Cipriani statue

PAINTED OVER: Sherwin Mason of the Engineering Department at the Port of Spain City Corporation paints over explicit graffiti on the base of the Cipriani statue yesterday on Independence Square, Port of Spain. Looking on are Port of Spain Mayor Joel Martinez, centre, and Anthony Boneo, works supervisor at the city corporation.

Protesters took their anger out on both the Commissioner of Police and a deceased labour leader and politician yesterday.

An unidentified protester painted the words “F--k Gary” on all sides of the base of the statue of politician Arthur Andrew Cipriani (1875-1945) at the Brian Lara Promenade in Port of Spain.

The graffiti seemed to be directed towards Police Commissioner Gary Griffith.

It followed several hours of sometimes violent clashes between protesters and police across Port of Spain and parts of the East-West Corridor and at Corinth Hills in Pleasantville on Tuesday.

Not long after the statue was defaced, Mayor of Port of Spain Joel Martinez said workers were sent to the site to paint over the profanity on the base.

Martinez said he was present at the scene.

He said when the crew had completed painting the statue, police accompanying him and his crew were instructed to respond to a report of debris blocking George Street.

A Sangre Grande woman looking on at the paint job yesterday was asked how she felt about the protests in Port of Spain.

She did not want to be identified but said she was grateful to the Police Service for its handling of protesters in Beetham Gardens and Sea Lots on Tuesday.

She said the police did a good job getting protesters to stop long enough for commuters to get in and out of Port of Spain safely.


Taxpayers now have to foot close to $10 million in damages to 20 former employees of the Security Intelligence Agency (SIA) who were dismissed by the Kamla Persad-­Bissessar regime.

The Industrial Court, in a ru­ling handed down on Wednesday, minced no words, with the panel describing the dismissals as “patently egregious” while, at the same time, slamming the Ministry of National Security under the former administration for not tendering a defence despite being ordered by the courts to do so.

Fifteen more people tested positive for the Covid-19 virus yesterday and are now in hospital. The Ministry of Health’s Covid-19 updates yesterday indicated that it was still unknown how 12 of the newest cases contracted the virus, as epidemiological investigations were being done. Three of the patients contracted the virus from recently positive Covid-19 patients, the Ministry noted.

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley is demanding that the Opposition United National Congress (UNC) remove an advertisement which, he said, likened black people to monkeys.

The Prime Minister was referring to a “Trinity’s Triangle” ad, in which an Afro-Trinidadian woman begs for food.

Opposition Leader Kamla Per­sad-­Bissessar has promised no one would lose their job because of race.

And she is urging the population to remain united and assured that if elected, her Government would not discriminate against anyone based on race or gender.

“As we hit the final few days, there are many who would seek to plant the seeds of fear and stir up ethnic doubts in your hearts. To me, the biggest challenge is to ignore those who do not believe in our resplendent possibilities as a people and our common destiny as a nation,” she said at a United National Congress (UNC) virtual meeting on Thursday.

United National Congress (UNC) St Ann’s East candidate Kenya Charles has called on Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi to explain his wealth and why his family has a number of buildings throughout the country rented to the Government.