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Crown Point, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO Weather :: 25C Cumulonimbus clouds observed

Cumulonimbus clouds observedCumulonimbus clouds observed 25°C

Humidity:
94%
Wind Speed:
Calm
Barometer:
1012 mb
Dewpoint:
24°C
Heat Index:
26°C
Wind Chill:
25°C
Visibility:
11 km
Analyst on E-mailgate: Maybe Rowley was set up

Political analyst Dr Winford James wants to know whether somebody was trying to “set up” Opposition leader Dr Keith Rowley by giving him a series of e-mails erroneously implicating Attorney General

Tensions again in Sando council

Tensions between the San Fernando City Council and the City Engineer Department seem to be simmering once again. This as acting San Fernando mayor Junia Regrello criticised the department for not s

Osha inspection of San Fernando courthouse: Risky situation

People are at risk of being injured at the old San Fernando Magistrates Court due to the possibility sections of the roof, ceiling and guttering will collapse. This was one of several health and sa

Dana nominated for T&T’s highest award

The Powerful Ladies of T&T (PLOTT) has nominated its former member, Dana Seetahal, SC, for the nation’s highest award. The nomination for the Order of T&T (ORTT) for Seetahal’s distinguishe

Alert systems ramped up to block Ebola
Published: 
Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The 911 emergency hotline has been activated by local civil aviation authorities to deal with any suspected cases of the deadly Ebola virus arriving in this country. Licensing manager, Civil Aviation Authority, Kingsley Herreira announced that yesterday. Chief executive officer of the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management (ODPM) Dr Stephen Ramroop agreed with Herreira that the air-to-ground measure had become necessary to activate emergency systems to prevent the importation and spread of the virus.

Addressing stakeholder agencies during a meeting at the National Operations Centre (NOC), Knowsley Building, Port-of-Spain, yesterday, National Security Minister Gary Griffith, who chaired the meeting, said: “There is absolutely no reason for fear or panic. There is a reason for us to be cautious.” Assuring the public that systems were in place to deal with any eventuality, Griffith said the co-ordinated approach was a “proactive” step by Government.

“I do not think we should wait for things to happen and it is very important to prepare now, rather than later,” Griffith said. He said several ministries, including Health, National Security, Transport and Social Development, along with the ODPM, T&T Defence Force, NOC, police, fire, customs, immigration, the Strategic Services Agency and the Counter Trafficking Unit, were all working closely to tackle the issue of the Ebola virus. 

Revealing his ministry had increased surveillance along the country’s coastline to prevent the illegal entry of people into the country and reduce the numbers who would not be properly screened by port health officials, Griffith said: “We will deploy more concrete strategies to address any potential occurrence of the virus as well as limit potential threats should the Ebola virus reach our shores.”

Herreira said while there was no general travel ban internationally, many airlines had opted to cease flights to infected countries which included Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. He said on Monday, officials from the Democratic Republic of Congo, confirmed they were examining eight to ten suspected cases.

Principal Medical Officer, Ministry of Health, Dr Clive Tilluckdharry said the quarantine and isolation facilities set up at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex (EWMSC), Mt Hope, and at the Caura Hospital were not yet utilised because “there is no Ebola virus case in T&T.” 

Adding that the 12-bed triage area at the EWMSC and the two 24-bed wards at Caura was fully equipped to treat with any suspected cases arriving in the country, Tilluckdharry addressed concerns by health workers who were afraid to contract the virus themselves as they interacted and treated patients. “The only thing that would create that panic would be a lack of information,” he said.

Tilluckdharry said the authorities were in the process of educating and sensitising health workers on how the infection was spread, which was through direct contact with the bodily secretions of someone suffering from the virus, such as blood, vomit, contaminated bedding and clothing.

Alluding to other sources of how the virus was spread, Tilluckdharry said in West Africa, animals, such as monkeys, chimpanzees and pigs, often acted as a transmitter of the virus to humans. Asked about whether local authorities were looking at implementing measures to quarantine animals imported into the country, Tilluckdharry said: “We will be looking at this area as well.”

During a training session, participants simulate spraying a body during a training course to instruct non-governmental organisation (NGO) workers and doctors on how to deal with the Ebola virus in Brussels yesterday. The course, provided by Doctors Without Borders, trains volunteer and medical personnel on precautions to take when entering a zone that contains the Ebola virus. AP Photo
Alert systems ramped up to block Ebola
During a training session, participants simulate spraying a body during a training course to instruct non-governmental organisation (NGO) workers and doctors on how to deal with the Ebola virus in Brussels yesterday. The course, provided by Doctors Without Borders, trains volunteer and medical personnel on precautions to take when entering a zone that contains the Ebola virus. AP Photo

The 911 emergency hotline has been activated by local civil aviation authorities to deal with any suspected cases of the deadly Ebola virus arriving in this country. Licensing manager, Civil Aviati

Pastor at funeral of 3 killed by police: Let our young men grow old
Published: 
Wednesday, August 27, 2014

If society and the police do not stop the ideology of fighting fire with fire then there would be more funerals, according to Rev Kirby Jackson who delivered the homily at the funeral service for three men killed by police last Tuesday. Jackson, during his message at the La Horquetta Gospel Foundation, told mourners: “We have to stop glorifying things that are negative. Young men need to know that joining into gangs is wrong.

