Daily Brief - Friday 12th January, 2018

TTMA IN THE NEWS

‘Let’s learn from our mistakes’

President of the Trinidad and Tobago Manufacturers' Association Christopher Alcazar says he is not surprised by the resignation of Dr Terrence Farrell as chairman of the Economic Development Advisory Board (EDAB). Read more here

 

NEWS

TT Chamber backs Paula

Thet TT Chamber of Industry and Commerce has welcomed the Government and Opposition’s co-signing of the nomination paper of retired Justice Paula Mae Weekes as President. In a brief comment, Chamber CEO Gabriel Faria said, “All the feedback from our members has been positive and we look forward to her nomination.” A total of 14 elected MPs – ten Government and four Opposition — supported Weekes’ nomination in accordance with Section 30 of the Constitution. Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar were among the MPs who signed the paper yesterday. Read more here

A passionate patriot, respected academic

The former president Professor George Maxwell Richards is being described as “a talented professional, a vibrant and respected academic, a passionate patriot, a dedicated and committed family man, and very dear friend.” The latest tribute comes from Professor and chairman of the Board of Directors of the University of Trinidad and Tobago Ken Julien. Describing it as “difficult to encapsulate the impact of a statesman who stood tall among his peers and countrymen–literally and figuratively–in just a few words,” Julien said the late President “embodied the ideals of excellence, dedication and compassion.” Read more here

Bullet between the eyes: Killing in Cunupia

A Cunupia man was gunned down near his home shortly before midnight on Thursday. Sheldon Springer, aka 'Shylo', 41, was found with multiple gunshot wounds in bushes near his home. At around 11.30 p.m. Springer's wife heard explosions outside their home at Samaroo Trace, Welcome Road. She saw Springer's vehicle, a blue Nissan Almera, parked nearby. She contacted police and officers found Springer's body in the bushes. The body bore a gunshot wound to the forehead, which appeared to have been shot at close range, as well as other injuries. Read more here

  

POLITICS

Kamla tells Rowley: "Man up"

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar yesterday called on Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley to man up to his responsibilities as Prime Minister and stop the blame game. She made this call in response to Rowley’s condemnation of the Opposition’s refusal to support anti-crime legislation in Parliament. The Prime Minister made these comments as he condemned the murders of 14-year- old schoolboy Joshua Andrews and taxi driver Devon Fernandez. In a statement, Persad-Bissessar said Rowley’s comments will not bring any comfort and security to terrified citizens. “You were ‘red and ready’ and wanted to be in charge and now, you cannot lead,” she charged. Read more here

Govt agrees to meet Opposition on legislation

The Government yesterday agreed to meet with Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar on two critical pieces of legislation— the failed Anti-Gang Bill and the Anti-Terrorism Bill to fight the criminal elements who have been creating mayhem and havoc in the country. In a January 10 letter to Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, Persad- Bissessar stated that based on the country’s 494 murders for 2017, with another 23 killings in the last 10 days, she proposed that the Government and Opposition “meet forthwith with a view of agreeing to a bi-partisan legislative approach in the fight against crime and the criminal element.” Read more here

 

BUSINESS

HSF now US $5.7B

The total net asset value of the Heritage and Stabilisation Fund (HSF) as at the end of September 2017 stands at US $5,762.5 million compared with US $5,619.3 million at the end of the previous quarter. In its Quarterly Investment Report for July to September 2017 released by the Ministry of Finance on Wednesday, the investment portfolio was valued at US $5,762.3 million, while the remaining portion valued at approximately US $0.2 million, was held in cash to meet the day-to-day expenses that arise from the management of the Fund. Read more here

Trouble at La Brea plant construction site

Protest action outside the Caribbean Gas Chemical Limited (CGCL) Mitsubishi Plant in La Brea on Wednesday, was taken by a small number of misguided individuals who are not supported by the majority of workers, says the La Brea Member of Parliament Nicole Olivierre. Olivierre said it was unfortunate the workers took to protesting for higher wages given the present economic conditions. The Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries also reminded the workers that frequent industrial action is what bpTT cited last year as one of the reasons for not fabricating the Angelin offshore platform in La Brea. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

No Hatchet To Bury’ - Security Minister And Police Commissioner In Public Show Of Unity

Police Commissioner George Quallo and Minister of National Security Robert Montague shared smiles, handshakes, and even a short embrace yesterday as they sought to dispel claims that their relationship had broken down. Following a meeting at the Ministry of National Security on Monday, reports surfaced that Montague had lost confidence in the commissioner and suggested that it was time for him to go. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

'Shame on Trump!' World reacts to Trump's 'shithole countries' remarks

US President Donald Trump's complaints about immigrants coming to the US from "shithole countries" have prompted condemnation from around the world. In the United States, Democratic and Republican lawmakers criticized Trump's comments as "divisive" and "unacceptable," while Haiti, one of the countries explicitly named by Trump, summoned the top US diplomat there to discuss the President's remarks. Trump's comments, made at a closed-door White House meeting, were a reaction to a plan to cut the number of people entering the US through its visa lottery program. According to CNN sources, lawmakers proposed reducing the number by half, with the rest going to underrepresented countries in Africa and nations with Temporary Protected Status (TPS). Read more here

Germany coalition talks: Merkel welcomes breakthrough

German politicians have achieved a breakthrough in talks aimed at forming a new coalition government. A blueprint for formal negotiations was agreed between Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) and their former coalition partners, the Social Democrats (SPD). Politicians stayed up all night to discuss the 28-page document, with the talks lasting more than 24 hours. But they managed to reach agreement on key sticking points such as migration. They plan to limit asylum-seeker arrivals to about 200,000 annually. The blueprint also speaks of capping at 1,000 a month the number of migrants who will be allowed to join their family living in Germany. Read more here

12th January 2018

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