VPs Sinclair, Rochester take aim at ASAJ leadership as Lyn opts out of re-election

By November 17, 2023
(from left) outgoing president Martin Lyn, Georgia Sinclair and Lance Rochester. (from left) outgoing president Martin Lyn, Georgia Sinclair and Lance Rochester.

After serving 14 years as President of the Aquatic Sports Association of Jamaica (ASAJ), Martin Lyn has opted not to seek re-election, citing the need to refresh and reinvigorate the organisation with new leadership.

Lyn, whose time at the helm was spread across seven two-year terms, believes he has left the association in good standing with a solid platform on which the next president can build to drive the country’s aquatic sports product forward.

The new president will be selected at the ASAJ’s Annual General Meeting scheduled for December 5.

Georgia Sinclair and Lance Rochester, who served as vice presidents with responsibility for swimming and water polo respectively, under Lyn’s leadership, are said to be frontrunners in the race to take the reins.

“Sometimes you have to know when to step aside and let someone else take over. My accomplishments and achievements speak for themselves, and nobody can dispute the fact that I have done a significant amount of good during my time in charge. I also think it’s time for me to focus on other things as well and also allow the association to grow in a different direction,” Lyn told SportsMax.TV.

“For the first time in a while, there are people vying for the presidency and it is good that people’s ambitions towards leadership is stimulated. So, I am stepping down to allow the association to grow even bigger and better with fresh ideas because I have left a strong foundation on which the next president can build,” he added.

According to Lyn, his time at the helm boast outstanding contribution and great personal sacrifice, though his credibility, integrity and, by extension, leadership qualities, have been called into question on a number of occasions.

“The presidency is not an easy job in any federation. It wasn’t always easy to beg and beseech the minister (of sports) and Sports Development Foundation for funding or even to secure sponsorship, and of course, you and others don’t always see eye-to-eye for various reasons. But we have upgraded the system and most importantly we are in one of the best financial positions that we have been in, in years,” Lyn argued.

“The day-to-day running of the federation was up and down but the administration performed very well including the disciplinary committee. For the first time in a long time, we don’t have any disciplinary matters pending,” he noted.

Though celebrating some infrastructure development, as well as the recognition of five Jamaican officials on the World Aquatics list among his achievements, Lyn pointed out that he also had some regrets.

“Two regrets I have, and one is the fact that I have tried unsuccessfully to change the constitution of the ASAJ so that there are not so many gray areas because in the current constitution, there are a lot of loopholes. But the feedback was that we couldn’t just meet and discuss the constitution, so maybe I was a little premature in my approach, but it is something that I will encourage for the new administration to look at,” Lyn shared without going into details about his other regret, which had to do with how swim meets were conducted.

That said, Lyn left words of encouragement for the new administration which will boast familiar faces, as treasurer Florence Grizzle-Williams will battle incumbent Shauna Jackson for the post of Honorary Secretary.

Robyn-Ann Chin-Sang will be running unopposed for Vice-president in charge of artistic swimming, while Marlon McIntyre is the only candidate for the vice-president in charge of water polo.

Meanwhile, Hilary Brown-Nixon seems set to take the post of vice-president in charge of swimming.

“The first word of encouragement is to keep the train rolling, because we are on a very good path for success. I have dedicated a lot of time out of my life to do what I did, so which ever candidate takes over, they must be willing to invest the time and effort into moving the sport forward because it is to the benefits of the athletes and more so the country,” he ended.

Sherdon Cowan

Sherdon Cowan is a five-time award-winning journalist with 10 years' experience covering sports.

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