Do something about power abuse at NY consulate
Madam Prime Minister,
I would like to wish you all the blessings for the new year.
As I look back at the past year, I must take time to pause and put on paper, several things that have touched me.
(1) The treatment of employees in the public sector. Can you explain to me how students graduating from the University of the West Indies, after working so hard to attain a degree, are now day labourers (no disrespect to anyone)? No job security in one of the richest third world counties?
(2) My daughter who recently returned home with a teacher’s degree from a university abroad, cannot find a teaching job. With no expectation of employment, what is she to do with this degree? Are we educating our young people so that they can be unemployed?
(3) But what stands out for me, based on the numerous reports in both the electronic and print media, is your silence (or is it indifference) surrounding our fellow citizens employed at the Trinidad and Tobago Consulate in New York.
I have read what is happening and recently did some research. I even spoke to a friend who works at the State Department, and discovered there is glaring abuse of power taking place at the consulate.
One thing she assured me was that there is no such thing as an illegal visa. What a lot of people have concluded is that this is being done to replace the staff with party faithful.
Nothing is wrong with employing your supporters but it is the manner in which it is being done. Attempts are being made to change the entire staff to accommodate promises made to party supporters.
My understanding is that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is responsible for these employees, but every attempt to reach out to the ministry is met with silence; no response except that their hands are tied. This ministry has become a toothless tiger.
How can you, Prime Minister—a woman, and blessed with the ability to understand what it feels like when a woman cries out in pain, especially when children are involved—refuse to call in the ministers that you govern, and demand that they fix this situation? That you continue to stay silent, speaks volumes.
There is no way you can say you don’t know what is going on; even Stevie Wonder can see it.
Now the issue has been handed over to the Attorney General for his input. Why? It has nothing to do with him. These employees are being held to ransom for a situation they did not create. These employees are now at home waiting for a decision to be made about a visa query, when there should have been no break in their employment.
Madam Prime Minister, please look after the welfare of your citizens, at home and abroad, particularly those who cannot get redress from the US government. This situation has the potential to become very nasty if not sorted out immediately.
Please advise your Attorney General, Foreign Affairs Minister, Consul General, to please be humane in their treatment of the employees at the T&T Consulate in New York.