Manning trains guns on Rowley

PM Patrick Manning and Dr. Keith Rowley

Budget debate turns into duel…

By Kyle Jeremiah
October 1, 2008 – guardian.co.tt

The 2008-2009 budget debate took a dramatic turn last night in Parliament, after a war of words erupted between Prime Minister Patrick Manning and Diego Martin-West MP Dr Keith Rowley whom Manning dismissed in April.

The heated exchange between the two most senior PNM officials in the House unfolded in the presence of only PNM members, after the UNC MPs had walked out of the chamber in protest of Manning’s special request to have an extension of time to give his contribution to the 2009 budget debate.

Detouring from commenting on the budget, Manning fired back at the political tongue-lashing he received from Rowley on Monday, by asking Rowley to account for $10 million that disappeared from the Cleaver Heights Housing Project.

On Monday, Rowley took Manning and the Government to task on various issues.

Last night in Parliament, Manning quoted from a May 3, 2005, letter, which claimed that the cost of the residential units amounted to $92,649,000, with the infrastructure costs at $40,800,000.

“When you add these two figures,” Manning said, “You get $133,449,000, but the contract is for $143,449,000.”

At that point, Rowley—then the Housing Minister at the time of the project—intervened to ask whether Manning was impugning improper motives against him.

Manning shot back: “I ascribe no motive to the Member for Diego Martin West. All I am saying is that the Member was the minister of housing on whose recommendation that the Cabinet took a decision for $143 million.

“And therefore I cannot get an answer anywhere else perhaps he (Rowley is in a position to assist me and I am asking him—“Where d money gone?”

Rowley immediately denied any involvement in any of the details of the awarding of the contract and put that on record without “fear of contradiction.”

In turn, Manning said he was not “pursuing it” but said rather, that the matter would be the subject of inquiry.

“Because I will now officially ask about it. Because I would like to know what has happened here,” Manning said.

He added that since the budget debate started, numerous Members of the House had “impugned” his integrity.

Rowley barked from across the room, “So now you impugn mine!”

“I had two strikes against me before, and this is the third,” he said.

Manning quipped, “Do so eh like so.”

Manning had also previously focused on the allegations levelled against him in the previous days of the budget debate, particularly allegations made by Rowley about Manning Woodford Square statement: “If the leader falls, all fall down.”

The statement was made by Manning during the no-confidence motion against him two weeks ago, which Manning said was essentially a no-confidence motion against the Government.

He reflected on the “NAR juggernaut” that was in Government from 1986-1991, which had the majority of Members, whereas the PNM only had three.

Rowley, Manning recounted, was the person who suggested that they target the NAR’s leader because if the leader fell, all would also fall.

Manning then claimed it was a strategy that Rowley was now using within the PNM.

“Have no assurance that your strategy will work,” Manning advised.

Manning also spoke about an article published in the Trinidad Guardian in June. This reported on an article in a foreign newspaper concerning Udecott chairman Calder Hart. Manning said this was a “diabolical” plot.

He said that when the foreign newspaper was contacted by Hart’s attorneys, the foreign paper indicated that no such story was printed.

“Who has such a diabolical mind in this country to do such a thing?” Manning asked.

Manning also made allegations about UNC deputy leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar.

http://www.guardian.co.tt/archives/2008-10-01/news8.html

NEWS: SEPTEMBER 30, 2008

Rowley on the floor ‘Come clean with Sunway’
Former Minister Keith Rowley is calling on Government to come clean on details of a memorandum of understanding with Malaysian company Sunway, in which Sunway is to construct highways, hotels and other infrastructural projects in T&T.

Rowley Roars
…tears into Govt policies, wades into Manning in Budget debate

Rowley: Inflation a threat to people
PNM DIEGO MARTIN West MP Dr Keith Rowley yesterday de-clared that inflation and not crime “is the most serious threat being faced by the people of Trinidad and Tobago (TT) today.”

