The Uff Report and Jail

Prof. John Uff

On the day the Uff Report was submitted to a happy looking President, the Prime Minister suddenly realized the people needed more hospitals and Summits. The Prime Minister did not say how the country was going to fund these hospitals or any project in the future since the country is nearly out of money, low on natural gas and expect the price of LNG to drop to around 1/8th of its current low price in a couple years. It was also on the same day of the Uff Report WASA announced again the country will run out of water before the rain starts, so citizens will have to bathe less.

Calder Hart and possibly aka Carlos Corazón or even aka Manuel Digoutui

Luckily, the press did not fall for any of these Government-planned distractions and the first few pages of every newspaper featured the Uff Report and talked about the recommendation that some people involved in many big construction projects might have to go to jail if found guilty or if found. Sometime around the handing in of the Uff Report there was a newspaper article saying the corruption police, or is it the anti-corruption, ass-dragging police, couldn’t contact Calder Hart. I don’t know if they contacted the AG because the AG told the population not to worry, he knows how to contact Mr. Hart – The number you have reached is not in Service. Please get on a plane and get cracking. This is a recording. The police have to consider Mr. Hart may have changed his name to something like Carlos Corazón or Manuel Digoutui (Man-Well-Dig-Out-U-Eye).

in butt-saving-mode

The only thing the people are talking about  in Trinidad is corruption and a church in the Heights of Guanapo. Strangely, the Prime Minister is not addressing any of these issues in his pre-campaign trail excursions and instead continues to kiss those too young to read about him in the press and projects a body language which says “if you don’t support me I will destroy you.”  Our Prime Minister may not be well respected by the majority of the population because of his open expressions of hate for his countrymen but he is feared by all, especially  professional grass cutters and the Gang Land finance people.

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Trinidad and Tobago – Running on Empty

I yawned last night when the news on all local TV stations reported that the police, famous for being loyal to our incorruptible leader, raided UDeCOTT offices, Sunway International’s offices and the home of Calder Hart, possibly looking for remnants of The Treasury. They did this after months of intense investigations – the AG claimed the investigations started since September last year but it appears nothing was done until the suspect fled the country maybe on a tipoff from one in the know. From what I saw on TV, the investigators wore shirt jack suits and detained some Dell and Lenovo PCs, a few external hard drives and laptops probably sporting quad and dual core processors. The police will probably find nothing but some local and foreign pornographic photos, a few good Malaysian jokes, family photos of long lost relatives and very little about churches or bank accounts. Even I don’t leave that kind of thing lying around my hard drive.

This raid was very entertaining and caused the press and print media to squeeze as much mileage from the recent government orchestrated stage show featuring loyal supporters of the God of the Government. The media however missed the most important piece of news to affect Trinidad and Tobago now and way into the future and that news is the money done. This report was pushed to page 10 of the Trinidad Express which says “BPTT Head: Natural Gas boom over.” Now, if a man like BPTT’s current head can face reality for a change and tell the public there will be no more easy money and we in Trinidad and Tobago must start to actually produce things the world wants  besides gas, oil and Chubby sweet drink, then things must be really bad. The Government knows this and many sensible people also know that the chances of getting their money from any failed insurance companies are getting dimmer by the second despite a bankrupt Government’s guarantee.

All these non-productive Port of Spain cosmetic projects, including the billion-dollar-fiasco-summits, have finally taken its toll on the country and all the money ain’t even done pass yet. The freeloaders appointed to cabinet are shaking in their shoes trying to justify their existence to the Prime Minister by nodding after every sentence the man utters, even when he is in a heightened state of delusion. I guess they must be suffering from his delusion as well.  A snap election is inevitable as more news of suspected financial wrongdoings is leaked to the public. Those contractors who had the foresight to milk the country dry before the downturn must be commended for their clear vision of the future. Hopefully they were smart enough to change their money into US dollars and bank it in Miami before our TT dollar floats away. I also hope they found the time and took those well-deserved European vacations. Hopefully, Citizens finally realize that God is not a Trini and he is extending the drought,  and WASA’s and UDeCOTT’s officials tenure just to prove this point.

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The Fall of a True Family Man

You’ve got to know when to hold ’em
Know when to fold ’em
Know when to walk away
Know when to run
You never count your money
When you’re sittin’ at the table
There’ll be time enough for countin’
When the dealin’s done

Kenny Rogers – The Gambler

So, another alledged family man has bitten the Trinidad and Tobago dust. Like the Street Lighting God, he didn’t bite it voluntarily or with a smile, but he bit it like the sun and in a way, by the bullying forces of the press and the politicians.

Our local newspapers and those opposed to the tall and sometimes Chinese direction the country was heading, decided to gang up on a man who was legally here and banish him from the country; away from both persecution and prosecution. A man, who by his own assessment, did the country proud by ensuring his boss’s will be done on time and within padded budget. A religious man who collected offerings on behalf of his boss has left, not only the buildings, but the country.

The ink on his resignation letter has not even dried and people are already worried, asking “who dey goe put?” But as Beyonce is fond of saying in song, he is Irreplaceable. Some say they will pray for him in Gunapo while others say we will now get water. Some sick people concluded that the problem at the hospitals will suddenly be solved and doubles will miraculously once again cost $2.00. Almost overnight, traffic into Port of Spain will flow smoothly and without any harsh words aimed at the Arrogant  Shortsighted Defender of Government Stupidity. There will be no more tall buildings in the country, not because the builder resigned, but because de money done.

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Steups – The Mood of the Nation

steupsI got this idea from Scene’s last blog post.

Only a few weeks ago I  saw the Mint from Diana with the word that I, and everybody in Trinidad and Tobago have been saying (in bold and red) more than usual, Steups.  Because of this, I decided to give Diana’s Steups some free ad space for understanding the mood of the nation better than any politician alive today. I also dedicate this blog post to those who make us feel no National Pride but only Steups instead.

