Alfred Emmanuel has been elected as the new President of the Saint Lucia Olympic Committee (SLOC), the third in the Committee’s history since its recognition by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 1993. On Tuesday 16th November 2021, he replaced Fortuna Belrose who did not seek re-election after serving two four-year terms.
The election took place at the SLOC headquarters in La Clery with all of its 21 national sports federations in attendance.
Emmanuel, the SLOC General Secretary for 25 years won over the President of the Saint Lucia Aquatic Federation (SLAF) and businessman Eddie Hazell 15 – 6.
Emmanuel will have as his deputies George Charlemagne, an Attorney at Law, and Trevor Hunte a former national tennis player. Theodore ‘Teddy’ Matthews, a former Vice President of the SLOC – now President of the Saint Lucia Table Tennis Association who was also Chef de Mission of Saint Lucia’s team at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland in 2014, takes over as General Secretary.
President of the Saint Lucia Volleyball Association, Attorney at Law, Shayne Felicien is the new Assistant General Secretary/Treasurer, while Joyce Huxley was retained as Treasurer.
Also on the SLOC team – National Federation representatives, Vice President for Sailing, Lily Bergasse, President of the Saint Lucia Athletics Association – Cornelius Breen, President of the Saint Lucia Boxing Association – David Christopher, and Vice President Saint Lucia Bodybuilding and Fitness Association, Monica Dudley.
Speaking to the media after the election, the newly elected president Emmanuel said, “I expected the results. I did speak to the members that matter and at the end of the day, they made their decision”.
Getting down to business: “First move as president, there are a lot of things that have to be address, you must remember that we are a team, it’s not the president alone, the team will have to sit and then we would call another press conference to outline our road map for the short, medium and long term.”
“I have absolutely nothing to say about my opponent, Eddie Hazell, it is his constitutional right to run for the office of the SLOC and he chose to do so.”
He added, “As I said, there are a lot of changes on the way, but we will have to sit as a team. Yes as president you will have some individual ideas, the team must buy into the ideas and sign off on it before we proceed.”
After 25 years of service: Emmanuel said, “I bring sincerity, honesty and hard work to this organization.”
Eddie Hazell congratulated the new executive of the SLOC especially Emmanuel on his selection to the position of President. He said, “The mandate he received clearly shows the confidence the Federations has in his ability to lead the organization in these trying times.”
According to Hazell, “It is now up to all Federations to ensure that they press for the SLOC to work towards uplifting athletes and coaches and fulfilling the mandate of being an Organization that does not just cater to an elite few.”
He said, “It is my hope that this new executive gives the assistance necessary in raising the professional standards of the National Federations as this represents a critical part to drive the development of the athletes. And most importantly, SLOC plays a greater role in serving and putting the interest and welfare of athletes first.”
Hazell added, “I therefore lend my support to the team as it is necessary that they perform and succeed as the future of all our athletes depends on their success. All the best, and let the work towards development commence.”
Chairman of the Election Commission, Hubert Pierre said, “From inception I must say that the candidates were very cooperative which is important to everything you want to do and bearing this in mind we have had a few hiccups, all because of a lack of knowledge or an oversight on their behalf, but really and truly everybody was cooperative.”
Pierre said, “We work with a constitution, it was always our guide, and we had decided not to step out of it. I have already told them this constitution needs to be reviewed because there is so much that is left to suspect to persons own interpretation, so they need to really tie it up and where there are gaps, fill it up.”
He added, “I am happy with the results, the election went well. I wasn’t supporting anybody, I am fully independent. For the sake of Saint Lucia, I have already told them this is just an election and as far as everything goes you are part of the whole development of people in Saint Lucia.”
Pierre said, “I am thinking that Levern Spencer has retired, who will we have consistently to be at the Olympic Games as a representative for Saint Lucia, the time has come where they have to throw their efforts behind who can be the best representative of us as a people more than turf guarding, it is time that we understand, it’s a multi sport organization, and let it be and let us support our best, we are all Saint Lucians, this is the message I try to live with”.