Govt praises UDeCOTT
Government yesterday fired back at former cabinet minister, Dr Keith Rowley, with full praise of the very enterprise that led to his firing-the Urban Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago (UDeCOTT).

‘Manning’s boasting not PNM’s way’
Prime Minister Patrick Manning found himself at the receiving end, yesterday, of the political wrath of the minister he fired in April–Keith Rowley.

NEWS: OCTOBER 1, 2008

PM, Rowley declare war
THE BATTLELINES between Prime Minister Patrick Manning and his fired Trade Minister Dr Keith Rowley were drawn during last night’s Budget debate in Parliament as the bad blood between the two men for the first time boiled over publicly in the parliamentary chamber.

Rowley abstains, UNC walks out
Diego Martin West MP Dr Keith Rowley last night abstained from voting in favour of the House of Representatives suspending one of its Standing Orders to allow Prime Minister Patrick Manning to speak beyond the 75 minutes normally allotted to any MP during a Budget debate.

$10m mystery
Manning and Rowley square off on ‘missing’ housing funds

Ramesh: PM using House to pressure Rowley
Prime Minister Patrick Manning used the Parliament for a political duel between himself and Dr Keith Rowley, Opposition Chief Whip Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj said last night.

Rowley: What $10m Manning talking about?
“I would dismiss that as an act of desperation on the part of the Prime Minister seeking to tarnish my name so as to get even or to create suspicion over my character,” Rowley said.

The road ahead for Dr Rowley

NEWS: OCTOBER 2, 2008

Speaker must end abuse of his office
Tuesday night’s decision to suspend Parliament’s standing orders to allow Prime Minister Patrick Manning to speak for more than the 75 minutes normally allotted speakers in a budget debate turned out to be an even more egregious abuse of the office of the Speaker.

Investigate me!
EMBATTLED PNM Diego Martin West MP Dr Keith Rowley yesterday dared his political leader, Prime Minister Patrick Manning, to bring any evidence linking him (Rowley) to the alleged disappearance of $10M out of $144M set aside for construction of Cleaver Heights housing development in Arima, during Rowley’s tenure as Housing Minister.

Parliament duelling ground for PM, Rowley
THE Opposition kept good on its threat to walk out of the House of Representatives on Tuesday in protest over an extension in the speaking time given to Prime Minister Patrick Manning during the Budget debate.

Rowley challenges Manning: Say it outside!
The war of words continues between Diego Martin West MP Dr Keith Rowley and Prime Minister Patrick Manning.

Probe PM’s Money Claim
Rowley, Elias call for forensic enquiry into $10m mystery

‘Serious questions raised on executive’
Sacked trade and industry minister Dr Keith Rowley has described as “frighteningly startling,” Prime Minister Patrick Manning’s revelation that he has been “monitoring” links between Siparia MP Kamla Persad-Bissessar and an employee of the Integrity Commission.

Rowley: Frightening behaviour by Manning

Rowley: A scandalous claim

Set up probe now!
Prime Minister Patrick Manning’s suggestion that there is a $10 million discrepancy in the cost of the Cleaver Heights Development Project in Arima has prompted Emile Elias, executive chairman of NH International Caribbean Ltd (NHIC), to join the chorus of criticism against Manning.

Don’t duck and run
Congress of the People leader Winston Dookeran is urging embattled Diego Martin West MP Dr Keith Rowley not to “duck and run” from the political fight between himself and Prime Minister Patrick Manning.

Clash worries Mayaro PNMites
The “personality clash” between Prime Minister Patrick Manning and Diego Martin West MP Dr Keith Rowley on Tuesday night in Parliament is causing concern among the party’s membership.

Elias: I will not remain silent
Emile Elias’s letter in part

Appoint forensic investigator

24 Responses to “Manning trains guns on Rowley”


  • Mr. Manning you are a professed Christian.Haven,t you read the part in the bible that says “Judge not,so that you will not be judged”Please get your facts straight before you accuse anyone.The same people who are feeding you with trash will be the people who will betray you.Remember the words of the late Bob Marley’s song “your best friends are your worst enemies.”Humble yourself and do the right thing(i.e investigate then act}.”Great is the P.N.M. and it shall prevail.”

