The Government of Dominica has achieved another milestone in its bid to rebuilding a modern and resilient country sector by sector with the official commissioning of the Massacre Indoor Sporting Facility.

The facility was officially opened with a ceremony held on Sunday, August 8 2022, followed by a ceremonial basketball game between home team the Massacre Blazers and the Paix Bouche Eagles.

Member of Parliament for the Mahaut Constituency, Hon. Rayburn Blackmoore says the facility is the reward of many years of hard work as this has been a dream of the people of massacre for many years, noting that he is proud to have been able to deliver on this promise.

“Who would have thought therefore that Massacre would have been the first community in Dominica to have had such an indoor facility, one of such splendor. We are proud to be here and for what we have been able to accomplish with the opening of this beautiful facility. Brothers and sisters this dream to have achieved a facility in Massacre has been a very long one. It has been a dream of the young people of Massacre over the years and that of your humble servant, your Member of Parliament,” Hon. Blackmoore stated.

Hon. Blackmoore stated that this new facility is proof of the Labor Party Administration’s continued commitment to the development of sports in Dominica.

“The opening of this indoor facility here in Massacre is a manifestation of the deep commitment by your Government to invest in communities and to mobilize its people for higher purpose and higher callings in life. Today’s opening therefore is a testament to our long held view that investment in the arts and sports can help to transform our nation, build character and teamwork, improve our health and wellbeing and cultivate a deeper sense of community and nationhood and ultimately build better human being,” Hon. Blackmoore noted.

The Massacre MP added that the investment into sports is also an investment into the country’s athletes, pledging to continue working to building on the sporting infrastructure in the constituency.

“But our investment in sports is also about building the skills and talent of our youth so that they can become world class athletes who can find their true passion on the global sporting fields and courts, leading them to being able to build careers in various sporting disciplines. As your humble servant, as your member of parliament, I pledge to work with your Government for the balance of the parliamentary term to focus on adding value to the sporting infrastructure for the constituency,” the MP added.  

Meanwhile, Minister for Sports, Culture and Community Development, Hon. Roselyn Paul says the commissioning of this facility has changed the sporting landscape in Dominica.

“Today marks a very special day in the sporting landscape of Dominica and for the community of massacre and environs. Our sporting landscape will not be the same after today and the community of Massacre has been changed. We are creating history with this commissioning ceremony. For the very first time in the existence of this country and I speak even pre independence time we are providing an all-weather facility for our sports men and women,” Hon. Paul stated.

Hon. Paul noted that Government has heard the calls of athletes and sports organizers over the years, and this facility is in response to these calls ensuring the continuity of sports and safety of athletes during inclement weather.

“For years we have heard the cries of sports persons who are involved in basketball netball and volleyball.  The difficulties that they faced in having to compete on surfaces which pose dangers to them due to having been compromised by wet weather conditions. We have heard the cries of organizers who have had to cancel events as a result of rain. There were also those who called for a facility to be used after dark. Our Government has been responding and has been investing tremendously in sports development. And today we are here to answer and provide that solution to those calls that date back to our pre independence period,” Minister Paul noted.

Acting Prime Minister, Hon. Reginald Austrie says this is another tangible example of the Government’s investment in sports.

“This Labour Party Administration will continue to invest in our sports men and sportswomen to create the right conditions for them to improve their craft and to excel on the international level.  The commissioning of this facility here in Massacre is another tangible sign of our investment in sports,” he stated.

Hon. Austrie noted that Government recognizes the need to ensure that local athletes have the required environment for their development.

Hon. Austrie further stated that this indoor sporting facility is a physical manifestation of Government’s commitment to the youth of the country and the creation of opportunities for the young people to discover their higher purpose in life.

“We are mindful that the investments in sports can result in a wide range of opportunities for a country and its people. Improved facilities can open up opportunities for economic development and create the ability to maximize potential particularly through the tourism sector. This Massacre indoor facility is a bold manifestation of the Labour Party Administration’s commitment to improving the opportunities and the means available to young people for realizing their highest potential in professional sports,” Hon. Austrie added.

Founder and Developer of Basketball in Massacre, Mr. Edgar Robinson expressed his thanks to the Government for the construction of this facility. He encouraged residents of Massacre and the Mahaut Constituency by large to make use of this major investment.

There are provisions made for you. Once we have an organized group, regardless who you are or where you come from, you get in there keep there neat and clean and follow the rules, you are welcome.  So thank you again and I hope this facility will continue to be meaningful to all of us. Thank you to the Government of Dominica,” Mr. Robinson added.

The eleven thousand, two hundred square feet facility will be a 24/7 sporting facility and will facilitate the playing of basketball, netball and volleyball.