Home / Live Wire / Kate and DiSmith heading for the rocks? Minister caught in whale of a porkie as PM gets involved

Kate and DiSmith heading for the rocks? Minister caught in whale of a porkie as PM gets involved

One day, there will be public relations lectures on the worst response humanly possible to an embarrassing media report.

It will go like this: blame your second-in-command, defend yourself with lies that can easily be cross-checked, call critics haters and insist that it wasn’t really a mistake anyway, based on the most brazen assault on logic since Faris Al-Rawi claimed he couldn’t identify his children in a photograph and Anil Roberts forgot what his own face looked like.

Photo: Dancehall star Shaggy distances himself from ex-Sport Minister Anil Roberts.
Photo: Dancehall star Shaggy distances himself from ex-Sport Minister Anil Roberts.

Public relations experts will call it “The Darryl Smith defence.” And, in this case, the word ‘defence’ is meant to be ironic.

It is hard to know where to start with Smith’s absurd response to criticism of the Sport Ministry’s $91,910.43 bill for a dozen officials to visit Tobago to present a solitary trophy at the THA Sports Awards.

But his attempt to hide behind Permanent Secretary Natasha Barrow by claiming that he had nothing to do with the guest list was particularly comical—for more reasons than one.

Save the women and children? Steups! At this point, even Barry could give lessons to ‘Princess’ Darryl on manly responsibility.

Veteran journalist and blogger Sharmain Baboolal, who broke the story in the first place, was quick to point out that Smith was telling ‘porkies’. The request to include three uninvited ladies on the trip—Melissa Assam (the executive assistant to the PS), Cindy Cupid (the Minister’s personal assistant) and Kate Balthazar (part-time communications officer, part-time hand-rest for the Sport Minister)—had indeed come from Smith’s personal secretary, Maria-Elena Phillips.

Photo: The hand of god? Sport Minister Darryl Smith (right) takes a hands-on approach to communication at the ministry with employee Kate Balthazar.
Photo: The hand of god?
Sport Minister Darryl Smith (right) takes a hands-on approach to communication at the ministry with employee Kate Balthazar.

Remarkably, Baboolal didn’t need to introduce a new document to prove Smith’s whale of a lie. She merely showed an extra paragraph on the same damn document that Smith already knew was in her possession.

It was as if Smith, a former St Mary’s College student, was trying to single-handedly dismantle the gloss of a “prestige school” education.

The fact that Kate’s plane ticket was booked before the formal request was made to Barrow was further evidence of who is pulling the strings—and anything else he can get his hands on—in the Sport Ministry.

Prime Minister Keith Rowley appears to have taken note and acted swiftly. And sources suggest it could lead to a titanic parting of ways for Smith, a married father of four—albeit now in the midst of divorce proceedings—and Kate.

Does the heart go on? Not if Rowley—or, as DiSmith might now refer to him, the ‘Cockblocker-in-Chief’—has anything to do with it.

Mr Live Wire can only hope that the Prime Minister will quickly find a way to keep the Treasury as far out of harm’s way as Kate’s derrière.

Photo: Sport Minister Darryl Smith and communications officer Kate Balthazar could soon be separated at the Ministry of Sport. And that is just the tip of the iceberg... (Courtesy Scotty Ranking/Wired868)
Photo: Sport Minister Darryl Smith and communications officer Kate Balthazar could soon be separated at the Ministry of Sport.
And that is just the tip of the iceberg…
(Courtesy Scotty Ranking/Wired868)

So, if she is taken away from Sport, which Ministry would provide refuge for a vibrant young woman who allegedly is not put off by married Diego Martin MPs with large families?

Mr Live Wire cannot confirm that Sharon Rowley is sharpening her three-canal.

Of course, the Prime Minister could just move Smith and save the Public Service from having to find safe houses for female Sport Ministry employees. Tick tock…

AboutMr. Live Wire

Mr. Live Wire
Mr. Live Wire is an avid news reader who translates media reports for persons who can handle the truth. And satire. Unlike Jack Nicholson, he rarely yells.

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175 comments

  1. “The fact that Kate’s plane ticket was booked before the formal request was made to Barrow was further evidence of who is pulling the strings—and anything else he can get his hands on—in the Sport Ministry.” #gasps =D

  2. FatMan hand on she ass normel normel….$90,000++ he paid well fuh dat ass boi

  3. Buh like allyuh doh listen to the news? Rowley pull she in already she is now working in the officers of the PM. Something she doing good !

