Minister Suruj Rambachan says he is not a racist

A strong dismissal from local government and new Works and Infrastructure Minister Dr. Suruj Rambachan that he is racist. The minister was on the Early Morning Show today where he responded to claims made by his former cabinet colleague last week.

Mrs. Nandini Rambachan and Minister of Works Dr. Surujrattan Rambachan
Mrs. Nandini Rambachan and Dr. Surujrattan Rambachan

Minister Dr. Suruj Rambachan offered this rational as proof that he is not a racist:

“My house keeper is of African origin and she has been in my house for 22 years. 22 years. 22 years she’s been in my house, brought up my children, cooks my meals every evening on the instructions of my wife.”

33 thoughts on “Minister Suruj Rambachan says he is not a racist”

  1. Hahaha, the PNM is now the guardian and defender of race? No, what Rowley wants is to maintain PNM status quo in all government offices. What that mean is the PNM boys and girls given jobs there should remain and the ethnic racist PNM trend of hiring only Africans continue. If an Indian gets a government job, Roget and Rowley get diarrhea. No PNM government minister to my knowledge has ever been question about ethnic hiring even though 75 percent of government jobs was given to Africans.,Lawwd. These people have no shame.

  2. How is that for proof that he is not a racist! Maybe we should question if she wore a uniform.

  3. In the mess it’s in and sinking further every day, that Island’s big shots proclaiming their non-racism(by in fact proving their racism),is proof positive that the country will come to a sticky end. This figure of speech may be looked up in Book of Metaphors.
    Too bad.

  4. Mamoo, be careful. Your contempt for the PNM is getting the better of you, and that might not be a nice thing for you as a person.
    This claim that Suruj Rambachan is a racist came from “his former cabinet colleague.” Namely, Mr. Austin ‘Jack’ Warner. The fact the Mr. Warner who mixes, more that most, with Indo Trinis, made that statement, says a lot.

  5. “My house keeper is of African origin and she has been in my house for 22 years. 22 years. 22 years she’s been in my house, brought up my children, cooks my meals every evening on the instructions of my wife.”

    Take a gander at his excuse as why he should not be considered to be racist. Because he has a black woman working as a made in his house and being ordered around by his wife. I mean that kind of rational was emanating to explain away charges of racism back in the 18th century.

    Of course he is racist. The PP has a serious racist bent. This does not surprise those of us who have been tracking trends in the Caribbean Politics for decades. It is Fiji, it is Guyana, it is certain parts of East Africa, it is the Andaman Islands. Alabama, Mississippi and South Africa circa 1980 aint got nothing on these folks.

    1. I am sure the lady he hired is well paid or else she would not be there for over 20 years. Good wages and excellent working conditions can keep an employee. But in your mind Rodwell this is the 18th century. Whatever you are smokin lad u need to get off it. This is the 21st century where money knows no race…

  6. So, I guess his anti-racism is in the same category as his doctorate (bought from a degree mill: remember that one, Mamoo?)
    But, Mr. Paton, saying “Alabama, Mississippi and South Africa circa 1980 aint got nothing on these folks” is perhaps unwarranted hyperbole that risks belittling the memory of the vile crimes against humanity, the tremendous suffering, and the hundred of deaths that took place in the old South and in apartheid South Africa(I trust that you are not being deliberately disingenuous).

  7. I met Suruj in Oropuche when he ran on an ONR ticket. He did not win in Oropuche but he created quite an impression on me as a little boy. He went house to house and met the people. No politician to my recollection ever did that before. He got into an argument with my stupid neighbour but he was a brave heart even way back then in the 80s as a young man fresh out of university.

    The long and short of it is Suruj leader was Karl Hudson Phillips. A man who was blacker than Jack Warner, when Warner was a virtual unknown in TnT politics. Suruj paid his dues and therefore deserve some respect instead of being tagged a racist. By that upstart Warner.

  8. The point, my good gentleman, is that there are no minimal and maximum degrees in connection with the racist mindset. There are limits to their capabilities, of course, but this does not mitigate in favor of lessening the severity of the “crime” so to speak. The comparison between the Suruj’s et al of T&T, and the folks in Mississippi and Aalabama and apartheid South Africa, if I can be allowed a canine analogy, can be likened unto a rabid dog being held in check by a chain or fenced yard, and one that is allowed to or able to run free and aggress. The extremties to which the Suruj’s can convert their prejudice into policies are limited by circumstances that did not obtain in the environment in which their symbiotic kin operated.

