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Low Level of Support for Regional Initiatives May Lie Behind CMC's Closure

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Contact: John Emmanuel

Tuesday, January 08, 2002 – St. Lucia’s Director of Information Services Embert Charles has been expressing his views on some of the apparent reasons behind the temporary closure of the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC). According to Charles the closure goes beyond just the failure of another business enterprise, revealing generally a low level of support for regional initiatives.

Embert Charles
Embert Charles - Director of Information Services

“We saw some of the near fiascos with LIAT, the West Indies Cricket Team, the University of the West Indies and OECS Secretariat,” said Charles. “All of these reveal that people have a very lax approach to these regional institutions unless they reach a sort of crisis situation. I don’t think that the CMC situation was any different. Naturally if a business venture fails because the figures go into the red then one needs to take consideration of that, and some of the big projects which are essentially public enterprises, like Cricket, Olympics and the like, need to be supported beyond the private sector level and also at the government level.”

There have been calls for regional information ministers to meet urgently to determine what can be done concerning the future of CMC, calls which Charles says he fully supports. However, he says the efforts must be led from the national front.

“I think what has to be done at a national level is to ensure that in the new policy formulation there is almost a commitment by private and public sector media entities toward public service information. And if you start at that level then it automatically will grow into a more regional approach to public service information,” said Charles.

Concerning the future of the CMC the Director of Information Services says, “I am confident, however, that CMC will get back on its feet. Of course, there will be lots of demands from persons who will put in resources as far as the shape it takes in the future. One would have to look very close at some of the projects that it gets involved in and I think for the sake of West Indian and Caribbean pride, I’m sure governments will put in some kind of support into CMC to ensure that we see Olympics, Cricket and so forth.”


CMC’s Problems must be Handled with Extreme Caution


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