Tag Archives: Raffique Shah

Election an illusion of power

By Raffique Shah
July 01, 2020

Raffique ShahIt’s difficult to get a good grasp of what’s happening on the ground regarding the general election, which will be held in the next three months. It seems that Covid-19, the virus that has impacted the world like nothing else in history, and fundamentally changed the way we live to the extent that we have coined virtually a new lexicon to comprehend its effects, said virus has relegated the election to a side-show, almost a non-event.
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Of Symbols and Substance

By Raffique Shah
June 23, 2020

Raffique ShahChristopher Columbus had his comeuppance coming for a long, long time. Five hundred years, to be more specific. Here was an Italian adventurer, brigand and explorer who persuaded Queen Isabella of Spain to invest in an expedition he had been obsessed with—sailing into the unknown West and finding the mythical city of gold, El Dorado, and claiming it, and other lands, on behalf of the monarch.
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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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The issues that matter most

By Raffique Shah
June 09, 2020

Raffique ShahAmerica was set to implode sometime soon when four police officers, going about a patrol in Minneapolis, did what many of their colleagues routinely do—subdue a black suspect with excessive force and recklessness, and quite possibly oozing rabid racism. Within minutes, George Floyd, who moaned “I can’t breathe” several times as one police officer knelt on his neck, was dead.

A courageous 16-year-old girl video-taped and broadcast the death live on the Internet, and almost instantly, millions of people were alerted to the atrocity. In Minneapolis, demonstrations against police brutality and racism erupted. Soon, protests against the police and other state institutions spread across America. People who had just emerged from two months of home confinement because of the deadly CORVID-19 pandemic, were outraged.
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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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Hypocrites with selective amnesia

By Raffique Shah
May 19, 2020

Raffique ShahSo what if Trinidad and Tobago sells a shipment of gasoline to Venezuela? Why must we citizens be concerned with or ashamed of such sale, once we are paid fairly and promptly? Why do members of the government employ fusillades of terminological inexactitudes in a bid to evade telling the truth about the transaction, a truth that might free their consciences? Why are leading members of the opposition United National Congress so consumed by the lust for power, they will stoop to any level, even kneel behind the uncertified lunatic in the Oval Office, just to sip the elixir of office?
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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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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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Black Power and Indians

Indian Officer Leads
African Soldiers in Black Power Revolt
“Creolised” Indians Sowed Seeds for Birth of ULF

By Raffique Shah
June 09, 2000 – trinicenter.com

Raffique ShahIN 1970, I was the only Indian officer in the Trinidad and Tobago Regiment. I was also the youngest officer, having graduated from Sandhurst in July 1966, some four months after I had turned 20. When I returned from England in January 1967 to take up duties as a platoon commander, it was the first time I got to know the Regiment (as it was, and still is, commonly referred to), since I was sent to Sandhurst in 1964 without any prior training locally. At the time, fewer than five per cent of soldiers were Indians, a ratio that may still exist, although I suspect the numbers will have moved up slightly.
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