  • The Prime minister shoud not abuse parlimentary time by making statements that he knows reaches the public and not being able to back it up. If $10m is missing that is a matter of a fraud investigation and the Auditor general and the police should be called in immediately to investigate the dissappearance of tax payers dollars.
    Instead, Manning does not care where $10m gone but rather use the time to make mischief in the land. $10m appears to be immaterial to Manning and his Government.
    That reminds me of other mischief such as the voter padding war cry. What became of that and where were the accusers when the matter reached in court.
    But Trinis “like it so”

  • There is only one decent course of action that is acceptable for Mr. Rowley to embark upon if he still want’s to obtain any credibility, dignity and respectability. He should pack his bags and leave the petty , oudated type of baseless and racially skewed politics that is the norm in Trinidad. The 150,000 or more people on the 116 square miles of real estate in our sister isle called Tobago is in dire need of a leader . Why would a leader of his stature wish to prostitute himself politically to such an ungrateful party , and people is beyond me.
    It is time that some serious apraisal be made as to what direction the neglected people of that island need to pursue if they are to develope to the extent that they deserve. Racial distractions , and nonsensical shenanigans that are taking place in the twin republic led by the clueless Manning ,and the unnamed criminal from the Opposition ,are definitely not in our collective interest.
    It is very clear that with each passing day , our people are being portrayed to the world as bunch of bumbling idiots ,with too much resources on our hands, always prepared to take four steps backwards and a single tentative one forward . What a tragedy!
    I am almost certain that this pathetic display by the two senior ‘manrats’ leaders -still from the same party- is viewed with humor and glee by members of the media and the general populace at large.

  • The PM’s language shocked me as it was far from that of a Statesman—“do so eh like so; I cannot get an answer anywhere else perhaps he is in a position to assist me and I am asking him–where d money gone? He is not pursing it [$10-milion]”; innuendos for substance! The PM referenced a 2005 letter indicating a fraud at the housing Ministry for the housing line item. Where is the reconciliation report from the Auditor General’s Office [AGO} for this particular appropriation and expenditure in the respective given year? Why are we just hearing of this in 2008 and after an election in 2007? When does the AGO’s report for closing years appear on the PM’s desk? Will closing year-2008 audit reports on all Ministeries expenditure be available sometime in early 2009 [before Carnival]? Or will we have to wait another five years for this closing fiscal cycle report? The PM did not come across as an intellectual in this debate. We deserve better that this from our leaders. The U.S. Federal Government has an Inspector General at each Agency [Ministry–in T&T]At my Agency, auditors are in my files—and these federal auditors/accountants do not tell anyone when they are coming for files until the day before when staff are told to pull certain electronic [DVD-spread sheets] and scanned electronic source document DVD files for pick-up by the Auditors. We have to balance to the last penny or else the U.S. Attorney’s Office at the Justice Department will investigate and bring charges before a U.S. Grand Jury for an indictment and then it’s on to federal court for trial. If I’m wrong with applying regulations for transactions, I am subject to up to 10-years in federal prison with a $10,000 fine—and this is a summary penalty by a judge. Why is this impossible for T&T to accomplish in government? Capitol Hill/Washington, D.C.

  • This Prime Minister is out of control. He is more than meeting the expectations of his opponents. He seems to thrive on power, vindictiveness and revenge- all traits of megalomaniac dictators.Since his rise to power,he has gone after all those who defied him.
    He interfered with the DPP and the AG to bring charges against Sharma.
    He influenced the Integrity Commission to bring charges against Panday..no one else was charged considering that many did not file on time.
    He is presently interfering with the Integrity Commission to investigate Persad Bissessar.
    He is making allegations against Rowley and by association Elias for fraud and improperty dealings.
    He ignores allegations against Calder Hart and Narace.
    He is controlling every member of his Cabinet as evidenced in the Finance Minister’s budget presentation .
    There are many more!

