Another GASA affiliate not pleased with entities posture

Another GASA affiliate not pleased with entities posture

Aug 10, 2017 Sports,

Sea Otters Swim Club highlights concerns
Following, on the heels of sister club Dorado Speed Swim Club seeking the Ministers intervention in the sport of swimming, another club has written to the Guyana Amateur Swimming Association (GASA) voicing its dissatisfaction on a number of issues.
The Sea Otters Swim Club has formally written to the GASA, headed by Mr. Ivan Persaud, objecting to the selection of a swimmer to represent Guyana at the Goodwill Swim Meet which will be held in Guyana from August 18 – 20, 2017.
The Goodwill countries are Guyana, Trinidad, Barbados, Suriname and St Lucia; additionally, this year, two guest countries, Grenada and the Bahamas have been invited to participate.
Last year, (2016), the Goodwill Swim Meet was held in St Lucia and a young American child, (Nia Fraser) flew from the United States suddenly appearing in St. Lucia to swim on the Guyana team, displacing a Guyanese swimmer who had travelled from Guyana to St Lucia to swim having made the required times. This was in direct contravention of the rules that govern Goodwill.
The Goodwill Summons is clear as follows: ELEGIBILITY: All Competitors must either be citizens or residents of the country they are seeking to represent. Naturalised citizens and residents must have resided in that country for at least 12 months prior to the competition. Proof of residency which may be in the form of a sanctioned letter from swim clubs or the athlete’s attending school must be submitted at the Technical Meeting.
This year Guyana is hosting the Goodwill Swim Meet and Nia Fraser has showed up, once again, displacing a Guyanese child, (Nekita Peters). Nia was recently registered as a member of the Orca Speed Swim Club.
The President of GASA, the Vice President, the Secretary and the head of the Technical Committee are all members of Orca. Prior to Nia showing up as an Orca swimmer, her parents had approached the Dorado Speed Swim Club to become a member.
But in keeping with adhering to rules, Dorado wrote back stating that it could not subscribe to that as the FINA rules were not being adhered to.
Despite this, the Orca Swim Club, (that dominates the GASA Executive), took Nia into their membership and when Nekita’s club (Sea Otters) protested, pointing out that it was in contravention of all the rules, the attitude seemed to be – we are the hosts of Goodwill and therefore can break the rules.
The Sea Otters club wrote to the Guyana Amateur Swimming Association stating that, while the club accepts that the Council voted for Ms. Fraser to remain on the team, the club wishes to register their concern about this process. The rules of the summons are clear and they were violated by Council.
Added to this the club understands that Ms. Fraser is not practicing with the team because she has returned to the United States and will fly back just in time for the Meet. It means, therefore, like last year, she will attend the Swim Meet and compete having not trained with the Guyana team.
The Sea Otters Club also stated, “Again we have nothing against young Ms. Fraser, but we are now left with the task of having to explain these matters to parents who believe that this is unfair.
This appears to be a repeat of last year in St. Lucia, where a member of the team was also displaced in favour of Ms. Fraser. It is our understanding that the parent of the other child was so upset that she pulled her children from swimming permanently. Again this is an official registration of our disagreement with the decision of council.”
GASA receives Government funding, Club affiliation fees and competition fees. However, the GASA Executive accounts to none of the clubs and, further, seems to make up selection criteria as they go along to select those swimmers whom they favour. This case involving Nekita Peters is just one of many.
All swimmers train long and hard and are entitled to a National Federation that is fair and impartial.

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