  4. Governments don’t take people to court, There are institutions in place for that. Numerous allegations have been made but alleged corruption re the last regime. The TTPS has to investigate and they have hundreds of cases pending,. Why the delay, it then goes to the DPP and then to the court

  5. Very good writing Lasana Liburd ☺

  6. Dis fok8n country not easy

  7. At least the tax payers didn’t have to pay for the plant like stuff and illicit females lol

  8. I was about to say to people, ‘hands off the man’ , who seems to be a very hands on guy. And with all the bickering and bacchanal in almost every sporting ‘discipline ‘ in our country he has his hands in lots of fires at one time. Good to see a hard working ministry with all hands on deck though.. Or maybe that should be ‘ all hands on board’.

  9. Charge him and get him to ‘F’ OUT. Immoral ,thieving No integrity

  10. Hmmm I think the Minister is fair game and can be roasted…but why is Kate being sullied?

    How does that add to the journalism? She isnt a minister, or PS nor has any control over how money is spent.

    • Pretty simple really – she benefited from something she was not entitled to. Smacks of cronyism… or ‘frenism’ if you will.

    • Ok. Leaving aside that statement from Malcolm that I do not endorse. One: Any relationship between the two parties would contravene the rules for public servants. Two: There was a specific request coming for Sport Minister for her to be there. Three: Their “relationship” is an issue at the Ministry.
      If Kate was a public servant anywhere but the Ministry of Sport, she would not have been identified.

    • All that may be true. But again in terms of this story…if she was specifically requested by the minister fair…that is acceptable knowledge. Everything else i think a bit much and leads to comments like the one removed.

      Because comments across fb is that she is the Minister’s whore…and basically a whole storg dedicated to them. Kate is a contracted officer by all information…

      And Ministers past and present…one and social development in the past was using tbe ministry, ojts et al as his playground….if proven blaze the Minister but in the end her reputation as we all know will take the greater hit…

      Again i think it much specific to this story.

    • I respect your point of view. Maybe I was wrong. But I believe for the reasons I said above that her relationship with Smith was worthy of being highlighted.
      If, as seems the case, the two do have a relationship. Then she should have applied for transfer and that would have been that.
      Thereafter, they are two consenting adults and I absolutely do not subscribe to the other derogatory references. I don’t think those references emanated here though. There are supporters on both sides of the fence who need to calm down and think more about the strengths and weaknesses of their views and the way they express them.

    • That is the thing, unless we have absolute proof not just sources say or speculation…why is she even a main focus? I just think once she is highlighted like this whether she is sleeping with the minister or not doesnt matter…for the rest of time she is…there is no going back now. And btw she cannot apply for a transfer as a contract officer…impossible.

    • Nigel, I do know what constitutes proof and I’m satisfied in way that has been framed. Sometimes we cannot reveal sources and it is up to readers to determine what they make of it all.
      If you know the regulation for relationships between public servants then I’m sure you would also know the proper steps that should be taken.

    • And this is why I was so confused by the people going on about the cost. The cost per person par for the course. In fact, at approx $2500/night all I would get is continental breakfast.

      I suspect THIS is the issue the opposition wanted to highlight. So mission accomplished it seems.

    • The main issue is the number of ppl.nothing else…

      Ministers been using ministries as their beds for decades that wont stop sadly

    • They Are Fair Game,They Are In Public Office,Screw Them

  11. Anything done in the dark always come to light…Never see come see Minister….

  12. Like is something with sports ministers$$$$$$$

  13. Say what you will about the previous Prime Minister, she terminated employment of ministers who stepped out of line… Under the previous administration, Smith would have already been gone.

    A lot of people who condemned the previous government for wastage feel to realise that in spite of the corruption (which I acknowledge was extremely high) the government still delivered services. Roads were paved, buildings were built…

    Under the current regime, we can see the corruption without any recognisable benefits for the people. This has always been a PNM way of life.

  14. This man has a young family children in school. Ease up with this foolishness.Everything is a joke.in this small island state.

    • Scotty Ranking

      So, the existence of his “young family” warrants a less harsh examination and exposure of DiSmith’s appalling malfeasance? Really? The existence of said family should have made DiSmith preclude himself from such shenanigans in the first place! Worse yet, all this was boldfacedly and unjustifiably done at the public’s expense!

