This week, Trinidad and Tobago witnessed a breathtaking lack of administrative foresight accompanied by a paralysed executive branch with a side order of absent checks and balances.
The outcome? Pandemonium in one of the most respected offices of the land, with citizens left feeling uncertain and disoriented while media reports have been distinctly apocalyptic in tone.
But enough about Royal Castle running out of pepper…
My editor said someone has to write something on Wired868 about Gary Griffith II being stripped of the right to wear fancy police outfits, hand out firearm licenses, and insult and bully the powerless, while NOT catching money launderers, drug smugglers, or human traffickers.
Well, ahmm… News flash: the TTPS doesn’t need GG or anyone else for tips on picking on the little man while not catching the big fish—if anything ‘Motor Mouth’ only worsened the two extremes. They’ve got this, trust me.
And Mr Live Wire don’t like to call ‘duppy’ name too much either. Allyuh didn’t watch Candyman?
In truth, the most noticeable thing about Griffith ‘losing’ an ‘acting job’ he didn’t have in the first place is what it said about everyone else who played along or was actively involved in the farce.
What’s that? Repeat what I said slower?
Griffith was dismissed on 14 October from a job that he actually lost on 16 August—but not before ‘John Wick-lite’ requested and received vacation leave from Minister of National Security Fitzgerald Hinds after his initial contract ended.
Come to think of it, is that not a beautiful euphemism?
Maybe Petrotrin workers wouldn’t feel so bad if, instead of being retrenched, they received indefinite, no-pay vacation leave without benefits.
Anyway, for once Facebook Troll-In-Chief was not the architect of his own downfall. For that, you need look no further than attorney general and landlord extraordinaire Faris Al-Rawi.
Want to get useless buildings leased to the public sector on terms that would survive successive changes in the government? Better call Faris.
Need sound legal advice that would allow for the collection of fines for Covid-19 breaches, determine whether a leisure boat cruise involving a TTPS bigwig is worthy of the same sanctions as a ‘zess’, or legislate for the appointment of an acting police commissioner? Better not.
(And don’t get Live Wire started on if yuh looking for tips on transferring yuh car!)
Al-Rawi’s law, paragraph four of Legal Notice 183 of 2021, was so bad that, when Police Service Commission (PolSC) chair Bliss Seepersad brought notifications for the role of acting commissioner to President’s House, Paula-Mae Weekes looked like an IPL batsman swinging and missing at Sunil Narine.
“A reading of paragraph 4 raised for me an immediate concern, as nowhere within its four walls does it set out any role or function, power or authority in the president,” stated Weekes, in her written response to Seepersad on the following day. “The President, being a creature of statute, has no inherent jurisdiction and must find all power and authority within some law. I have found none beyond receiving the relevant list.”
Urban translation: “Gyul, I dunno what to do with that ‘ish’ nah!”
The fact that Weekes’ response did not spark an urgent internal enquiry within the PolSC, or that Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley did not smell something worse than tonka bean when ‘GG’ resumed work sans formal notice at parliamentary level speaks volumes.
Particularly as both parties were allegedly taking advice—directly or indirectly—from ‘Landlord Faris’.
Justice Nadia Kangaloo, in her verdict yesterday, declared that ‘paragraph 4 of the Commissioner of Police and Deputy Commissioner of Police (Selection Process) Order, 2021 is superfluous and hereby struck out’.
‘Superfluous’ is a strikingly apt way to describe the work of the sitting attorney general—if not the Attorney General himself. Still Mr Live Wire would pay good money to see Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Roger Gaspard SC pick up a cricket bat and give ‘paragraph four’ a go.
Gaspard, after all, once described a speech from fellow intellectual heavyweight Chief Justice Ivor Archie as ‘spectacularly disingenuous and misleading’. The fielders still trying to find that lost ball!
By the time he was done with him, the DPP might have had Faris holding umbrellas for celebrities 24/7.
All the same, it is GG—not Faris—who, at present, is on the wrong-side of this colossal cock-up.
And, like most jilted lovers of this era, he has taken to spilling his feelings all over social media, with smiling photographs one moment, followed by incoherent ramblings the next.
Poor double G. One minute you’re trolling national football coach Kelvin Jack with a photo of him captioned ‘the face of unemployment’; the next thing you’re discovering that you actually became unemployed two months ago.
And just imagine… if Justice Kangaloo had ruled one day earlier, Griffith might have been Robert Hadad’s new Trinidad and Tobago Women’s National Senior Team head coach.
Like Al-Rawi, Hadad would not know common sense if it gave him a butt in the middle of the Ato Boldon Stadium.
By which Mr Live Wire means it probably is not a good idea for the Fifa-appointed normalisation committee to hire an American Futsal coach to steer your 11-a-side national women’s team—with more than a dozen highly qualified local coaches kicking their heels up, waiting for the CMO to decide that organised team sport is probably not more dangerous than children running around at a water park.
Come to think of it, maybe it wasn’t a good idea to hire a dim, egotistical soldier-cum-politician to run the police service either.
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