Will the UIA deliver another great Fair at Blacktown?

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UIA’s president John Kennedy says his team will deliver once again.

The United Indian Associations is gearing up for the biggest Indian fair in Sydney. Newly elected president John Kennedy says that this year’s fair will be bigger and better than the India-Australia Friendship Fair in previous years.

The UIA Fair has been held in a few different locations in the past, including Parramatta, Fairfield showground and the Sydney Olympic Park. The Fair has been a big attraction for the local Indian community in previous years, although it has generated its share of controversy within the Indian community.

John says, “UIA is moving this year’s Friendship and Harmony Fair to the heart of our community. The Blacktown International Sportspark is a more accessible venue with plenty of free parkingand easy access to the station and buses. Almost 9% of Blacktown’s population is Indian.”

John says that his team enjoys the backing of local and state governments besides private sponsors and large sections of the wider Indian community who’ve traditionally turned up in large numbers for the Fair.

This year the UIA celebrates 20 years as the Indian community’s umbrella organisation in NSW. The UIA today has the support of 25 other Indian associations. A few more associations are in the process of seeking membership with the UIA, says John.

Soon after his election, John appointed six members from the UIA’s General Council into the Executive Committee. John says this will give more associations a voice in the UIA decision-making processes. John was previously secretary of the UIA and he is also active in leading Tamil community associations.

The UIA has been plagued by financial problems and some sections of the community have been openly critical of the lack of “transparency and accountability” within the association.

John claims that his team are actively working to fix this state of affairs and in the year ahead many initiatives are planned to deal with the association’s problems. John, however, insists that the critics and opponents of the association are engaged in a vilification campaign and the UIA still enjoys the support and confidence of all wide sections of the community.

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