Minister Tonge urges earlier preparation for Carnival

 Tonge said tourism is everybody's business
Tonge said tourism is everybody’s business

Tourism Minister, Robert Tonge, has called for earlier preparations for Dominica’s Carnival celebrations.

He said that should be done so that persons will have an idea what to expect during the season.

“Carnival has to be planned a lot earlier so that people know what to expect,” he said.”We should be promoting Carnival from now and our Jazz event…..Even now we should be having our videos that people can see what Carnival was all about, just like our music Carnival should not just be for Dominicans only, it also has to be for the wider public,” according to the businessman turned government minister. “So all the time when we promote Carnival we promote it with a Creole or patois phrase. The people who are not familiar, how do they understand what that means?” 

Tonge believes that both versions are needed so that people who are not from Dominica can also understand what it is.

“When we say the best Mas, how many people understand what Mas is?” he asked. “But if we are trying to bring in other people, we have to look at some of these things critically in terms of moving forward.”

The Tourism minister is also suggesting that costume bands bring in their costumes earlier and sell them to cruise ship passengers.

 “The most important thing is the planning, we need to plan early and put these things in place even if we have to assist the bands to get them with some financial assistance so that they can begin to bring the costumes earlier, so people can buy their costumes earlier,” Tonge urged.

“We have cruise ships that are coming on a Tuesday. I believe that the bands that are here should be selling 100 costumes to the cruise ships and these cruise ship people come in and they have a blast,” he declared.

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  1. Noke
    February 25, 2015

    You are the primary sector decision maker and yet you sound like you are some padna by the road, detached from it all and floating ideas.

    No more passing work to your friends, no more playing facebook hero, no more leaning on daddy rep.

    Get to work and let other people learn from you. Either that or you will have the longest 5 years of your life.

  2. February 25, 2015

    Does poverty have any thing to do with most Blacks world wide does not keep their country clean. Or is it a culture problem.

  3. jennifer anne fadell
    February 25, 2015

    But Robbie, you are the head of Tourism, how can you urge earlier planning? You are the one to start the ball rolling, Give your directive that you need a plan by a certain date and heads will roll if it is not done. You are the boss. Get your p.s and c.e.o’s and players together and get the ball rolling. one love.

    • Truth Be Told
      February 25, 2015

      Thank you. I was beginning to think that it is only me who is thinking this minister is beginning to say to others to do exactly what he should be taking the lead and organise. Just do it sir! Direct the Festivals Commission, Discover Dominica, Carnival Organising Committee – provide them with the budget and set them on their way to do it. Also, be sure to be constantly monitoring and reviewing progress so that there are no surprises about what has not yet been done or is not achievable before the time carnival comes around!

  4. me
    February 25, 2015

    Wonderful and refreshing ideas…

  5. Nac Vibes
    February 25, 2015

    Oh my Confused?, yes I was.

  6. Visionary
    February 25, 2015

    Dear Hon. Tonge,
    While i am agreement with you that planning for carnival should be done early but how is your Government contributing to the development of carnival. This meagre financial contribution that the Government makes to carnival speaks volume to the seriousness of the Government about carnival. For carnival to be a major Tourism product Government needs to invest heavily. A carnival band is a costly exercise so Government needs to subsidize bands. Make the prices more attractive. A case in point the TRinidad Government is contributing $1000,000 TTD to the winner of the Soca Monarch, Road March King and the Calypso Monarch. Make a change Robbie. Bring your business acumen to the development of carnival. Talk is cheap and we are fed of talk. As minister tell the your Government to put its money and actions where the talk is.

    • Sunday Islander
      February 25, 2015

      Trinidad has a lot of oil money and cannot compare to Dominica. :?:

  7. Talk shop
    February 24, 2015

    As if DFC still owing the band that win last year…..LMAO Robbie mind they put you out we papa…… anyway Tonge Group of Companies all ways there….. I hope all you do not send Collin anywhere to promote Creole festival in September…… the man cannot sell water in the Sahara Dessert……..

