Vila Times

“No financial contribution from Government towards Kassav’ Concert,” VBTC CEO

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The Chief Executive Officer of Vanuatu Broadcasting and Television Corporation (VBTC), Francis Herman, dismisses all information claiming that the Government of Vanuatu is contributing financially towards the concert of popular group Kassav’ scheduled for Saturday 5 October.
Contacted by Vila Times on Sunday afternoon to clear all information published on social media regarding Government’s contribution as one of the sponsors of Kassav’ Tour to Vanuatu, VBTC CEO said in Bislama, “Yumi Toktok Stret i kiaman” (Yumi Toktok Stret is lying).
On Sunday, Yumi Toktok Stret (YTS) that is a public forum in social media claimed that Kassav’ Concert will cost Government Vt17 million.
According to YTS, sources inside Vanuatu Government have affirmed that the Kassav’ Concert will cost the Vanuatu Government around VT17 million.
“The 17m is funded from the PMs Office budget as VBTC do not have the budget for a show this big. Logistics and accommodation are also added in plus duty exemption which is around VT5m for the sound system, lighting and other equipment required for the Concert.”
“The source has also revealed that there is no allocated budget for the concert and all ticketing proceeds will go directly to VBTC.”
The Catch a Fyha concert organized in July by VBTC this year was a loss and it is hoped the Kassav’ concert will do better as public funds are being used as finance.”
“When asked why the Vanuatu Government feels it is important to finance the Kassav Show, the source replied he does not know why as there was never a reason to finance such a massive band with public funds.”
“The source did suggest that the concert should be free to everyone as it is funded by the Vanuatu Government and it is Tax Payer money that funds the Government.
YTS News asked the source whether the Government thought about its own regulations as the normal rule is any amount being spent by the Vanuatu Government that exceeds 5 million must be tendered; the source replied that this is also another worry.”

VBTC CEO brushed all the information aside saying all is a total lie.
The State-Owned company is the main organizer of Kassav’ Tour to Vanuatu. Also among the sponsors, the Municipality of Port Vila and many private local companies that are willing to make the dreams for many Ni-Vanuatu come true.
The sponsors’ contributions will be certainly made known during the concert at Korman Stadium.
It is a longtime dream for Ni-Vanuatu people who are fans of this popular zouk band from Guadeloupe.
Kassav’ already performed in New Caledonia several times and for its next trip organized to celebrate 40 years of its existence, VBTC (Vanuatu Broadcasting and Television Corporation) that manages Paradise FM98 saw it is the only opportunity to have it before the band goes to the French territory.
Before its show in Noumea scheduled for 11 October, the management of Paradise FM98 and VBTC entered to a deal with the organizers of this Pacific tour and managed to grab this only opportunity to have Kassav for its Vanuatu fans on 5 October.
An attempt has been made in 2006 for the group to come to Vanuatu during its tour to New Caledonia but due to a lack of sponsorship, people who wanted to organize the tour renounced to their initiative.
Kassav’ is a Carabbean band formed in Guadeloupe in 1979. The core members of the band are Jocelyne Béroard, Jacob Desvarieux, Jean-Phillipe Martély, Patrick St. Eloi, Jean-Claude Naimro, Claude Vamur and Georges Décimus. Kassav’ have issued twenty albums, with a further twelve albums by band members.
The band was formed by Pierre-Edouard Décimus (former musicians from the Les Vikings de Guadeloupe and Paris studio musician Jacob F, Desvarieux.