Sep 5, 2011

Curfew Hours Pushed Back in Trinidad and Tobago


The Government of Trinidad and Tobago with a majority vote of 28 to 10 decided to extend the current State of Emergency until the first week of December. The original declaration that was instituted on August 21 will now be extended a further three months. However, The hours of the curfew will now be from 11:00 PM to 4:00 AM.

There was traditional politics in the Parliament where we had all government ministers voting to extend the State of Emergency and all the opposition members present voting to prevent the continuation of the State of Emergency. Two opposition members were missing for the vote. Ex Prime Minister Patrick Manning who represents San Fernando East and Patricia McIntosh who represents Port-of-Spain North/St.Anns were absent.

There was drama and some 'picong' (teasing/stinging remarks made in a jesting manner) as government and opposition members went after each other to score points with the citizenry. In the end the government had it way and the emergency laws were extended a further three months.

"It is now or never", said the Prime Minister as she concluded the debate proceedings. She gave notice of a plan of action to deal with the criminal activities in the land. She advised the people that the government was not targeting PNM areas in the country. The  Prime Minister assured the nation that “We will continue to target so-called business that supports criminal activity and that are aligned with it and which provide a cover for crime and criminal activities.” Well the nation wants to hear these words but at the same time they want to see the results. Most people think that the government is playing politics and are only targeting the 'small fish' while allowing the 'big fish' to continue pillaging the nation. The blogs and chat boxes continue to say that the current State of Emergency is a joke. The Prime Minister is not concerned about what people think but continues with the belief that the efforts of the government will bring some peace in the land.

The Prime Minister also revealed that along with the State of Emergency and the 'plan of action' efforts will be made to transition the society into one that is peaceful and productive. She spoke about the implementation of social programmes and other ministerial initiatives which the government hopes will give the nation's youth some hope.

The new hours of the State of Emergency will ease the burden placed on the nation giving people enough time to conduct and finish business before getting home in time to their families. Let us all hope the same is not true for the criminals whom are also monitoring the situation.

This part of the year is the lead up to Christmas... Parang festivities will surely be affected by this State of Emergency. I am sure we will be reading about this soon. In the interim let us keep hope alive and leave it all in the hands of those whom are responsible for National Security in Trinidad and Tobago.

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