By Stephen Kangal
July 13, 2021
There at least two matters that I consider to be very frivolous and entirely vexatious in the unwarranted Statement of the AG delivered in the House when it met on Friday 2 July to consider The Finance Bill.
We had our saturation fill on these Bills on Monday to Wednesday last.
Under the guise of Statements by Ministers AG Faris Al- Rawi used this privilege to shamelessly repeat and reiterate the exact contents of his speeches made on both bills on Monday and Wednesday almost verbatim even though that matter was under the exclusive preserve of the adjourned Committees of the Whole and procedurally out of bonds from the floor of the House.
He was doing this repetition with the full approval of the Speaker who harassed Opposition MP’s for this same practice and even unsettled them to the extent that they the young ones lost their train of thought by frequent unnecessary one-sided interruptions from the very biased Chair.
When the Opposition protested at this weird un-parliamentary development and abuse of the time and Standing Orders of the House for naked Bills electioneering purposes by AG Al- Rawi, the Speaker dismissed their concerns in a most disrespectful manner that will have angered and unsettled the most sedate of MP’s.
The Speaker ought to have adjourned the House for 15 minutes for tempers to cool, had an informal chat with the two MP’s one of whom was the ag Chief Whip. She could have also asked Deputy Speaker diplomatically to chair proceedings at resumption.
But no she used a most frivolous reason to expel these two MP’s from the House thus depriving the constituents of San Juan/Barataria and Couva South of continuing representation in the House on what were very low-keyed procedural matters and allowed AG to continue his boring repetitions on the two Bills.
He also proceeded to make a most stupid and dotish accusation that The Leader of the Opposition and Couva South MP had falsified the records of the House that are in fact the exclusive remit and duties of the Hansard recorders. The records of the deliberations of the two Committees of the Whole (Hansard) cannot be falsified by statements issued outside of the proceedings of the House even by MP’s or Ministers.
These are mere allegations or statements alleging the secretive introduction/gutting by new simple majority amendments. They can have no locus standi in the Hansard records of the House and indeed cannot change or falsify anything as foolishly posited by the AG.
Why did he not move a motion of Censure? He fully well knew that he was spewing utter rubbish in our living rooms to deceive and manipulate the faithful 28% base.
This Speaker is without relent subservient and beholden to the Government side. Her politically partisan and her total, unrelenting mis-management and obfuscation of the proceedings of the House do not seem to abate.
It is obstructing the smooth deliberations of the House and the hallowed tenets of our democracy.
The only trouble is that the Opposition is the hapless victims of her biased dictatorship.
There is no hint of a cessation in this increasingly toxic situation in the highest court of this land. Some thing has to give because we cannot proceed along this treacherous route for another four tortuous years.