7 Sept 2008

Manning's medals and Manning's Laws

It is an open secret in pan circles that Tony Williams and Bertie Marshall received the highest national award to ward off widespread resentment that the Prime Minister was determined to give it to Professor Copeland, come drought or flood.

After all, since last year, Manning announced that Copeland would receive the award, which had not yet been named. So much for national awards! Manning’s medals, maybe!

Tony Williams and Bertie Marshall were just camouflage.

From a letter to the editor of the Guardian. How do you feel this statement stacks up? True, or false?

And check this out:

Opposition Leader Basdeo Panday says the 100-plus people who failed to file declarations of incomes, assets, liabilities and statements of registrable interests with the Integrity Commission should be charged...

...Last Sunday, the Integrity Commission published the names of more than 100 people, mostly from State companies, who failed to file declarations of their incomes, assets and liabilities for the years ended December, 2003 and 2004.

The publication appears like a reminder to them. Some of them and the organisations they were with at the time are:

* Minister of Information Neil Parsanlal, BWIA West Indies Ltd;

* Gerard Ferreira, Urban Development Company of T&T;

* PNM Senator Laurel Lezama, Youth Training and Employment Partnership Programme;

* Richard Afong, National Carnival Commission (NCC);

* Patrick Arnold, NCC;

* Ray Braithwaite, Solid Waste Management Co Ltd (SWMCOL);

* Hugh Eastman, North-West Regional Health Authority.

* Dr Dave McIntosh, Land Settlement Agency.

* Daran Boodansingh, Land Settlement Agency.

Panday said: “I hope they treat them the same way they treated me.

“They said I failed to declare one thing, but these people didn’t declare at all. That’s worse than exempting something. According to the law, they should be charged.

“There is a separate law for the Opposition and a separate law for the Government.”

Panday recalled the Government’s recent attempts to amend the Integrity Act, in order to exempt State board chairmen and similar officials from its requirements.

Panday is quite right. Of over 100 persons in the PNM who have not yet files declarations going far back as 2003, (5 years ago!) and several more from the opposition, Panday remains the only one charged to my recollection.

This flies in the face of:

It is hereby recognised and declared that in Trinidad and Tobago there have existed and shall continue to exist, without discrimination by reason of race, origin, colour, religion or sex, the following fundamental human rights and freedoms, namely:
(a) the right of the individual to life, liberty, security of the person and enjoyment of property and the right not to be deprived thereof except by due process of law;
(d) the right of the individual to equality of treatment from any public authority in the exercise of any functions;

Chapter 1, part 1 of T&T's constitution.

So neither was Panday treated equally as the PNM old boys, nor are they being treated equally as Panday.