Politics and Promotions in the Cabinet Re-Shuffle

By Stephen Kangal
June 27, 2012

Stephen KangalThe Cabinet reshuffle, dubbed the new “pan- Cabinet”, would appear to be engineered, driven and tuned exclusively by the politics of consolidation, internal cohesiveness and ministerial promotion/demotion rather than enhancing performance in the post-MSJ era. It is a case of creating some over-lapping and ill-defined courses for horses while earning a six-month respite from the rising tide of adverse media reviews and infrastructural and labour discontent.

Ministers Ganga and Baksh are claiming water and WASA, Sharma and Howai Caribbean Airlines and Douglas and De Coteau cultural diversity that has been re-defined to mean protocol, patriotism and creating national patriots.

New, reconstituted and truncated Ministries will undergo an incubation and start-up process before coming on stream to show results. In fact will they will reduce and stagnate the much-touted performance factor.

The re-shuffle presented an occasion for fostering political re-alignment, mending political fences with the COP, a political solution to the Marlene Coudray debacle and promotion of junior Ministers establishing a Government with 41 ministers equivalent to the composition of the Lower House.

What must be disturbing to the national community is the continued desecration of the Foreign Service, started by the PNM under Dr. Williams, as a glorified dumping ground and palliative to mitigate the toxic effects of ministerial demotion/alternative in the futile hope that failures domestically can be transformed into instant successes internationally. The overseas missions of our Foreign Service today are saddled and burdened with novices and failed and abandoned former Ministers at a time when domestic economic decline requires a spirited and frenetic response and interventions on the international stage.

I note that both Sandy and Greaves rejected their traditional carrots postings in the diplomatic service of T&T.

2 thoughts on “Politics and Promotions in the Cabinet Re-Shuffle”

  1. When PNM was ruling people were leaving, Same with the ANR, same with the UNC, and same with this PPP. Parliament and MP’s seems to be leaning in one direction while the voters and the working class is heading in another direction.
    Around Carnival time over 100,000 plus people come to these shores, most of them were born here. Around carnival time the wind that blows always echo; ” Trinidad is a Paradise” but after Carnival Wednesday, these same people will be heading out back, back to where they came from.
    Is it a Paradise only for carnival Monday and Tuesday? or with a little last lap then back out? What causes this? Nice weather, nice food, nice beaches, Geography is great. Between the Islands of T & T-people have seen a Paradise, but to live in this Paradise is where the Problem lies.
    Is it Crime that is seen as the only Problem? Nah ! more than that- The social Fabric, don’t we socialize anymore? Is it the Population Growth? Food Supplies, State of the Art Technology, Deep down inside I know that everyone who choose to leave T&T had a logical reason.
    Now we can’t be against people for making that choice can’t we? Am sure there is substantial and legitimate explanation to everything.”A riddle, a riddle a Ree, the man who is turning the pot saying- he’s not in the cook” Can you guess who it might be that is causing so much people to flee???…

  2. Recently there have been numerous complaints from several circles regarding the replacement of PNM political appointees. Keith Subero and other anti government journalists have been attacking the PP for appointing too many PP supporters to a variety of positions. Some have even suggested that too many members of the clan/ Indians are replacing the PNM appointed personnel. The President has even awakened from his slumber to strongly suggest in his unusual partisan speech to the Legislature that there might be problems in these PP appointments.
    Is it not fascinating to watch this parade of criticisms and listen to the disgruntled whispers in the capital criticizing the new regime for looking after the “clan”? Where were these critics when the PNM controlled the corridors of power and stacked the country with their political hacks and supporters? Every government Minister, parliamentary secretary, chief of police, commissioner of prisons, central bank governor, ports manager, state board member, etc. etc. were members of the PNM tribe or were quietly affiliated in some manner. It was wrong then and it is wrong now.
    The country must find a better, transparent, and objective process to fill its vacancies. It is futile to complain only when you have stopped receiving the government invitations to the free cocktail circuit.

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