Daily Brief - Monday 18th September, 2017

NEWS

TT to feel effects of Maria

Tropical Storm Maria was expected to be upgraded to a hurricane by 5 pm yesterday (Sunday). She follows in the wake of Irma, Jose and Lee, who has been downgraded to a tropical depression and poses no immediate danger. According to the Trinidad and Tobago Metorological Office, Maria was moving west-north west at 24 kilometres per hour. Meteorologist Anton Wiltshire said Dominica was under a hurricane warning rather than a hurricane watch while St Lucia was under a tropical storm warning. Read more here

Cop: I’m an experienced midwife

A Woman Police Constable attached to the Valencia Police Post went into action yesterday morning and successfully delivered a baby girl at the mother’s Valencia home. Both mother and baby were reported to be in good health and are now warded at the Maternity Ward at the Sangre Grande Hospital. It was around 7.37 am yesterday that 10-year-old boy Kai Pierre ran to the Valencia Police Post to alert officers that his pregnant relative had been in severe pain and needed immediate help. Read more here

Crackdown

Sweeping changes have been made at State-owned Petrotrin to guard against future “fake oil” scandals and its president has assured that the company will be taking action to recover any money that was overpaid to A&V Oil and Gas Drilling and Workover. Read more here

 

POLITICS

Wholly unacceptable

The reported physical and abusive attack on media personnel is “wholly unacceptable and should not be initiated or encouraged by any person, under any circumstances”, Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley has said. Rowley’s position was communicated via email at 2.08 pm yesterday. Earlier yesterday morning, the Opposition UNC castigated the Prime Minister and National Security Minister for not condemning the attack on journalists and on freedom of the press. Read more here

Govt, Opposition hit attacks on media

Both the Government and the Opposition yesterday condemned attacks on members of the media in the execution of their duties. Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley stated that the reported physical and abusive attack on media personnel is wholly unacceptable and should not be initiated or encouraged by any person, under any circumstances. Read more here

 

BUSINESS

TSTT claims competitive advantage with iPhone X

One telecommunications provider in T&T is predicting that it would have a competitive advantage over other providers when the Apple iPhone X (pronounced "ten") is introduced to the T&T market for Christmas 2017. Chevon Wilson, VP, Mobile Services at TSTT said bmobile is the only provider in T&T that is certified by Apple to provide LTE (Long-term Evolution) technology on iPhone devices. It means that in order for the consumer to "unleash the power of the iPhone X, customers would need to be on our (TSTT's) LTE network or else the phone would be vastly under-utilised" Wilson said. Read more here

Pre-budget review: Expenditure constant, fiscal gap widens

As we conclude our series leading up to the Trinidad and Tobago budget for FY2017/2018, we turn to the expenditure side of the equation, and consider the possible options available to the Government to address what is likely to be a deficit budget. Expenditure steady  Based on the most recent data from the Central Bank of Trinidad & Tobago (CBTT), Government Expenditure totalled $32.2b for the period October 2016 to May 2017. This represents a marginal increase of 1.8 per cent compared to the same period in 2015/2016, in which expenditure totalled $31.8b. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

Fixed Dates For By-Elections - Phillips Wants To Set Deadline For Local Polls

President of the People's National Party (PNP), Dr Peter Phillips, is vowing that a future Government led by his party would change the present law to fix the date, within a specific time, for the holding of by-elections to fill vacancies in Parliament. According to Phillips, if this is done, "no prime minister will be able to play games with the calling of by-elections". Addressing the party faithful yesterday during the PNP's 79th annual conference at the National Arena, Phillips suggested that Prime Minister Andrew Holness has reneged on a commitment to name a date for by-elections in St Andrew. "The window for these assurances has already passed and no date has been announced," he added. Read more here

Hurricane Maria to become major storm near Caribbean islands

Maria is expected to become a dangerous major hurricane as it nears the Leeward Islands in the Caribbean. The category one hurricane will rapidly strengthen over the next 48 hours and will hit the islands late on Monday, says the US National Hurricane Center. It is moving roughly along the same path as Irma, the hurricane that devastated the region this month. Hurricane warnings have been issued for Guadeloupe, Dominica, St Kitts and Nevis, Montserrat and Martinique. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

Georgia student Scout Schultz shot dead by Atlanta police

Police in the US state of Georgia have shot and killed an LGBT student activist, leading to an independent investigation. Police encountered Scout Schultz at a campus in Atlanta after a call about "a person with a knife and a gun" late on Saturday, officials say. Footage has emerged apparently showing Schultz, 21, refusing to obey several police commands to drop a knife. Schultz's mother said police should not have used lethal force. Read more here

Cycle of selflessness: How Florida Keys survived Irma's darkest days

In the darkest days after the storm, when the basic comforts many take for granted -- power, water, toilets, contact with the outside world -- were wiped out by Hurricane Irma, the Conch Republic took care of its own. With roads and airports wrecked and waters near the shoreline littered with dangerous debris, rescuers and emergency officials struggled to reach the Middle and Lower Keys by land, sea or air. Residents who stayed found themselves with no means of communication. Amid those conditions, neighbors in the Florida Keys put their own interests aside to help each other -- and one act of altruism fed into the next. Read more here

18th September 2017

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