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2013 take backs

By Kevin Baldeosingh

As the year draws to a close, there must be many people who are looking back and wishing they did certain things differently. Certainly, for some individuals in public life, they surely would have preferred if news reports about them had been different. A few examples:
Jack stays in PP. Following allegations in a Concacaf report that he had committed fraud, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar said that National Security Minister Jack Warner would be handed back the Works Ministry portfolio. “If all these allegations are true,” said the Prime Minister in a news conference, “then Mr Warner has demonstrated that he can handle a heavy workload without getting stressed.”
Meanwhile, Warner denied all wrongdoing and said he was glad that the Prime Minister was standing up for him. “She knows that I have been loyal to the party, and that all this talk of my corruption, or of her own Ministers engaging in corruption, is just ole talk,” Warner said. “She knows, even if she kicked me out, I would never badtalk this great party or anyone in it. Not only is Mrs Persad-Bissessar a great leader, but she has great people around her, such as Suruj, Rudy, and Anand.”
Asked about rumours that he had planned to form his own political party if he had been fired, Warner said, “How ridiculous is that? Look at me, and look at Mrs Persad-Bissessar. You think I could ever win against her?”
Rowley exposes e-mails, says not sure if they genuine. In Parliament yesterday, Opposition Leader Keith Rowley displayed print copies of emails which recorded alleged exchanges between Government Ministers in which they laid out plans to undermine the judiciary, bug the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, and accuse an investigative reporter of being sexy. “I am not saying that these printouts are actual emails,” Rowley told the Lower House. “There are wrong addresses, wrong dates, as well as other technical and factual issues. Nonetheless, I felt it my duty to bring this matter to the Parliament’s attention immediately, since some people will always believe the worst of this Government.”
Prakash leaves People’s Partnership. Congress of the People leader Prakash Ramadhar has resigned from the People’s Partnership, citing testicular fortitude. “Most men will tell you that fortitude is extremely sensitive,” said Mr Ramadhar at a press conference yesterday, “and while a ministerial post provides free anaesthetic, this does not alter the injuries caused by repeated pummelling.” He said that, following the withdrawal of the Congress of the People from the Partnership, conception was unlikely.
President says, Merit not magic. Just a few months after being appointed President of Trinidad and Tobago, Anthony Carmona announced that he’d be making replacements to the Police Service Commission, and assured the nation that, with his background in law as a High Court judge, he would be appointing persons about whom there could be no legal queries. “That is important,” said the President, “or else citizens will have no confidence in any decisions made by the PSC or, indeed, in myself.”
He also denied he had accepted an invitation to visit the Pope at taxpayers’ expense, noting that some Prime Ministers had been criticised for having seer women and gurus. He added, “I won’t allow the Office of the President to be influenced by magic.”
AATT board stops fraud. The Airports Authority of Trinidad and Tobago has fired its general manager after discovering that his university degree was faked. “We had got wind of this within the organisation,” said the AATT in a release, “and decided that it smelt.” The AATT said it has immediately seized the manager’s file, sent his certificate to be checked for authenticity, and ensured that all its toilet paper was two-ply. Contacted on the matter, Transport Minister Stephen Cadiz said, “This is very embarrassing for the board and, indeed, for myself. I don’t hold with unqualified people being put into managerial posts, because research shows every good manager is really a specialist in their field.” Cadiz added, “Yes, I have gone on a diet.”
Emergency oil spill plan proves effective. Following an oil spill on the south-western coast of Trinidad, Petrotrin and the Energy Ministry immediately activated a clean-up plan which had been prepared 50 years ago but was not aimed at politicians. Within a few hours of getting reports, emergency equipment had been deployed, sea-birds cleaned, and spanners were being questioned. Asked if a Ministerial team would be appointed, Energy Minister Kevin Ramnarine told reporters, “Why would we do that? None of us knows a thing about oil spills.” He added, “Yes. I am committed to trimming fat.”
Meanwhile, young black men from La Brea complained that they had not gotten much work from the disaster because the clean-up personnel proved so efficient. In response, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar promised them 20 percent off rap CDs and gold chains.

• kevin.baldeosingh@zoho.com
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