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Girl, 6, and father murdered at home
Published: 
Friday, April 28, 2017

The rural village of Mammoral in Central Trinidad was shaken up this morning following the brutal murder of a six-year-old girl and her father.

Investigating officers are at this time still on the crime scene.

T&T Guardian was told that at about 4.30 am the bodies of Solomon Joseph, 36, and his daughter, Salisha Faith were discovered in their one room wooden shack where they both lived.

Police said they were stabbed to death.

T&T Guardian will update as soon as more information comes in.

Girl, 6, and father murdered at home

The rural village of Mammoral in Central Trinidad was shaken up this morning following the brutal murder of a six-year-old girl and her father.

Investigating officers are at this time still on the crime scene.

T&T Guardian was told that at about 4.30 am the bodies of Solomon Joseph, 36, and his daughter, Salisha Faith were discovered in their one room wooden shack where they both lived.

Police said they were stabbed to death.

T&T Guardian will update as soon as more information comes in.

Judiciary’s black eye moment
Published: 
Friday, April 28, 2017

It would seem, however, that Ayers-Caesar has accepted the role of scapegoat in the fiasco, after the public realised the issue of her unfinished cases was substantial enough to warrant major concern over the future stability of the court system.

This is because what in effect has occurred is a mere slap on the wrist from Chief Justice Ivor Archie who, in accepting her resignation as a judge yesterday, also agreed to send her back down to the magistracy in her former position to complete the workload she left behind in the first place.

But the explanation for the situation from Mr Archie and Mrs Ayers-Caesar may warrant even further scrutiny, since it reflects a slipshod approach to a most important function undertaken by both Archie and the Judicial and Legal Services Commission (JLSC) which must never be allowed to reoccur.

Ayers-Caesar readily admitted yesterday that she never informed the JLSC “of the full state of my list” and made the relevant request for “further time to bring matters to completion before confirming my readiness to assume duties as a Judge of the Supreme Court.”

Mrs Ayers-Caesar added that after careful deliberation, prayer and consultation with her family, she sought an audience with Archie, then delivered her letter of resignation to President Anthony Carmona and expressed regret at the effect her actions had caused.

For his part, Archie sent out his own release apparently scolding Ayers-Caesar for failing to notify either himself or the JLSC of the full extent of her lower court obligations before Carmona fixed the date for the swearing in.

Pointing out that she was selected for elevation following a robust process by the JLSC, Archie noted too that she “departed from established practice whereby successful candidates ensured they have fulfilled all outstanding professional obligations before advising the Commission of their availability for appointment to the High Court.”

What is strange, however, is the fact that this allegedly robust process by the JLSC and CJ did not entail a question on the exact scenario now confirmed by Ayers-Caesar herself. We have had the fairly recent case of a former judge, Justice Sebastian Ventour, who had to resign from his position as deputy chairman of the Integrity Commission in 2014 and return to the High Court system for a day to deal with three outstanding matters he had left behind. How then could either party (CJ or JLSC) still conduct a process in which they do not ask this of the candidates?

While we accept that Mrs Ayers-Caesar has urgent work to attend to in the lower courts, does not Mr Archie think she may now be open to ridicule over the current situation when she returns to her court? Why put her through this immediately then - as opposed to giving her a break before a return to duty?

Ironically, for all this we may have to thank the prisoners who caused a furore at the Port-of-Spain Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, since it is their action which brought the haste needed to deal with the matter.

In the wake of this fiasco, the hope now is that the CJ will sit with his most senior colleagues and revisit the process of the selection of judges with a view to making it more transparent, as has been suggested by the Law Association. A more rigorous process in which the obvious questions were asked would have averted the current embarrassment to the entire judiciary.

President Anthony Carmona presents newly appointed judge Marcia Ayers-Caesar with her instruments of appointment during a swearing in ceremony at the Office Of The President,St Ann's eaelier this month. At ,right, is CJ Ivor Archie.
Why don’t you care enough?
Published: 
Friday, April 28, 2017
Diary of a Mothering Worker

Are you personally responsible for climate change?

The brutish and short answer is “yes.”

The question that follows, and is asked by David Hughes in his book, Energy Without Conscience, is: “Why don’t you care enough to reduce your contribution to CO2 emissions through your role as a waged or profiteering cog in the oil and gas industry or through your ceaseless and carefree consumption of its products?”After all, devastation is about to wreck the planet and future generations of all species, and barely anyone from Westmoorings to Moruga seems bothered.

