Last update: 12-Dec-2013 4:50 am
Thursday, December 12, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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COP bemoans T&T condition after 37 years
Decades after T&T becoming independent and a Republic, T&T is still a nation more “frustrated” than much poorer countries. This was the Congress of the People’s (COP) message yesterday, as the country celebrated Republic Day. In its message, the COP compared T&T to Singapore, which at one time was much poorer than T&T, but is today one of the wealthiest countries in the world.
“Singapore is a country with a smaller size and population than ours. They gained their independence from England in 1965, three years after ours. Anyone can do an honest comparison between the two countries. Sixty-two billion dollars annually is a lot of money for a nation of 1.3 million people. Yet our people show more frustration, indiscipline, and dependency than many poorer states,” the release said.
The party cited Black Stalin’s song “oil money come, oil money go, but poor people remain in the ghetto” and raised the question how does the nation get out of this syndrome. “In 1976, T&T changed from an independent to a Republican constitution. A very bold step. Today, one may ask, was it a changeover or was it principally a paper switchover? Do our achievements last 37 years justify this decision?”
It said T&T’s constitution provides the country with leverage to chart a better future and that leaders “come and go” but the business of the nation must go on. “Let us make a solemn pledge to revisit our constitution with the sincere intention of creating one which will ensure that everyone, irrespective of geography or socio-economic status is motivated to build themselves and their country to the best of their abilities.”
The COP, which belongs to the People’s Partnership Government, advised political leaders to stay away from “raw urges.” “Our political leadership is well advised to stay away from raw political urges. National interest must come before self interest. This is indeed true independence, the hallmark of republicanism.” The party also said coalition governments are becoming popular all over the world and people are demanding that their voices are heard.
“Young people are becoming nervous about rising debts, one that they will have to settle in on the backdrop of rising cost of education, homes, cars, food and other basics which they cannot afford. Our approach to this will determine our eventual success.”
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