Scene: Balisier House. Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi and Minister in the Ministry of the Attorney General Fitzgerald Hinds stride purposefully up to the secretary.
Faris: My goodly madame secretary, it behoves me to solicit you for an acute convocation with the Honorable Dr Prime Minister over an affair of grave reverberations.
Secretary: You asking if who soliciting? Yuh want to me to tell you who will be vibrating in that f*****g grave?!
Fitzie: No, no. Sorry ma’am. Let me translate. He is just saying we need to see the Boss real quick. It’s urgent.
Secretary (sucks her teeth): So why he didn’t just say so? The Prime Minister is meeting the Sport Minister about the spate of sexual harassment cases in the USA these days. You can just walk right in.
(The two men enter the Prime Minister’s office and close the door. Sport Minister Darryl Smith is talking excitedly as they enter).
Smitty: … And then the prosecutor asked Jesus: “Please restrict your answer to ‘Yes’ or ‘No’… Did you or did you not—on the pretext that it was the only way to acquire a mansion from your Father in Heaven—lay hands on Mary Magdalene?!”
Keithos and Smitty (in unison): Hahahahahaha!
Keithos (wiping away tears): Oh gorm… You know I thought Glenn Ramadharsingh was the first person to use that line?!
Keithos and Smitty (in unison): Hahahahahaha!
Faris (coughs): Good day Honourable Prime Minister…
Keithos: Yes Faris, what is it? We were… ahmm… discussing golf.
Smitty (Sniggers): Yeah, this talk is only for men with long iron.
Faris: Apologies for being curt, Honourable Prime Minister, but we have a most pressing development. Two eminent businessmen with State contracts from our administration are in a state of agitation after being detained by the Police without charge…
Fitzie: He means Police hold two of our contractors!
Keithos (sits up straight): What?! What the hell is going on here?!
Smitty: Yeah. And who is Curt? And why he wants you to act like him? Does Stuart mind?
Keithos: Smith, you don’t have something to pretend you’re doing right now?! That’s not why I give you a Ministry?
(Smith says goodbye and closes the door behind him).
Keithos: Okay Faris, so is the DPP involved? Do they have attorneys? Where the hell is Dillon? Get on top of this quickly so I can use What’s App in peace without any damn journalists harassing me like Archie…
Faris: Regrettably Honourable Prime Minister, the predicament deteriorated before we could apply the wonted prophylactic. As we understand it, the EDR Chamber of Commerce have hitherto laid claim to the streets and are protesting the imposition in the locality of the Beetham Highway.
(Rowley stares inquisitively at Hinds).
Fitzie: Boss, he means people protesting on the Beetham already.
Keithos: Why would people be protesting this on the Beetham? And what is the EDR Chamber of Commerce?
Faris: Honourable Prime Minister, that is the East Dry River Chamber of Commerce. The entrepreneurs in question both reside in the Beetham.
Keithos: Steups. That’s what you come in here hot and sweaty for? So Police hold two bandit in the Beetham. How is that PNM business? What you talking bout ‘Chamber of Commerce’?
Faris: Honourable Prime Minister, both men, Kenneth “Spanish” Rodriguez and Ancel “Chemist” Villafana, have six and seven figure HDC contracts under our administration.
Fitzie: Boss, they got the Chamber of Commerce idea from us. After Patos started to call them ‘community leaders’ and not ‘gangsters’—so he could justify meeting with them—they decided they liked the idea so much that they built on it.
Faris: They have also started referring to their get-togethers as ‘board meetings’ and ‘retreats’. It has evoked much uncertainty among our Police Service who are no longer sure as to whether the Anti-Gang Legislation still applies.
Keithos: Are you two mad? These men are not contractors. They are criminals!
(Al-Rawi and Hinds look confused).
Faris: Forgive me, Honourable Prime Minister, but what is the dissimilarity?
Keithos: Steups. Let me make it simple enough for you to follow Faris. A real entrepreneur, like a contractor, is someone who sees an opportunity to provide a service for the benefit others in the country and sets a price for that service that allows him or her to meet demand and make a profit within the scope of what the users of that service can pay.
A criminal is someone who sees an exploitable situation and through scheme-ish means or even under the threat of menace tries to get money or benefits that they have not worked for or are not entitled to.
Faris: Thank you for your explanation, Honourable Prime Minister. By that yardstick, which one of these entities is or is not a criminal enterprise: Nazim Baksh’s A&V Oil and Gas Company, the Sinanan family’s KallCo, John Aboud’s Fouraime Enterprises or Cedric “Godfather Burkie” Burke’s Rasta City?
