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Story Highlights

  • Minister Neita Headley, is reiterating the Government’s commitment to ensuring that the nation’s young footballers can evolve into international superstars.
  • This is one of the reasons the Government embarked on a $250 million High School Sports Infrastructure Improvement Programme in November.
  • 21-year-old Kemar Lawrence of the Harbour View Football Club as brand ambassador for Pepsi Cola Jamaica and the face of this new football campaign.

Minister with responsibility for Sport, Hon. Natalie Neita Headley, is reiterating the Government’s commitment to putting the necessary infrastructure in place to ensure that the nation’s young footballers can evolve into international superstars.

“We do well at football at every level; however, we have to make the transition from being that boy on the corner…that boy in the club to the international star athlete,” the Minister said.

Mrs. Neita Headley was addressing a Pepsi Cola Jamaica press conference, held at Cuddy’z Sports Bar and Restaurant in Kingston, on January 24, to unveil the local segment of the conglomerate’s international football campaign.

The Minister lamented that while it has been recognized that the country has exceptional football players in the making, “somehow we have not made that transition properly and fully in terms of moving from good school boy football to terrific football at the national level.”

This is one of the reasons the Government embarked on a $250 million High School Sports Infrastructure Improvement Programme in November last year to further develop 23 high school and community-based sporting facilities across the island.

“For me that’s where it starts, because a part of what we have to do is to give our youngsters the right equipment with which to work. They have the natural talent, but we must support them in providing for them, the right equipment and the right tools, so that they can explore all their potential,” she said.

The Minister praised Pepsi Cola Jamaica for “this very worthwhile and diverse project,” which sees the company signing 21-year-old Kemar Lawrence of the Harbour View Football Club as brand ambassador and the face of this new football campaign.

Congratulating Kemar, the Sport Minister encouraged him to “do us proud”, noting that “you have an opportunity to become a greater role model and to inspire the young people of Jamaica to know that they can reach any heights that they desire.”

In response, the young footballer expressed gratitude to Pepsi for being chosen to be a part of the campaign, while thanking his family, friends and other well wishers for their support.

Brand Manager, Pepsi Cola Jamaica, Carla Hollingsworth, explained that Kemar is joining a group of the world’s greatest players, including Argentinian captain, Lionel Messi and Dutch player, Robin van Persie, in embarking on the campaign.

She noted that Kemar has demonstrated “true ability and the right attitude to make it in the business of football,” and will lead a new advertising campaign and his image will be used in the company’s branding.