Portia says report addressing proposed rewards for Olympians coming


Saturday, September 22, 2012

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Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller would not commit to a specific timeline for a report that will give details of exactly how the government plans to reward athletes who represented the country at last month's Olympic Games in London, but indicated it would be soon.

A special committee, which was set-up to deal with the issue, is still mulling over ideas, which includes the possibility of cash awards. The Prime Minister, who was speaking to reporters at the launch of the Howard Aris Scholarship at the Mayfair Hotel in Kingston on Thursday, said she was still awaiting the report of this special committee.

"There is a particular committee dealing with that and they will be giving us a report for Cabinet and then we will discuss and see how we can assist," she said.

"I am expecting it (the report) not Monday coming because I will be going to the UN meeting... I don't want to tie myself to a particular date, (but) I know the minister will be taking something for me before Cabinet (soon)," said Simpson Miller.

Earlier this month minister with responsibility for sport Natalie Neita-Headley disclosed that there were plans to honour the athletes with a range of celebratory activities on the weekend of National Heroes' Day.

Jamaica achieved its best ever performance at the Olympics by capturing a record 12 medals — four gold, four silver and four bronze.

Fifty athletes in four sporting disciplines — track and field, swimming, Tae kwon do and equestrian — represented the country and were led by the mercurial sprinter, Usain Bolt.

In a show appreciation to their Olympic champions, the governments of Grenada and Trinidad and Tobago showered them with gifts of enormous sums of money and real estate.

Kirani James won the 400 metres for the Spice Island, while Keshorn Walcott took the javelin gold for the twin-island republic.




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