Patriots, assemble!

By Raffique Shah
November 01, 2021

Raffique ShahHow many of you remember the video posted on one of the social media networks in which a girl, looking no more than 15 or so years old, standing before her smartphone’s camera, put an expletives-­laden cussing on the then-prime minister, Kamla Persad-Bissessar?

Many people recoiled in horror: no, this could not be happening in this God-fearing country, some screamed. Others thought the girl was merely registering her displeasure with the Prime Minister and her government, so what?

I do not recall what was the outcome of that episode, whether she was charged with any offence, or threatened by the law, or if she issued an apology and that was considered closure of the issue. What stood out most for me was the casual manner in which the girl put a good cussing on the PM, and the equally cavalier response by a majority of the population who thought Persad-Bissessar deserved it.

Fast-forward to the total breakdown of order, if not law, in the Parliament two weeks ago, occasioned by the mostly young parliamentarians who orchestrated a seemingly well-choreographed performance of asinine behaviour that their leader, the said Persad-­Bissessar, all but cheered on, and which old and young members of the Opposition United National Congress (UNC) seemed so proud of that they have decided to treat it with reverence, naming it “The October Revolution”.

This latest manifestation of the diseased minds of far too many leaders, in a society that is laden with mindless followers whose capacity to think seems to be missing from their brains, who are manipulated every which way like puppets on a string, would be laughable if it didn’t have the strength in numbers to inflict irre­parable harm to the body politic of the nation.

What should be more disturbing to the sane and sober, not just in this country but across the world, is the rise and dominance of dotishness, the near-absolute absence of reason and the powers of reasoning, the slow but steady erosion of the individualism that has always saved civilisations from the rampaging hordes of sa­vages. I am sorry to use such harsh terms to distinguish one kind of human being from another. But taking the easy way out of the primitiveness that overwhelms progress, that sinks science in a lagoon of mumbo-jumbo, unbelievable stupidity is not an option when mankind faces extinction.

The cacophony of dissonant, confused voices from the dark, and the booming, irrational echoes they elicit are what threaten our very existence. You listen to them explain why they aren’t vaccinating their families, and you stare dumbfounded. This cannot be real, you think. Oh, but it is: Jesus will protect me from all harm, Covid-19 included in the pastor’s package. The so-called holy books are retrieved from dusty shelves or cupboards, pressed into service to lend credence to the irrational among us, thus eliminating any kind of reasoning.

Such warped minds that we did not think still existed 2,500 years after Plato, Socrates and Cicero walked this Earth and stimulated the brain, the mind, you are left to wonder if the planet has reversed its rotations, if commercial travel into space that is a reality today may, in fact, be figments of our imagination.

I ventured into what many might brand flights of fancy, travelled to inner space to illustrate that there are among us politicians who will easily mislead us back into the Dark Ages, and their supposedly educated but realistically dumb apostles and disciples and flocks will easily steer us to savagery.

Now, more than ever, leaders at every level of the society, but especially in politics and in moving the economy into growth mode which necessarily requires the use of science in agriculture and industry, must be capable of shedding backward thinking that can only harm us. The last thing we need now is for the primitiveness that comes with elections, as will happen in Tobago over the next month, to distract us from doing what is essential to ensure our survival. With China in the lead and the world following into a recession such as we have not seen in decades, only the forward-­thinking can save us from plunging into poverty.

You would think that in such dire circumstances, our leaders, such as they present themselves, would show pathways to recovery and highways to success, stimulating minds that have been dormant for decades, blunted by obstacles that prevented them from participating in recovery and progress. Instead, some among them have tried on the cult of personality, misleading their flocks into misbehaviour that they seem to be proud of.

There is a time for cussing. There is even a time for buffoonery. This is not that time. Genuine patriotism is what is needed to steer this ship of state to safety.

Patriots, assemble!

19 thoughts on “Patriots, assemble!”

