Awaiting your plan, 'Action Jack'
The lack of action by National Security Minister Jack Warner in response to the unrelenting crime wave should lead the Prime Minister to wonder whether her Man of Action is not too distracted for the job.
It is now just over two and a half months since Mr Warner took the National Security portfolio and ebulliently promised a crime plan within two weeks. Not only has he not presented a plan, but there is nothing to suggest that his appointment to this high priority task has made any difference to the Government's capacity for reining in the crime rate and making the country safer.
The 48-hour crime wave that left another five persons dead by Saturday, pushed the murder toll to 289, still averaging more than a murder a day. And yet, the issues that seem to most preoccupy Mr Warner are those that involve political tit-for-tat.
In his role as chairman of the United National Congress (UNC), Mr Warner's ever-ready willingness to trade political punches is probably pleasing to UNC members. But the national community deserves the undivided attention of a minister with single-minded dedication to the task of keeping the country safe by protecting life, limb and property.
With Mr Warner also leading the People's Partnership Government's Tobago House of Assembly campaign in the sister isle, we are left to wonder whether he will not be even more distracted as the year rolls to a close in taking us into the January elections.
In addition, Mr Warner continues to carry his personal burden as a result of the many allegations against him arising out of the FIFA corruption enquiry. It is clear that, far from going away, this matter is still very much alive and may even be in the developing phase.
The Prime Minister should recognise the quandary into which she has thrown her Government by dismissing Collin Partap while continuing to champion Mr Warner's presence in her Cabinet on the grounds that he has not been convicted on any charge. Given the example set in Mr Warner's case, Mr Partap is entitled to wonder about the apparent double-standard in being dismissed for conduct for which he, too, has been neither charged nor convicted.
Faced with a case of different strokes for different folks, reasonable people are entitled to wonder whether, for all the high-sounding rhetoric surrounding Mr Partap's dismissal, the Prime Minister's own political agenda may not be the only logical explanation for Mr Warner's continued presence in her Cabinet.
Whatever, the rationale, the people of Trinidad and Tobago are running out of patience with political games. What they want to see is action from the Government that demonstrates that the people's priorities are indeed the Government's priorities.
On that list of priorities, crime remains at number one.