The latter question is more of a mouthful and Hughes tries to answer it in the book. He suggests that from the expendable bodies of plantation labour to the later turn to fossil fuels, use of energy developed without a conscience or accountability in Trinidad. This created a society comfortable with its own complicity and lack of conscience today.

Hughes points to other sources of culpability. He highlights the kinds of maps and graphs petro-geologists use to think about oil resources and reserves, to deny possibility of peak oil (for unknown oil resources are simply not yet known or technologically accessible), and to argue that carbon sequestration is a solution rather than ultimately reducing both production and consumption.

In his view, petro-geology, governance and economics have melded into an overlapping impetus for business as usual, even while venturing into renewable resources like sun, wind and wave energy, in order to keep the global energy industry and its influence going.

For him, carbon sequestration is a mystification of the problem because too much carbon, which at this point is any at all, will continue to spew to the skies, its effects spilling everywhere, while more is generated from fossil fuels being taken from the earth in a genocidal and circular flow of effect back to our lives.

Interestingly, as small tropical islanders (including Tobago) subject to rising sea levels, intensified hurricanes, hotter temperatures and drought, we (in Trinidad) seem either clueless or in denial about the production of our own republic’s demise.

Depicting Trinidadians as irresponsible and backward, Hughes’ main concern is to point a judging finger.

He does so even at environmental activists whom he stereotypes as narrowly concerned with an obsolete, place-based pollution politics, rather than with planetary air conservation. Weirdly, for an anthropologist, he missed an opportunity to truly document concerns about climate change and fossil fuel dependence across the country. He didn’t have a clue, for example, that Hazel Brown sought to apply for a license to run the first solar-powered radio station decades ago.

We lament our climate change victimhood as a Small Island Developing State, but are actually a proud perpetrator, he accuses.

Rightly so. The fact that, by global standards, Trinidad produces a minuscule impact on climate change is irrelevant at this time for every molecule now counts. What matters is that per capita, each individual in this nation produces among the highest amounts of CO2 in the atmosphere. We run cars and air-conditioners like gas is cheap. We use and dispose of plastics and agricultural fertilisers like excessive petrochemical use is our divine right.

It’s like God isn’t just a Trini. He’s a Trini petro-capitalist seer-man, all knowing and above morality. We all model ourselves in this image, to differing degrees depending on our levels of wealth or poverty and our will to get “off the grid,” recycle and lower our carbon footprint, or our inability to even think ourselves out of this pre-apocalyptic matrix. Plus, if we didn’t get the fossil fuels out of the ground, someone else will.

Surrounded by ecologically unaccountable Goliaths such as the huge multi-national oil companies, and the US as an increasing energy exporter (and suppressor of social movements which pursue alternatives), it’s a source of pride when we roll with the big boys like we are little gods too.

Public planning for sustainability (like bicycle paths or heat-reducing building construction) be damned. Thus, instead of treating them as sacred and to be used sparingly, we are enchanted with petrochemicals in the most immoral of ways: wastefully.

It’s time to act with carbon conscience. It’s not too late to care enough to take responsibility.

For him, carbon sequestration is a mystification of the problem because too much carbon, which at this point is any at all, will continue to spew to the skies, its effects spilling everywhere, while more is generated from fossil fuels being taken from the earth in a genocidal and circular flow of effect back to our lives.

Property Tax and the fear of crime
Ian K Ramdhanie, MSc, Principal, CISPS T
Published: 
Friday, April 28, 2017

As it stands, it’s proposed that relevant assessment officers will visit citizens’ residences and private businesses to verify the information they submitted on their forms in order to calculate the annual rental value of their property.

This may require a complete walk-through of your property.

While many may not have an issue with such official persons coming onto their premises, they fear that criminals, white-collar ones, imposters, con artists etc, may pose as such official personnel to gain illegitimate access to their premises.

As such, they’ll be able to see the layout of their house, the items therein, access ways, where valuables may be stored etc.

For businesses,they may be able to see where safes and certain stock items like jewelry, legitimate arms and ammunition, financial documents etc, are stored.

Are financial institutions and other corporations okay with this development?