      Whomever the cap fits here, it is a firm and deserving fit! Pong him, Lasana! Pong him just as hard as we did Brahmin Boy …

    • Wait… Tell me again who has to ease up with the foolishness?

    • WE jamming still, cool off… He didn’t know he has a family before??

    • Thank you Chloe. These so called intelligentsia get caught up all too often in bacchanalia. It seems a pleasant thing to scandalize people all in the name of Journalism.

    • Journalist do what they do, they write/report etc…Sports Ministers should do whatever-the-hell they supposed to do…I dunno Minister to Sports:) Ok then, I seem to recall a pic from yesterday’s post with his hand on a female’s derriere?? Was that a “familial” look???
      I have he down as a kinda glad man long time anyway and this just drives home my little assessment of him. He is indeed fair game and cares not about his family. And the jokey lies man, come nah man doh we dat nah?

    • Tony Sinclair and that’s news???

    • Ask the prime minister if it is news. He seemed to think so. ?

    • Lasana Liburd he is merely trying to placate the idiots. Nothing more.

    • Reynold he is mamaguying us then? What a trustworthy chap. Smith must feel let down if he thinks his prime Minister blows and bends in the breeze like that.
      Funny that the PM doesn’t make a statement for every scandal (e.g. Shamfa) but chose to do so this time.
      In any case, you say the issue is not an unhinged sport Minister but a weak and dishonest prime minister eh?
      Point duly noted.

    • I have no problem with the reporting of facts but it’s stooping below your standard by using a clearly bad photo shopped pic to get your point across just saying

    • When you are a public figure , you have to be careful of your actions.

    • Reyad Solomon if we are all shouting and cussin then nobody is listening. 40% of the country are UNC, 40% are PNM. How will we get anywhere if all we do is insult each other?
      Make your point without getting personal and it might sink in more than you think. Whatever you accuse the PNM supporters of, the same exists in the UNC camp. And vice versa. We should calm down and recognise that.

    • Lasana Liburd nope the pnm supporters not the same as unc IN ANYWAY!!! You don’t believe me??
      Take a walk in penal and TRY an take a walk in laventille GOODLUCK!!!

    • Lmfao pnm supporters talking bout “f***ing facts and truth”
      Lmfao why alyuh don’t hush all alyuh dunce mc!!!! “Oh I have non problem with the reporting of facts”
      Lmfao hush yuh motherc**t you pnm crayon believe in rowley “email gate” is that fact ?? You pnm crayon believes in “kamla empty the treasury” is that fact???
      Watch alyuh!! Lmao one talking bout the man have family!!
      When alyuh same creole with fake profile commenting racist all over and taking bout “kamla is a drunk pee down” this are facts ent??
      Once is not about the creole everything is ok and factual ent?

    • I have walked through Laventille. And through Siparia. There is more that unites us than divides us.
      I’m guessing you grew up under a PNM government. They weren’t trying to make you suffer. No more than the UNC is trying to make anyone suffer.
      It isn’t about one side being good and the other evil. Just two groups with different flaws and us trying to steer them the right way for the country.
      If we are divided, we lose all leverage.

    • u normally piss me but yuh going good

    • Lasana Liburd and no 40% is pnm and no 40% is unc!!!
      Tobago alone full of dunce blind f**ks pnm supporters

    • Came here to make a comment- but lady this is my tax money and we don’t have extra these days. So Chile Paul with much respect. You are wrong is this instance and delete your comment. You must have told Smith what to say as well ” the government own the hotel, so the money remain in the system.” What an uneducated answer to the allegations

    • Unite us all no matter of Race. !!!

    • They are taking us for fools, and they have all them covered. No vision, no forward thinkers. I going by Eric, Mohammed and Manning place of rest and Mr Panday, and ask for some guidance. No violence, no more

    • Chloe, why when they was bashing the other side,you did nothing, do so ent like so. They jamming him.

    • I am not in the business of bashing. I say it as I see it..

  15. Lol u really have a gift lol great article

  16. That picture deserves an Oscar !!

  17. Siedah Sampson love this reporting yes

  18. Nah, nah Natasha Barrow won’t be in that. That woman takes her job seriously.

  19. That fat minister of sport, what’s his name, has no place in our government. He is an elected MP, so Mr Smith will just live out his time in ignominy!!