Patrick Manning – Steups

Basdeo Panday – Steups

Gary Hunt – Steups

$2 Million Dollar Flag Pole – Steups

Colom Imbert – Steups

Bailey Bridge – Steups

Flooding – Steups

Trincity Mall – Steups

Neil Parsanlal – Steups

Calder Hart – Steups

Michael Annisett – Steups


Barry Sinanan – Steups

Corruption – Steups

Traffic, Traffic Everywhere – Steups

Martin Joseph – Steups

CoP Philbert – Steups

The Blimp – Steups

Crime Wave – Steups

Jerry Narace – Steups

Karen Nunez-Tesheira – Steups

Integrity Commission – Steups

Max Richards – Steups

Licensing Office (especially Omera) – Steups

Passport Office (ALL) – Steups

Shoulder Riders – Steups

CHOGM – Steups

WASA (Pothole Crews) – Steups

Please Feel Free to Add

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Summit of the Americas – Why Protests Matters


If the Government of Trinidad and Tobago wants to forbid protest during the Summit of The Americas in April they should think again. The Government agreed to host The Summit not to show off the made in China Prime Minister’s Mansion, or the modern but empty Waterfront Project but to highlight the real Trinidad and Tobago; or so he said. The Government must understand that only through protests will people see the real Trinidad and Tobago and not through elected empty vessels.

Journalists are normally not stupid and are never energized by talk but by protests and unruly behavior with a cause. Video clips of the Summit proceedings will have a dead look especially when our Prime Minister speaks or is shown in his daily, haughty, clueless pose. Only Obama will be of any interest and the rest of leaders will be faces in the crowd, hopefully not picking their noses on camera. The world craves substance in the form of real emotion and not a billion-dollar-waste-of-time.

People did not know or care where the G20 Summit was being held until the protesters jumped (danced) in front the cameras. The G20 protestors were unfortunately not there to highlight the wastefulness and corruption of the Trinidad and Tobago Government, UDECOTT, the childishness of our The Minister of Works or even the stupidity of our Minister of Finance. The protesters were there to protest a cause known as greed. The Summit of the Americas can give our local protesters, along with foreign protest consultants, a world stage to highlight both international and our version of greed, incompetence, and massive ego tripping. This is something all suffering countries will identify with. Maybe The Protest in Trinidad will become popular on YouTube and blogs and shame our Government into caring.  Naturally, well staged protests will make people curious about Trinidad and Tobago and soon enough people will learn the names Patrick Manning, Calder Hart, Lawrence Duprey and Golden Grove.

An Open Letter to Calder Hart

chDear Mr Hart,

Commission of Enquiry Commissioners, Professor Uff and Mr Khan, last week, asked, maybe not in the friendliest of tones, what your compensation package was and you told them that you, a man paid by the public, did not want to disclose the figure to the public in a public hearing by a Commission of Enquiry. Can you see the irony here, Mr Hart? Is your package so big that is must be kept hidden from the public to prevent scaring them? This hiding of packages, as your would be aware by now, left your-salary-paying-public quite annoyed and caused much speculation about the size of your package, compensation package that is, on the Internet. As you are well aware by now, without facts rumors spread and then rumors become the facts. As you are also aware there is a great level of distrust in the minds of the public about your company’s conduct in spending the people’s money, which is caused by the hiding of information from the public. There is also a view that your company is not only mismanaging public funds, but also are overpaid, overrated and shady. This Enquiry is the golden opportunity for you and your team to dispel these perceptions but you appear to have more to confirm and hide than deny. As I said before, it is only a perception by the public and may be far from the truth.

Your supporters and fans said you are a man who can get the job done but Wall Street were full of can-do individuals, some even as competent as yourself. What I  understood, or misunderstood from the enquiry so far is that you appear to operate like a secret agent, probably nicknamed 009 or something, with an unrestrained license to build. You appear to get your orders from a mysterious and unknown boss like Tom Cruise did in Mission Impossible, and your approach is that of an unbridled bulldozer. You can correct me if I am wrong and I hope I am.

However, Mr Hart, in your defense, your approach might be what the public needs to jolt us out of slumber. After all, our Public Service was designed to find creative and innovative ways to not get anything done or to get it done in the slowest way possible but not without lunch. Just look at the Police Service, the Licensing Division, Ministry of Works and the Immigration Department. Ineffectiveness seems to be their mandate and the staff is well versed in carrying out this mandate. Your team, on the other hand, was designed to provide buildings on time, within budget, without excuses and without public outcry. I suppose you can’t behave like a public servant and deliver like the private sector. But, Sir, even in the private sector there are rules and codes of conduct which are followed and it’s not a free for all by any means. It is almost always someone else’s money to account for.

So, this is the dilemma. Should we continue with the traditional way with a prolonged and inefficient tender procedure where the contractor with the lowest bid and who can’t do the job is selected or should we go the way of the unbridled bulldozer? The answer is almost obvious and the best of both worlds is what the public demands. The public did not get value for money using the traditional method and will certainly not get any value for money when there is no accountability. But how we go in the future will be a political decision guided by public sentiments and I don’t mean to burden you with decisions that are not yours to make.

Managing the public’s purse is always tricky and surely the powers that be must know how hard it is to justify cost overruns on useless projects and the awarding of tenders to friends and sometimes, even family members from distant lands. Maybe that is why you were considered the right man for the job, I don’t know. I am not suggesting you did anything illegal, immoral or unscrupulous since that is for the Commission of Enquiry to decide. My job, as a member of the public, is an everlasting one and that is to express my displeasure at what I see and keep on wondering whey de money gone.