Saturday, September 22, 2012

Devant commends PM for handling of Section 34 affair

Minister of Food Production, Devant Maharaj has joined the chorus of support for Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar's handling of the Section 34 matter and the dismissal of Justice Minister Herbert Volney.

In a media release, the minister said Trinidad and Tobago possesses "a healthy democracy, a dynamic and rapidly changing environment, where very little can be taken as a constant. 

"In the fast pace of Government, every option for improvement has to be considered to keep close to our Manifesto Promises of 2010, when we took oath to serve the people.

"Governance within the PPG means facilitating the conversation, encouraging people to share their ideas, and then synthesizing all the available information into the best possible decision. Our democratic leader has also been able to communicate that decision back to the people of Trinidad and Tobago who placed full confidence in this Government, to bring unity amongst us all.

"In a diverse society, where situations change frequently, the Honourable Prime Minister offers a great deal of flexibility to adapt to better ways of doing business. 

"Unfortunately, a few unfounded opinions outside of Government see it as being slow to make a decision in this structure...

"Is it not a contradiction that the previous administration, while establishing the rule-unto-themselves private state companies with little accountability and transparency in their operating culture, took over the delivery of services from public service entities. 

"The taxpayers became inundated with all the bitter details of nepotism, corruption and exorbitant billion dollar and non-accountable disbursement of the public purse by UDECOTT and other entities.

"The politicization or privatization drive was a hidden ethnic, political patronage and electoral security agenda geared to deepen and widen the client-of-the-state base and state dependence model of governance. 

"The requisite checks and balances and supervision of the public purse, recruitment and promotion of personnel hitherto performed by the independent Service Commissions have been discarded. The costs of this indiscretion are frightening.

"The PNM administration took no decisive action in handling malpractice in public office. The former Minister of Sport’s poor accounting for $2 million dollars being spent on a flag. When called to account, he said “I disagree. You just have to go on Facebook and you would see some of the arguments and support that is there. It has huge support online.” 

"Interestingly, the former Minister of Community Development, Culture and Gender Affairs who held responsibility for the Financial Assistance Fund has said “the Fund was never a ‘scholarship programme’ but simply a ‘financial assistance window’ meant to be accessed by the neediest citizens who were in quest of further formal education, training or exposure. The Fund was legitimately established by a Cabinet decision.” She went on to say that the Fund was not publicized as widely as perhaps it could or even should have been.”

With these considerations, the Honourable Prime Minister must be commended and respected for upholding the Manifesto Promise, for which over 400,000 citizens approved, “to deliver clean, responsible and responsive government with legislative changes and constitutional amendments to curb excesses and abuse of power. There will also be an emphasis on transparency and accountability."

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai