Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago (T&T), Dr Keith Rowley, is re-assuring his countrymen that the government has taken no undue risks in its decision to host the entire Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

Organisers of the CPL had last month negotiated with the T&T government to host the CPL, usually occurring throughout six countries, solely in the twin-island republic.

The schedule and venues for the CPL have since been released, with the T&T Prime Minister promising a bubble to protect the citizens of T&T.

“Everything that will go on around the CPL will go on in a bubble that does not interact with the national population,” he said.

According to Rowley, all visitors will be screened for COVID-19 before coming to T&T and once they do, they would be subject to all protocols of entry. Once in the country, those visitors are confined to the Hilton Hotel “and that becomes a bubble for them.”

Matches will be played at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba and at the Queen’s Park Oval in St Clair.

Those venues form part of the bubble with Rowley saying, "Then (the players) will go to a venue to play the game where they will not interact with the population. So, therefore, the CPL is a bubble that has nothing to do with what goes on with the population in the country."

The CPL is scheduled for August 18-September 10.

Reports have emerged suggesting that Trinidad and Tobago will host all matches in the 2020 edition of the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister, Dr Keith Rowley, has ignored the concerns of ousted Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) President William Wallace, and completed negotiations with the organization’s Normalisation Committee for the use of the Home of Football to house those suffering the effects of COVID-19.

Rowley made the announcement while speaking at a post-cabinet media briefing on Thursday, saying the building could accommodate up to 72 people.

"It has been offered to the Government and the Government has accepted the offer. It has been evaluated and found to be excellent and my advise is that it can accommodate up to 72 persons of a category that will be designated by the Chief Medical Officer and the Minister. This is as good as any accommodation you can get anywhere in Trinidad and Tobago."

The Prime Minister added that the facility should be available within a week.

He also indicated that the Home of Football will be outfitted by the private sector.

"Within a week or so, that facility could be available. There are one or two things to be done. I may also add that the private sector has been approached to put in some put in some outfitting items and the private sector has come forward and has committed to ensure whatever is required to make it comfortable and fully utilised. It is offered to the Government of Trinidad and Tobago at no cost."

The multi-million dollar facility was opened in November 2019, but was temporarily closed one week after by Wallace.

Wallace claimed that the facility did not have property insurance or fire approvals.

Wallace did not have a problem with the use of TTFA facilities to help in the fight against COVID-19 but believes the government’s negotiations with the Normalisation Committee means offers legitimacy to it when he is the rightful head of the TTFA.

“This Committee has no legal or other standing in Trinidad and Tobago. As you are aware, the TTFA was formed by an act of Parliament(Act 17 of 1982) and is to be governed by its Constitution. The Constitution of the TTFA places the responsibility for negotiating and entering into any contracts or agreements on the President of the TTFA, a post I have held since the 24th November 2019,” Wallace had written in a letter to the Prime Minister.

The FIFA-sanctioned Normalisation Committee is being run by Robert Hadad.

William Wallace, the ousted president of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) has written to the Dr Keith Rowley government expressing concern over its negotiations with the FIFA-appointed normalisation committee about the use of the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva as a facility to host COVID-19 patients.

Wallace and his executive are locked in a dispute with FIFA over the appointment of the normalization committee that football’s world governing body named in late March. The matter is before the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS).

However, while he supports the use of the stadium as a holding facility, Wallace said he is the person the government should be discussing such issues with, as the normalization committee has no legal standing to do so. He also suggested the possibility of the committee profiting from the use of the stadium during a national crisis.

“I note with some concern reports in the media that the government has apparently entered into discussions with the Normalisation Committee led by Mr Robert Hadad, who was purportedly appointed by FIFA, in respect of the use of the Home of Football in Balmain, Couva,” Wallace wrote on official TTFA letterhead on Thursday.

“This Committee has no legal or other standing in Trinidad and Tobago. As you are aware, the TTFA was formed by an act of Parliament(Act 17 of 1982) and is to be governed by its Constitution. The Constitution of the TTFA places the responsibility for negotiating and entering into any contracts or agreements on the President of the TTFA, a post I have held since the 24th November 2019.”

 

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