There’s fear expressed that many homes have single persons more so, single mothers and women. How safe will they be when total strangers enter? Will this now increase their probability of being victims of crimes such as robbery and sexual assault etc? What about homes with elderly persons living alone?

People also fear that the information gathered from illegal assessors may be given or sold to others as well as used by them for future criminal activities.

Further, official assessors may be even blackmailed or threatened into giving such information to criminals. Such valuable information may also be stolen.

We also have the fact that residents and business owners are being asked to submit their building plans and a range of other personal building documents by depositing them into boxes in government buildings. Were these not all submitted in the first place to get approval? How safe is this new deposit system? How easy is it for such documents to be stolen, illegal photocopied, photographed etc, during and after working hours? Are these being stored in tamper-proof ways? What guarantees are there for citizens and businesses?

We must recognise that there’ll be ill-thinking persons who’ll be looking for ways to capitalise on this latest project. They’re right now plotting how to use this legitimate financial system to commit crimes.

In order to gain public confidence in this data collection system, citizens must be assured that their information and safety are well-taken care of.

Having only a badge identifying such persons is not good enough. We all know how easy it is to make false ID cards. Such crooks have been counterfeiting money, license number plates, cheques, official documents, deeds etc, for so long now that it’s difficult at times to distinguish between fake and legitimate ones. Letters of authorisation can be faked as well. What else will be provided to the public?

From the citizens’ perspective, the following are some ways in which they can take some basic precautions:

• Take a photograph of all persons claiming to be assessors before they enter their premises. Share these pictures immediately with family and friends. (This will obviously be a limitation to persons without such a device, but get a friend or relative to be with you)

• Those with home or business security systems will have a recording of this visit so ensure that it’s functioning well.

The following are some of the things that the government can do:

• Institute severe penalties for breaches by official assessors and imposters. These should be made public.

• Assessors should have at least two forms of identification: an approved, uniquely designed Assessor ID card with a photo and the national ID card.

• Assessors should also present an authorised letter on a uniquely designed letterhead and an appropriate watermark.

• All visits must be by appointment only and on an agreed date and time by both parties so that persons can have friends or relatives with them.

• If visits are done by geographical regions at a time, then appropriate law enforcement officials should conduct patrols in such areas.

Have a 24-hour hotline where residents can call to verify if Assessor X, who’s in front of his house, is the legitimate assessor assigned to that house or business on this date and time. This schedule must be known by the hotline personnel in advance. Assessor X must be able to give the house or business owner a secret code that can only be revealed when the visit is about to take place. If Imposter Assessor Y knows this code then it must be an inside con job.

Key to this data verification project is to assure the public that the information provided to the assessor and government remain safe and don’t get into the wrong hands as there’s an increased likelihood that potential criminals will be searching to maximise on this new opportunity to commit a crime.

 

n The CISPS is a registered institution with the Accreditation Council of Trinidad and Tobago (ACTT). Tel: 223-6999, 299-8635, info@caribbeansecurityinstitute.com or www.caribbeansecurityinstitute.com

Forecast for Morning
Becoming fair with winds from the eastsoutheast at 17 mph.
Forecast for Overnight
Fair with winds from the eastsoutheast at 17 mph.
Forecast for Evening
Fair with winds from the eastsoutheast at 17 mph.
Forecast for Afternoon
Fair with winds from the eastsoutheast at 17 mph.
MOHAMMED: EVRIL

MOHAMMED: EVRIL of #1 Alice Street, La Romain passed away on April 25th, 2017 atthe age of 56. Daughter of Carmen Mohammed and the late Felix Faizool Mohammed Sister of Fidel, Wendell andEstella. Sister-in-law of Saran Kissoondan and Salisha Mohammed Aunt of Nicola, Sastee, Vedan, Keshav, Aleahand Josiah.

The funeral Service of the late EVRIL MOHAMMED will take place on Saturday 29th April, 2017 at3:00 p.m. at J. E. Guide Funeral Home & Crematorium Ltd.,#120 Coffee Street, San Fernando followed by Cremationat 5 p.m. Donations will betaken up for Vitas House Hospice, St. James. Enquires can be made to J. E. Guide

Funeral Home & Crematorium Ltd.,#120 Coffee Street, San Fernando (652-4261 or 657-5465).

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