Minister responsible for culture Myron Walwyn last evening declared that he does not have enough money to pay persons who run the Virgin Islands Festival and Fairs Committee, adding that God will however bless them for the work they perform.
He made that comment nearly three years after he, during the 2014 emancipation festival in Carrot Bay on Tortola, called for the festival volunteers to be paid.
At the time, Walwyn stated that virtually all other government boards are paid even a stipend.
During the launch of the Virgin Gorda Easter Festival last evening, the minister indicated that no progress has been made regarding efforts to have the festival volunteers paid.
“The work of festival is hard work and sometimes we don’t always appreciate what goes into putting on a good festival, and they (organizers) are not paid,” Walwyn said.
He continued, “I want to pay them, but I don’t have any money to pay them. So the Lord will bless them, and I thank them very much for the good work that they continue to do.”
Meanwhile, Chairman of the Virgin Islands Festival and Fairs Committee Trefor Grant, who spoke at the event last evening before the culture minister, noted that persons on his committee are not paid.
As such, he said residents should be appreciative of the voluntary service being offered.
“Please enjoy and appreciate the hard work that our founders and our present festival bodies continue to do for everyone’s enjoyment. Be patient and understanding. Don’t forget we are all volunteers,” added Grant.
He further told the audience, “Festival is our labour of love – love for country and love for culture.”
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