  1. “Fast-forward to the total breakdown of order, if not law, in the Parliament two weeks ago, occasioned by the mostly young parliamentarians who orchestrated a seemingly well-choreographed performance of asinine behaviour that their leader, the said Persad-­Bissessar, all but cheered on, and which old and young members of the Opposition United National Congress (UNC) seemed so proud of that they have decided to treat it with reverence, naming it “The October Revolution”—-Shah.

    Democracy allows for any kind of behaviour including in the 1970s when a young mentally deranged army officer decided to start his own revolution. With a band of rag tags following him he failed. His failure continued losing his seat to the current Opposition Leader. This was something that young lieutenant never recovered from. He is still filled with bitterness, acrimony and disdain for someone who exhibits patriotism.

    But being an armchair critic and defending the corrupt Rowley and his band of “ultra vires” misfits who do not understand or could not defend the Constitution of the honourable republic much more so defend it. This nation has lost its way.

    As a great son of the soil wrote in “Mimic men”. “ The tragedy of power like mine is that there is no way down. There can only be extinction. Dust to dust rags to rags fear to fear.” —V.S. Naipaul. That is the sad tragedy of power currently being demonstrated by the President of the honourable republic. There is certainly no way down for her, having reached the pinnacle of power. An office, a large salary, a cooking staff, a secretary, military guard, chauffeur and most of all a loving Prime Minister who boasted he can visit her anytime. Such is the corrupted collusions of power. A misguided understanding of democracy and separation of powers.

    As Malcolm X ones said “ “The media’s the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that’s power. Because they control the minds of the masses.”. Anyone who stands for truth, equality and Justice can be deemed an enemy of the State by a former enemy of the State. Satan correcting sin is a proper descriptive of this poorly thought out article. The writer is singing for his supper.

  2. DR KIRK MEIGHOO

    Guest Column

    THE UNC party commends its parliamentarians for their spirited behaviour on Thursday October 21, during the historic, extraordinary sitting. Trinidad and Tobago needs more behaviour like this, not less, when our rights are being trampled upon.

    It is preposterous that people in this country considered the vigorous defence of our republic as “bad behaviour.” This includes two so-called Independent Senators, Anthony Vieira and Paul Richards, who crossed the line by openly, definitely and improperly descending into the political arena.

    These two unelected senators attacked Opposition parliamentarians in the press, having the nerve to accuse the Opposition of being disrespectful and bringing the entire Parliament into disrepute. What do they think parliamentary democracy is?

    These so-called independent senators want to play the role of the good colonials in dress-up. They apparently think democracy is a tea party or a march-past.

    Would the senators have preferred the Opposition be polite while the rights and freedoms of citizens were being violated with impunity? Is this the “good behaviour” they want us to set as examples for our children?

    Defending democracy from Government tyranny has always been a passionate, contentious, abrasive affair. Far from being “bad behaviour,” the extraordinary sitting saw the best behaviour of Opposition Parliamentarians defending democracy. Indeed, the behaviour of the Opposition was quite mild compared to parliaments around the world.

    These so-called independent senators and commentators obviously have no idea how MPs in the “Mother of Parliaments” in the UK behave when the executive abuses its authority, or is perceived to have abused its authority.

    Conscientious Opposition MPs understand their role, and deal with Government abuse and tyranny themselves, right then and there, where and when it occurs. It is entirely within parliamentary tradition for MPs to be loudly passionate in such situations. Indeed, in the British tradition, Parliament is radical – most famously, and most extremely, in 1649, when Parliament captured King Charles I and executed him.

    Up to today, this vigorous British parliamentary tradition can be easily checked on YouTube and many other websites. For example, the 2019 protest by British Opposition MPs against the unusual five-week prorogation of Parliament was a very rowdy affair (see here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XNuN-FRKcCI ).

    It far exceeded anything that occurred on October 21 in the Red House.

    British Opposition MPs not only shouted down the Speaker and Black Rod (the Sergeant-at-Arms), they disrupted proceedings, rushed the Speaker’s chair, held up sheets of paper with protest slogans written on them, engaged in shouting matches with the Speaker, and one of them appeared to actually physically hold the Speaker.