    Suruj’s “I have a black maid” retort represent one of the text book response of every racist when they are exposed. Its most frequently used version is “I have a black friend”. Further, the fact that he is dark skinned has nothing to do with it. Those flinging out this red herring do not consider this pigment characterstic important when they are accusing black people of being racist. Now all of a sudden the pigment they ignore in their Brahminian evolutions and assumptions, is being trotted out to hide what is so poignantly obvious. I wish they would, give it a rest because we aint buying that.

    The fact of the matter is that although the vast majority of Indentured Migrants brought to the Caribbean belonged to persecuted castes in the motherland, when they landed here and observed that there were Africans with appearances that they characterized with the lowest in the order of human value in the land of their birth, the reaction of a significant segment was no different than that of the lighter skinned Indians to them back in India. That set the stage for the relationship between Africans and Indians. It was what was expected by the planter class, and they had to have patted themselves on the back and guffawed heartily over their ability to predict the behaviour of a partisular ethnic group.

    From that time on to today, ask the yound indian child what they thought of the black man and the response is no different than if the question was asked of the young white child in South Africa under Apartheid. During the apartheid era CNN and other News organizations asked white 3rd graders in South Africa what they wanted Law Enforcement to do in the face of the political protests against Apartheid. Their response was “kill the black youth”. In 2002-2003, the BBC asked similar questions of young Indians in Guyana, and they referred to African Guyanese as “black dogs”.

    There is a supremacist trent to the mindsets that conceive or are indoctrinated into this perspective, and you can see its indications in this blog whenever there is a discussion on crime or social issues. If the leader of the country is Indian and there is there is an Indian foundation to the political regime, the use of force upon black people is applauded and rationalized. This never fails in its manifestations, regardless of how far they are removed geographically from the scene, or many tertiary degrees of education they obtain.

    Thou mayest attempt to conceal thy evil mind by cunning art, but constant vigilance and scrutiny of your comments sits as a silent witness to thine deeds. This exposure will disturb thy rest, thye peace undo, because it is a Judge, jury, and an excutioner too

    1. The traditional caste relationship among the East Indians has lost most of its religious Sanction and the Brahmin, who is not a religious leader, is not given any special deference. Remember that only 4 to 5 percent of Indians are Brahmins. Money, position and education are the new cultural values which the Trini East Indian now uses for social ranking within the ethnic group. Marriage does not often take place between the East Indian and other groups, not so much on account of that group’s status but because of the persistence of marriage patterns from India. The marriage patterns of this group are changing with acculturation within the Trinidad context and the increasing incidence of intermarriage is reflected in the marriage statistics of T&T.

      1. I have no problem with that except people like you are the first to call black people lazy, illiterate, PNM, uneducated and all the negatives that you can muster. We are experiencing your brilliance right now in the form of your search for justice. AG who spends more three times any other previous AGs have spent “in fighting crimes” (wink eye), CAL – where they inherited $150M cash flow and it is now close to 2billion in debt, ADB – where a patched up building is being rented for $200,000.00 per month (not even passed by Town & Country, the works ministry where a two billion hi-way price tag has suddenly increased to $7b. Yeah TMan you dont know how much your profile fills my expressed view of people of your ilk. Money at any cost. It does not matter how you earn it. As long as you get rich enough so you can pass it on to “the next generation.
        People are not fooled by the run-away spending trying to bring those corrupt officials from the PNM regime. All we need to do is look at those who get the legal work “to take those corrupted PNM to jail” – yes how many times have we heard that? And I’m sure TMan you are soooooooo convinced of this. The only problem is that you guys never had the evidence. But plenty of PR. And this is where I have problems with the so called black elite. They remain quiet while people like you go around calling us lazy, stupid and untalented. You use your ill-gained wealth to boast about your intelligence and wealth. And through all this the black elite remain quiet and long to knock glass with “The Talk of Trinidad” elites.

        1. Do you know that middle class Blacks in T&T are also a thriving , prosperous group dedicated to uplifting the next generation?
          Do you know that the acquisition of wealth and the building up of the next generation can both be accomplished honestly?
          Do you know that it is only a few “tenderpreneurs” in T&T who are responsible for the corruption and Blacks are also part of that group?

