They stole the soul of the nation

By Raffique Shah
February 26, 2024

Raffique ShahMany of my readers who know of my health challenges, who have noted my not-infrequent absence from this space, added the proverbial two-and-two together and came up with 22. Wrong answer. Watching each other with a strong element of conspiracy my readers worked feverishly (they thought they were on a timeline!).

They engaged in conversations aplenty. My spies reported that further discussions held in camera resulted in innovative journalism, but like all who have followed my chequered careers in my near-80 years on earth, they quickly resolved their differences, demanded communication time with me, and… well, here is the fruit of the first such exploration.
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A Quest for Truth

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
February 20, 2024

“A Quest for Truth” was delivered on Monday Night February 19, 2024, at the UNC’s forum on crime.

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeThe Hon. Kamla Persad-Bissessar, leader of the UNC, other members of the panel, distinguished members of the UNC, ladies and gentlemen and those who are present at the Chaguanas Borough Council and those who are following on radio or television.

“Talent hits a target no one else can hit. Genius hits a target that no one else can see.”

—Arthur Schopenhauer

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Dem people

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
February 20, 2024

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeAfter my column “Rowley cannot fix the crime problem” appeared in the Sunday Express a few weeks ago, Kamla Persad-Bissessar and Jearlean John, leader and deputy leader of the United National Congress (UNC), respectively, invited me to share my views on the crime situation in Trinidad and Tobago in its Anti-Crime Conversation that it was conducting. I accepted their kind invitation without reservation.
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Machel resurrects the old

By Raffique Shah
February 19, 2024

Raffique ShahIt took Machel Montano 40 of his 49 years to creatively and graphically make an emphatic statement on this senseless commess that surrounds calypso and soca. I am still not sure however that his contention—that soca is the soul of calypso—is correct, but he laid down the gauntlet for anyone who wishes to argue otherwise. I have never entered the debate before. Not when it raged in the 1970s with flamboyant stage performances by artistes like SuperBlue, Maestro, Ras Shorty I and the like.
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If Jesus Returned to this Earth

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
February 13, 2024

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeIf Jesus returned to this earth, what form would he take; what region would he go to; and where would he live? We know that he was born in a manger, the humblest of all dwellings, but would he reappear in the pomp and regality of a king, the self-importance and arrogance of a prime-minister, or the swagger and manipulative power of a financier?
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When music ignites passion

By Raffique Shah
February 13, 2024

Raffique ShahI can see it clearly today as I did back then 70-odd years ago. My brain at eight years young focused on the sweet melody that came from the one steelband that passed through Freeport Junction. By 6 a.m. when the junction came alive with about 800 people of varying races, colours and cultures, swaying, jumping and shouting loudly to the sounds of Lord Blakie’s “Steelband Clash”, I stood there in awe of what I was witnessing.
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Living and dying on a river bank

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
February 06, 2024

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeIf you are travelling from Port of Spain to Arima and pass through Tacarigua and make a left turn onto Richard Street, you would be heading to the Northern Range. It will take you to a semi-urban community, Paradise Gardens, that sits at the base of that magnificent mountain. Sometimes its serenity feels like paradise as the soft, refreshing breezes that caress the community.
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Rowley cannot solve our crime problem

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
January 23, 2024

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeKeith Rowley and his Government will not solve our growing crime problem for the simple reason that Rowley has become a part of the problem rather than part of a solution. He is much too arrogant, indecisive, ill-disciplined and un-inspirational to lead such a vital national effort.

First. He says that Trinidad and Tobago is a violent society, but exempts himself from that national condition. If his description is true, we are all infected with that virus. However, Rowley is mistaken in one regard. He feels that only physical violence matters. He does not realise that verbal violence—a product of the same society of which he is a part—is as bad as physical violence and may be the precursor to physical violence. Rowley practises verbal violence against the nation each day.
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Consigning Panday’s Memory to National Forgetfulness

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
January 23, 2024

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeNo fallen prime minister since Eric Williams has ever received such an outpouring of sympathy as Basdeo Panday did. On Thursday, the mayor of Siparia and his council members expressed the hope that, “His legacy as a dedicated servant leader, a man of unwavering principles, and a champion for the people of Trinidad and Tobago will always be remembered and cherished.” (Express, January 18). I am not sure their wish will come to pass.
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Parkinson’s patients mission

By Raffique Shah
January 23, 2024

Raffique ShahEleven years ago, when I first reported that I was diagnosed by several doctors with Parkinson’s disease, I thought I knew then much about this neurodegenerative condition for which there was no cure. Back then, the only persons I knew who had PD were actor Michael J Fox, my boxing idol Muhammad Ali, and my political guru of sorts, CLR James.
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