Crisis next door will continue

By Raffique Shah
June 21, 2019

Raffique ShahDuring the recent Venezuelan migrants registration exercise, I found myself subconsciously scanning video-clips and photographs of the hundreds of hopefuls who turned up at the three designated centres each day for, I am not ashamed to admit it, applicants of colour. “Where are the Waraos?” I kept asking aloud. “Where are the Afro-Venezuelans?” I spotted one or two of the latter during the two-week exercise, but not one of the indigenous people (Warao and other tribes), who, I am told by fisher-folks who routinely make trips across to the Main”, live closest to Trinidad and Tobago.
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The Public’s Right to Know

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
June 20, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeAlmost invariably citizens elect a government with the expectation that it will act in their best interest. You allow them (the members of government) to go along their merry way with the tacit assumption that they realize their primary function is to serve rather than to be served; to listen and to respond rather than to impose and to dictate.
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Identifying and fighting economic apartheid

By Raffique Shah
June 14, 2019

Raffique ShahTrinidad and Tobago should be grateful for having among its citizens patriots who are unafraid to speak out on issues that affect us all, and more importantly, who bear allegiance to the country, not to any political party. Of course, such persons have the right to support a party of their choice at any point in time. But they also jealously maintain their independence by criticising the policies and actions of the party they voted for when they are convinced it has made decisions that are inimical to the best interests of the nation.
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“I Am a Homosexual, Mum”

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
June 12, 2019

“If there is a miracle in the idea of life, it is this: that we are able to exist for a time, in defiance of chaos.”

—Binyavanga Wainaina, One Day I Will Write About This Place

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeFew people in Trinidad and Tobago may have heard the name Binyavanga Wainaina, the Kenyan writer and activist, who died on May 29 at the age of 48. He was one of the most prominent international writers of his time who “above all, sought the truth of complexity” (Financial Times, June 1). In 2014, Time Magazine named him one of the “100 most influential people in the world.”
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Look into the mirror, people

By Raffique Shah
June 06, 2019

Raffique ShahTwo crews, one from the URP and the other from the CEPEP, descended upon the two-by-two street on which I live during the past two weeks in a kind of pincer attack that I am convinced was devised by mid-level officials of the programmes to show citizen Shah how taxpayers’ dollars are wasted, and how we can do nothing about the wastage.

An in-my-face kind of gesture, probably with the finger…
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Land Grabbing with Government’s Assistance

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
June 06, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeThe Tacarigua Welfare and Improvement Council, also known as the Tacarigua Village Council, was established on 23 May 1945. Its first meeting was held at the “Cocoa House” that was built by enslaved Africans in 1837. Vernon Scott, the headmaster of St. Mary’s Anglican School and the person under whom I began my teaching career, was the first president of the Council.
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Four trains too far?

By Raffique Shah
May 29, 2019

Raffique ShahConsider the following: in 2019, when the 20-year contract for Train 1 of the Atlantic LNG plant expired and a new contract was negotiated, supposedly giving the people of Trinidad and Tobago a fairer share of the profits, the principal shareholder of the Train, BPTT, cast doubt over its future viability based on an unreliable supply of natural gas occasioned by two (or four?) “dry holes” in the energy giant’s infill drilling programme offshore T&T.
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Whispers of Corrupting Practices

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
May 28, 2019

“Whenever you ignore whispers, you do so at your own peril. Sometimes they may be the truth.”

—Eric Williams, PNM’s Founding father

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeOk! Minister Colm Imbert, PNM party chairman, did not bouff Education Minister Anthony Garcia. Garcia was asked “a barrage of questions” and Imbert intervened politely, according to Laurel Lezama-Lee Sing, PNM’s public relations officer, “to remind him [Garcia] that the press conference was about party issues” (Express, May 20).
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Cultural & Environmental Violence

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
May 20, 2019

“I bear a grudge that we in Trinidad do not pay enough attention to our heroes. They are the people that will give Trinidad life.”

—Beryl McBurnie quoted in Judy Raymond, Beryl McBurnie

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeThere has been much coverage about the horrible murder of the prime minister’s boyhood friend John Miles and his wife Eulyn at the hands of a monstrously deranged person. This dastardly act led the PM to bemoan: “What have we become? What are we producing as ‘the next generation’? John and I grew up together in poverty, with pride, but violence and criminality were never part of our life” (Express, May 4).
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Adulating the Hillview T20 Supremacy

By Stephen Kangal
May 15, 2019

Stephen KangalI was there at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy, Torouba on Friday 10 May to witness first hand with my colleagues Bedoor, Zainool and Ramlogan Mahabir, ball by ball the progressive demolition of the Presentation Chaguanas (PC) Team from the Caroni plains that dared to challenge the Hillview (HVC) side originating from the Northern Hills in the Finals of the T20 Secondary School Championships.
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