    1. The fact of the matter is that although the vast majority of Indentured Migrants brought to the Caribbean belonged to persecuted castes in the motherland, when they landed here and observed that there were Africans with appearances that they characterized with the lowest in the order of human value in the land of their birth, the reaction of a significant segment was no different than that of the lighter skinned Indians to them back in India. That set the stage for the relationship between Africans and Indians. It was what was expected by the planter class, and they had to have patted themselves on the back”, well said Rodwell. It is too bad that many of our fellow non-indians do not understand this innate difference in the way we see and internalize concepts. Every I go and notice the immigrants from the Indian sub continent their behaviour is the same. They settle in a piece of real estate and add members of their tribe to it until… eventually it becomes a “an Indian community”. There is nothing wrong with this in particular but it lends one to think that they almost do not act as loners but in force as a group of people belonging to the same race. Thats why as long as KPB is Prime MInister we will never have a national government. Two of the first acts of their intentions were expressed by KPB and the then PSC chairman. In both cases the expressed point of views never had anything to do with good governance, KPB’s view was to get rid of the security apparatus that existed in order to know who in her party were on the files kept by the organization, so her reaction to that was to get rid of the professionals and replace them with novices who can be directed what to do. Mr. Mohammed, as PSC chairman was aggrieved by the incident in which he was stopped and by a black police who had the audacity to question his intention to go in the direction he intended. He felt that it was beneath him to answer to this person who, in his minds belongs to a lesser caste than him. Both cases are classic acts of racism, because they represent a group’s feelings toward another. If your review KPB’s public remarks towards those whom she viewed ‘inferior’ you would find that they are replete with feelings of condemnation. Her famous remarks that “Trinidad is not an ATM” was issued to places like Jamaica, Grenada and Barbados, not Guyana. Because it is so natural to express themselves in racial context, Rambachan felt that he was saying something positive not negative about his employment of a black maid. Why did’nt say that he employed a black accountant? because in his mindset such a position should be occupied by an Indian. KPB in rooting out all members of state boards who do not look like her is saying by her actions that she CANNOT trust them because they belong to the dalits class so “we cannot have them sit with us”. Look at who is placed in the public to correct or explain the “wrongs” committed by her government, it is almost always inevitable that black people are placed to do the explaining. Conversely, it is with that expectation in mind that people like the madam lady from San Fernando, the former Mayor, do not enjoy the respect of the African population because there is a common thread of understanding that they are put there to make things smooth for the Brahmin tribe. It is for the same reason that Jack is treated so suspiciously by his own people. By doing these acts, guys like Gypsy who is a natural talent have been relegated in the performance of their profession to a lesser class. Jack is so correct in his thinking, when he asserts that KPB’s confidence in her cabal is leading her in the wrong direction that at first without thinking his observation might appear unfair until you get the replies by those sympathetic to the cabal. What emanates from them in contextual form almost always have racial overtones. A case in point, read all the responses of my dear friend Mamoo on this issue. Aloofness and insensitivity are the first things that become noticeable.

      1. “Because it is so natural to express themselves in racial context, Rambachan felt that he was saying something positive not negative about his employment of a black maid. Why did’nt say that he employed a black accountant? because in his mindset such a position should be occupied by an Indian”
        Kian would you have preferred if he did not employ a black maid? Would you have preferred this sister to be the mother of 5 children from different fathers with no income coming in? The maid is more like a member of his family after 20 years. I am sure she is well paid and only work a certain amount of hours for the week. My aunt hired an indian maid who did the chores around the house. She was a good worker and all it took was 2 hours to clean and another hour to cook, three hours per day, but she was well paid. Good money.

