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Director of Culture defends postponement of CARIFESTA, saying officials would not want to host a watered-down festival

Director of Culture Khan Cordice is defending the Government’s decision to postpone CARIFESTA XV until 2022, saying that other countries have been impacted by the economic situation, as well.

Last week, Festivals Minister Daryl Matthew announced that, following consultations with the CARICOM Secretariat, the staging of the festival had been rescheduled to August 11-21, 2022.

Cordice says the postponement affects not only Antigua and Barbuda, but other CARICOM countries that were slated to take part in the biennial Festival of Arts.

He says the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has affected each and every country, many of which spend millions to take part in the event.

Cordice says that local officials would not wish to host a watered-down event.  Rather, they would prefer to have the full participation of all countries – especially because it is the first time this nation is hosting the prestigious festival.

The Director of Culture says that not putting out the best event would be a disservice to the people of Antigua and Barbuda.

He says members of the other countries expressed some level of relief upon learning that the event would be postponed.  There is consensus that postponing the festival would allow for better planning and greater participation, he reports.

According to Cordice, COVID-19 is still very much present and the uncertainty that surrounds next year is cause for concern. He notes, too, that that Trinidad & Tobago has already cancelled its 2021 Carnival celebrations.  

The main objective of CARIFESTA  is to showcase artists, musicians, and authors, and to exhibit the folklore and art of the Caribbean and Latin American region.

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