The Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs, along with the Sports Company of Trinidad and Tobago having consulted with the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee, advises the public that as government entities. the organisations may monitor but cannot intervene in disputes within National Governing Bodies (NGBs) for sport.
NGBs are independent sporting entities whose autonomy is sacrosanct under the Olympic Charter and general principles of sports law. Dispute resolution and disciplinary hearings are the sole purview of the NGBs, who must implement and enforce their own internal administrative processes. Intervention from Government in these processes may incur country sanctions and threats of sanctions by international sporting organisations, as demonstrated by published cases involving Sri Lanka, Mexico and Kuwait and the International Olympic Committee. The end result of such sanctions would mean that athletes would not be able to participate at international games and tournaments under the flag of their country of birth but rather (in the case of the Olympics) have to participate under the Olympic Flag.
NGBs may be held accountable to the Government should the use of public funds be in question. Further, the Ministry responsible for sport may consider withholding funds from an NGB if it cannot resolve its internal disputes professionally and maturely or if executive decisions are not in keeping with best sporting practice or the tenets of the National Sport Policy.
The Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs and the Sports Company of Trinidad and Tobago will continue to support NGBs in the conduct of their affairs and in the best interest of the athletes and support staff who represent Trinidad and Tobago. We hope for a fair and speedy resolution to all disputes and for good governance in sport to be normalised in the affairs of all NGBs.