Politics before food
Sugar and Energy Festival Street Parade – October 09, 2005
By Andre Bagoo
May 18 2013 – newsday.co.tt
THE CLOSURE of Caroni (1975) Limited and consequent devastating impact on the agriculture sector and TT’s food security, may be directly linked to political considerations surrounding the then PNM government’s fear of a repeat of the 18-18 general election deadlock of 2001, Tourism Minister Stephen Cadiz said yesterday.
Continue reading ‘The Closure of Caroni (1975) Limited’
By Raffique Shah
April 7, 2013
Trinidad and Tobago is not the third fattest nation in the world. In fact, I venture to add that we would hardly rank among the top fifty countries when it comes to obesity. What are the scientific bases for my bold pronouncements? They are the same used by Britain’s Daily Mail when the tabloid threw the fat spotlight on us last week—none! Or let’s say I trust my eyes when it comes to evaluating fatness.
Continue reading ‘We are not obese’
By Raffique Shah
October 20, 2012
MOST times I stay silent when I listen to people in authority or those who think they know it all say the wildest things. But there are times when I feel compelled to intervene, mostly when I think too much is at stake. This is one such intervention. For many years, but more so since the global food crisis of 2007-08, politicians and governments would vow to put this country’s food production on a growth path that would take us to full food security.
Continue reading ‘Food for Thought’
January 23, 2012 – newsday.co.tt
There are bound to be questions and indeed raised eyebrows at the purchase of a luxury Porsche Cayenne SUV – with a showroom price tag of $925,000 – for the official use of Minister of Food Production, Vasant Bharath. Bharath defended the purchase by saying the actual price paid – after exemptions for taxes and duties – was about $400,000, which he said was comparable to the cost of other SUVs.
Continue reading ‘Porsche questions’
By Derren Joseph
August 30, 2011
There was a recent story in the Jamaica Observer about food security in Jamaica that got me thinking. Like Trinidad, Jamaica is a net importer of food. Two officials at Jamaica’s College of Agriculture, Science and Education (Case) argued that crucial political decisions must be made in order to secure Jamaica’s ability to feed the population, particularly in the face of a natural disaster such as a hurricane. The officials advocated an urgent need for efficient national food storage systems.
Continue reading ‘Ensuring T&T’s Food Security’
May 2 2011 – newsday.co.tt
It is to be sincerely hoped that the Government will stand firm in the decision to put an end to the illegal occupation of State lands for whatever purpose.
This newspaper’s lead story yesterday gave another side, indeed food for thought, of the now highly publicised bulldozing of acres under food production in D’Abadie and other places which so incensed the public.
Continue reading ‘Government must stand firm’
By Raffique Shah
April 30, 2011
WHEN one sees the insensitivity—one might even say insanity—of persons who authorised and executed the destruction of food and root crops on three parcels of state land, one wonders what the hell is going on in this country. Successive governments, the incumbents included, have proclaimed their intent to make food production a priority. Yet, they have all committed agrarian atrocities, most times citing “progress” as an excuse. The price of progress is indeed very high.
Continue reading ‘Agrarian Atrocity’
April 28 2011 – newsday.co.tt
Authorities may have followed the letter of the law in the eviction of squatters illegally farming State lands at Mausica Road, D’Abadie, but officials might have used a defter touch.
We agree that the D’Abadie farmers were legally obliged to vacate the lands, but this problem stretched back to 2008. Discussions could have been held with squatting farmers in order to establish a date which facilitated the collection of crops and which did not delay in manner untoward the housing project in whose way the farmers stand.
Continue reading ‘Tragic waste’
By Burton Sankeralli
April 26, 2011
Pineapple… sweet potato… water melon… pak choi… lettuce… topi tambo… bodi… pumpkin… corn…
On April 25th, 2011, this Day of Destruction, the so-called Peoples’ Partnership government destroyed 175 acres of food crops in two agricultural sites. There are certain actions that come to define a regime, certain events when such a regime loses its fundamental credibility. Such an event may involve bloodshed or it may, on the surface, be largely symbolic or it can involve the killing of crops.
Continue reading ‘Day of Destruction’
By Raffique Shah
February 19, 2011
I AM so blasted vex as I write this column (Friday morning), I am seething with anger. The newspapers featured a story complete with photographs showing a group of thugs attacking some farmers and other residents of a farming community in Lopinot. The violent, brazen attack occurred in full view of journalists who had gone to cover the story. In fact, the thugs threatened and attacked media workers who escaped blows only because one of their colleagues knew one of the attackers.
Continue reading ‘The law-abiding will strike back some day’