    After the contentious announcement was finally concluded amidst the protest, the Speaker rose to leave the Chamber in procession. Opposition MPs refused to get up to leave with the rest. Instead, they all noisily shouted at the Speaker on his way out, “Shame on you!” while remaining seated in the Parliament in protest.

    Importantly, the Opposition MPs were correct in their objection to the UK Government’s prorogation. After the illegal prorogation (which the Government had maintained was lawful), the Opposition took the matter to the Court.

    The Opposition won, and the Parliament was ordered to reconvene. The illegal prorogation was expunged from the record, and business continued as if no prorogation ever happened.

    This vigorous action is how the legislature historically keeps the executive in check in the Westminster model. The notion that Parliament is primarily a place for polite debate is a colonial fiction for children and subject peoples.

    The only way to defend our freedom from tyranny is through robust vigilance. Parliamentary protest is a well-worn tradition that needs to be followed much more in Trinidad and Tobago, not less.

    To mature as a democratic republic, we need to understand what real bad behaviour is.

    It is not when our tyrants and oppressors tell us we are rude. It is their own tyranny and oppression that is bad behaviour: the Speaker disallowing debate, the microphones of Opposition MPs being muted, the Speaker cheating for the Government and President by illegally creating guidelines and disallowing a debate on the Opposition Leader’s motion.

    It is bad behaviour to cover up misbehaviour in public office and criticise those who are exposing it. This is the bad behaviour that should be condemned. Scratch beneath the surface of this so-called elite and you see the real bad behaviour.

    Thankfully, the UNC parliamentarians did not simply let PNM abuse pass. The Opposition will now take legal action against the Speaker. The PNM and their agents will not stop us. We continue on our October Revolution, and call on all patriots to join us.

    Dr Kirk Meighoo is the public relations officer of the United National Congress (UNC).

    1. Kirk Meighoo’s article is mistaken and dangerous. In it Meighoo claims, “Defending democracy from Government tyranny has always been a passionate, contentious, abrasive affair.” Of course it is and of course we can have “spirited behavior” in Parliament, the fundamental question is, however, what are you defending, are you defending democracy or destroying it? If, for instance, the Members of Congress in the US, decided to passionately and contentiously struggle to overthrow the vote count of the Electoral College, because, for instance, they thought (without evidence mind you) that the elections were rigged, then that would be an insurrection, a coup, not the defending of democracy but the overthrowing of democracy, because they would be going against the Constitution. In a democracy we are ruled by laws, by the Constitution. We cannot decide to overthrow the Constitution, that would be a coup, an Insurrection.

  3. Raffique Shah’s condemnation of the Opposition parliamentarians’ behavior was bold and aggressive, using very harsh words to dismiss them.
    Maybe he would have preferred them to storm the Parliament with loaded weapons and take over the government.
    I am happy that Mr. Shah has matured but his article shows an ignorance of Parliamentary behaviors all over the world.
    Ironically, the verbal assaults rendered in the house and condemned by Shah, are much less destructive than the violent attempted coup orchestrated by Shah in his failed adventure to take over the country.

