Tag Archive for 'Raffique Shah'

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No scruples, no consciences

By Raffique Shah
November 9, 2017

Raffique ShahTwo Thursdays ago, at around 11 a.m., one of my brothers was robbed at gunpoint as he pulled up at the entrance to his home off Beaucarro Road. He had returned from First Citizens Bank in Couva where he had withdrawn a few thousand dollars to pay farmers who supply him with hot peppers. Three young men, one armed with a gun, rushed him and threatened to kill him. They searched his pockets, stole the cash, his wallet (with vital documents) and phone. After seizing his keys from his car and telling him to run for his life, they bolted to a car parked nearby and made good their escape.
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Fall of giants—but there is hope

By Raffique Shah
November 3, 2017

Raffique ShahA friend of mine, a Queen’s Royal College alumnus, no less, and an Afro-Trini, which is relevant only because of the theme of the discussion we had, having scanned the list of the 389 national scholarship winners, noted the demise of his alma mater in academic performance (and in sports, I should have reminded him), and more generally, the seismic shift in scholastic achievements from geographical, race and gender perspectives.
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Let casino workers plant peas in Cumuto

By Raffique Shah
October 26, 2017

Raffique ShahIt says so much about this country, about the national psyche, when, in the wake of a budget that will impact the cost of living almost across the board, reducing people’s purchasing power, the most vociferous protests are coming from gambling establishments that add nothing productive to the economy, but enrich a handful of casino owners, pauperise thousands of families, reduce many female gamblers to prostitutes, and provide the biggest avenue for laundering the ill-gotten gains of criminal enterprises, in particular money from the illicit drugs and firearms trades.
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Considering a new commissioner

By Raffique Shah
October 19, 2017

Raffique ShahThe last hope we have for reining in runaway crime in this country lies with a leader yet unknown, the man or woman who will be recommended by the Police Service Commission to be named Commissioner of Police, subject to approval by Parliament. In fact, since crime affects so many aspects of citizens’ daily lives as well as the country’s economy, and because the Police Service is, or ought to be, the spearhead of any assault on crime, the new commissioner will carry on his shoulders a burden bigger than Government’s, and greater expectations than any other office-holder in the State-apparatus—the President, the Prime Minister or the Chief Justice.
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Every Trini wants to go to heaven

By Raffique Shah
October 11, 2017

Raffique ShahAs I digested details of Government’s 2017-2018 Budget and monitored the furore that followed its presentation, I kept hearing “in mih head”, somewhat like calypsonian Shadow and his “Bassman from hell”, the lyrics of a song that was popular about ten years ago, “Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die (to get there).”
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A happy wonderer

By Raffique Shah
October 04, 2017

Raffique ShahWhen you have lived as long as I have, and for most of your adult life you have had an interest in politics and affairs of state to the extent that you actually pay attention the annual Budget presentation by the Minister of Finance, you will have learnt that you waste valuable time listening to a mostly boring speech that contains little or nothing that is dramatic or surprising, and you’d be better off doing something more interesting (reading a good book, in my case), and await the summary of its salient points as captured by journalists who are paid to do such scavenging, or, if you have the stamina, listen to analysts who more or less say the same things year after year.
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Public transportation a priority

By Raffique Shah
September 27, 2017

Raffique ShahI continue to focus on issues pertinent to the economy, to chastise the Keith Rowley-led administration for using the slump in the energy sector, hence plummeting government revenues, to moan and complain and blame for their inactivity, rather than being bold and innovative, grabbing opportunities that require little by way of capital investments, but which might yield rich returns.
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Grab Gulf coast opportunities

By Raffique Shah
September 20, 2017

Raffique ShahThe suggestion I made last week to phase out the Port of Port of Spain (PPOS) as a cargo port and expand the Port of Point Lisas (PPL) to become the main such facility in the country, generated much interest and discussion. That, plus the fact that the Minister of Finance will unveil the fiscal 2018 Budget in a few weeks, prompted me to return to the issue of rationalisation of the nation’s ports, and in the context of diversification of the economy, to marine services as having immense potential as a key earner of foreign exchange.
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Beyond the ferries fiasco

By Raffique Shah
September 14, 2017

Raffique ShahThe sittings of the Joint Select Committee of Parliament that is probing the procurement process of two ferries, maybe three, were broadcast live on television and are said to have displaced the leading “soaps” in popularity among television and radio audiences. Predictably, they generated juicy scandals that implicated politicians and corporate and professional hustlers who feast on the multi-million-dollar, taxpayer-subsidised Port of Port of Spain (PPOS).
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Roodal riding Anand’s misfortunes

By Raffique Shah
September 07, 2017

Raffique ShahNo one has challenged Opposition Member of Parliament Roodal Moonilal’s assertion that the arrest and indictment of former Attorney General Anand Ramlogan last week was a “distraction by the PNM”. Moonilal is reported to have said: “…This is the modus operandi of the PNM, whether it is Basdeo Panday, Vijay Naraynsingh, Sat Sharma…to harass, to intimidate, to oppress and suppress independent voices against the PNM and their government…”
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