Daily Brief - Monday 3rd May, 2021

NEWS

241 new cases, 3 more covid19 deaths

Three more covid19-related deaths have been reported along with 241 new infections according to the Ministry of Health's covid19 update on Sunday. A release issued from the ministry confirmed that the death toll reached 174 as of Sunday. The new cases brought the total number of active positive cases to 2,506. Four deaths were reported last Friday, while two deaths were reported on Thursday and another two reported on Wednesday. Read more here

Griffith: We need public’s help in securing borders

Police Commissioner Gary Griffith yesterday called on citizens to use their phones to record any breaches of the country’s borders. He was speaking at a news conference hosted by the Ministry of National Security in Port-of-Spain. “There is no such thing as the perfect crime. When these boats come in, we as citizens love to pull out our phones and take photographs. How often have we seen a photograph of a vessel and you get the name of the vessel?” he asked. Read more here

 

POLITICS

Hinds to police, military heads: Tackle rogue elements

In his first press conference as National Security Minister, Fitzgerald Hinds acknowledged there were kinks in the armour of the national security apparatus as he called on security heads to deal with rogue elements who can undermine the hard work being done to secure this country. Speaking from his ministry in Port of Spain on Sunday, as he was flanked by Police Commissioner Gary Griffith and Chief of Defence Staff Air Vice Marshal Darryl Daniel, Hinds also called on members of the protective services to "step up your game," just as "your leaders have," adding that more can be done. Read more here

Trade Ministry tells businesses measures are to protect all

The Ministry of Trade has issued a statement telling the business community that the public health measures that we implemented last Friday under a new health ordinance, were done to “preserve the health and safety of their customer base, employees and by extension citizens of Trinidad and Tobago”. The statement was in response to comments from the various business associations to the government’s recent decision to limit the operations of certain businesses in an attempt to stem rapidly rising COVID-19 infections. Among the new measures implemented last week, malls, restaurants, bars, cinemas, casinos, beauty parlours, gyms and fitness centres were closed. Read more here

 

BUSINESS

6 oil executives granted house arrest

Six American oil executives jailed in Venezuela more than three years ago on corruption charges were granted house arrest on Friday in a gesture of goodwill toward the Biden administration as it reviews its policy toward the politically turbulent South American country. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

$263.1 million spent to repair Harbour Bridge in 2020 

Aside from its annual maintenance budget, the Demerara Harbour Bridge Corporation (DHBC) expends hundreds of millions of dollars each year to repair damage caused by vehicular and marine activity. In 2020, that sum stood at a whopping $263,163,644. In 2019, $104,157,912 was spent on doing repairs. Earlier in 2018, the cost of repairing the bridge was $367,231,456; in 2019, the cost of executing repairs was pegged at $190,034,756. This means that within the last four years, the DHBC has spent exactly $924,587,768 on repairing damage done to the bridge. In cases where an errant party can be clearly detected, those persons are liable to fund the requisite repairs to the age-old structure. According to statistics provided by the DHBC, some 75 per cent of marine accidents have been compensated for, while 95 per cent of those responsible for vehicular accidents have financed the repairs. Read more here

Terror at sea

Clive Campbell, captain of the 18-foot ill-fated boat the Kahder, which set out on a spearfishing expedition in which Donovan Haywood returned to land without an arm, described Saturday’s battle with a seven-foot shark as a harrowing nightmare. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

The Covid-19 hospital in India so bad patients want to get out

For three days, Goldi Patel, 25, went from hospital to hospital in New Delhi's oppressive summer heat, frantically trying to find one that would keep her husband breathing. Four hospitals turned away Patel, who is seven months pregnant with the couple's first child, before she finally found one that would take him. But the level of care at Sardar Patel Covid Care Centre and Hospital, a makeshift pandemic facility on the outskirts of the capital, is so lacking that her husband is begging to leave. Around Sadanand Patel, 30, people are dying. He has barely any contact with doctors, and limited medicine. With 80% of his lungs already infected, he's terrified of what happens if his condition gets worse. Read more here

India elections: Modi party defeated in West Bengal battleground

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's party has failed to win a key state in elections held amid record Covid-19 deaths and cases. The BJP targeted West Bengal heavily during campaigning but the state was comfortably held by the incumbent, Mamata Banerjee, a fierce Modi critic. Her win came as a surprise to political observers, who noted how much time and money the BJP invested in the state. Mr Modi was even accused of focusing on polls rather than the pandemic. Despite the defeat, the BJP won nearly 80 seats to become the main opposition party. In the 2016 vote, Narendra Modi's party won just three seats there. Elections also went ahead in Assam, Tamil Nadu and Kerala states as well as the territory of Pondicherry (Puducherry). The BJP held power in the north-eastern state of Assam but failed to make major gains elsewhere. Read more here

3rd May 2021

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