  8. Alas
    February 24, 2015

    no respect for Christmas…..sell costumes to cruise ship tourist??? What load of crap. We doomed in DA, no hope….no ideas

    • Elixir/Mily
      February 25, 2015

      seriously? Negativity is your mantra friend. Firstly selling Costumes in order to get the Tourist to participate and further enjoy our Carnival…is a load of Crap?? what have u done lately to help the situation? You my dear ‘ALAS’ need to re-evaluate yourself.

  9. concerned
    February 24, 2015

    Start by assuring of tighter security and upgrade carnival. As a tourist i expect exotic things not a bunch of feathers and half naked women.

  10. Jaime Lewis
    February 24, 2015

    Mr. Minister:
    These are all great ideas. My hope is that these ideas will become a reality. Pull these festival committees together and get the planning process in gear!

  11. love I
    February 24, 2015

    yes, but your office has to put more MONEY into Carnival…this present Government is killing the
    Carnival, they killing Culture…they do not care,,,period

  12. REAL!!!!
    February 24, 2015

    Partner….You need to sound like you are running a country tourism sector. Where are the bigger plans to impact the product and inject revenues into our tourism sector.

    Your utterances lately sounds very mediocrity my friend , you are starting to let me and the country down.

    I hope all is not lost, Lets see if you can produce more sound and profound plans for the sector.

    • me
      February 25, 2015

      “Your utterances sound very “mediority”?…..wonder how you sound?

  13. The Facts
    February 24, 2015

    I wholeheartedly agree. You may be aware that T&T band organizers commence the following day after Carnival Tuesday. This accounts for their success and lavish costumes which are also expensive.
    A T&T friend who never misses Carnival informed me that the T & T banks loan money to the organizers and also for attending those expensive Carnival shows and parties. I suppose for those who qualify.
    Since you have broached this topic and wisely so that all band organizers sell costumes to the tourists, it should be done in an organized manner. This is extremely important so as (also) not to turn them of.
    I am certain interested tourists who are up to participating and jumping up and enjoying Carnival will be enthused about purchasing costumes. Tourists love partying and enjoying themselves. After all they are on a holiday. What better way to have fun and leave Dominica with the satisfaction that they had an enjoyable time. Rest assured they will inform others and…

  14. anonymous
    February 24, 2015

    where is your marketing program for carnival mr tonge? how do you plan on improving the carnival? you’re the one in charge of it now you know. do you even believe in what you’re doing?

  15. Efficatious
    February 24, 2015

    Carnival is over and we look forward for the next carnival. we need good and colorful wear,people come to carnival with their farm garment,the calypso’s song to be played at carnival and not take part it must be written carnival on the wear.The presenters must be professional and not sexual we can do better go for it

  16. Jon Carson
    February 24, 2015

    Well said Minister but you failed to include or reference WCMF in all that conversation and appeal. Why? Here’s a critical question, when is WCMF this year is it early like last year? I’ve been looking at the calendar and for some strange reason, I am thinking the weekend of Oct 23-25 as opposed to Oct 30 – Nov. 1st. Are we going to make the same old stupid argument of last year that the WCMF will run into the Independence celebrations and in particular, the military parade?

    If the date is going to be changed why not make an announcement now so as to put the wider public as you referred to them, on notice? The tardiness in announcing the WCMF date every year does affect severely the ‘wider public’ and those in the Diaspora. In reality, it has minimal if not any major impact on people from the French territories because of their close proximity. Can we raised the bar this year with the planning for the WCMF?

  17. Shameless
    February 24, 2015

    Robbie, Tourism is now your portfolio so grab the bull by the horn and make it happen. Enough talk talk and more talk. You don’t want people to start calling you LA=PAWOLE :mrgreen: :mrgreen: . Mine eyes are peeled on you and the administration.

    Assertive, NOT Aggressive! :twisted:

  18. Erasmus B . Black
    February 24, 2015

    The argument that early planning for an event will somehow yield better results may be fallacious. You can have all the time in the world to plan but if you do not know the basics of planning it won’t help. Being busy does not always mean real work. For starters, the minister can help create a management committee of action oriented people with proven decision-making and communication skills to manage the next carnival. And that committee should be prepared to listen to both sides including the voices they don’t want to hear.

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