Nastiest campaign ever

By Raffique Shah
October 20, 2013

Raffique ShahThis local government elections campaign was the nastiest ever in the history of this country.

And three man-rats, abetted by their respective executives, can take credit for having reduced electioneering to a level so low, anything worse will be burrowing the sewer mains. Dip your heads Jack Warner, Anand Ramlogan and Roodal Moonilal.

Having witnessed the demise of Uriah Butler and Albert Gomes, and seen the rise of the PNM in 1956, the bitter battles against the voting machines, acrimony over electoral boundaries, and a cofounder of the ULF in 1976, I thought I’d seen it all. In my time, a meeting was not a meeting unless there was a drunken heckler. “Picong” was a fine art that real politicians had to master or suffer. Debate was robust and savaging one’s opponents and shaking hands afterward was the norm.

But nothing prepared me for what transpired over the past few months. The sheer nastiness that spewed from platforms, the annoying horns that drowned the few speeches that contained any substance, the soca-fest-like campaigning… politics hit a new low.

It is mind-numbing to think that this small country has spawned so many sewer rats clustered in two political parties-the ILP and the UNC. Many might argue the rodents-in-human-form crawled out from the same stink-hole, hence their cussed compatibility. Whatever their genesis, what sin have we as a society committed to be saddled with such creatures and their mindless supporters?

When the slide began, maybe as far back as in January during the THA elections, I viewed the nightly radio and television fares as comic entertainment. By the time we got to the Chaguanas West by-election, the mudslinging had wor­sened. Jack Warner was “bussing mark” every night on his UNC friends of yesterday, complete with graphics and theatrics, as if they weren’t co-harlots in the seedy House of the Rising Sun, sinners all, until the fallout.

We laughed at the jokes, the jabs, the exposés—I certainly did. Then the UNC slime hit back, dipping into their cavities for stink bombs, hurling them every which way, and things got nastier. But who would have thought they’d sink to be depths plumbed during this campaign?

If it was not whose mother or sister or brother slept with whom, it was whose “nennen” got a “ten days”, whose “sarobhai” landed a plum job or contract, whose concubine was housed where, and worse. Threats of lawsuits that never materialised only fuelled the nastiness, much to the delight of their colleagues on the platforms and their colour-clad, flag-waving supporters on the ground.

It was only a matter of time before it reached dangerous levels. That happened when Attorney General Anand Ramlogan bared the confidential contents of an official police investigative file on a public platform. That singular act of desperation altered the equation. It was now open season.

Party sycophants did not query why, if he had evidence that Anna Deonarine was alle­gedly involved in wrongdoing related to a Range Rover (as he implied), he or the police or the DPP did not charge her with the serious offence. Bear in mind the alleged offence came under police investigation in 2011 when all of them, ILP and UNC, were one happy family.

The land transaction became a matter of interest in 2005 when Shama Deonarine, Anna’s mother, was a prominent UNC councillor. No one in the UNC queried the $13 million sale then. Why did Ramlogan not pursue what he now deems a “suspicious transaction” when he became AG in 2010? Or when the CLICO probe was underway?

Many of the nightly allegations that Jack titillates his audience with (“but not tonight”) relate to alleged thefts or misdemeanours that occurred while he was head honcho in the UNC. What, he knew nothing of these when he was praising Kamla as the incarnation of Maha Lakshmi? He queries Ramlogan’s suitability for the position of AG. But will he tell us what role he played in bringing Anand in from the political cold back in 2010?

When friends fall out, the acrimony is worse than when thieves squabble; and all too often, the lines here are blurred.

As the stench from the stateroom and the deck gets nauseating, the circus continues into the by-election, complete with jugglers and clowns. Take the selection of Ian Alleyne as the UNC candidate for the St Joseph by-election, replacing one weirdo with another. What could have prompted this choice? Is the Prime Minister losing her mind?

You would think these jokers would have learnt some harsh lessons from the THA campaign during which they demonised Orville London, Keith Rowley and the PNM, and lost disastrously.

No, they have compounded their errors, targeting women on Warner’s platform who people might otherwise have dismissed based solely on their association with Jack. Their attacks have disgusted many. The negative results of their nastiness will show tomorrow night. Watch them.

