KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent, March 7, IWN — The Carnival Development Corporation (CDC) has restated its concerns about violence at rural carnival events and said it is determined to address the situation this year.
“We understand the logistical and security challenges, but, frankly, the misconduct which occurred last year at some of the rural events are beyond our expectation and sent a very negative signal about our national festival,” Dennis Ambrose, chair of the CDC said at a press conference on Tuesday.
“Carnival is not about hostility and bad behaviour. I reiterate that the CDC condemns this type of conduct and asks those of you who have difficulty controlling yourself to refrain from bringing your bad behaviour to the events. We have a reputation of keeping our events clean and safe and have every intention and will use all means of preserving that reputation,” he further said.
Ambrose subsequently told I-Witness News that rural festivals have grown tremendously.
“In 2012, we had about 14. The police are concerned about that expansion because they think that is a stretch on their resources. And we have seen some bit of ugliness, as I have mentioned, creeping into it,” he further said.
Ambrose said that when there are two rural events on any given weekend, the resources of the police cannot cover adequately those events.
“And this is where sometimes you may have that compromising situation and you will find cases of violence as we saw last year in South Windward, and the police had to move in and close down the activity to make sure it just didn’t repeat itself.”
He said the CDC will be making some move to address the concerns of the authorities.
“It is something that we have been talking about for the longest while. And it is a concern that we are determined to address in 2013,” Ambrose said