It is time to stop the decay
by Steve Alvarez
What kind of people are we evolving into? On my way to San Fernando a few days ago I noticed that the squatting shanti town west of the highway before the Claxton Bay area was growing into over one hundred shanti. I imagined that within these shacks without running water, electricity, toilet facilities and proper roads and sidewalks are human beings, families with little children who must grow up in these unplanned communities.
Sometime later when a “vhaps” hit someone in government there is the possibility that bulldozers will seek to destroy the homes much to the outcry of a beleaguered Nation or politicians may use the opportunity to score political points by offering letters of comfort to the law breakers. Who is looking out for our children? Who is looking out for our Nation? When did we emerge as this selfish, heartless, narcissistic, arrogant people unmoved by the reality that we are rapidly rushing towards relegation to 4th or 5th world status?
We look at countries like Venezuela with all its oil reserves and wonder how they can be without basics services and consumables like toilet paper while we bury our heads in the sand and pretend that we are so much better. We cannot or ought not sit by and allow squatting to continue. Continue reading
Trinidad anti-corruption activist Afra Raymond
Submitted by BFP reader Yummie Bear
Oh sure… the f**king Trini parliamentarians are pretending to have a major inquiry into the administration and operations of the Telecommunications Services of Trinidad and Tobago.
What can they do to limit the debate, disenfranchise citizens and make sure that informed persons are unable to present a proper submission to the committee? Easy… give only ten days notice to the deadline for submissions!
F**cking politicians. F**king corrupt b**tards!
Read Afra Raymond’s new column. He doesn’t call ’em like I do – he’s a lot more polite, but he’d probably like to use the words that I do.
Our old friend Afra Raymond explores the dangers of Government-to-Government arrangements. Once again, those politician piggies at the trough will do anything they can to sideline the tendering process and turn public funds into personal profits.
How many Barbados politicians have foreign bank accounts in Canada, the USA, Switzerland or some private bank somewhere? We don’t know because Barbados has no integrity legislation and no requirement to disclose assets, and no conflict of interest rules.
Take it away, Afra…
The current Government to Government (G2G) arrangements are a direct threat to our country’s fundamental interests.
The key element of the G2G arrangement is that a larger, more advanced, country will assist a smaller, less-advanced country by building or operating complex facilities which are beyond the reach of the smaller state.
One of the features the G2G arrangements have in common with the other large-scale projects is the high degree of secrecy with which the proposals are developed. That secrecy raises doubts as to whether proper Needs Assessments are undertaken and as to the degree to which the views of citizens and stakeholders are sought, far less considered. The fundamental issue as to the necessity for these projects is thus routinely sidelined, which is inimical to the public interest.
The main criticisms of the G2G arrangements are –
- Sidelining of the elementary Tendering Process – the procurement process is effectively…
View original post 1,052 more words
Guarding the Guards
by Afra Raymond
Our country continues its perpetual grappling with the question of conduct in public office, but at this time we are faced with particular threats and opportunities in respect of the Public Interest.
Before getting to the present particulars, some critical facts and concepts must be stated. Trinidad & Tobago is a leading nation in the Caribbean region, so progress made here will be to the wider benefit of the region. That said, the particular shape of our economy is such that the State is easily the dominant player in the country’s commercial affairs. Given that reality, the question of illegal or improper conduct by the State and its Agencies, goes far beyond principled assertions. The State must be exemplary in its conduct, not just because that is a principled position, but because its regular misconduct and illegality will continue to distort the behaviour of non-State players.
The size and wealth of the State makes its control and oversight a continuing and seemingly-insurmountable task. Like the old proverb – “Where does an Elephant sit? Wherever it wants to…” It is essential that the State be subject to ongoing and timely oversight, so as to preserve the society’s stability and progressive development.
The State’s power emanates from its unique legal powers and the fact that it has more money than any other element of the society.
These two streams of power work together in a special relationship to which we must be most alert. We rely on the State to seek our collective interests, so we have a special duty to be most vigilant as to its operations.
That is the background against which the current threats and challenges must be viewed…
Read the full article at Afra Raymond’s blog.
AND: Red flags for corruption waving strongly on the Beetham Water Recycling Project (PDF)
How did the Republic Bank let a mortgage under these circumstances?
Editor’s note: We received a copy of this email from an unverified person. Take everything with some salt, folks – but let’s have a look…
I am writing to you in hopes that you can launch an investigation regarding the fraudulent mortgages and deeds that are registered in your data base.
The first is a deed of ascent, executed on 26Apr2006, by Carolyn Joefield with a deed # de200601162018. It was verified on 05Aug 2010.
The second is a deed of conveyance executed on 24Jul2007, by Dexter James with a deed # de200703243051. It was verified on 11Jan2008.
The last one is deed of conveyance executed 30Jan2009, by Evered Edwards with a deed # de200900680520. Unfortunately, I do not have the date that this was verified for you.
“It is my belief that the following institutions willingly and knowingly used fictitious property descriptions and deeds of ascent and conveyance to acquire loans and steal property, my property included.”
It seems the 3 deeds mentioned above form part of an invisible estate that does not exist in reality, only on paper. My question to the Registrar is, how did a Nyron Josefield, not Joefield, acquire a mortgage with Republic Bank using deed # 200601152018 on 19Oct2006? The records clearly show that the deed that was used was only verified on 05Aug2010. Continue reading
Special to BFP by Phillip Alexander
Following on the almost billion dollar drug bust found a few years ago in the hull of a yacht bound for Spain outfitted in T&T, the six hundred million dollars worth of cocaine intercepted at Monos down the islands for which a handful of small fries are spending life in prison, and the soft drink that killed a foreign national ‘accidentally’ in the branded bottle of a Company now in the international spotlight once again as another of its brands are found to contain seven hundred and thirty pounds of narcotics, I turn my attention to the drug trade in Trinidad & Tobago.
At a local car dealership in San Juan a shipping container was opened and millions of dollars worth of drugs literally fell out onto the floor. A container full of chicken was opened on the port and found to contain again millions of dollars worth of drugs for which no one has been arrested, and, on the heels of both of those discoveries I ask, why has it not become mandatory that all shipping containers be unstuffed on the port?
A surgeon in east Trinidad has removed drugs from the stomach of a drug mule without reporting the matter to the police, and from what can be gleaned from the sanitized media stories, both surgeon and mule are still free to continue plying their trade. What is to become of this? Continue reading
Afra Raymond chats on the show ’Forward Thinkers‘ with David Walker on 104.7FM, dealing with the CL Financial bailout and my lawsuit against the Minister of Finance to get at the detailed information as to how the $24B in Public Money was spent. 24 October 2013. Audio courtesy More 104.7 FM. Listen here.
Programme Date: Thursday 24th October 2013
Programme Length: 0:45:41