Promising sprint athlete – Tarique John is no longer a part of the IT-DAT Academy set up, because of his refusal to stop the practice of bleaching.
Bleaching is the practice of using substances, mixtures, or physical treatments to lighten skin colour.
The action against John, who has been a member of the club for just over a year, was taken by head coach and founder of IT- DAT Academy – Michael “Lord Have Mercy” Ollivierre.
A resident of Sion Hill and a student of the Emmanuel High School Mesopotamia, John, believes Ollivierre’s action was a violation of his personal rights.
“Bleaching is my personal right”, John related.
John noted that he bleaches mainly as a style and according to him, “It makes me look good”.
However, he revealed that he does not bleach all the time, a practice he got involved in two years ago.
With the fall-out with Ollivierre, John said that he too does not want to be part of the IT- DAT Academy anymore and is seeking to join another club – X- Ceed, under the headship of Godfrey Harry.
Expressing that he loves the sport of Athletics, John wants to continue on his recent set of successes – winning the 200m intermediate race at this year’s inter- secondary schools’ meet. His time equalled the standing record in that event.
John also won the male Under-18 200m at the Grenada National Championships held in June at the Grenada National Stadium.
When contacted on the matter, Ollivierre confirmed taking the stance on John.
“I do not tolerate bleaching, plus because of his bleaching, he cannot train in the sun and when he does, he is not giving his all because he is more concerned with not exposing himself to the the heat ”, Ollivierre said forcefully.
Ollivierre also underlined that John was the only athlete of the lot in his camp, who is involved in such a practice.
Ollivierre stated that students who are part of the IT- DAT Academy cannot show up to training sessions with earrings in their ears, and their shirts, in the case of the boys, must always be tucked in their pants.
“I don’t want to mistake the boys for the girls when we are training”, Ollivierre quipped.
Ollivierre added: “I try not to teach just the Athletics but also the ways of life, deportment and other life skills”.