As I understand it, the minister of education made a decision to not publish the names of the national scholarship winners starting in 2018. I also heard this decision was taken because of a request by “some” parents.

If this is indeed true, it is a very sad situation.

Winning a national scholarship requires hard work, dedication and sacrifice, both on the part of the pupil and the parents. These are qualities which should be celebrated.

It is an achievement which can instil pride in a family, a school, a community. So for anyone to suppress that feeling, something must be fundamentally wrong with their thinking.

I am not certain which parent would not want the public to know of their child’s wonderful achievement. I also can’t fathom how a few parents can dictate to the ministry whether to publish the results in full or not. I doubt the ministry sought an opinion from all 400 parents before making such a horrible decision.

It is to be noted that a couple of schools have (on social media) hailed their successful pupils. This I commend, and hope others will follow suit so that the public can share in the joy of these deserving winners.

If the ministry was willing to share the names of the top two performers in the country, why not share all? Did they seek special permission from these parents? Do they notice how proud these parents/children are every year?

I am a former secondary school teacher and still speak highly of the first pupil (many more followed) I assisted to win an open national scholarship more than 40 years ago.

Carlyle Singh

via e-mail


Potholes on public roadways remain irrefutable signs of life in Trinidad and Tobago today.

There are apparently no clear solutions to these perennial problems. As road users, a weary population has essentially given up hope of solutions being proposed, much less implemented. On major roadways, equally as on minor roads, in built-up areas to the same extent as in villages and communities in rural districts, dilapidation is a fact of life. Often, generations of nationals go through this lived reality of bad roads and their deleterious effects on life in these areas.

Some years ago, a man was complaining to me about his wife of 25 years. The issues were not major; mainly the daily irritants that occur when people share space. But then, just like that, he said something that jolted me.

When Mike Pompeo, Donald Trump’s global legate, comes on his two-day State visit to Jamaica next week, he must be made aware that Jamaica won’t be quiescent about the often irrational behaviours of the US president, too many of which threaten to wreck a global order in which small states, like this one, are reasonably assured of protection against the arbitrary actions of powerful ones.

Sedition law is not about colonialism or gagging democratic expression. It is to do with controlling things that could lead to insurrection or mass disorder via speech and acts.

This is a lawless, bacchanalian society that is forever giving the hypocritical, self-righteous impression that we are holier than thou, making as if we walk on egg shells while ignoring that we are tiptoeing through the minefield that is life—our Trini life.

I read with alarm that Colm Imbert, the Minister of Finance, wants to make further amendments to the nation’s procurement legislation.