(There is a long pause as all three politicians stare at each other).
Keithos: Tell the Police to release the two businessmen straight away if there is nothing to charge them with and tell Marlene to send some hampers to the East Dry River Chamber of Commerce right away, with our regrets—quietly!
And tell my secretary to dust off that “Zero Tolerance” speech for me.
Faris: Are you alluding to the meandering diatribe which suggests that crime was tolerated before but is suddenly taboo now—even as we give dodgy gangs like KallCo renewed license to plunder the treasury while they are under investigation for the same transgressions?
Keithos: That’s the speech!
Faris: Yes, Prime Minister.
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Anyone held yet for the Beetham disturbance? Asking for a friend..
H can’t take it he give notice well Me done get through they could tranship they C. but the man working on P so H run. Can’t remember he*. lol lol I going and chat with Paul and Job. after ah loose everything God may he restore me
you all eh know about H and M. haha T & T is a circle yes take allya degrees and go get a boat by NIDCO cause PATT can’t spin it.
Good one Lasana Liburd. Still laughing at the reference to Stuart Young Keithos’s chinese mini me.
“This is the world we live in…tell me why this is a land of confusion…” from the band Genesis in 1987 just update the Cartoon characters in the video and 30 years later the lyrics are equally applicable in the US as well as here in T&T.
What’s this Genesis band? I missed the reference. Lol
Yeah right Las…too young to remember 1987 eh… trying to play young or wha? ?
They should have never been labeled Community leaders , they were not social activists , but members of the criminal elements .
The politicians are guilty of rubbing shoulders with these elements for their support & to do their dirty jobs!
Started since eric William days!!!!
If there is zero tolerance to crime today, how much tolerance did they have yesterday? Didn’t Dillon declare war on crime? How is that going?
If Dillon declares war on Grenada, we might as well start learning Grenada’s national anthem.
“Police officers need to stop befriending gangsters in the Beetham who are called “president” and “prime minister” by some children, claimed head of the Beetham Police Youth Club and retired police inspector Sheila Prince.
“People in authority supposed to know better and have the power to deal with the law. And they have been playing games with gang leaders. Putting so much status on to them. Calling them all kind of names projecting innocence and they…know the (gangsters) have influence on the young people in Beetham.” She made the comments in an interview with Sunday Newsday about the protests and traffic disruption in Beetham on Thursday following the arrest of two men by police.
She claimed officers took part in Christmas parties in Beetham organised by criminals.
“Where is the integrity? Why are police compromising integrity to be part of a whole masquerade? Where did they get the money from? Why you have them around young children?” She said the police would be talking and laughing with these individuals. She also claimed when some people made reports to the police they would ask if they spoke to the “bossman” of the area, taking their vested authority and giving it to criminals. Prince said it was sad Beetham was going down that road of destruction because there was no proper mentor or anybody to denounce wrongdoing.”
This shouldn’t really surprise us…going down the road of destruction? Hmm
People are focusing on this issue from the wrong angle. That’s all I’m saying. And Akins is making a similar point.
someone cant force you to do bad things..you choose to do bad things..dont blame someone else for your evil ways
The people of beetham holds this country at ransome.
A a how strength in d mouth looking like a young boy soo. Lol.
Guns are very easy to obtain, you don’t have to b with d one percent, it can come in easily n cheap from Venezuela, you just have to have the money to pay at toe gate.
Did Rowley meet with the gang leaders? Answer
When dole chade was doing it, why people never say anything
Hmmmm if my memory serves rite, they hang him ent…….
Richard Maraj you people believe anything and who he help the most with his drugs money
Meetoo Ganpat the 1%+ have made their millions and even billions already. They owned 80% of Port of Spain and is raking in millions from rent and business. They don’t need to bring in anything again, illegally. What, the black boy is fighting for is the crumbs that others don’t want. They kill each other for disrespect and turf. Have you ever read the 1% killing each other for turf, disrespect and other small things? No!! But the black boys do, hell they kill each other for putting a big toe on their turf. The 1% don’t need the small man, they have governments in their pockets.
I beg to differ….the 1%-ers thrive off the hard work, blood, sweat n tears of others….we are the cognitive mechanism to their clock work
Junior Phillip I will agree with you if you can tell me when does a businessman think he have enough money.