  • PNM’s corruption is on show for all to see! What has happened here is clear proof that the illegitimate, foolish, “court jesture like” nature of the outdated westminster parliamentary politics in T&T and the world is an illusion of justice and rule of law. And whether it was 1 dollar or 1 million dollars was stolen from the people, it does not matter anymore. They have not a clue as to the immoral criminal nature of stealing from the people, or the principles of justice involved in the role of government. Such is the level of disrespect and disdain they have for the nationals of T&T.

    It is the peoples money that they are both debating and making accusations about. The nation’s money, Not The PNM’s or UNC’s.

    And let us not forget that the opposition was the one’s who created the project’s for those towers that Dr Rowley’s has referred to in his UNICOTT expose’, along with the hyatt as well.
    So the UNC would have been the one’s raking in the dough if they were voted back into power. Thus the “hidden” agenda of discontent.
    THE GOLD LAYING GOOSE THAT THEY RAISED WAS STOLEN FROM THEM!

    It’s time to wake up T&T, you are ushering in your own destruction everytime you cast a vote of support for one of these corrupt parties and their system of governance. It’s time for us to join the rest of the progressive world and usher in “real” change, A REVOLUTION OF SOCIAL CHANGE, shake off the brain washing of 500 plus years.

    The nation has had enough of the “colosseum” games used to distract and divide the people in T&T. This MONSTROSITY called parliament.

    However. A serious issue that everyone should be paying attention to and voicing their concerns about is the upcoming FTAA(Free Trade Area Of The Americas) meeting next April 17-19 2009 hosted by the PM, whereby the government plans to use T&T as the base for this criminal operation for caribbean and latin American economical destabilization and control, spearheaded by the US empire. A program which if all who attends votes in favor of, will insure that the US WILL GET COPYRIGHTS CONTROL OVER YOUR FOOD amongst other things.

    i.e IF A FARMER HAS TO BUY SEEDS OF LIVESTOCK HE OR SHE WILL HAVE TO PAY THE UNITED STATES FOR THE COPYRIGHTS TO USE THE ANIMAL OR THE SEED! can you imagine the implications of such a plan?
    It will ensure that you cannot develop you nations technological capacities, because the US will have pattern on grains, goats, cows etc, THIS COST WILL BE PASSED DOWN TO THE SUFFERING PEOPLE AS AN ADDITIONAL TAX INCREASE IN FOOD PRICES, SEPARATE FROM VAT OR THE USUAL PRICE GOUGING!

    When a government cares little for it’s farmers or for the nations ability to be self sufficient, it is easy for them to be used by the US empire for these aims.

    WAKE UP T&T!!!

    We are in grave danger of becoming a COLONY OF THE USA, UNLESS WE DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE CURRENT STATE OF AFFAIRS IN T&T.
    Is this what the PNM was voted into office for? i taught it was to help the suffering people of T&T and the region?

    If you think corruption is strife now, just wait until those “Free trade” programs are institutionalized in T&T.

    LETS MAKE APRIL 17-19 2009…”2 DAY OF PEOPLES PROTEST AGAINST CORRUPTION”

    LET THIS SLOGAN GO OUT TO EVERYONE EVERYWHERE!!

    LETS ORGANIZE PROGRESSIVE PROTEST RALLIES TO HIGHLIGHT THOSE RESPONSIBLE FOR SUFFERING AND CORRUPTION IN T&T, (WITHOUT THE OPPOSITION PARTIES OR THEIR FRIENDS)

    LETS SPARK THE FLAMES OF SOCIAL REVOLUTION IN TRINIDAD AND USHER IN A NEW SOCIETY, ONE WHERE LOVE AND RESPECT FOR ONE’S FELLOW MAN IS THE MOST CHERISHED IDEAL.

    Good points Neal.

    One T&T
    One Caribbean.