  4. Raffique Shah is a voice for reason and sanity in a country where some denizens seem to have gone stark, raving mad. But don’t worry, it seems to be happening on a global scale. We have to ask – what is the cause of this pandemic of stupidity, this descent into an underworld of crazed morons? Raffique asks, “Such warped minds that we did not think still existed 2,500 years after Plato, Socrates and Cicero walked this Earth and stimulated the brain, the mind, you are left to wonder if the planet has reversed its rotations…” I think the mentioning of Plato and Socrates situates the question in its rightful context and may bring some light on the matter. Western civilization has been labeled to a great extent as “post-Socratic”, and it has been labeled in this way because Socrates first introduced a way of questioning, a means to knowing that has influenced all later thought, in the Western tradition anyhow. It is said that the Oracle at Delphi told Socrates that he was the wisest of men. Socrates in his quest to find out what this meant went about questioning people wherever he could find them to find out if the Oracle was right. Socrates thought that he knew nothing so how could the Oracle be right, how could he be the wisest of men. In his questioning of all and sundry, he found out that most people thought they knew many things, but when questioned they were found to be lacking in the knowledge they thought they had. Socrates realized that the Oracle was saying that he was wise because he knew that he did not know. His wisdom consisted in the fact that he knew that he did not know. Call this if you will “epistemological modesty”, we start off with consciousness of that limitation and then we gain knowledge through a dialogue in which reason and logic are the arbiters of what is true. Socrates calls this a dialectic, and in his questioning of people we see that reason and logic come up against ego, that which does not submit to reason and logic. Call the process if you will the enthronement of reason and call the opposite process the enthronement of unreason, or to be more accurate, of stupidity. The ego wants to rule over reason, but for the ego to rule, reason, logic and eventually truth must be tossed aside. We see that happening in the big country up north and of course we want to mimic it, after all we are mimic men and women. As Raffique puts it elegantly, “The cacophony of dissonant, confused voices from the dark, and the booming, irrational echoes they elicit are what threaten our very existence.” Well said indeed.

  5. “Genuine patriotism is what is needed to steer this ship of state to safety.”—Shah.
    It is a subtle admission that those at the helm of the ship lacks patriotism. Tis true that absolute power corrupts absolutely. An administration that is galloping along unchecked is a danger to the honourable republic. But where are the patriots who will stand up and defend the Constitution. Where are those who were marching and demanding better governance when some questions arouse about Section 34.

    The death of the Constitution should come as no shock to all right thinking citizens. The folly of a Prime Minister whose references to “grooming”, “horny goat”, “jamettry”, “emailgate”, etc, shows where his focus is, a man who cherishes all his conquest starting at age 17.

    The PM is following in the steps of his friend Maduro becoming a law unto himself. “ Beyond these specific constitutional violations concerning the 2018 election, the Maduro regime unconstitutionally arrested and assaulted democratic protesters (violating Articles 52 and 68). It imprisoned opposition figures and banned political parties (violating Article 67). It jailed journalists and shuttered media outlets (violating Articles 57 and 58). And it tortured prisoners (violating Article 60)” https://share.america.gov/maduros-constitutional-crimes/

    Yes true patriots need to stand up or be slowly drowned in the cesspit at balisier house. When unelected but selected leaders are feasting like fat pigs on the tax payers money, they must be accountable for their conduct. It is known that a news cycle last about 2 weeks and then die down. It is my hope that pressure will rise to have those in office accountable for their corrupt actions.

  6. UNC politicians seem to want to outdo each other in their crazed, extreme positions on behavior in public life. “Indeed, in the British tradition, Parliament is radical – most famously, and most extremely, in 1649, when Parliament captured King Charles I and executed him.” The execution of Charles 1 was the ultimate consequence of the wars between Royalists and Cromwell’s Parliamentarians. Are we in some kind of civil war? Those words sound like threats, is Meighoo threatening those whom he considers tyrants? Is Meighoo, in his quest to go to the extreme, willing to emulate the other coup leader who stormed Parliament? Is the UNC trying to terrorize the population with their descent into mob behavior? Is the speaker supposed to cower before the UNC threats to continue the mob behavior in Parliament? Are we, as a population, supposed to cower before the UNC threats to become a mob in Parliament? Is the UNC copying the crazed behavior of the far right fanatics in the big country up north?

  7. “Instead, some among them have tried on the cult of personality, misleading their flocks into misbehaviour that they seem to be proud of.” Shah.

    There was no great cult of personality than the founder of the PNM. He created a party that saw power as a tool to oppress others. It may have not been his intent but the illiterate plebeians could not see well beyond the myopia created by cultism. They shout out “great is the PNM”. Party before country is one of themes of this cultic beast. Hence no one is brought to account for mischief, thiefing, or even violating the Supreme laws of the land. Every institution have the marks of a dirty finger emanating from balisier house.

