Daily Brief - Monday 5th August, 2019

NEWS

Met Office warns of North/Central flooding, Northern Range landslides

The Met Office has warned of possible flooding in North and Central and landslides on the Northern Range over the next two days. The Met Office issued an adverse weather alert #1 (Yellow Level, likely and moderate severity) for the period August 5 from 5 am to August 6 ending at 2 pm. "Heavy showers or thunderstorms will occur in few areas mainly during the daytime in north and central Trinidad. Street or flash flooding will occur in these areas. There is a high possibility of landslides or landslips along the Northern Range." Read more here

The Million-Dollar Business of Crime

Close to 40 promi­nent busi­ness­men—from south, cen­tral and east Trinidad—who are linked to ma­jor drug and hu­man traf­fick­ers, gun run­ners, gang lead­ers and mur­der­ers fu­elling the mul­ti-mil­lion dol­lar crim­i­nal en­ter­prise in this coun­try, have been named in a po­lice in­tel­li­gence re­port. These busi­ness­men, who are be­ing pro­tect­ed by some mem­bers of the T&T Po­lice Ser­vice on their pay­roll, are among 100 peo­ple of in­ter­est iden­ti­fied in a con­fi­den­tial 2019 po­lice in­tel­li­gence re­port ob­tained by Guardian Me­dia. This news­pa­per has with­held the names in the re­port due to the sen­si­tiv­i­ty of the mat­ter. The re­port is the cul­mi­na­tion of months of prob­ing and sur­veil­lance by spe­cif­ic in­tel­li­gence-gath­er­ing units with­in the T&T Po­lice Ser­vice and the ex­er­cise was un­der­tak­en to “iden­ti­fy per­sons of in­ter­est who were al­leged­ly in­volved in crim­i­nal ac­tiv­i­ty us­ing the guise of le­git­i­mate busi­ness­es or have di­rec­tors in these busi­ness­es that are in­clined to crim­i­nal ac­tiv­i­ty,” as the po­lice ser­vice at­tempts to tight­en its reign on the ne­far­i­ous un­der­world ac­tiv­i­ties which have been fu­elling the spi­ralling crime lev­els in T&T. Read more here

 

POLITICS

THA official: It's a police matter

Police are investigating an altercation at Pigeon Point Heritage Park involving a Trinidadian, a THA official and his brother. The incident occurred after the Great Fete Soca Glow event last Saturday. A video circulating on social media this week showed the THA official approaching a bleeding man and slapping a coconut out of his hand. Police intervened and the THA official and the man, identified as Keino Chandler from Penal, Trinidad, who was bareback and wearing white jeans, began arguing over who was wrong. Read more here

UNC supporters in Arima protest march

Sup­port­ers of the Unit­ed Na­tion­al Con­gress (UNC) staged a protest march in Ari­ma yes­ter­day call­ing on the elec­torate to vote out the Peo­ple’s Na­tion­al Move­ment (PNM) in the next gen­er­al elec­tion. The protest was held in con­junc­tion with the One Cor­ri­dor Move­ment un­der the theme Let’s Res­cue Ari­ma. UNC’s North­east re­gion­al co­or­di­na­tor Bri­an Baig said the protest was in­tend­ed to high­light nu­mer­ous prob­lems in the con­stituen­cy. “The peo­ple of Ari­ma have said in one voice that Row­ley must go,” he said. Baig, who ap­pealed to vot­ers to sup­port Op­po­si­tion Leader Kam­la Per­sad Bisses­sar, ac­cused the PNM of tak­ing cred­it for projects which had start­ed un­der the UNC in­clud­ing the new Ari­ma Hos­pi­tal and the re­fur­bished Ari­ma Po­lice Sta­tion. Read more here

 

BUSINESS

Banks post strong results

This week, we at Bourse review the financial performance two locally domiciled banks listed on the Trinidad and Tobago Stock Exchange—Republic Financial Holdings Ltd (RFHL) and First Citizens Bank Ltd (FIRST)—for their respective nine-month periods ended June 30, 2019. RFHL’s acquisition of Cayman National Corporation and continued diversification efforts would have materialised into strong improvements in profitability. FIRST benefited from a drastic decline in Impairment Expenses, ultimately driving Net Income higher. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

Church Not Guilty - Leaders Distance Themselves As Pastor Awaits Sentencing On Sex Abuse Charges

The Kingston-based Harvest Temple Apostolic Church has vowed to press on, declaring that it has nothing to be ashamed of as its disgraced pastor awaits sentencing on sex-related charges after impregnating a 12-year-old girl. Last week, Pastor Kenneth Blake pleaded guilty to two counts of having sex with a person under 16 years old and one count of sexual touching in the Home Circuit Court. He had been denying the charges for two years, despite DNA tests revealing that there was a 99.9 per cent chance he was the father of the minor’s child. At yesterday’s first Sunday service since the guilty plea, senior church leaders insisted that the pastor’s sins would not be the congregation’s shame. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

Protesters start large blaze next to Sha Tin police station

Protesters started a large fire outside a police station in Sha Tin, a residential area of northern Hong Kong where authorities and demonstrators have clashed today. After making a pile of boxes and wooden pallets, protesters sparked a fire at about 7.30 p.m. local time. Firefighters have arrived at the scene and are attempting to put it out. Read more here

Article 370: India strips disputed Kashmir of special status

India's government has revoked the part of the constitution that gives Indian-administered Kashmir special status in an unprecedented move likely to spark unrest. Article 370 is sensitive because it is what guarantees significant autonomy for the Muslim-majority state. The entire region is disputed between India and Pakistan. Each claims it in full, but control only parts of it. There has been a long-running insurgency on the Indian side. India and Pakistan, both nuclear powers, have fought two wars and a limited conflict over the Himalayan territory since the independence and partition of India in 1947. Read more here

5th August 2019

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