        1. Mamoo, I think that we are miles apart in the way we view this matter. His hiring of a black maid is neither here no there with me. His reasoning and how it effects his racial stance is whats important. I can be nice to everyone and I can ‘pretend’ to be nice to everyone. These two are the same words but the operative meanings are so different, that similarity should not come into play. Sorry my friend, if I were to entertain the idea of Rambachan’s employment of a maid it would be a waste of my time. Strom Thurmond was a super segregationist, he wanted everything good only for white people in his political stance, but when it came to his private life, he had a ‘black’ child with his black mistress. So if I were to evaluate him on his racial politics, it would be his hypocrisy that I would be talking about. The same for Professor Watson who was this renowned geneticist who, on his way to London to receive an award for his famous theories and scientific work on genetics where one of his theories were that black people are inherently inferior to white people. On reaching London, he learned that he was 20% black. Talk of race and racism is cheap. God made human beings in his own image and likeness and trying to play God in terms of how we rate another person who does not look like you in terms of inferiority and superiority is really foolish because we are all ‘good’ and ‘bad’ in challenging situations where one might prevail or fail the situation better than the next. We all have the same failings and different strengths, there is nothing in our genes that tell us that one race may live to be 120 and the other live to be ninety. In the course of our science and medical studies, there are those who venture into these matters, but who is to say who is right and who is wrong? So my friend please drop the talk of Rambachan’s maid having a job for 20 years and the money she makes etc, that is nonsense talk to me. I am more interested in his mindset than his maid set.

  9. The stupidity of this family cannot be used as the yardstick to measure Indians across the globe.
    Race relations and racial interactions in T&T are much more complex than the caste characterization which you present.
    Interaction between Africans and Indians in T&T is unique. We cannot apply the usual constructs to explain this symbiotic relationship.The difference in interaction between these two ethnic groups in T&T is noticeable to any visitor to India, Fiji, Guyana and South africa.

  10. I was trying to lay low on this race talk, but…
    I have always maintained a special “admiration” for people who can put their heads on a block for a politician.
    Mamoo stated twice, “I am sure she is well paid and only work a certain amount of hours a week (for 20 years).” So Mamoo if you are so sure (twice), why don’t you tell us what this maid is paid and how may hours she works? And while you are it, Sir, please tell us about her National Insurance Contributions and/or any other benefits that she is receiving. She should be well placed, after all 20 years is a long time.

  11. One of the major problems which I am detecting here on this Blog is the tendency for USA Trinis (and I am speculating here) like Kian and Rodwell to apply American constructs and American rationale to explain race and politics in T&T.
    Race and politics in T&T are much more complex, unclear and ambiguous than the US senario.
    Also, on closer examination, these gentlemen seem to be extracting their information from overseas from the three daily newspapers published in T&T. Very often the situation here is quite different and changing on an hourly basis.
    They also seem to be sending signals that their long term experiences in the US have severely affected their attitudes on race and politics. Their constant refusal to accept the realities today in T&T indicate that they belong to an era in the history of T&T which they are reluctant to surrender.
    They also seem to be believers in the divine right of the PNM and the African population to govern T&T. They are fully prepared to deny the reality of the Indian culture and religion in T&T.
    Kian’s frequent derogatory remarks about Hunduism, a religion to which I do not belong, shows the type of person that he is…an intolerant American, parading as a resident of T&T.

    1. Itis good to know that you hold the right to Trinidadian citizenship and I don’t, to Canadian and I don’t, to UK and I don’t. I believe in truth and will always lash out against shallow ideologies based on statistics and opinions. Yes I am as Trinidadian as you are. Because I dont sound like a Jack, Gypsy, Errol, George, Lass or Griffith does not take away from me what my father taught me. You boast of material things, you will never hear me get into that you boast of the global forward march of THE INDIAN. I believe in the humanity of man. I believe that the live that we live should never die as long as we leave behind a mark of decency and kindness and helping our fellow men NOT boasting about howmuch material things we have hoarded in our brief life on this planet. Shakespeare died more than three hundred years ago yet he is still relevant today, Mahatma Ghandy live a life of poverty and wisdom and he is still relevant today. Martin Luther King preached love and unity in the face of hate and destruction yet his work is still relevant today. Because I do not subscribe to the crap about the force of Indian and Hindu conquest of the western world does not mean that you are superior and I’m supposed to be inferior. It is true that most black Trinidad intellectuals tend to remain quiet in the face of destructive politics and racial pandering. Again my father was poor but was a man of rich intuition and fed that to his children, I am my father’s son and will never allow myself to to the ‘eat ah food’ mentality.1

      1. Very noble thoughts, my friend,but never forget that fee enterprise, wealth acquisition and sound investments are the building blocks of modern civilisation and the foundation on which successive generations will thrive in the future.Each generation must make sacrifices to enhance the chances of success of the next generation, in other words, create an environment in which the next generation will exceed the accomplishments of their forefathers.It’s a philosophy adopted by most of the successful cultures in the universe.

