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PM to Skinny, Fireman: Don’t let your fans down

PM to Skinny, Fireman:  Don’t let your fans down

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Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves has made an appeal to Soca artistes Gamal ‘Skinny Fabulous’ Doyle and Delroy ‘Fireman’ Hooper not to let their fans down.{{more}}

“These guys are like heavyweight champions…they are preparing for a heavyweight fight – you can’t just back out from the ring; you got to be inside there,” Gonsalves said on Wednesday, on a radio program on Star FM.

The prime minister was responding to news that both artistes would not be participating in this year’s Soca Monarch because of a dispute with the Carnival Development Committee (CDC) over prize money for the event.

According to Gonsalves, he was making an appeal to both men.

“This is not just about individualism, this is about community and I am hoping that they will respond to this,” the prime minister said.

He said that he became very concerned, as one who pays attention to the music.

“Naturally, when I heard that Skinny and Fireman were not going to appear on Soca night, I felt badly about this and then I heard last night (Tuesday) that Fireman says that he is not defending and that Skinny is not coming if Fire not coming…” Gonsalves continued.

He said that Doyle was at his residence on Tuesday and this prompted him to call Hooper. He said that he, however, spoke to Hooper’s management, and explained that he was making an appeal for both men to perform, not for CDC, but for the fans.

Gonsalves contended that the artistes may recognize that it was late for the prize monies to be amended for this year, adding that he heard CDC’s chairman Dennis Ambrose say that they would review it for next year.

“If he wasn’t interested in having it go up, he wouldn’t say that he would review it; he would have said I don’t see a case for review for next year,” Gonsalves explained.

“So, I think there can be a reasonable expectation that next year we are going to see an increase in the prize monies,” he continued.

But that was not something for the soca artistes only, but would have to be examined for all the components of carnival, Gonsalves said.

Up to press time Wednesday, when SEARCHLIGHT met up with Hooper, he said that his participation in this year’s competition was still up in the air.

Doyle, in an interview last week indicated that none of the artistes were contemplating a boycott of the show scheduled for July 7, but that they were prepared to take a unified stand on issues relating to prize money and appearance fees. The artistes were calling for an increase in the first five places in the competition.

An emergency meeting was held on Thursday, June 21, which was attended by seven soca artistes and some managers. (DD)

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