  20. OMG! That’s the best photoshopped picture I’ve ever seen! It makes me so nostalgic!!

  21. Brilliant article! Sad for the family tho. I’m sure if he had admitted how inappropriate the whole thing was right off the bat he could have saved face

  22. He’s definitely the Anil Roberts of the PNM. Sportslife might be coming soon

  23. I think it’s safe to say DiSmith on his way out. I believe he was on the replacement list anyway. This might be just the excuse his boss needs. Is only so much “own goal” and “unforced errors” we could take.

  24. Smith bought airline tickets before request made and approval given and Al Rawi announce the date and time for the hearing of the appeal before word from the Court. These officials have great insight. Definitely the the of people we need in Parliament. Definitely not clueless like we have had over the years….

  25. Wired 868 makes delightful reading but as Hakim the current flavour of the month psychologist..take a side Ramesh and Rene…as Hakim suggests,one begins to reflect one’s surroundings, including what one reads…..In this case I have begun to prepare a piece, before reading Mr. Liburd’s ‘review’..It is an open letter to Denish new sport’s CEO asking why any one would swim TOWARDS the P.N.M. Titanic ..I also point out that no travel agency of that era took bookings after the news of their hitting the iceberg broke.

  26. Please Mr. Liburd..In the name of ‘fair, unbiased commentary’, please stop referring to Min Smith ‘single hand’..wherever he may have place it..in any photos.

  27. Earl Best

    When Sharmain done with he ass, DiSmith might have to seek refuge in the pokey of a whale…

  28. jokey people playing themselves

  29. Lasana Liburd, take win, “part-time hand-rest for the Sport Minister)—” yuh have more court clothes?

  30. Wow…..imagine this is bachanal..wheeyyyý…after life sport..point fortin highway…reshmi…and d rest ah tiefing…something we can laugh at.

  31. There’s a market for spin doctors in this country.

  32. The gentleman said we are trying to bring him down based on his performance.Me ent know nutten ’bout that.But 69,000 ? Lawd fadda,have mussy.

  33. Well historically that has been a major downfall of man; ask Adam if yuh doh believe mi.

  34. Thinking with the wrong ‘head’, you sir just brought your ministerial position to an abrupt end. All for some pu**y.

  35. A life boat? I’d throw him a pallet of 8 inch Bestcrete Concrete Blocks

  36. Another bacchanal. People I tired, I cant keep up it is intellectually tiring all these issues.I know Darrly Smith the PM wants some answers,like the rest of the country. But of interest to me is where is the Permanent Secretary in all this, who approve and signed off the monies, since the Minister don’t sign anything. (Moonila reminded us of this when he was accused of corruption, he blame public servants. This is a classic example This raises my concern about giving power to PS to hire staff (Maxie Cuffie announcement last week) My concern is nepotism and political patronage for jobs. This Darrly Smith issue further raise concerns about Permanent Secretaries to hire staff. Is this another adhoc decision for a quick fix in the Public Service,since i don’t see PS ever being held accountable for their respective Ministries, they are simply transferred or go retire, No questions asked . I want the PERMANENT SECRETARY to be brought into the MIX

    • Well Creed nearly took the fall for life sport. Nearly.

    • What you mean when last have you heard anything about the case?it , the Commissioner of police and the TTPS is a lame duck. So may cases and nothing, they still investigating? whaaaaaaat

    • Kevin Harrison, really? Because as I recollect, the head P.S. waited until after he had retired (about 1 year after instruction was given) to forward the file, with the excuse that his name was not called in the report!

    • Rossana Rossana you should have come and read my exam question last week on accountability from my accounting exam…we have all that is required to hold the PS’s and other accounting officers including the Ministers, yet nobody and I repeat nobody, no one is ever held to account when these things happen.. we have the Auditor General, the 2 Joint Select Committees, the Ex-Chequerer account where all this $ coming from yet we continue to talk about this issue.. no one goes to jail no one is locked up, no one is held to account and our politicians know this that’s why they play the race card and other card games with us …why?? because as mighty sparrow sang over 2 decades ago “We like it so” because we will quarrel and quarrel and blame and accuse yet we won’t take the necessary actions to change what is wrong with us, what is wrong with the system, we just keep on voting every 5 years because it is our constitutional right to do so, our democratic right to do so..alll the political jargons we use to justify our rights to put red ink on our finger yet that’s where our rights stop for us we go no further because someone told us it ends on polling day.. real change require a revolution in the minds of trinbagonians going beyund ethnicity and race, digging deeper trenches, we need to be emancipated from our selves from the mental slavery Bob Marley sang about decades ago.. we celebrate emancipation day yet we are still bound, chained in our minds if not our hands and feet.. our politicians are a reflection of our society, the condition or state that we are in, same as Trump is to America. Trump won because the people who voted for him think like him see nothing wrong with what this man stands for.

