In a lengthy and hard-hitting statement signed by public relations officer Michael Joseph and posted to Pan on the Net, the steelband body said it is the three Carnival interest groups that are under attack.
“The NCC has lost its moorings as facilitator, and have created a debacle within our Carnival. Why? Because they choose to show gross disrespect to the Carnival Interest Groups. A lot of people are not seeing that it is not only Pan Trinbago Inc. T.C., but the three main interest groups in the Carnival, that are under serious attack (Afro-centric groups). Those who represent the interest of those who make the Carnival, Mas, Calypso/Chutney/Soca and the Steelpan as the foundation, are facing a hostile takeover.”
Referring to NCC’s control of all gate receipts for events controlled by Pan Trinbago and TUCO, the pan body said they were castigated and vilified in the worst of manner before the eyes of the world, to stem the tide of progress and advancement that is being embarked upon on the road to self-sufficiency.
“We were being starved for funding at every turn in this 2016/2017 season. Panorama, our premier event coming out of the Carnival celebrations, was high-jacked by the NCC, where they decided to take control of our gates receipts and all related revenue streams and boasting of their rights to do same. They believe that we have no rights of our own.
“We were promised a management fee to manage the actual Panorama show. However, in the national interest, and the Patriots that we are, we came together and managed the most financially successful events in the Carnival, rivaled only by Calypso Feasta, which was managed by TUCO, under the same humiliating and disrespectful conditions as the Steelpan fraternity. They Jamming STILL,” the release said.
Pan Trinbago said they had to suffer the humility of begging the leaders of the NCC cabal” for Photo ID to facilitate its executive, staff and workers entry to their own Panorama shows.
The body claimed it was denied the usual access to the area of land to stage the Northern Greens, one of its revenue earners.
“ After the dance and run around by the NCC, the area was released to the Army to host their event. No discussions were entertained by the NCC on our proposals for funding for Steel bands participation on the roads of the Republic for Carnival 2017. Our offer to the cabal to stage our annual Champs of Steel Plus was also not entertained,” Pan Trinbago said.
Pan Trinbago said most decisions taken by the Chairman of the NCC and his cabal was taken without any input from the members of the Carnival Interest Groups.
“No discussion was entertained on the issue of funding for Steel bands participation on the roads of Trinidad and Tobago for Carnival 2017. Somebody must investigate the many ghost-gangs and ghosts contractors entertained by the NCC cabal. Is the NCC fulfilling its mandate, or does it have a new mandate to mashup we culture?” the statement questioned.