Daily Brief - Tuesday 22nd October, 2019

News

Couva West Secondary closed indefinitely

PLUMBING problems, a leaking roof, non-functioning and inadequate toilets, mouldy walls and ceilings, have resulted in the indefinite closure of the Couva West Secondary School.

Couva South MP Rudranath Indarsingh said the school has been plagued with prolonged problems and recalled this is one of the schools which Education Minister Anthony Garcia alleged sabotage for the continuing sewer problem. He called on Garcia to urgently address the situation. Read more here…

New bridge over Yarra river in Blanchisseuse

A new 26-metre bridge with two traffic lanes and two pedestrian sidewalks was formally opened along Paria Main Road, Blanchisseuse on Saturday.

At the opening ceremony, Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan said the original bridge collapsed decades ago and residents have been using a single-lane Bailey bridge for about 20 years. The bridge, which crosses the Yarra river, was tendered at $17.5 million and was completed for about $13 million. The savings is expected to be used for other infrastructure projects in the area, Sinanan said Read more here…

 

Politics

Rohan: $1b PoS flood plan scrapped

A $1 billion loan to be used to alleviate flooding in Port of Spain could not be accessed because a prerequisite study on flooding in the capital was not up to scratch, said Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan yesterday.

He told that to the Standing Finance Committee of the House of Representatives in reply to Oropouche East MP Dr Roodal Moonilal why the ministry last year spent only $486,000 on flood mitigation out of an initial estimate of $8 million. Read more here…

UNC moves to block sale of Petrotrin

The Unit­ed Na­tion­al Con­gress (UNC) is seek­ing an in­junc­tion tem­porar­i­ly block­ing the sale of Petrotrin’s Pointe-a-Pierre re­fin­ery. 

The par­ty, through its for­mer sen­a­tor Wayne Sturge, filed the in­junc­tion ap­pli­ca­tion yes­ter­day as part of a con­sti­tu­tion­al mo­tion law­suit over the fail­ure of Fi­nance Min­is­ter Colm Im­bert to hold a Joint Se­lect Com­mit­tee (JSC) on En­er­gy Af­fairs for the past 19 months. Read more here…

 

Business

Ministry makes $15m from inspection stickers

The rush for in­spec­tion stick­ers led to a wind­fall of more than $10 mil­lion for Min­istry of Works and Trans­port (MOWT) ac­cord­ing to the draft es­ti­mates of rev­enue.

MOWT has es­ti­mat­ed that it would make $4.2 mil­lion from the sale of in­spec­tion stick­ers last year; in­stead, it made more than three times the amount. Read more here…

Credit unions: Don’t call us small

WITH the credit union movement boasting over 600,000 members and an asset base of some $10 billion, a call is being made to stop referring to the movement as a small enterprise.

President of the Palo Seco Credit Union, Alvin Stephenson, who made the call, also advocated for a name change to the Ministry of Labour and Small Enterprise Development under which the movement falls. Read more here…

 

Regional

Port Headache - Fee Hikes, Jams Hit Cargo As Fears Mount Of Christmas Crunch

There are fresh jitters and deepening anxiety about “increasing inefficiencies” at the Port of Kingston that have caused a logjam in cargo movement and an uptick in storage fees that has rattled stakeholders amid heightened concerns as the Christmas season approaches. Read more here…

Alliances for electoral victory

THE alliances formed by the Coalition Government, which yielded a resounding victory in the General and Regional Elections of May 2015, will see a repeat come March 2020. This is the prediction of Minister of Communities, Hon. Ronald Bulkan. Read more here…

 

International

Canada election: Trudeau's Liberals win but lose majority

The Liberals are projected to win 157 seats, 13 short of a majority, and will find it harder to pass legislation in Mr Trudeau's second term.

The opposition Conservatives are expected to win the popular vote but have not translated that into seats. They are projected to take 121, up from the 95 they held before. Read more here…

Brexit: Boris Johnson in last push to get deal through

MPs will vote on the PM's Withdrawal Agreement Bill and if they back it they will be asked to approve a three-day timetable to consider the legislation. But the decision to curtail the scrutiny of the bill to three days has sparked anger from opposition MPs.

The BBC's Norman Smith said the PM looks set for a "deeply damaging" defeat over the timetable. Read more here…

 

22nd October 2019

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