Daily Brief - Tuesday 28th January, 2020


China gives $100m grant for forensic centre

The Prime Minister said Government has negotiated with the Chinese government for a $100 million grant for the establishment of a new Forensic Science Centre. He was responding to a prime minister’s question in the House on Monday from Caroni East MP Dr Tim Gopeesingh on why there had been no significant improvement or modernisation of the centre given the Prime Minister’s previously stated desire to improve it to international standards. Dr Rowley said: “My colleague from Caroni East who always claims to say that he is my friend. My friend would know that I keep my word.” Read more here

Former NP chairman responds to loss under his watch

The au­dit in­to the mul­ti-mil­lion dol­lar loss at the Na­tion­al Pe­tro­le­um Mar­ket­ing Com­pa­ny (NP) be­gan un­der the Peo­ple’s Part­ner­ship and the man re­spon­si­ble “prompt­ly re­signed”. For­mer NP chair­man, Neil Go­sine on Sun­day re­spond­ed to two Guardian Me­dia re­ports that de­tailed the loss of mon­ey and gas oil at the State-en­ter­prise. Last Mon­day, Guardian Me­dia re­port­ed that out­go­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Bernard Mitchell re­ferred to the fi­nan­cial hit and the au­dit in his good­bye email to staff. At that time Mitchell said that the NP paid over US$500,000 in that deal. How­ev­er when Guardian Me­dia ob­tained a copy of that au­dit it re­vealed that NP was ac­tu­al­ly forced to write off more than $8 mil­lion on the soured deal with a non-ex­is­tent Suri­name-based com­pa­ny. Go­sine in a text mes­sage on Sun­day said he was writ­ing to “clear up some mis­in­for­ma­tion in the ar­ti­cle”. His de­fence though seemed built on the fact that the board ap­point­ed by the Peo­ple’s Part­ner­ship ini­ti­at­ed the au­dit and not the PNM-ap­point­ed board. Read more here



PM: Incomplete schools to be finished soon

The Prime Minister said many of the incomplete schools since the UNC administration should be completed in a matter of weeks or months. He was responding to a prime minister’s question in the House Monday from Caroni East MP Dr Tim Gopeesingh on why Government has not been able to complete any of the more than 60 schools which were left at various stages of construction in September 2015 (when the previous administration left office). Dr Rowley said the main reason for the delay in completion was the way the scope of work had been established. He reported that during 2015 the previous government awarded a series of contracts towards the construction of schools and all executed and contractors put to work but there was no identifiable funding put in place to sustain the projects. Read more here

Kamla queries Cabinet approval for ex-PNM candidate's $$matters

Did Gov­ern­ment seek to write-off mon­ey mat­ters - to­talling al­most $94,000 - con­cern­ing Ra­j­coomar Bha­ga­loo be­cause he was a de­feat­ed PNM can­di­date for San­gre Grande in re­cent elec­tions? That's the con­cern Op­po­si­tion Leader Kam­la Per­sad- Bisses­sar yes­ter­day grilled Gov­ern­ment about in Par­lia­ment. This was dur­ing dis­cus­sion on as­pects con­cern­ing vari­a­tion in the sum of $255.3 mil­lion made to the 2019 Bud­get. Dis­cus­sions were aimed at clos­ing off 2019 ac­counts. The $255.3m sum didn't in­crease that $51B Bud­get. The Op­po­si­tion took is­sue with an as­pect in­volv­ing $93,536. 18 cents and write-off of the over­pay­ment of salary/cost of liv­ing al­lowance in this sum to Bha­ga­loo over Oc­to­ber 1986 to De­cem­ber 2011 . He was de­scribed in doc­u­ments as a re­tired Rev­enue Of­fi­cer II, In­land Rev­enue (Fi­nance Min­istry.) Read more here



Another big oil find in Guyana

The Guyana government yesterday announced that United States oil giant ExxonMobil has made its 16th oil discovery offshore Guyana. Read more here



Woman Killed In Savage Axe Attack - Daughter Hospitalised After Home Invasion

A woman was slaughtered with an axe and set ablaze while her daughter, who tried to come to her defence, is now hospitalised following an invasion of their Red Hills Road home yesterday. The St Andrew North police have launched a manhunt for the suspect, who is known to the family and law enforcers. The dead woman has been identified as 57-year-old Cecilia Robinson-Lawrence. The Gleaner understands that her daughter was hospitalised with blunt trauma to her head after she, too, was hit unconscious with the axe. Read more here

The transportation network in Guyana

In the wake of the recent spate of fatal road traffic accidents, the question regarding what might be done in order to minimise and stop the avoidable loss of life on our roads has been broached many times and in many different forums throughout the country. Fatalities as a result of road traffic accidents have become commonplace in Guyana, and the nation has become seemingly desensitised to this epidemic. Consequently, the Ministry of Public Health has noted that road traffic accidents are amongst the leading 10 contributors of deaths in the country, and are also responsible for the largest number of disabilities occurring after birth. Read more here



Bolton blows the impeachment case back open

In reality, where we all live, the White House and Republicans scrambled Monday to deal with the situation created by John Bolton, who has blown the impeachment trial open with his leaked manuscript. There were new revelations about Bolton's book Monday from the New York Times, which first broke details on Sunday and is now reporting that Bolton told William Barr, the attorney general, that he was concerned President Donald Trump was doing personal favors for autocratic leaders. Read more here

Coronavirus: Hong Kong to slash border travel as virus spreads

Hong Kong has announced plans to slash cross-border travel between the city and mainland China as the new coronavirus continues to spread. More than 100 people have now died in China, with confirmed infections surging to more than 4,500. High-speed trains and ferries that cross the border will be suspended from Thursday, Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam announced. She wore a face mask. The virus has spread across China and to at least 16 countries globally. Several foreign governments with large numbers of citizens in Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, are considering evacuations. Japan is sending a plane later on Tuesday. Read more here

28th January 2020


Copyright © . Trinidad and Tobago Manufactures' Association All Rights Reserved.