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Apr 8, 2015

Bodybuilding Federation Elects New Committee

The Belize Body Building and Fitness Federation is under new leadership. An election was recently held and resulted in a new committee. The nine person team is led by Mirna Greenidge. For a federation whose committee has long been filled with men and whose sport is mostly male dominated, a woman has never been at the helm of this association. Andrea Polanco spoke with Mirna Greenidge, the first woman to become President of the Federation.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Meet the new President of the Belize Body Building and Fitness Federation, Mirna Paul Greenidge. She has taken up the mantle from Stanley Moody for the next three years. So, leading a federation whose sport has been traditionally male dominated, how will Greenidge command the respect she deserves?


Mirna Paul-Greenidge

Mirna Paul-Greenidge, President, B.B.B.F.F.

“Our focus is going to be on health and fitness and that carries no gender. Males and females can be fit and that is one of the things that what we want to promote. Yes, our athletes will be the focus of the events but we want to include other associations and we plan to work with everyone and incorporate programs that the community can benefit; for example, if your company has a staff meetings and our athletes can go and give tips on health and fitness, just so that people can understand the importance of health and fitness in Belize.”


And so commanding that respect and leading the federation means growing the sport in Belize. Over the years, body building has lost some of its excitement and public interest has dwindled. Greenidge says she will be building on what is in place and introducing new elements to take the sport to another level.


Stanley Moody

Mirna Paul-Greenidge

“The only we can do that is to have a little more presence in the community; more events and exposing our athletes to various events and going abroad. For example, we had the opportunity to participate in the recent Central American Championships and we brought back five medals; one of them gold. So, definitely that will be something that we can see a little bit more. In September we will be participating in another competition, so definitely representing the country well, take our athletes to bigger games and a little exposure for tourism for our country.”


But it’s an association shrouded in controversy under the previous president Stanley Moody and his committee; notably, the issue with athlete Cricel Castillo which resulted in a two year suspension. As a woman, what’s Greenidge’s position on Castillo’s case?


Mirna Paul-Greenidge

“I want to take away from the minds of the people, the controversy. I think Mr Stanley Moody and his team were able to accomplish a lot during their period and they did a well done job. However, yes you will always have difficulties. But the way we will respond to challenges is to always engage and partner with different associations and work in the community. I think it is a little premature to speak about that situation as yet, we are just having our meetings and this will just be the second one. It is something that we are open, whenever that is tabled we will definitely come to the media and let the public know what’s happening with that.”


Andrea Polanco

“So, you are definitely open to reviewing it and perhaps even engaging in dialoguing with Ms Castillo?”


Mirna Paul-Greenidge

“Like I said, we want to be open. We want to be transparent.”


And while that may take a while before we hear the federation’s official position, what we do know is that the newly installed committee hit the ground running over the weekend. They held the first ever international body building and fitness competition, the Orion Classic. The big winner for the event was Oyinkro Akpobodor who walked away with the title of the over eighty-five K category. Reporting for News Five, I am Andrea Polanco.


Also elected are First Vice President George Myvett; Second Vice President and Secretary, Wendy Assad; Assistant Secretary, Josephine Gault and Treasurer, Giovanny Gomez, along with four other committee members.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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