    This cultic rule can be found in the EBC, the DPP, the CJ office and now the Presidential abode. In myriads of position the cultist keeps an open eye looking in to protect the mafia run organisation. “Costa Nostra” …The so call “independent senators were caught playing their hand in favour of corrupt illiterate leaders. The media has join the dance with “if you can’t beat them join them”. Many of them has joined Maduro “Congo line”.

    “Hateful to me as the gates of Hades is that man who hides one thing in his heart and speaks another.”
    ― Homer, The Iliad
    Yes we have seen men who hides one thing in the heart but speaks another. They stand before the audience of heaven, whilst the audience of hell takes note. There they swear to uphold the Constitution of the honorable republic then engage in a deception that destroys every fibre of truth and trust. Their words are the hollow echoes of a lost morality. With this elected dictator one cannot countenance the decay the next four years hold for this beloved nation…

  8. Could the President be sent to jail for violating her oath of office?

    “On Monday, Kublalsingh said,“We think the President acted “ultra vires” that is against the law, and she needs to answer the questions of what happened. Why was this withdrawn and why did the process take place the way it did? We are not dealing with an ordinary citizen, we are dealing with the commissioner of police, we cannot leave it as it is. It is an important issue, and it could set dangerous precedent.”—-Newsday.

    Good citizens must demand an explanation. Could Kian come up with an answer as to the mischief going on in the People”s House where the President reside?

  9. “I am sorry to use such harsh terms to distinguish one kind of human being from another. But taking the easy way out of the primitiveness that overwhelms progress, that sinks science in a lagoon of mumbo-jumbo, unbelievable stupidity is not an option when mankind faces extinction.”……….Raffique Shah
    Raf, you have mesmerized me with your intellect, even though you claim to be a victim of Parkinsons. Literature is one of those unique things that some in our society have been blessed to exhibit whilst others are totally void of it. Those who are in disagreement with facts and reason are people who have gone lost in tyranny. Those of us who truly believe in democracy see it as of the people, for the people and by the people. Those who are criticising democracy when it does not work in their favor, see it as anything else. They call it dictatorship, because it give them reason to exhibit crass uncivilized behavior for what they term is their ‘grievance’. In other words, their ‘grievance’ is reason for lowering acceptable behavior. There is nothing ‘acceptable’ about the UNC behavior in Parliament and the untoward blaming of the President for what a member of the PSC did, no matter how much they try to justify it. IN my view, that is the real bullying, because they want intelligent people to see things in the warped way they are seeing things. I commend you for sticking to your guns and calling ‘a spade’ a ‘spade’. The behavior we saw in parliament belong in the jungle.

    1. “There is nothing ‘acceptable’ about the UNC behavior in Parliament and the untoward blaming of the President for what a member of the PSC did, no matter how much they try to justify it.”
      The Speaker did not allow the motion by the Opposition Leader to be fully read. She rudely interjected and shut off her mike. Is that acceptable? In a Parliament? Where the people business is to be conducted?
      The Speaker allowed for no debate when it is clearly written in the Constitution that the electoral college decides on that issue. It is an extraordinary sitting. She with her dotish, pompous self is an affront to democracy.
      The Speaker allowed for an open vote knowing that those selected by the President will not vote against her. It should have been a secret ballot allowing elected officials to honor the Constitution they sware to uphold.

      The nation is without a CoP because the President acted “ultra vires”. The voice of the people was silenced by the most partisan Speaker ever in the history of TnT in the people house Parliament. Democracy died but Kian the cultic mindset he has see no wrong. Drunk with balisier juice.

