Riding into the valley of death

By Raffique Shah
October 31, 2010

Raffique ShahTHERE are few reasons why the People’s Partnership Government should portray itself as a victim of circumstances the way the NAR did in 1986. Back then, Ray Robinson and his “party of parties” inherited an almost empty treasury. The George Chambers government had faced declining oil prices from OPEC-driven “highs” in 1973-77 to “lows” by the time Chambers assumed power in 1981.
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Wage Rage

Newsday Editorial
October 28 2010 – newsday.co.tt

President of the PSA Watson DukeANY responsible person is likely to be torn in his sentiment towards the wage talks between the Government and the Public Services Association (PSA) for members of the Public Service.

On one hand the Government’s offer of 0-0-1 percent for the past three years respectively is quite startling, alarming and really impractical for workers who have seen no freeze in the prices they daily face over the same three-year period.
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Making UTT a National University

By Dr. Selwyn R. Cudjoe
October 27, 2010

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeI am sure that Sat Maharaj’s would say that ah follow fashion. However, the truth is that his recent discussion of UTT, its academic standards and it place in the society reminded me of questions I raised two years ago when Ghana’s former President John Kufoor visited Trinidad and I made an address in his presence. Just for the record, my speech can be found on trinicenter.com on August 6 2008. My interest in this matter goes back a long way. This contribution only adds to Sat’s concerns. At least, there are some things on which we agree.
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Wanted: A ghost whisperer

By Michael Harris
October 25, 2010 – trinidadexpress.com

Patrick ManningA spectre is haunting the PNM and unless that party can discover within its ranks a person, or persons, versed in the rites and rituals of political exorcism, it is likely to stay in its present state of limbo for a long time to come, incapable of undertaking the vital task of critical self-assessment without which it could never begin the task of reconstruction. The spectre has a name. Its name is Patrick Manning.
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Clico Policyholders: Pay Us 40% Upfront

By Lara Pickford-Gordon
October 25 2010 – newsday.co.tt

CLICO BailoutClico policyholders want 40 percent of their investment in the Colonial Life Insurance Company Ltd “up front” and the balance paid off in government bonds. Persons who wish to liquidate their bonds should be free to do so and there will be no “middle man.”

This proposal has been put to the Government and was yesterday endorsed by scores of policyholders attending a meeting at Woodford Square, Port-of-Spain to get an update on negotiations between their representatives and the government inter-ministerial team headed by Agriculture Minister Vasant Bharath.
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Excitement over New Low Cost Carrier

By Derren Joseph
October 24, 2010

JetI think it was back in 2007 when I was working at Caribbean Airlines that I first heard about plans for a new Jamaica based Low Cost Carrier (LCC). The rumor was that it was born from the experience of Digicel Executives who were island hopping during the 2007 Cricket World Cup. They saw inefficiencies with the existing players and decided to turn this into a business opportunity. A December 7th 2007 article in the Jamaica Gleaner however, dismissed talk that Digicel was an investor but rather a sales partner.
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Corridors of power living hell

By Raffique Shah
October 23, 2010

Raffique ShahI HAVE never been close to the corridors of power, except on occasions when those on high invited me to some meeting or social function. Regarding the latter, I should add that I have grown so asocial over the years, some people think I’ve become anti-social. I enjoy good company and great conversation. Having attended some of these social activities, I have found the same people there; they invariably get drunk the way “ignorant” Trinis do at rum shops, and they behave little different to boisterous bar flies.
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Hold parents responsible

By Sean Douglas
October 22, 2010 – newsday.co.tt

ViolenceTHE Rape Crisis Society yesterday called on Government to pass laws to hold parents responsible for sexual offences done by their children. “Some of the perpetrators of these heinous sexual assaults are teenagers and thus are not liable for prosecution.”

The Society wrote to media houses to support the Evidence (Amendment) Bill 2010, under debate in the Senate, which makes it easier for victims of sexual abuse to testify in law-courts.
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Connecting our Foreign Policy with the Diaspora

By Stephen Kangal
October 21, 2010

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-BissessarPrime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar and her itinerant Foreign Minister Suruj Rambachan have both been extolling the important benefits of establishing closer functional links with our diaspora based in metropolitan Caribbean enclaves in North America and Europe as the rationale for radically reforming the priorities of our foreign policy. In fact both now have a shared political/administrative responsibility for the conceptualization and conduct of our foreign policy.
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Partnership leaders must smoke ‘peace pipe’ now

By Raffique Shah
October 16, 2010

Raffique ShahA brief story in the Express last week caught my attention. The report spoke of serious differences between two organisations purporting to represent nationals of this country who have indigenous blood flowing in their arteries.

The first contentious issue is a claim that one group represents only Amerindian descendants who are Catholics. The other was the timing of the “smoke ceremony to the spirits”. One group swears it should be before dawn. The other went ahead “smoking” at 7 a.m.
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