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Fixin’ T&T slams ‘dangerous, hypocritical, irresponsible’ response to murders by business community

“What exactly is the T&T Chamber of Commerce advocating? Does the T&T Chamber of Commerce condone breaking the law to enforce the law?

“Will the T&T Chamber of Commerce support extrajudicial killings as a tool that should be used to address our untenable crime situation?”

The following retort to the response to the spiralling murder rate by members of the business community was submitted by civic watch group, Fixin’ T&T:

Photo: T&T Chamber of Industry and Commerce CEO Gabriel Faria.

Excerpt from an interview with Gabriel Faria, CEO of the T&T Chamber of Industry and Commerce, published 22nd July, 2019 in the Trinidad Guardian:

Faria said the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion needs a re­sponse that is not ‘mea­sured’.

“This is a time when a mea­sured re­sponse is not go­ing to de­liv­er the re­sults that are nec­es­sary, we need to take de­ci­sive ac­tion, the gov­ern­ment needs to show its un­wa­ver­ing com­mit­ment to deal­ing with crime.”

What exactly is the T&T Chamber of Commerce advocating? Does the T&T Chamber of Commerce condone breaking the law to enforce the law? Will the T&T Chamber of Commerce support extrajudicial killings as a tool that should be used to address our untenable crime situation?

A ‘report’, two phone calls and a Facebook post formed the basis for DOMA President Gregory Aboud’s broadcast to the nation about the dangers of traversing the Piccadilly/East Dry River area; irresponsibly contributing to the ongoing stigmatisation of those communities, creating unnecessary panic and possibly placing undue stress on the TTPS. Even worse is the fact that Mr Aboud chose this reckless course after he visited a police station earlier that day to register what had been ‘brought’ to his attention.

The T&T Chamber and DOMA never seem to address issues that may be related to corruption with such targeted aggression and venom. ‘Gangsters’ aren’t the only ones that may be receiving taxpayers dollars under circumstances that require clarity. Where are their voices on, among other things:

Photo: Police Commissioner Gary Griffith (second from left) accompanies Port of Spain Mayor Joel Martinez (far right) and DOMA president Gregory Aboud (centre) on a walkthrough the capital in December 2018.
(Copyright TTPS)
  • The fact that, ten years and $160m later, a signed lease is yet to be shown to the citizenry for the rental of No 1 Alexandra Street St Clair.
  • The collapse of the sea bridge, the decimation of Tobago’s economy and the Bridgemans Services Group deal described by the Prime Minister as ‘crooked’.
  • The award of a $400m contract to a company whose competence is challenged by the very Government that granted same.
  • How a ‘fisherman’ from Sealots was able to go into a car dealership owned by a major business conglomerate and fully pay for a Range Rover without traditional financing.

FIXIN’ T&T recalls with dismay, the events in the immediate aftermath of the FIFA cash for votes scandal at the HYATT. Jack Warner was elevated to the post of Minister of National Security by then Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar. The T&T Chamber of Commerce, instead of objecting to that absurdity, invited Mr Warner to dinner.

To be clear. Our situation is entirely unacceptable and has been for far too long. Criminality at all levels must be robustly dealt with… within the confines of the law.

Photo: Former Chaguanas West MP and ex-FIFA vice president and TTFA special advisor Jack Warner (left) gets a police escort after an extradition hearing.
(Copyright Diego Urdaneta/AFP 2015)

This ‘by any means necessary approach’ seemingly embraced by some is the lazy way out. It is an admission that our Independent Institutions are weak, our Justice System has collapsed and of an unwillingness to do the work necessary to fix them. FIXIN’ T&T urges the T&T Chamber and DOMA to introspect and reflect.

Rather than just focusing on the symptoms, we look forward to working with them to effectively address the causes.

#FixCorruptionNOW

#FixOurInstitutionsNOW

#HireOneMoreNOW

#EndPovertyNOW

About Fixin TT

Fixin TT
Fixin T&T's mission is the realization of good governance to achieve healthy, holistic, and fulfilling lifestyles for all citizens through the study, promotion, and furtherance of strong democratic institutions; sound infrastructure; integrity in public and corporate affairs; and a culture of respect by all for the laws and regulations of the country to create a safe, secure, efficient and productive Trinidad & Tobago.

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2 comments

  1. Very good stance on finally realizing the efforts needed to take action….whatever it takes…..however this is all left to be seen

  2. Earl Best

    A voice crying in the wilderness, “Reject ye the way of the lawless.”

    Unless and until Fixin T&T begins to finance one or other of—or, like some of the people for whom Mr Faria speaks, both—the major political parties, deaf ears will be the final destination of any such calls.