  • I meant UDECOTT

  • Mrs Brooks. Im sorry, but citing the US government as an example of good “fiscal” governance for T&T or any other country for that matter is the craziest thing that i have every heard of. The US economy is in a “RECESSION” because of the very practices that you claim those “auditors” whom investigates prevent. The federal government is the most corrupt arm of the US government. You cant really be serious!

  • When young lion roars.
    Mr Manning has the attitude of most Black Leaders form Africa to the Caribbean,Their own greed comes frist ,and the people’s needs take second place.Manning wants to take Trinida on the same course that Papa Doc took Haiti. He (Manning)do not like his own people especially poor blacks.The crime in Trinidad is out of control with know Commander and Chief. Now he wants to close the mouth of the one person who is left to tell the people the truth about his administion.Manning has no integrity to impugned upon,He wine and dime his foreign diplomatson the back of Trinidads,build a multimillion masion while the average person is struggling to make a living .In my view Mr ROWLEY should run for Prime Minister in the next election.boston

  • I believe that Dr. Keith Rowley will go down in the history books as the first member of the PNM to go boldly where no man has gone before. He did this by openly challenging old assumptions as a PNM parliamentarian. Unfortunately, many of us good Trinbagonians still stubbornly cling to these old assumptions. For too long us good Trinbagnoians have foolishly believed that party leaders could do no wrong. This view is widely held by both PNM and UNC fundamentalists, or should I say both Patrick Manning and Basdeo Panday fundamentalists. Before I go on, let me provide a basic definition of what a Patrick Manning and a Basdeo Panday fundamentalist are. A Patrick Manning fundamentalist is a person who believes that Patrick Manning is infallible, that he is the only person qualified to be prime minister, that he is above the law, that to question his stewardship is to be unpatriotic, and would often utter the statement, ‘if not Manning, who we go put?’. A Basdeo Panday fundamentalist is an individual who believes that Basdeo Panday is infallible, that he is the only person qualified to be prime minister, that to criticise him is to be a racist, and that he is innocent of all charges against him that are pending in court.
    Because of this mindset, the country is stuck with individuals at the top of both parties whose characters have raised serious questions in recent times.

    Keith Rowley did what he was legally obligated to do and was expected of him as a duly elected member of parliament. He raised questions on what appeared to be misconduct at the highest levels of the Government of Trinidad and Tobago. The illegal use of taxpayer dollars by Patrick Manning or anyone else is a criminal act. In many countries throughout the world, prime ministers and presidents have been sentenced to prison for this. If Patrick Manning knew that state’s funds were being illegal used by individuals who are government officials, and failed to report the matter to the police, then Patrick Manning is setting a very bad example by not reporting criminal activity to the police. In this instance he is just as guilty as those who he his accusing of misappropriating state’s funds.

    It appears that some are ready to condemn a member of parliament for simply trying to uphold the law. In a nation where government corruption is rampant, and in a nation where the prime ministers appear to be above the law, it is time that more members of parliament follow the courageous step taken by Keith Rowley. Democracy and good governance demand nothing less. Not only did he make Mason Hall and Tobago proud, he also made many in Trinidad hopeful that one day rampant corruption could be a thing of the past. Let us give this true patriot the respect he so well deserves. Keith Rowley proved that he is able to put the interest of Trinidad and Tobago ahead of that of the party, and for this he should be highly commended. I strongly urge all Trinbagonians to do the same.

  • A rush to judgment

    Express Editorial
    Friday, October 3rd 2008

    House Speaker Barry Sinanan, by now, must be ruing his decision to open the way for the Prime Minister to have unlimited speaking time at last Tuesday’s parliamentary session. Mr Manning, after all, used the extra time not to speak on any matter of national importance but to continue his political attack against his former deputy, Dr Keith Rowley, and malign Siparia MP, Kamla Persad-Bissessar.

    Mr Manning is entitled to attack any politician he likes but what he is not entitled to do is to abuse the precious privilege he was granted as Prime Minister simply to score points against a former PNM colleague now turned rival, the Prime Minister’s angst going back as far as 1996 when Dr Rowley battled against him for the party’s political leadership.

