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Police Commissioner and speakers at Sprite Live Life Youth Basketball Tournament: “Focus less on your differences and more on what you have in common”

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Posted: Saturday, May 7, 2022. 11:25 am CST.

By Aaron Humes: Speakers at today’s opening of the 2022 Sprite Live Life Youth Basketball Tournament emphasized that the 140 participants from 15 teams based in Belize City, Ladyville and Hattieville, have it in their own hands to reduce crime and animosity within the District, starting with their actions on the basketball court.

Commissioner of Police Chester Williams, who came up with the original “South Cup” idea a few years ago as head of Eastern Division, responded to naysayers through his presentation that events such as these form part of the intervention and conflict resolution strategy at multiple levels.

In a trenchant observation, Williams said that often, two things separate youths in crime and gang-ridden areas: their rivals and their colors. But both the predators and the prey share similar skin colors and increasingly, similar backgrounds.

Over the next five months, Williams urged participants to work out their frustrations and tensions on the basketball courts in each neighborhood, with fans sitting side by side, and achieving peace for our time and for all time.

From the Government view, Minister of State for Youth and Sports Gilroy Usher Senior and Minister of Home Affairs Kareem Musa reminded that Belmopan has the youths’ back to succeed through the Leadership Intervention Unit and the multisectoral strategy being developed to fight crime and promote peace.

A candid Usher said he evolved from petty thief, gambler, smoker and general malcontent to a prosperous and successful businessman and politician by discovering that he could be the master of his destiny by cutting out detestable habits and focusing on life’s goals.

Sprite, a brand of Bowen and Bowen Beverages, sponsored jerseys, prizes and of course refreshments, while the City Council is a partner in logistics and Police will be securing each venue.

May the best team win!

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