  10. It would appear that facts, rules, policies, laws and precedents are no considerations in the minds of the UNC and its supporters, who seem intent on usurping power at any cost. Their iterations of ‘truth’ is far removed from the written word, yet they insist that their ‘truths’ must be interpreted as the law of the land. Respect for the rule of law is second only to their ‘wants’, aspirations and interpretations. This is dangerous stuff. When people’s version truths corrode reason, then we are threading on a path towards anarchy. This country has adopted a republican form of government, where procedures are carefully laid out for appointments to high office. When tyrants seek to short circuit the process then we have deviated from the rule of law. In the case of the UNC’s motion depose the President, a prima facie was NEVER established for a constitutional removal. You CANNOT build a case on heresy. None one is yet to prove the President’s guilt by these accusations. The role of the President in our constitution is not executive in nature. It is largely ceremonial, traditional and when there is a constitutional impasse by differing parties, she acts as an arbiter. So, when her signature is desired for confirmational purposes, she is merely doing her duties performed by the responsible department of government. For her to defy the request of the authorizing agency, she would then be acting ultra vires. The act os sending and requesting the return of the list is the responsibility of the PSC. It is foolish and idiotic to hold the President responsible for that. Yes, there are those with judicial credentials whose political opinions differ BUT they are clearly wrong in placing blame on the President. Hindutva is NOT an official policy in our democracy and we should guard against it holding us hostage.
    What we are seeking is the appointment of a commissioner of police, it is unfortunate that politics has derailed the authenticity
    of the process. Maybe what we should be arguing is how to get the politics out of the process and not the oneupmanship that we are now engaged in.

    1. “What we are seeking is the appointment of a commissioner of police, it is unfortunate that politics has derailed the authenticity
      of the process“ Kian.

      Correctly so. Politicians instead of valuing the democratic process choose to violate it because they know they can and get away with it. The process was violated and that is why the ruckus in Parliament occurred. They keep interpreting the rules differently. Kian there is home for you!

  11. *********** A MIND IS A TERRIBLE THING TO WASTE ***********
    ***************** KNOWLEDGE IS POWER ************************
    ************************ MY EPILOGUE *****************************

    GIVEN THE HIGH POWERED LEGAL EFFORTS THAT WENT INTO THIS EPISODE OF PARLIAMENTARY PERSECUTION OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO, WE SHOULD ALL BE ASHAMED THAT THE ONLY THING ACCOMPLISHED ACHIEVED WAS USING THE END TO JUSTIFY THE MEANS.

    At the end of this unfortunate journey was left a tarnished office of the presidency, the honorable name of the office holder, Paula-Mae Weekes was attacked and bruised, a disgusting display by parliamentarians in the name of ‘representing the people’, a soured political climate, an even greater divide among the races
    and THE POLITICAL PERSECUTION OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC and we are no closer to the truth than when it started.

    What was never established: (1). We are no closer to the appointment of a commissioner of police (2). Facts surrounding the accusation of interference in the movements of the so called ‘list’. (3). The establishment of ‘who is to blame’ (4). This was NEVER a constitutional matter. (5). IN other words a prima facie case was never established to take this matter into a parliamentary hearing.

    The clear emitter of vitriol and persecution was – politics. It started on a finger pointing mission, with accusations of political interference in mind. The motive was to identify the head of state and prime minister as culprits interfering in the Police Service Commission’s business of choosing a commissioner of police. The presentation of evidence and substantiated facts never established this to be the case. However, it remains a deeply held belief that this accusation is FACT (although NEVER proven). Isn’t it the duty of legal practice to establish fact, before convening proceedings to depose high office holders?
    THE ACCUSERS NEVER ESTABLISHED FACTS or built a prima facie case.