    • I gather you Rossana Glasgow are not aware that the sports PS was on a this Tobago trip

    • yep I am aware , my issue is let her answer also. PS have long done wrong things wrong things and no one questions them . The last regime, one accompanied Warner on trips, another one flew to Brazil and her boss was not informed (Head of the PS) and KPB rewarded her with a promotion to OPM. I reiterate no one is independent in T&T. Everyone has chosen sides (including PS) of the political fence. More than that, who leaked the information to the press and Cudjoe TSTT bills. Spies and whistle blowers. NO accountabliity and business as usual

    • yep I know, PS need to also answer

    • For the first time. For me. I recognize they are a party to the madness, and not only that , front and center. We always heard they were innocent bystanders, outside the politics. Well. We know now, all that is lie.

    • Nerisha Mohammed that’s what I meant by nearly! Sarcasm! There were many investigations after life sport and into other scandals, but none of those conclusions have been revealed.

  37. And people have said that Ministers don’t run things, it’s the PS! Well this is proof

    • Yes. Top work again Sharmain Baboolal

    • Interesting that tickets were bought before approval was given for additional 3. Wonder when next, if at all, the JCC meeting for Min of Sport, and if the P.S. could be asked about it?
      And it is not the amount of $ only, it is the principle!

    • You people want to talk about principle? What a bunch of hypocrites! I guess all principles
      were off the table before this present administration took office. You trolls just give me a break!?
      All offenders of the public purse must be made to account for their misdemeanors dating back to the present. Not only from the present.

    • Joan, you are showing off your ignorance. Feel free to search for any corrupt minister you choose from the last regime and Wired868 and you will see the stories published on the site.
      Learn, listen or leave. But don’t flaunt your ignorance.

    • Joan I noticed too that when I tagged you in the story we wrote on LifeSport, you said nothing.
      You wanted to preserve your bubble of ignorance. A man or woman cannot be free from the chains that he or she adores.
      Your failure to comment on that story shows your own hypocrisy and shallowness.

    • Lasana Liburd, why bother to answer?
      I just ignore those who are ignorant, and/or speak because they can.
      ‘You people’? Lol…not in your garden or mine.
      If anyone is familiar with this page, they would realise that for the most part, issues are highlighted and ventilated, and it certainly did not start yesterday, or last year.
      Moreover, this new administration is in place, and part of the premise was to bring to justice the wrongdoers in the last administration.
      Is it that there were none, or are they too busy trying to clean their house to focus on that?

    • Slips showing before even warming up

    • Lasana my dear, ignorant I am not. And you supposed to know better than that. I am not defending any administration, rather, merely pointing out that corruption didnt start yesterday.
      Also we as a people have the responsibility to get results from officials not leave questions unanswered and situations the norm and just move on. And that is what most of your bloggers simply want to do.

    • Keep it up Lasana Liburd, I can and have always gotten unbiased stories on this page.

    • Lasana this comment is not like you,…

      “Joan I noticed too that when I tagged you in the story we wrote on LifeSport, you said nothing.
      You wanted to preserve your bubble of ignorance. A man or woman cannot be free from the chains that he or she adores.
      Your failure to comment on that story shows your own hypocrisy and shallowness.”

      …no one should make you inferior without your consent…

    • Timothy, I suppose I was railing at my own failure to spot the intention of the poster.
      Joan tagged me and said we should look into lifesport and I figured she had a genuine interest in the topic and shared stories for her to read.
      Her latest posts explained why she never responded to the work I showed her on lifesport.
      So I was ruffled at my own shortcomings there by failing to spot her wind up.
      Sorry Joan. Not personal. I see where you are coming from now and will take your posts in a different light. And I won’t lose my cool again. We all are who we are and I see why you have suddenly become vocal here.

    • Oh dear. You will learn eventually

  38. Hahahahahahaha.His heat will go on.