Sunday, January 21, 2018

A Trini President for all seasons

The President should enjoy the respect of all citizens and be seen to be above politics; he must act on behalf of all citizens and not in the interest of any section or group. While the president's term of office is five years, a presidential candidate meeting these criteria will hopefully serve several terms, overlapping any change of governments.

If a president is not universally accepted, but is seen merely as the pick of the party in power, T&T can have a new president every five years coinciding with changes of administrations; this certainly will be a national tragedy. Theoretically, an unconscionable political party could rotate the presidency to allow manifestly unsuitable candidates a chance to "earn" lifetime pensions.

I do not subscribe to Kenneth Lalla's view that "the people" should chose the president. In a popularity contest T&T might well find itself with a president with football qualifications, but who is not competent to perform the duties of president, or even those of a minister of national security. Until a better system emerges, I continue to hope that good judgement will prevail in selecting as president someone acceptable to the vast majority of citizens.

Michael J Williams

Maracas Valley