    Driven by what seems to be a desire to get Dr Rowley at all costs and to poison the political waters of Mrs Persad-Bissessar, Mr Manning not only disgraced himself in the Parliament but, unwittingly, hung himself out to dry. Having seen Dr Rowley not only beat back but overturn allegations against him raised via the Integrity Commission, Mr Manning – congenitally unable to accept the courts’ ruling as vindication of one of his former deputies – now sought to wound him by loaded innuendo.
    Full Article : trinidadexpress.com

  • “I believe that Dr. Keith Rowley will go down in the history books as the first member of the PNM to go boldly where no man has gone before.” These and similar forms of useless flatteries are all laudable comments that translates to nothing tangible whatsoever in the land where feting, the next holiday extravaganza, as well as rum & roti politics, are highly anticipated.
    There is only one reason why a pseudo tin pan dictator at the helm of the present PNM regime can dictate the pace, and run roughshod over a timid and sleeping population. The Opposition as constituted is dead but is yet to know it, and know viable challenge is eminent from within the ranks of the party.
    Our people collectively are the losers unfortunately. It is why something is desperately needed in the present obscure, dormant political landscape to jolt our elites into action. One group is too stupid to recognize that grabbing their money, running away while screaming foul is defeatist, as the other sits perched on their various local fiefdoms and condemn without attempting anything innovative or providing hope to the desperate.
    I have subtly stated what that should be done as a way forward – as the politics of distractions remains a recipe for disaster.

  • No missing $$, says Rowley
    Rowley said yesterday the public servants were preparing documentation to give to the Minister the file to show her what had happened and to prove that it was a mathematical error. “While that was being done, the Minister came to the Parliament… and sat there as the Prime Minister made his statement,” he said.

  • This chap (Manning) is totally out of control. But we are the ones to blame. We permitted this rather second rate, sophomoric leader to believe that he is a great leader and his ego over the years has grown to unbelievable proportions where he thinks he can do no wrong. This guy is reckless and violates every known decorum of a modern day parliament in his attempts to make wild, unsubstantiated allegations about people who disagree with him. This is really sad. Which responsible leader would make his wife a Minister. Food for thought not for guts.

  • Chedi Jagan, and look at the what excellent progress Guyana has since made.

  • Manning in deep waters
    Judging from their letters and comments on radio talkshows, members of the public have instantly zoned in on the weak point in Prime Minister Patrick Manning’s allegation of $10 million wrongdoing in the Cleaver Heights housing project: if this situation is five years old, why is Mr Manning only now bringing it up?

  • Mr. Manning is using the tactic of his freind Hugo Chavez, blame others for things so the public will be distracted from his own corruption and greed. And he done a great job. You are all talking about Manning/Rowley instead asking about the wasteful spending in the current budget. $10 million from 5 years ago thats missing, what about the hundreds of million that will go missing in the current budget.

  • Staunching the ‘bad blood’
    It is all very well for Planning Housing and Environment Minister Emily Gaynor Dick-Forde to play the role of martyr by casting herself as a persecuted Jesus going like a lamb to the slaughter, but we find it curious that she seemed to have had the greatest difficulty in answering the question put to her by our reporter: Was Dr Keith Rowley’s assertion that she knew there was no missing $10 million from the Cleaver Woods housing project because she had been told this by HDC public servants true?

  • While I join in the sentiments toward Dr.Rowley, I still abhor the notion that some people still have, including Dr.Rowley; the notion that he is PNM and Will always be PNM! True, each to his/her own opinion but if you’re to be percieved as a true patriot of and for the people then that cliche’ must be thrown behind the back. I am past the “I am will always be” for a party. I am Trinidadian First and a patriot second! Some of you may disagree with the order but none the less, i know who I am and what I stand for. Like the ol’ cliche’ ” either you stand for something or fall for anything.” Dr.Rowley needs to cross the floor and join hands with anyone, and I mean Independents too, to do what is right for the country without fear.