    In this country, we look up to people who have established themselves as pillars of strength and authority in their fields of competence. So, when stalwarts like Martin Daly and Israel Khan speculated that an offense was committed, it gave rise to speculations and accusations of political interference. AND SO, THIS STORY WAS BORN, nourished with mauvis langue, speculation, greed, conspiracy and finger pointing towards the highest office holders in the land. Is this a healthy way to run a country? HELL NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Parliament should be considered sacred grounds of deliberation of the country’s business. Not a place to air personal grievances . So, in my opinion, those who accused the Speaker of wrong doing was correct, in the sense that the issue should have been investigated by a special select committee, comprising both government and opposition member with professional investigators help. Establish truth and facts. If the evidence warranted or established facts to prosecute, then and only then should congress get involved. As it now stands, any member of Parliament can get up one morning and say something outrageous any office holder, convene a hearing in parliament and prosecute. Is this anyway to run a country?

    Office holders and renowned professionals should hold themselves responsible and authoritative before lending power to speculation to un-established stories. Only then can we have a more informed atmosphere for true facts to flourish.

    I remain convinced that we have tarnished the name and reputation of Paula Mae Weekes, whose only crime was the speculation and persecution by those who know better.

    SHAME ON THE ACCUSERS!!!!!

  12. “I remain convinced that we have tarnished the name and reputation of Paula Mae Weekes, whose only crime was the speculation and persecution by those who know better.”Kian

    The President did not commit a crime. What she did was more serious than a crime, she violated her oath of office. There is the person, then there is the office. President Paula Mae took an oath to defend the Constitution. She swear to “preserve and defend the Constitution and the law… to conscientiously and impartially discharge the functions of the President and… devote myself to the service and well-being of the people of Trinidad and Tobago”

    When she received the merit list for CoP her only duty according to the Constitution was to send it to Parliament. What happened next was a PNM mystery resulting in the entire PolSC resigning. She did not obey the Constitution and therefore violated her oath of office and she should immediately step down.

    Failure to step down will bring the office she holds into disrepute. And it will be a precedence setting issue with future Presidents using her action as the standard. She has greatly tarnished and diminish the value of the Office. She is now a “puppet” President doing the will of the PM and balisier house. The office I say here officially is no longer INDEPENDENT. It has been corrupted. Resign Paula, resign and save the office from public scorn. To continue to violate the Constitution is anathema to the honourable republic…

  13. As the UNC attacks and tries to dismantle the institutions of our country, on spurious and imaginary charges based on what can only be understood as hatred of the PNM, we have to understand the importance of the democratic system that we have and the need to protect it from being dismantled. The dismantling of democracy leads inevitable to tyranny, and its justification is often disguised as an opposition to tyranny, in other words, an authentic “doublespeak” or “doublethink” in Orwellian terms. Because if you attack and try to bring into disrepute the institutions that are the bedrock of democracy on conspiracy theories or fancies or suspicions without any shred of evidence, then what you are doing is to prepare the way for tyranny where the rule of law, the importance of rational thought and evidence is secondary to the whims, fancies and suspicions of the “dear Leader”. We saw that in the last administration of the UNC where thousands of people were rounded up and put into hastily made jails without regard for due process. The present behavior of the UNC and the Opposition Leader reeks of that same mentality. Beware folks; the wolf sometimes comes in wolf’s clothing.

  14. Which very high official of this country so badly wants Gary Griffith not to be reappointed Police Com­mis­­­sioner that he would visit President’s House to prevent the merit list of candidates going to the Parliament, precipitate the collapse of the Police Service Commission (PolSC) and do irreparable damage to the Office of the President?

    This was a one-man wrecking crew! He has inflic­ted profound harm to democracy in Trinidad and Tobago by compromising two critical independent institutions. Just to stop Gary Griffith from continuing as Police Commissioner. Who in this country is so afraid of Gary? And why?!

  15. This email was sent to Kamla and her team today.

    From: Candice Maharaj
    to Kamla, Saddam, Arnold, Rishad, Vandana, Dinesh, Ravi, Rudranath, rai, Lackram, Rushton, Michelle, Rodney, Roodal, Davendranath, Dr, Barry, khadijah, Anita, senatorwade, Anil, Anil, Jearlean, David, Damian, Jayanti, peter, Kirk,

    Dear Kamla,

    I write to you with a heavy heart and I hope you take the time to read the contents of this email, which has also been forwarded to all media houses.

