I start this letter with an apology to two comrades I truly respect—comrades Stephon and Sterlling. The latter sent me a letter, via WhatsApp, since October 10, and the former told me about the same letter since the day before it was sent to me.

Truth be told, I did not read it until last week, which is the same time I heard, via radio, someone boasting that privatisation is the way.

The letter has an “S Mahabir” at the end, which leads me to believe he or she is the author. The letter made for nice and informative reading until the very end.

The letter called for “an independent audit into the affairs of T&TEC”. The call was inspired by S Mahabir’s belief that electricity rates would be raised and that this is unfair to Trinidad and Tobago.

S Mahabir goes on to list that the rates should not be raised because “jobs for the boys, mismanagement, low productivity, over-staffing...”, among other reasons, are why T&TEC is not optimally run. He/she believes the raising of the rates has to do with customers paying the price for the wastefulness of the commission.

I have no problem with the public calling T&TEC to account, or calling on the Government to intervene. Despite popular belief, T&TEC belongs to us, the people of Trinidad and Tobago, and, as such, should we see things going wrong, we should sound an alarm.

However, my reading turned sour at the very end of the letter, where S Mahabir stated the “solution to these burdensome State companies” is privatisation.

One thing I’ve noticed with all countries during this pandemic, as we all tussle to make sure we outlast Covid, is the wake-up call to food security; also the ability to secure and stabilise one’s economy.

How come we’re talking the opposite? Truth be told, privatisation talks are rampant right now due to the selling of our gas stations to businessmen, with no one expecting anything good to come out of this deal for the working class.

Privatisation talks are also circulating concerning the Port of Port of Spain.

To S Mahabir and like-minded individuals, I say let’s hold those in authority accountable and force their hand to do right.

Does anyone remember CLICO? The Government intervened, right?

Let’s not sell our birthrights, please. T&TEC, WASA, TSTT and the Port of Spain port belong to us.

If this is the road we, the people, intend to take, then let’s cancel August 31 as a holiday.

Hugh Springer

via e-mail


Dennis Hall, better known as Sprangalang, was honoured by having the street to enter Skinner Park named after him.

Special thanks to Mayor Junia Regrello.

There are some people you cannot please. It’s damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

How does one put $1,000, or $10,000, in someone else’s hands, forget it for two weeks or two months, add nothing to it, and expect to receive $20,000, or $50,000, at the end? Is there some obeah that multiplies this money magically?

The four core principles from the International Convention on the Rights of the Child are as follows: non-discrimination, devotion to the best interests of the child, the right to life, survival and development.

They stem from the declarations in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child—a legally binding international agreement setting out the civil, political, economic social and cultural rights of every child, regardless of race, religion or abilities.

In Trinidad and Tobago, however, these rights are found to have been breached in all too common and cavalier a manner, with disquieting frequency, in what appears to be the ingrained behaviour of adults.

I shouldn’t have been surprised by the volume of responses to my last column on domestic violence and sexual abuse. They are obviously prevalent though we can only guess at the extent.

In 2015, our GDP had declined for four consecutive quarters—we were in a recession which was caused by the reduction in foreign exchange earned by the energy sector. This situation continued into 2020, forcing the Government into continuing deficit budgets, the use of the HSF and drawdown on the foreign reserves.

The idiom “might is right” has proven itself to be true more often than not, especially in these times. I am referring specifically to possible broken election promises with regard to prioritisation of major public projects.