    I’ve never really been a fan or Dr.Rowley, i guess because i saw him “guilty by association.” Association to Manning and his cohorts. It’s about time someone fought for the reins of the country and not just leave manning to hold on to it. Those people who insist that “Trinidad and Tobago” is in great shape, is in great denial and listens to too much PNM rhetoric.

    There are too much self-centred, duncee and ignorant people holding high offices in the country eg. Teschiera, the current COP to name a few. This is the way Manning uses people to keep control of the country. I challenge a few more ministers and other parliamentarians to join with Dr. Rowley in demanding accountability not for himself but for the PEOPLE!!. It don’t really matter to me who he joins with, UNC or independs to even NAR, as long as it will challenge the current status quo and bring about the much needed change.

  • “I’ve never really been a fan of Dr. Rowley , I guess because I saw him “guilty by association to Manning and his cohorts.” How ironic. So perhaps this writer would have loved the Mason Hall kid a bit more if he was guilty by association with the UNC/ ULF or COP , Tapia , NJAC , or ONR correct?
    Felix you have every right to decieve yourself , but please do not attempt to do the same for members of the reading public that traverse this blog. Time is too precious and much is at stake. What we need in our country at the moment is honest communication as to what our true feelings and motives are with respect to power, race,ethnicity, and the countless social maladies that afflicts us presently as well as possible solutions for moving forward.
    Here I thought you and half the nation simply despise anyone that was born-is it north of Toco.After all how can one explain the sadistic pleasure so many of you felt when Abu Baka and his pseudo religious tugs attacked our Parliament, shot our PM the Castaria kid in his knees and humiliated countles others in the process?

  • I read your piece 4 times trying to find the part where “i’m deceiving myself,” without luck. Perhaps my reading comprehension is slow and not up to par as yours, so I will put my tail between my legs and ask you to clarify, please.

    I never was a follower of the PNM or anyone associated with the PNM. That said, I complmented the writer on his recognition of the efforts of Dr.Rowley. I myself, like you, am guilty of having the “mens rea” against Dr.Rowley because of his association to Manning. However, It is my strong opinion and i’m sure the same for many on this blog, that Dr.Rowley is showing great skill and trepidity in taking on his own party on their lack of accountability and wilful blindness of the corruption taking place. I don’t give a flying rock’, about race, ethnicity, gender or anything of that nature.

    I feel the pain of everyone that is afflicited with the status quo. I spoke to my father today, as I do every other day as long as i can afford it, and he had some advice for me, as he does every time we speak. He is 64 and has only left the shores of T&T once for a week and for business purposes. I told him of my plans of returning home for good and he became really aggitated with the very suggestion. My father loves his country like no other that I have known. He worked in the cane fields from the age of 6 with his father, until he was let go in 1980 from Orange Grove. I have invited him many times to visit me in Toronto and he has always declined. I am the oldest in 5 children and the only one living abroad or away from home. Every excuse he gives is a joke but he always ends with “Trinidad is the sweetest country in the world, why i leaving here to suffer in another country.”

    So, please Neal, if you’re implying in any way that i’m cynical and numb to the happenings in Trinidad, you’re way off base.

    I refuse to be associated with any party in the country as it stands because in my opinion they are all in it for themselves, the power and the money available to those in power. But when a man challenges his party in front the whole country he deserves kudos from everyone.

    In hindsight the abu bakr coup didn’t reeally do anything to change country as a whole. ONe would’ve thought that our leaders then would’ve seen the cries of a desperate few for social adjustments that would’ve made a difference but it was business as usual. The castara kid apparently was seen as a hero then but he is now considered the biggest traitor to date when he handed power to the PNM in the tied election. One knee wasn’t enough! I’ll guarantee you, that if another coup should ever be attempted again, it will gain massive support from all aspects of the country.
    at this time anything is better than the status quo.