    As a woman and politician you have ascended to very high offices in Trinidad and Tobago, albeit because of the opportunities given to you by those who came before you.

    You were appointed an Alderman in the St. Patrick’s County Council under the advice of Suruj Rambachan and the National Alliance for Reconstruction in 1987 and although you fought against the United National Congress in 1991, Basdeo Panday appointed you a Senator in 1994, gave you the UNC safe seat of Siparia in 1995, appointed you the first woman Attorney General in 1995 (although you were stripped of this title in less than three months), the first woman to act as Prime Minister and to become the first female Opposition Leader in 2006, to hold the seat warm for his return.

    Regardless of the fact that you did not earn these offices, but they were given to you, it is still credited to your political life and resume.

    You also achieved, with the significant assistance of Jack Warner, the post of Political Leader of the UNC, Opposition Leader and then Prime Minister in 2010.

    Your resume is indeed impressive, but is as a result of those persons paving the way for you – something which you disregard and are apparently ungrateful for.

    Since 2010 you have lost every single national election, every court case and every Parliamentary motion you have filed against the People’s National Movement.

    In a futile attempt to mask your incompetence and ineffectiveness, you play victim and cry “Everyone blaming Kamla” rather than face the harsh reality that the majority of the country does not believe in you anymore and will continue to reject the UNC so long as you are leader.

    The only purpose you serve at present, is to keep Rowley and the PNM in office.

    Harvey Dent in Batman: The Last Knight said “You either die a hero, or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain.”

    Kamla, you are now making yourself the villain of your own story.

    You have now become the Panday of 2021 – a leader who does not know their time is up and that there is no more that they can do.

    Everything you have done since 2010 has been a failure and you are at this point consigning the UNC and its members to opposition and 1.4 million people to tortue at the hands of the PNM.

    Your desperate attempts to hold on to office and to disregard the membership of the UNC is clear for all to see.

    You have surrounded yourself with imbeciles and duds who qualified for their posts by having one criteria in abundance – blind loyalty to you.

    You fail to follow and obey the constitution of the UNC at every turn. In the selection of MPs, you refused to meet with Constituency Executives and party members.

    You have effectively dismantled all arms and institutions of the UNC, to make it difficult for anyone to infiltrate the structures of the party and remove you from office.

    You are not much different to Nicholas Maduro who is a dictator in the truest sense of the word.

    Kamla, I want to remind you of the story of Narcissus.

    Narcissus was a hunter in Greek mythology, son of the river god Cephissus and the nymph Liriope. He was a very beautiful young man, and many fell in love with him. However, he only showed them disdain and contempt.

    One day, while he was hunting in the woods, the Oread nymph Echo spotted him and immediately fell for him. When Narcissus sensed that someone was following him, Echo eventually revealed herself and tried to hug him. However, he pushed her off and told her not to disturb him. Echo, in despair, roamed around the woods for the rest of her life, and wilted away until all it remained of her was an echo sound.

    Nemesis, the goddess of retribution and revenge, learned what had happened and decided to punish Narcissus for his behaviour. She led him to a pool; there, the man saw his reflection in the water and fell in love with it. Although he did not realise in the beginning that it was just a reflection, when he understood it, he fell in despair that his love could not materialise and committed suicide.

    Kamla, you need to consider your legacy and what memory of yourself you will leave behind or you will certainly end up like Narcissus.

    If you continue on this path, your life’s work and accomplishments will be overshadowed by your narcissism, greed and desperation to hold on to office and power.

    Once upon a time, you were someone the country revered and looked up to, today you are someone the country gawks and laughs at.

    You must ask yourself, “When I leave this world, how will I be remembered?”.

    At this point, you are sullying your own name and reputation, and history will not be kind to you if you continue like this.

    There is still time to save your reputation, the UNC and the country if you do the right thing and allow the party to move forward by moving out of the way.

    I urge you, do the right thing.

    Candice Maharaj

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