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Speaker urged to reprimand Roberts
Concerned citizen Patrick Bynoe has called on House Speaker Wade Mark to discipline embattled Sport Minister Anil Roberts for allegedly making “disparaging remarks” in Parliament on March 28. Bynoe’s call was contained in an April 4 letter to Mark, claiming that Roberts made remarks criticising Opposition supporters for abusing him while contributing to a private motion on the billion-dollar National Gas Company/ WASA water-recycling plant at Beetham, Port-of-Spain.
Bynoe presented Mark with newspaper reports to support his claim that Roberts was not abused by PNM protesters. Both the People’s National Movement (PNM) and United National Congress (UNC) had supporters outside the Parliament for that debate and were closely observed by police officers. Roberts reportedly told legislators then: “But the adults in PNM jerseys here today, I am stating here, that they were acting like hooligans.”
In an interview with the T&T Guardian yesterday, Bynoe said two months after his letter was sent to the Speaker, he was yet to receive a response. He said he decided to write to Mark because of all the political tension in the country. “It is getting out of hand in the country now,” he added. Bynoe said: “Things are escalating in the country now in terms of how supporters are being treated. There are new features coming into the politics and it could escalate,” he added.
“There is no telling where we could be at the end of the road, so this thing needs to be nipped in the bud,” he said. Bynoe said he made one request of the Speaker in that matter. “The only request I made of the Speaker is that he (Roberts) be reprimanded by asking for his apology,” he said. Bynoe said based newspaper reports in all the dailies on March 29, there was no evidence to support Roberts’ claim that he was abused by PNM supporters and Roberts should apologise. Mark declined comment on the matter.