    Many of you are gonna jump on me for this view, but none the less thanks to democracy I am entitled to my opinion and so are the rest of you.

    My father had to wait years to get his severance from the government after the retrenchment, he got half 5yrs later and the other half 3yrs after that. My brother lost an arm at work in 2004 and to date he has not received any compensation or income from his employer, i help support him and his 2 girls and his wife.Last week, 2 hooligans from malabar robbed him of his 4 boxes of kentucky he bought in arima and was taking home to his family and not just the chicken but the napkins too. Last month a woman flagged him down, he drives a taxi, when he stopped 2 men jumped out of the bush on Omera road and tried to hijack him, he had to jump out of the car and run in a gas station.

    So please don’t think my opinions are witout substance. I apologize to any of you that may be offended because of my sentiments, but i don’t have the ability to tell my mind and soul how to feel, it reacts freely.

    I await your response and i’m sure it will be interesting.

  • Rowley gets Cleaver Heights file
    DIEGO MARTIN West MP Dr Keith Rowley yesterday said he received documents pertinent to claims Prime Minister Patrick Manning made, about him, over $10 million which could not be accounted for in the Cleaver Heights housing project in Arima.

    When asked by reporters on October 22 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Port-of-Spain whether he will respond to Rowley’s statement that he misled the Parliament by making claims against the Diego Martin West MP, the Prime Minister replied: “I am sorry I have no idea what you are talking about. I stay away from pedestrian matters.” Rowley’s response to that comment from Manning was: “When did it go from being matters of national importance to pedestrian matters? I am very disappointed to see the Prime Minister taking this very flippant position over what is a very serious matter. I reject it out of hand.”

  • Housing Minister stands firm on Cleaver Heights

    Housing Minister bows to pressure
    Housing Minister Dr Emily Gaynor Dick-Forde was on the offensive for the entire duration that she faced aggressive cross-examination by attorney for Margaret Chow, former managing director of the Housing Development Corporation.

    Cleaver Heights $10M mistake
    A TEN MILLION-dollar discrepancy in the contract sum for the Cleaver Heights development project was yesterday said by Housing and Development Minister Emily Gaynor Dick-Forde to have been, in part, a mathematical mistake.

    Chow: ‘Missing’ $10m a mistake
    A change in the fixed price of the units at the controversial Cleaver Heights Housing project from $92.965 million to $101.969 million is not an arithmetic error, former Housing Development Corporation (HDC) acting managing director, Margaret Chow, says.

  • Are Cleaver Heights mortgages ‘real’?
    The legality of thousands of mortgages in the State housing sector came under question yesterday after chairman of the Commission of Inquiry into the construction sector, Professor John Uff, noted that the failure of the State to secure the legal land title for Cleaver Heights could mean mortgages on the housing project – and many others like them – are not “real”.

    Criminal charges loom at HDC—Imbert

    Former Imbert firm owing $18m
    …to Cleaver Heights contractor for Grenada Stadium, alleges lawyer

    UDeCOTT Enquiry: Dick-Forde cries fraud

    Housing Minister: I’m not sure PM asked for file
    HOUSING, Development and Planning Minister Dr Emily Gaynor Dick-Forde yesterday said she did not recall whether or not Prime Minster Patrick Manning asked her for documents in relation to the Cleaver Heights housing project in September last year.

    Where’s the missing $10m?

    Khan: No evidence missing $10m tied to Rowley

    Rowley: I was not a lax housing minister
    FORMER Housing Minister Dr Keith Rowley yesterday denied his tenure as housing minister saw lax management that allowed problems and discrepancies to creep up in the Cleaver Heights housing project.

    Colm justifies his ‘expert’ advice
    WORKS AND Transport Minister Colm Imbert yesterday attempted to justify his intervention as an “expert” witness on the Cleaver Heights Housing project by saying he was a member of a special Cabinet sub-committee charged with organising Government’s response to the proceedings of the Uff Commission of Inquiry.

    …Rowley fires back on ‘lax performance’

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