Tag Archives: Covid-19

The leader must rally the masses

By Raffique Shah
June 16, 2020

Raffique ShahFinance Minister Colm Imbert, and by extension the Keith Rowley-led Government of Trinidad and Tobago, missed out on an opportunity to rise above the noise that tends to drown out sensible discussions about serious issues when Imbert presented the mid-year review of the fiscal 2020 Budget last Friday. Coming as it did during the aftershocks of the first wave of the Corvid-19 pandemic, the review necessarily highlighted the impact this global health crisis has had on the national economy, and what is required of all citizens to see us emerge stronger from it, whenever that may be.
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Think small, score big

By Raffique Shah
June 03, 2020

Raffique ShahMemo #3 to Post-COVID-19 Recovery Team: Friends, Trinis, countrymen (and women). I feel certain that by now you will have submitted preliminary recommendations to the Government. I imagine the most urgent challenge is the state of the country’s finances, how best to manage our dwindling resources and severely reduced revenues, balancing these with servicing our huge debt—well over TT $100 billion—repayments being some $4 billion per annum.
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Do not squander this opportunity

By Raffique Shah
May 26, 2020

Raffique ShahIf there is substance to the saying that in every crisis there are opportunities, then the COVID-19 pandemic has delivered spectacularly, if only we the inhabitants of the twin-island republic of Trinidad and Tobago would recognise them for what they are, grab them, and infuse them into the post-pandemic recovery narrative and action plans, just so we understand they may never be on offer again.
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Young’s tragic blunder

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
May 18, 2020

If once you forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem.

—Abraham Lincoln

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeI thought the expeditious manner in which the Prime Minister and his party handled the coronavirus pandemic rescued their fortunes and gave their supporters reason to believe the PNM would focus on the needs of ordinary people, albeit by circumstances rather than by choice.

Then the unravelling came. Without even being pushed, the Minister of National Security uttered the most unbelievable statements of his career and, by extension, the Government in which he serves. Inexplicably, he continues to do so in the face of evidence to the contrary.
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Compassion and consumer power

By Raffique Shah
May 12, 2020

Raffique ShahBased on comments I’ve heard or read in the media on the likely economic realities that will confront us when Government eases the COVID-19 “lockdown”, I am worried about the future of Trinidad and Tobago. No one disputes that the country faces enormous problems, what with the near-collapse of the oil and gas sectors, the closure of several petrochemical plants in Point Lisas, and the absence of other export-driven industries that could earn substantial foreign exchange.
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COVID-19 & African-Americans

By Dr. Kwame Nantambu
May 07, 2020

Dr. Kwame NantambuIndeed, one of the most tragic and realistic fall-outs of the novel, contagious COVID-19 pandemic in the United States is its most violent and deleterious impact/attack on African-Americans. Population statistics reveal that African-Americans comprise 13.4% of the national population but yet account for the following: in May 2020, Wisconsin African-Americans are only a miniscule 6.7% of the population but have accounted for a whopping 32% of COVID-19 deaths; in Michigan, African-Americans account for 14% of the population but 40% of the state’s COVID-19 deaths; in Missouri, African-Americans comprise 12% of its population but 40% of its COVID-19 deaths; while the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) points out that nation-wide, African-Americans are 33% of all hospitalized cases.
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Don’t Blame China For Your Government’s COVID-19 Failures

The anti-China narrative is based on falsities, and serves to distract people from the failure of neoliberalism.

By Davide Mastracci
April 07, 2020 – readpassage.com

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeIn early January, COVID-19 was largely limited to China. Now, just three months later, it has spread far beyond China’s border, and has effectively been halted domestically within the country.

There are currently around 1.36 million reported COVID-19 cases globally, with more than 76,000 deaths. China accounts for just 6 per cent of all cases, and 4.4 per cent of deaths. Yesterday, China reported no new deaths for the first time since January.
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‘Roadmap to Recovery’ team invites public to make submissions

Dr Keith RowleyThe 22-member team of government members, businessmen, economists and activists is chaired by Prime Minister Keith Rowley. It is tasked with the responsibility of creating a COVID-19 Roadmap to Recovery for Trinidad and Tobago.

The team has issued a call to all citizens to let their voices be heard by submitting their views on the way forward for T&T.
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Memo 02 to Team Recovery: Freeze motor imports

By Raffique Shah
May 4, 2020

Raffique ShahMemo 02 to the post-COVID-19 Recovery Team: Gentlemen, and the few ladies among you, greetings. I have chosen to communicate with you in full glare of the public because I do not wish to be seen as saying and doing nothing when my country needed every citizen to contribute what he or she could in the aftermath of a disaster such as the world has never experienced.
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Re-charting our Ruins

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
May 4, 2020

“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”

—James 1:5 KJV

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeFifty eight years ago Eric Williams (PNM) and Rudranath Capildeo (DLP/UNC) went to Marlborough House to discuss the path forward to create an independent nation. Williams was determined to take the country into independence while Capildeo wanted to make sure that Afro-Trinbagonians, the majority group, did not discriminate against Indo-Trinbagonians. Subsuming their party interests to the national interest, they inscribed a minority platform into the country’s constitution that protected the rights of Indo-Trinbagonians and other ethnic groups.
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