weekend to hold a press conference and to meet with Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture representatives and an official from the Royal Bahamas Police Force.
The networking of the BBC in Grand Bahama was put in motion by Director of Sports Timothy Munnings. He recognized from the outset that the professional boxing events in Grand Bahama must be regulated. His associates in Grand Bahama complied fully with the commission.
Copies of the Boxing Act of 1990 were presented and the commitment was made to monitor future professional boxing programs in Grand Bahama, to make sure that the sanctioning process is followed.
Because of disconnection between official bodies in the capital and those seeking to do or doing related business in the Family Islands, there is an alarming lack of awareness.
No doubt, the promoters who came up with the concept of women boxing for pay, never heard of the Bahamas Boxing Commission.
Now though, they know what needs to be done to be within the law when they engage in future promotions.
The situation definitely speaks to the great need for a balanced sports focus across the length and breadth of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas.
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Tags: Sports Entertainment