  12. No matter what, the issue always seems to fall back to the PNM or Rowley. Even the Kublalsingh affair was credited to Rowley and the PNM.
    Trinidad decided to vote out ‘African’ Manning and replace him with ‘Indian’ Kamla in a big way, blowing your “divine right” theory clean out of the water. Months after, when the PP Gov’t began to make missteps and the people were ranting and raving, Mr. Jack “FIFA Money” Warner claimed that they were only doing so because the PM was ‘Indian,’ as though no one knew she was Indian before. Nobody cared. It was jubilation time – our first female Prime Minister.
    Mr. Africa himself, Makandal Dagga supported her. Errol McLeod and his all ‘African’ Union, who never supported the PNM in my lifetime, supported her. ‘African’ women with their printed head wraps and dresses supported her. (Ask Cro Cro)
    It did not take long for the ugly side of Indian culture and Hinduism in Trinidad and Tobago to rear its head. That my friend is the reality. Do you think we will ever see ‘Indian’ women in saris supporting a non-Indo leader in Trinidad? I am waiting on that piece of reality.

    1. Frontsman, my friend in 2007 295,000 people voted for the PNM. In 2010, 287,000 people voted for the PNM.
      The fact is that PNM voters are consistent.

      1. “The fact is that PNM voters are consistent.” That is so true, because the PNM has a history; they have been around for over half a century. Some of our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents were member of, or voted for the PNM in the past. Ask Dagga or McLeod who their parents or grandparents voted for and I am almost certain what the answer will be. How do you translate that into a belief of some ‘divine right?’

    2. Doh study it Frontsman. A certain element on here is looking to find any excuse to tar African Trinis with the racist brush.

      Many on this blog don’t have courage to come out and say they believe they are superior to Africans, so they parade the pseudo-bogeyman of the racist African, insulting our intelligence in the process.

      I will end my contribution with what seems like a non-sequitur, stated using grammar consistent with the Trini dialect: I eh know why the straight hair have dem tie up.

    3. This contribution is literally polarizing the peaceful co-existence of the 2 peaceful majority races in this land. This is nothing more but venom seeded in the heart spilling over as a malfuctiong ink flow from a pen rather than ‘I was trying to lay low on this race talk’. Do you think we will ever see ‘Indian’ women in saris supporting a non-Indo leader in Trinidad? Check the archives of the Media in the public library and you will be surprised. That’s from Eric Williams to Manning era via JAW.

      1. Loyal Trini you are reading with one eye. The topic is about Rambachan racism. From the onset one writer attacked the PNM, when it was not the PNM who made the charge. You did not notice that venom seeded in the heart spilling over.
        I attempted to correct the writer hoping that the discussion will stay on course. The attacked turned to the African population in T&T and the belief of a divine right, all the while attempting to paint Rambachan as a Saint.
        Loyal Trini put on your glasses and come better than that.

  13. TMAn that is absolute crap. I am not presenting a political argument. Politics is not a science. Politics has no beginnings or endings. Racism does.

    Further, I would challenge everyone who peruse this blog to examine blogs frequented by Indians from Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, India, Africa, the US, and see if there is any difference between the pejoratives some use to describe black people, the context of the arguments they present to rationalize such use, and the commonality of contrast between the descriptions of Indians and the descriptions of Africans. I will further challenge anyone to check out the racist white blogs and see if there is any difference in the views they present about Africans, and that presented by some Indians.

    I will further challenge anyone to access African American or African blogs and not the absence of similar racial animus by the members. Cmon man!!

    I mean, “look I have a black maid who receives instructions from my wife” is supposed to be proof of a non racist mindset. Does the fact that black women were caring for and nursing the babies of the slave master amount as evidence of their non racial tendencies. I will put it to you that anyone who expects people to accept this as proof of their non racial predispositions is so damn racist that they expect black people to feel happy that an Indian is employing them as servants. Give me a flipping break man!!!!!

    1. Get off the drugs there Paton. People hire people all the time. Will you not work in a factory if your boss is white? I am sure the pay will be less and the work harder. Will you not work cleaning garbage if the pay is good even though your boss is Chinese? Will you not work as house maid if your boss is Indian? If the pay is good?