Harold Schullere the money made from the drug trade was enough for them to legitimize their current businesses. Look at their portfolio of businesses and ask yourself why do they need illegality to legitimize themselves, when they literally own the country legitimately. The black man has voting power not economic strength, the east Indian has wealth, but not economic power, the Chinese are the second powerhouse the new kid on the block.
Junior Phillip, your comments sound much like a conversation that I was a part of recently. Care to elaborate on ” the East Indian has WEALTH but not ECONOMIC power”?
Michelle Mitchell East Indians at one time were the wealthy group and had economic power because they were the ones who control the real estate wealth. They owned the Gulf Cities, land, shopping empires and rented out to governments many of those properties. Now those realities are controlled by the Syrians and the Chinese. They have resorted to selling off those properties and estates and are renting out minor shops, groceries and bars. Ninety percent of all shopping centers and malls are owned by the Syrians and the Chinese alliances they now are the emerging forces to be reckoned with. In recent times we have seen the political opponents making it their business to meet with the Syrian business community for support. Its not voting power, but economic support, this overture we have not seen towards the East Indian community. We have not seen the PNM for instance meeting in secrecy with East Indians magnates for economic support. I’m not saying there are not wealthy Indian businessmen but they are not a unifying force as the Syrian and Chinese community..
Junior Phillip you’re a man of intelligence I tip my hat
Caribbean ppl will always….ALWAYS be submissive in the face of our massa’s ancestors n those of fair complexion. BTW to say Syrian or Chinese community is inaccurate because it minimizes geographic n ethnic variation, when in fact Lebanese n Philippines nationals out number nationals from Syria or China in this our beloved multicultural society. The more precise vernacular when referring to ppl of those origins would be Arab n Asian communities
Junior Phillip, you have spoken the truth but the 1% + is the real barons are using the few small men to achieve their goals
The name “community leaders” went another direction
Extremely pleased to annoy a servile flatterer, a sycophant! Sorry is only one!
There was a time when we knew the little black boy from Laventille and Beetham couldn’t bring in any container of guns. After the government started calling them “community Leaders” and gave them million dollar contracts the paradigm shifted. These little black boys have a highly sophisticated network of customs, port employees, police officers, ambulance drivers etc on their payroll. This is facts….
Who bringing d gun where d gun coming from who know you all sick
Wait!wait!they really have lucrative contracts?
I thought Fitzie was the long winded one?
Hahaha. Faris is a big word one for the sake of my pieces ok. Fitzie just talks a lot of nonsense.
Lol okay then good sir!
Fitzie is the translator..lol
Shaun and Vernal, I’ve a question: When Govt’s (as in multiple) tell communities there is no money for their community centre or sport teams or to upgrade their recreational facilities… But then give million dollar contracts to alleged gangsters…
What are they encouraging such communities to become? Law abiding or lawless?
It goes deeper to…what example does that set in the ever aware community [kids] and police. Why study, save, plan or work hard…when a certain model is more lucrative, easier and recognized
That question requires no answer!
Exactly. But when you give resources to the lawless and not to the lawful, you are empowering the former category of resident.
What do they then expect to come of that approach?
I also think that’s the approach of postcolonial governments in a few caribbean nations regarding the inner city. Our attitude to how we distribute resources serves the interest of a few. It has to be Lasana that some are gaining from our historical mishandling of crime, justice and community development. I think deep down we hate ourselves.
Self-hate? Short-sightedness? Or greed? That would be an interesting talk right there Keron. What do you think Akins?
I’ve been observing something really interesting of late, it’s the concept of privilege.
In America we have what is called “white privilage”, but that is only a variation of the privilage that it seems to be human nature to create. Privilage does not necessarily have to do with wealth of possession, but rather an understanding (usually unspoken) within societies that some of us are inherently better than others. This seems to be human nature and often it is manifested ethnically, but it isn’t isolated to ethnicity and in Trinidad one way it is manifested is by one’s neighborhood and we see it most when talking about Beetham or Laventille.
It’s the system of development where there is a need for a large pool of under employed and unemployed people. The system consolidates wealth in the hands of a few while pretending to promote competition. Reality is that the glass ceiling is real and we don’t even acknowledge that those who overcome these circumstances are a minority. It’s like CSEC Math and English, 50% fail but we celebrate the top 5.
Or the 5000 youth who drop out / opt out of the school system
There is no sensation as satisfying as having other people upon whom to shit.