By Richard Lord
June 21, 2016 – guardian.co.tt
Fresh moves are underway to increase the salaries of the Prime Minister, cabinet ministers, the Opposition Leader and all other MPs.
This is as a Salaries Review Commission (SRC) consultant met with senior Government and Opposition MPs last week to initiate the process for the hike.
Continue reading ‘Pay hikes proposed for PM, Cabinet, Opposition’
By Raffique Shah
June 16, 2016
It would be asking too much of our politicians that they show some humility in their public lives. In fact, it will be true to say that, with precious few exceptions, politicians across the world are egotistical and arrogant, character traits that distinguish them from most ordinary human beings.
Lest I be accused of being unduly harsh on the men and women who offer themselves for high political offices, I ask that readers think of politicians you may know personally, contrast the genial soul you knew before he or she was elected or appointed to high office with the person you see (or saw) in office, lording it over lesser mortals.
Continue reading ‘No civility, much hypocrisy’
By Raffique Shah
June 06, 2016
When constitutionally-independent institutions in the country seem to be collapsing, when holders of the highest offices seem confused about their roles and perplexed about their powers, and when the law publicly proves to be the proverbial ass, then, Trinidad & Tobago, we have a problem…a very serious problem.
Continue reading ‘Integrity Commission a waste’
Friday, May 13 2016 – newsday.co.tt
THE BOOKS have been cooked.
Recent disclosures to Parliament have led us to conclude that the State’s financial accounting is seriously flawed. The books have been rendered defective through suspect accounting practices, gaps in oversight of revenue, and the use of tactics that have the effect of masking shortfalls. The result? A distorted picture. A Budget statement every year, yet no true accountability.
Continue reading ‘Cooked books’
Thursday, May 5 2016 – newsday.co.tt
IT WAS a bright cold day in May, and the clocks were striking 13.
This opening line is a paraphrase of the famous opening line of George Orwell’s novel 1984. It’s fitting, we feel, given what took place in the Senate on Tuesday.
Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi, without citing specific legal precedent, made a chilling declaration.
Continue reading ‘Privacy is our right’
By JANELLE DE SOUZA
April 10, 2016 – newsday.co.tt
The seven percent levy on online purchases of goods and services scheduled to take effect by September will probably not slow down online shopping simply because local prices are too high.
Some regular online shoppers to overseas retail companies questioned the move by the Government to further tax online shoppers as they already pay a 20 percent duty and Value Added Tax on these items when they arrive in the country.
Continue reading ‘Online shoppers: 7% tax unfair’
Not worthy of public office
By Rhondor Dowlat
April 01, 2016 – guardian.co.tt
Former prime minister of T&T Patrick Manning believes that politicians who are guilty of hiring relatives at their respective constituency offices are not worthy of public office.
Manning made a statement via his Facebook page on Wednesday night.
He disclosed that in all his 44 years as a Parliamentarian, he has never employed a family member or relative in his constituency office.
Continue reading ‘Manning knocks MPs hiring relatives’
March 20, 2016, 9:49 pm AST – trinidadexpress.com
IT is disingenuous for Members of Parliament to be offering to refund salaries paid to relatives in breach of parliamentary rules, to quibble over definitions of employment, to suggest that new rules should not affect old behaviour or to dismiss them as mere guidelines. The fact that one of those MPs is Wade Mark, former speaker of the House under whom the parliamentary rules regarding employment at MPs constituency offices were reviewed and changed before being implemented in the current term, is scandalous.
Continue reading ‘Getting serious with errant MPs’
By Gail Alexander
Sunday, March 20, 2016 – guardian.co.tt
Apart from Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar, two other Opposition UNC MPs had relatives employed at their respective constituency offices in this current parliamentary term, and a third UNC MP still has a “distant” relative employed.
They are Princes Town MP Barry Padarath, Caroni Central MP Dr Bhoe Tewarie and Mayaro MP Rushton Paray.
Continue reading ‘Padarath to repay Parliament $60,000 for hiring relative’
Opposition Leader accused of hiring relatives at Siparia constituency office
By Ria Taitt
March 19, 2016 – trinidadexpress.com
Allegations of a breach of the Parliament rules against the hiring of relatives gathered momentum yesterday with fresh claims that Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar has broken the rules too.
Reports surfaced yesterday that Persad-Bissessar has employed two of her relatives at her Siparia constituency office for well over a decade.
Continue reading ‘KAMLA MUST GO TOO’