“Our police officers must know that even if our young men are going wrong or are doing something wrong they are not to be judge and jury but let justice take its course. “We must also understand that the days are really tough for law enforcement officers and sometimes when they walk into a community they are unsure of what they would meet. “There are some who believe they will fight fire with fire, all that will create is more anger within our people.” 

He said there were both good and bad elements in the La Horquetta community, having served in the area for the past five years. He called on young men to change their ways and turn their lives to God as society was “going down a pathway that is leading to destruction and spreading like a parasite.” He blamed some of the negativity in society on music which glorified illegal activity and gun violence, saying if he could, he would ban such songs. 

“It is time we let our sons grow old and die of old age. I challenge you young men to change your mentality.” Jackson was the officiating minister at the funeral service for th La Horquetta men—David “Junior” Baker, Baker’s nephew Kareem Edwards and Reuben Richins—who were killed at a house at Kurban Drive, Freeport, on Tuesday night. Police subsequently identified Baker as the man who shot Senior Counsel Dana Seetahal dead on May 4 at Woodbrook.

WHAT HAPPENED

According to police, Baker, 28; Edwards, 19; and their neighbour Richins, 23, were at a house at Kurban Ali Drive, Calcutta #2, Freeport, when they were shot. Members of the North Eastern Division Task Force went to the house in search of Baker, who had six outstanding warrants for murder and gun-related offences. Police said as they entered the house they were shot at and they returned fire, fatally wounding the men. 

The trio were all shot in the chest and taken to the Couva Health Facility where they were pronounced dead on arrival. Police said two bulletproof vests, a .38 revolver and a .45 pistol were recovered. 

Mourners during the funeral service for Kareem Edwards, inset, top right, David Baker, centre, and Reuben Richins who were killed by police in Freeport last week Tuesday. PHOTO: MARYANN AUGUSTE
Pastor at funeral of 3 killed by police: Let our young men grow old
Mourners during the funeral service for Kareem Edwards, inset, top right, David Baker, centre, and Reuben Richins who were killed by police in Freeport last week Tuesday. PHOTO: MARYANN AUGUSTE

If society and the police do not stop the ideology of fighting fire with fire then there would be more funerals, according to Rev Kirby Jackson who delivered the homily at the funeral service for t

I can’t support unfair system, says Drayton
Published: 
Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Independent Senator Helen Drayton yesterday described Government’s runoff provision in the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 as a “Trojan horse” which was unwieldy, disruptive and expensive. She made the comment during her contribution at yesterday’s Senate debate. While admitting change was always unsettling, Drayton said there were dangers when principles and processes were compromised. “I think intuitively there is a perception that fundamental principles have been compromised.

“There was no consultation on the runoff. The public knew nothing about a significant change to the Constitution prior to August 4,” she said. Drayton said the process used to amend and change the electoral system in a fundamental way went against the grain of the people’s expressed reasons why they wanted change which was a fairer system.

“If in democracy was only about taking three minutes to dip your finger in ink to elect a representative then principle and process do not matter and there is no need for government to consult with and inform citizens of anything, better defined as tyranny by majority.” In criticising the process, Drayton said she found it hard to believe that was the way to treat the Constitution. “I don’t think it is the way to treat citizens,” she said.

Responding to Government’s claim that several other countries used the runoff system, she said: “These are unsettled democracies with a constant state of strife.” She said it led to divisiveness and conflict in some countries. “The runoff is not designed to deepen democracy but to deepen winner takes all,” she said.

Drayton, who at the beginning of her contribution praised Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar for coming to the Senate, said while she supported the principle of a recall of non-performing MPs, she would not support it unless there were substantial amendments to the section. “I could not support a system that is unfair,” she added. She said MPs should be allowed some form of due process, if only to ensure political mischief was not at hand. 

She said there were issues with the recall and judging MPs’ performance because they had to perform multiple roles. She also questioned the need to rush the bill, while congratulating citizens for expressing their views. She added: “I want to commend the citizens of this country for their sterling involvement in the debate of this bill. I have never witnessed so much passion, so much fervor of the citizens in the affairs of the country. 

“I think that is encouraging because it is what democracy is about. I think this augers well for the country’s future. “Whether someone supports the bill or not, that is secondary to a person’s love for this country and I think that is a testimony that we can be a dynamic, progressive people.” 

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