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Kudos for PM Kamla for taking Rowley to South Africa

Sunday, December 15, 2013

An independent poll conducted by pollster Vishnu Bisram has showed unanimous support for Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar for inviting Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley to the funeral of freedom fighter Nelson Mandela in South Africa. Persad-Bissessar was also applauded for choosing Rowley to accompany her to the funeral.


However, there were a few critics who felt that Persad-Bissessar should not have taken anyone from the Opposition to South Africa, stating that when the People’s National Movement was in power, they were never so kind to the extend the same invitation to the Opposition. “It is hard to think of any opposition leader who accompanied their PM as part of an official delegation to other state functions,” Bisram stated in a release yesterday.


Bisram noted that in fellow Caricom countries, the Opposition was not invited to attend the funeral rites for Mandela. “The President of Guyana, Donald Ramotar, was criticised by the Opposition for not inviting Opposition Leader David Granger to accompany him to Mandela’s funeral. So Kamla’s invitation to Rowley was seen as a most magnanimous gesture, because opposition personalities in third world countries normally do not go along with government members on official visits,” Bisram explained.


Several voters, Bisram said, approved of Persad-Bissessar’s gesture. Bisram said people also praised the Opposition for not objecting to the arrangements made by Persad-Bissessar to invite the media, officials, as well as inviting Caricom heads to travel on a chartered T&T aircraft. Voters pointed out that this was a first for T&T, where the PM and Opposition leader worked together amicably. 


Bisram stated that people were pleased that the death of Mandela has brought two opposing leaders together and urged them to collaborate more, especially on political, economic and social issues.


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