Archive for the 'Politics' Category

Ebola: panic paralyses nation

By Raffique Shah
October 19, 2014

Raffique ShahPort of Spain, November 31, 2014: Reports that two persons stricken with the deadly Ebola virus were identified and isolated, one at the capital city’s general hospital, the other at the Mount Hope facility, have paralysed Trinidad and Tobago, literally shutting down the country.

There is an eerie silence across the country, at least those parts that this reporter reached by car, restricted as I was since petrol stations, like most essential services, ceased to function last Friday when rumours that Ebola had arrived sent the nation into panic.
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PM visits Dr Kublalsingh at St Clair Medical Centre

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar*STATEMENT BY THE HONOURABLE*
*KAMLA PERSAD-BISSESSAR SC*
*PRIME MINISTER OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO*

October 12, 2014

I have been informed that Dr Wayne Kublalsingh was admitted to St Clair Medical Centre for observation and medical checks.
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Wayne’s Choice

By Raffique Shah
October 12, 2014

Raffique ShahWayne Kublalsingh’s second hunger strike has bared the good, the bad, and the very nasty sides of his fellow citizens, although I feel certain none of this surprises the environmental activist whose dogged pursuit of his goals puts many of us to shame.

One does not have to agree with Wayne to admire the man. I have stated before, I do not know whether his opposition to the Debe to Mon Desir section of the San Fernando to Point Fortin Highway is justified, if the alternatives he proposes are better. Like most people, including Wayne, I support the construction of a highway that will make commuting in Deep South Trinidad easier.
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Truth be told

By Suzanne Mills
October 10 2014 – newsday.co.tt

Armoured Personnel CarriersWhat I’m about to say will likely be deemed harsh, but it is my view that MPs serving in hotspot communities should not ask for or receive armed security and should definitely not be more protected than the residents who live in their constituencies and face the same threat from criminals as they do. It can also be argued that an MP who is guarded is less likely to do his or her best to bring crime under control and that until politicians stand the bounce for their misguided policies, they should not be spared from having to look over their shoulders.
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US debates APCs after Ferguson killing

By Andre Bagoo
September 30 2014 – newsday.co.tt

Armoured Personnel CarriersARMOURED vehicles similar to the Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs) destined for use in TT next year are currently at the centre of a debate in the United States over the increased militarisation of the police there, in the wake of their reported use during the events at Ferguson, where police force provoked a national discussion about State powers and race.
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Rowley blasts TT support of UN security resolution

Sunday, September 28 2014
www.newsday.co.tt

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-BissessarOpposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley yesterday lambasted Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar for Trinidad and Tobago’s co-sponsorship of a United Nations Security Council resolution on the fight against terrorism saying it was best for TT to have passed up on the occasion.

TT cannot afford to declare war on terrorists “at a time when you can stay away, ” Rowley said.
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GAYS MUST WAIT

PM hints at referendum to decriminalise homosexuality

By Juhel Browne CCN Senior Multimedia Journalist in New York
September 25, 2014 – trinidadexpress.com

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-BissessarPrime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar says the “decriminalisation of homosexuality” in Trinidad and Tobago is not something her administration will seek to do because, “it would not be prudent for the Government to proceed in that direction at this time”.

“It’s too divided, there’s no consensus on that issue,” Persad-Bissessar said during an interview-styled forum at the Trinidad and Tobago Investment Forum at Pratt House in New York, USA.
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Better bite the bullet now

By Raffique Shah
September 14, 2014

Raffique ShahNine out of ten people, if asked to comment on Government’s 2014-2015 budget, would quietly, and many grudgingly, say it was a good package.

For the average citizen, what matters most in the annual Appropriation Bill are what new measures strip him (or her) of some portion of his earnings or wealth, meaning taxes or levies, and what new benefits accrue to him by way of increases in grants, subsidies, soft loans and so on.
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WELFARE BUDGET

By Andre Bagoo
September 09 2014 – newsday.co.tt

WELFARE BUDGETSTATING Government is moving to safeguard the welfare of society, Finance Minister Larry Howai yesterday unveiled a record $65 billion budget. It contained increased benefits on a wide range of fronts, including pension enhancements which will affect more than 131,020 retired and self-employed persons, a new minimum wage, improved allowances for the disabled and easiser access to mortgages for more than 26,100 prospective homeowners.

In the fifth Budget of the People’s Partnership administration, Howai announced:
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Politics and ethics only rhyme

By Raffique Shah
September 07, 2014

Raffique ShahArchbishop Joseph Harris strikes me as being a “rootsy Trini”—a prelate who commands respect beyond his flock even as he exudes a tremendous sense of humour.

What I could not discern from a distance (I’ve never met the good Father) is that he is also a humorist who can put veterans such as Paul Keens-Douglas and “Sprangalang” to pale on any stage at any time.
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