Olympic finances in order

The Cayman Islands Olympic Association’s financial statements have been fully audited and are all in order.

The latest statements cover the period from 1 January 2004 to 31 December 2007.

The delay in auditing the accounts was because of the impact of Hurricane Ivan in 2004 and also the fact that to audit them would have cost tens of thousands of dollars which the Olympic Association could not justify.

In the end KPMG prepared the accounts for a modest fee and Deloitte audited them for nothing as a goodwill gesture.

The Olympic Committee consists of Donald McLean (president), Lori Powell (vice-president), Carson Ebanks (secretary general) and Bernie Bush (treasurer).

Bush said: ‘The proof is in the pudding. I would like to say a special thank you to KPMG for preparing them and to Deloitte who did the books for us at no charge.

‘That was what was holding us up, the cost of getting them audited.

‘The delay in getting the accounts updated was that when Ivan hit the Olympic Committee office was under five feet of water and all the computers were destroyed.

‘We had to back track and deal all over again with all the associations, wire transfers, credit cards and banks. It was not an easy task.

‘There were some people within the Olympic movement who wanted to get themselves in there and were making fuss but what was so nice to see was that the audit showed that at times we used money out of our own pocket to finance things.

‘Our president had to at times loan money to the organisation until it came in from the International Olympic Committee. There were times that we even used our own money to finance trips.

‘You don’t go into these things to make money and it was a pleasure to see last night at the Annual General Meeting that we were all returned unopposed.’

Bush has been involved with the Olympic Committee for over 20 years and thinks this is the best it has ever been run.

‘We have a different way of doing things and stress being inclusive, not exclusive. We started a newsletter, which keeps the members informed.

‘We’ve sent members off to Olympic solidarity courses that informs us how to access money to help our athletes and associations.

‘We intend to keep moving forward in the Olympic movement and help the organisations in administration courses.

‘A lot of the associations really need to sharpen up and that starts at the top. We all do this as volunteers for the love of sport, especially Donald, our president. I don’t know anyone who loves the movement more than he does.’

Bush admits that some Olympic committee reps are in it for personal gain such as luxury trips and reflected glory. He is not like that.

‘I don’t enjoy going on planes and only do so when I have to. I only attend conferences when told to go by the IOC. If I have an option not to go, then I won’t. I’ll rather stay here and work.’

Cynics might say that the Olympic Committee books are only prepared up to the end of 2007. Bush explained that the 2008 accounts are ready but they’re waiting on the kindness of Deloitte again to audit them at their convenience.

‘Our 2008 accounts were accepted as well last night.’

McLean said: ‘We have done the drafts for 2008 and have now to get them audited. Deloitte are doing it pro bono again and hopefully, they’ll get them done after June when they’re not busy. Our financial statements were always up to date but just not audited.’

McLean had no qualms in loaning the Olympic Committee $12,000, interest free at one point because there were no funds.

‘When I took over we were behind and had to do reports to the IOC. That took three or four months before we could get funding.

‘At the AGM the entire executive was voted back in. We must be doing something right because no one wanted to get us out!’