Tag Archives: Raffique Shah

Giant leap by a Black man

By Raffique Shah
September 27, 2021

Raffique ShahLast Sunday, dealing with the potential I saw in many of the young players who competed in the recently-concluded CPL T-20 cricket tournament, I introduced the issue of race in sports as highlighted by several Black American athletes who used the stage of the Mexico City Olympics in 1968 to confront racism head-on. I cited the iconic photograph of sprinters and 200-metres medallists Tommie Smith, who won the event in a new world record of 19.83 seconds, Australian Peter Norman who was second in 20.00, and John Carlos, who was third, also in 20.00. The fourth finisher was Trinidad & Tobago’s Edwin Roberts, who clocked 20.30.
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Healing through sports

By Raffique Shah
September 20, 2021

Raffique ShahI was hooked to the Caribbean Premier League cricket tournament over the past two weeks, from the opening match between the Trinbago Knight Riders and the Guyana Amazon Warriors to the thriller-of-a-final in Warner Park between the host’s St Kitts-Nevis Patriots and the St Lucia Kings, that went down to a last ball decider. As is normal for me when I feast on sports, I look beyond the participants and their performances. In CPL cricket, I find not just entertainment and scintillating skills, but more importantly, from my perspective, a panorama of Caribbean life that can teach Caribbean societies lessons in race relations and class compression.
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Education for those who want it

By Raffique Shah
September 13, 2021

Raffique ShahFor the second time in as many months I ask a question that is pertinent to this country’s future path, one that we need to answer because it is critical to everything else we do as we forge a road to recovery in the aftermath of the unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic and the near-collapse of the national economy. It is this: are we satisfied with our education system which, give or take a tweak here, a turn there, has remained a hugely expensive relic of colonialism that refuses to die 60 years after independence.
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Catapult, club and a bullpistle

By Raffique Shah
September o4, 2021

Raffique ShahNo state of emergency, lift the curfew and let’s get back to normal. We are fed up with Covid-19, 20 or whatever edition or variant is stalking us. No more. Time to show this beast just what Trinis are capable of. We will beat him to death with ‘wining’ and ‘jamming’, drinking puncheon rum. Release the Trini beast, Mr Prime Minister, and we shall show the world how to fight Covid, David, any id.
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T&T at 59: Jean or Dinah?

By Raffique Shah
August 30, 2021

Raffique ShahIf I were asked to put a human face to a new portrait of Trinidad and Tobago at age 59, I would sketch a decrepit Jean or Dinah, aged beyond her actual years, scowling and regretting her wasted years, waiting to die at the feet of an ungrateful people.

I am not happy conjuring such a sorry image of my native land at a point in its history when it should be bubbling with life, oozing confidence and full of energy befitting a nation that has had a good run, whatever obstacles it may have encountered after it became an independent nation on August 31, 1962.
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Surprise us, Mullahs

By Raffique Shah
August 23, 2021

Raffique ShahIf there was anything shocking about what happened in Afghanistan last weekend, it was the millions of people who were surprised by the speed at which the Afghan regime collapsed, the military imploded and the Taliban swiftly moved in to declare itself the new government.

BBC journalists referencing Saigon way back on May 1, 1975, when the last Americans who were evacuated from a war that never should have been, reversed on board the aircraft, kicking away desperate Vietnamese who had worked for the US, and who wanted to escape before General Giap’s army took control of the country. “Experts” spoke of the colossal waste of US resources in pursuing yet another ‘mission impossible’ in a country and among a people who will never be tamed, not by Western standards anyway.
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Encounter with The Maestro

By Raffique Shah
August 16, 2021

Raffique ShahI was dreaming of the din that has developed over vaccination—to vaccinate or not?—which of the vaccines is acceptable, which is not?—an unholy row that is international in its reach, with the Internet offering a global platform to everyone who must have his say—when an apparition of Cecil Hume, stage name The Maestro, blotted out everything else, crooning in his high-pitched voice the near-comical lyrics of his masterful calypso, ‘Mr Trinidad’.
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Sports overlords must be made to account

By Raffique Shah
August 08, 2021

Raffique ShahIf you think you cannot possibly get any angrier over the state of sports in the country, what with the annihilation of Team TTO at the Tokyo Olympics, our cricket teams performing way below what is expected of them, and our once-proud football team booted out of World Cup 2026 by some miniscule islands, then read the local football legend’s recently published Everald Gally Cummings, The Autobiography.
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The answers my friends

By Raffique Shah
August 01, 2021

Raffique ShahFact: an overwhelming majority of the 1,000-plus victims of Covid-19 who died of the highly contagious virus were also stricken with non-communicable diseases (NCDs), such as heart diseases, diabetes, renal conditions and other preventable ailments.

I do not have the precise numbers of such cases since the Ministry of Health has a policy of not disclosing details of patients in its system. But I think I can safely say that based on the frequency with which “co-morbidities” has been attached to the profiles of the deceased, some 80 per cent fell in that category.
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Choosing fight over flight

By Raffique Shah
July 26, 2021

Raffique ShahI got vaccinated last week. I received the first of two doses of the Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccine. I chose the drive-through option at the Ato Boldon Stadium because it is close to my home and I didn’t have to leave the privacy or comfort of my car to queue up at any stage of the proceedings, which is helpful to people who suffer with Parkinson’s and similar neurological disorders.

The operation was organised by Proman, a large project management corporation in the energy sector, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health. Fazad Mohammed, the company’s manager of corporate communications, said they hoped to fully vaccinate 7,000 people in this initiative.
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