4 thoughts on “Nastiest campaign ever”

  1. Excerpt: It is mind-numbing to think that this small country has spawned so many sewer rats clustered in two political parties-the ILP and the UNC. Many might argue the rodents-in-human-form crawled out from the same stink-hole, hence their cussed compatibility. Whatever their genesis, what sin have we as a society committed to be saddled with such creatures and their mindless supporters?

    And this speaks for itself. Born of the same parent they exhibit the nasty and odious characteristics that is prevalent among those who reside under the PP umbrella. Some might have left the host, but the navel string connections continue to influence their public performance.

    1. Life is funny if we were to think back to 1986 PNM lost 3 to 33 in the 36 seat general elections and the recount in Sando was stopped even though there were strong rumors that Patrick lost his seat. The recount in Sando was stopped. Morris Marshall died mysteriously as people looked up to him to take up the mantle of leadership in the PNM. Nevertheless as faith would have it Patrick became the leader. More importantly was the fact that the PNM learnt to spring back from defeat as that defeat had most of us thinking that perhaps we were seeing the end of PNM. But they came back, thanks to Mr. Panday. Most would have us believe that Patrick was from the same mold as Eric but the truth was Panday and the UNC focused strongly on filling their own pockets with our tax monies. This was why Patrick made it back to power in 1996 and then again after the 18-18 tie in 2002. Then Robbie turned his back on Panday. Panday and Ish and others during the Tringen II Plant 1985-6 loan arrangement funneled part of the 250 USD million to design/build the Plant via Northern Construction funded the UNC. UNC was was club 88 (1988) but had little monies and 70 USD million was stolen from the Plant design/construct loan to finance the coming onstream of the UNC( Plant was cheapened to 180 USD million and the 70 USD million transferred from Capital accounts in a New York bank to Maintenance/Operations accounts). Yes they got away with it. Bribes past left and centre and Miss PM knows only too well as she was part of it as in section 34…2012. So I expect that the UNC unlike the run of the PNM will fade like NAR, ONR, COP etc. Their foundation was poor with too much greedy people in their midst. This is why PNM will prevail as they always do a clean job and their base is opposed to wanting to join any opposing party. Some things stay with me over the years as PNM wins when the voter turn out is under 40% as their base 200,0000 strong always come out to vote by whatever means; they always have financiers(last of note was CLICO – remember the Carlos John/ Mervyn Assam etc arrangement – also in the UNC);and with distraction and deception along with brain washing and fear in race politics they became very good at this, their propaganda efforts; and they will along walk with the buses along with governmental connections and contractors on their payroll, the rum and the roti etc. But having said this I want to believe the people are no longer buying into these strategies anymore. What came out of the 2010 elections was that the grassroots PNM were no longer getting their monies worth. There was fragmentation in their ranks. More so Patrick had his boys (inner circle) and they were living it up and this starting to affect the grassroot party campaigners from wooing their voters. As we used to say in the 70s nobody will beat the PNM. Instead they will beat themselves. However 2013 presents a new picture as we are still in a world recession and so the money tree has dried up for the PNM. On the other hand Miss K ploy is not to be underestimated as she will fight for proportional representation to take the seat count to 60 or perhaps 70 (now 41) and of course most of these seats will be south of the Caroni bridge. Mr Rowley says this will take a special majority but we will see.

  2. I was disgusted by the dirty campaign. I noted that Abdulla’s party and the PNM did not join engaged in the filth.

  3. and what make it worse, if that is possible, these are all big growm old blasted people who are supose to set an example. Now we see clearly why the young people behave so badly. These people have no dam common sense and no pride, no shame in dey game. with a smile on dey face and grinning too they continue to bring down deyself and sweet sweet t&t. meh heart hurting.when i go on ilp websie and see d amount of people talking up jacko i refuset to believe so much people in t&t have lost their pride.Jacko really feel people stupid wee d hell you go put up so much candidates wtih questionable backgrounds,what kind of shite is this ? d next idiot put up ian now tell me these people not serious or they have little respect for the citizens of t&t. what else can i say dis past stupid.i did say CW was not all of t&t and i this election has proven that there is still plenty people in t&t who have not lost there minds and do not intend to make the same mistake ..twice.. thank you my beautiful people stand up for what is right ,do not let these bunch of nasty people with no morals walk away thinking all ya stupid, enough is enough.

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