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» GUEST RUNDOWNS » “IT WASN’T ME” SAYS OLIVIA “BABSY” GRANGE!

“IT WASN’T ME” SAYS OLIVIA “BABSY” GRANGE!

BY BALFORD HENRY——

OLIVIA ‘Babsy’ Grange, former minister of youth, sports and culture, says it is unfair for anyone to point fingers in her direction for what is now being regarded as the Jamaica 50 song fiasco.

Grange made the statement a day before Lisa Hanna, minister of youth and culture, addresses the sectoral debate in the House of Representatives today.

GRANGE… unfair for anyone to point fingers in her direction

The controversial issue surrounds claims made by Hanna that Grange had put together a multi-billion dollar programme of events to celebrate Jamaica’s 50th anniversary of Independence without any funds to finance it.

Hanna has since revamped the programme, leading to the current controversy over a new theme song for the celebrations.

On a Mission, produced by reggae star Shaggy, was selected and Find The Flag, the song chosen during Grange’s tenure and produced by veteran music producer, Mikey Bennett, replaced.

“I did not create this problem. The story first appeared in a local paper Jamaica Observer last month when producer Mikey Bennett was interviewed. I was not aware up to then that his song was rejected,” Grange told the Jamaica Observer.

“I was quite prepared to move on and allow my successor to complete the Jamaica 50 process with my full blessings, until the charges of mismanagement and lack of credibility started flowing from the minister,” she added.

According to Grange, the issue became controversial when Hanna gave an “incorrect statement” on the budget for the 50th anniversary programme planned by the previous Government.

Lisa Hanna & Shaggy

 

“The minister and the Secretariat also decided to throw out a theme song which was donated free of charge by over 20 of Jamaica’s best known singers, deejays and musicians and then paid close to $2 million for a new song,” Grange said.

She insisted that the plans for Jamaica 50, up to December 2011, were not developed in a partisan way.

“Our plans were developed through consultation, with the input of a wide crosssection of society, including the Opposition,” she said.

 

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