      Please explain what kind of job you would qualify for Paton.

  14. Guyana under siege is run by a Hindu Supremacist. During the troubles in Guyana during the 60’s both Indians and Africans were run out of villages where they were minorities. Africans were killed and run out of villages on what is the West Coast of Demerara in Guyana, Corentyne Berbice, and many other places. PPP cuban trained militias placed a bomb on a vessel named the Sun Chapman killing hundreds of black people. The home of a Portuguese Family, whose daughter was a strong member of the United Force, one of the opposition parties to the PPP government, was fire bombed resulting in the death of 90% of family members. Between 2002 and 2006, PPP engineered gangs led by Roger Khan and Rondald Gajraj, the former a twice convicted felon who became a drug baron in Guyana and a henchmen for the PPP, and the latter a sitting Minister of Home affairs, kidnapped, tortured and lynched more than 400 mostly young black men claiming that they were criminal suspects.

    The facts of this can be found in the archives of a federal court in Brooklyn where Roger Khan and his Lawyer Robert Simels were tried for attempting to assassinate witnesses in his drug trafficking trial. Witnesses at that trial provided sworn testimony that a Government Minister, the sitting Minister of Health at the time, secured phone tapping equipment from the US to enable Khan to track his potential victims. The evidence in this disclosed that Khan engineered the assassination of black social activist and journalist Ronald Waddell, and that after Waddell had been shot, Khan called the Minister of Information and instructed him to ensure that Waddell did not receive recuperative therapy at the hospital.

    These are not facts gleaned from a Hindu Supremacist website run by a Hindu supremacist, where people boast that they are proud to be racist. These are facts that can be found in the archives of that Federal Court in Brooklyn. Further, anyone can google the names Roger Khan and Robert Simels and find links to that trial.

    I have done some research on this and have discovered that the person to die from political violence in Guyana was a black man who was murdered by PPP activists during ethnic triumphalistic euphoria from a PPP first past the Pools election victory in the very early 60’s. There is also evidence that under that PPP regime, the first political torture occurred. Further, when one checks the record of Law Enforcement activity during the 28 years of PNC governance and 23 Years of PPP governance a very clear pattern emerges. While under the PNC virtually every black criminal of prominence was arrested, prosecuted and sent to prison, under the PPP Indian Criminals, including rapist, murderers and drug traffickers, family members and relatives of Ministers and others connected to the PPP who beat up people or kill them in vehicular accidents, are never prosecuted.

    The latest racist venality coming out of Guyana involve the former President Bharat Jagdeo distributing 90% of the communication spectrum to friends, relatives and members of the PPP. Every major agency in Guyana is headed by an Indian, at the expense of blacks who are far more qualified. Recent disclosure in a libel case brought by Jagdeo against Journalist Freddie Kissoon who accused him of being an ideological racist in a newspaper column, revealed that 100% of Guyana’s diplomatic missions, including those in Africa and Caribbean nations with majority black populations, were headed by Indians.

    This is a link to a scathing analysis of Guyana provided by a lecturer at the UG who happens to be Indian. Don’t allow those who seek to camoflage their racist heritage to confuse you into accepting their dirty traits. Malcolm X warned us about not being so damn stupid that we would allow ourselves to be influenced into hating those who are close to us and loving those who do not have our best interest at heart. Or words to that effect. Mamoo and TMan want you to accept an inferiority status based on their warped racist thinking, and will call you racist when you refuse to humbly genuflect and accept their superiority. They have been doing this for ages. It has become tired today.

    1. Paton, Guyana’s history is a sad one for 40 years of Guyana independence indians were excluded from governance. Many fled as much as 200, 000 to enrich foreign lands. They lost their home, land and place of birth. Thousands were raped, murdered and robbed. The brutality of that dictator burnham was such that is a miracle indians survived, elections were rigged in his favour.

      The African population was silent in those years but like a breath of fresh air they have finally found the courage to whine, complain and accuse the indian population of racism. But is it really racism or is it just indian fears of African dominance again? Jagdeo was the first president to visit buxton and implement programs of social reform. He was the first president to give money and support to single mothers. The ppp has worked hard to transform guyana. As for indians being in major positions it is not surpriding. Over time all will achieve equality…

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