The Judicial and Legal Service Commission (JLSC) should be replaced with a more independent and transparent body.
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No way, Senator Mark
Opposition Senator Wade Mark must know that the People’s National Movement (PNM) did not march “up and down the town” when former United National Congress (UNC) member Winston
Dookeran was appointed governor of the Central Bank under the Basdeo Panday-led government.
At no time did the PNM hit the road when Dr Bhoe Tewarie was appointed principal of the University of the West Indies (UWI) under the same UNC government.
Both men were very active in the political arena and after their stints in the “independent and impartial roles” they returned to active politics in T&T.
Dookeran went on to be political leader of the Congress of the People (COP) and Tewarie is a sitting member of the Opposition as the representative for Caroni Central.
We must not forget how Herbert Volney entered the political fray after demitting his position as a High Court judge. His dramatic move was very controversial since it was the first time in the history of T&T that a High Court judge moved from the bench onto a political platform OVERNIGHT.
When these glaring and disgraceful political acts took place, citizens of our beloved country did not hear a murmur, not a sound from the so-called independent commentators who, today, parade up and down the country unjustly attacking every move by a PNM Government.
It was the second time that Senator Mark made that outrageous outburst in the Parliament. He was spared from any condemnation by the so-called independent commentators along with the editorial writers in the daily newspapers along with radio and television hosts who do not spare the PNM every morning in their respective programmes.
Minister of Finance Colm Imbert was given a sound tongue-lashing for presenting a historical fact that these so-called independent commentators were politically aligned in the past but at no time did anyone see the blatant nepotism in the political appointments of Dookeran and Tewarie. In fact, Minister Imbert was responding to the MP for Princes Town who introduced the so-called independent commentators into the debate in the House of Representatives.
Unlike Senator Mark’s contribution when he maligned the chief elections office without prompting from any other member in the Senate.
In addition to these unsavoury appointments under the UNC, the brother of a sitting opposition member who served as member of the UNC cabinet is a high-profile member of the Judiciary while another who is the son of a former political leader of a party opposed to the PNM also sits in a very high position in the Judiciary.
The country must take note of the inconsistencies displayed by the so-called independent commentators, talk show hosts, and ghost editorial writers in dealing with sensitive national issues.
So when the history of T&T is written the facts would not change. The so-called independent commentators referred to by Minister Imbert cannot rewrite their respective roles as MPs, or losing candidates for political parties opposed to PNM and, more importantly, the fact that some worked for the Government when the PNM was in opposition.
Ashton Ford is the former General Secretary of the People’s National Movement
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