Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00072147/00182
 Material Information
Title: Tapia
Physical Description: no. : illus. ; 43 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Tapia House Pub. Co.
Place of Publication: Tunapuna
Creation Date: October 5, 1975
Frequency: completely irregular
Subjects / Keywords: Politics and government -- Periodicals -- Trinidad and Tobago   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
serial   ( sobekcm )
Dates or Sequential Designation: no. 1- Sept. 28, 1969-
General Note: Includes supplements.
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 000329131
oclc - 03123637
notis - ABV8695
System ID: UF00072147:00182

Full Text

1F~a ~ lrjSrPEL~
7 '.7



Tapia Election Convention Says:


ABOVE all, Brothers and
Sisters, this is a time for
self-examination. The
time for change is here. I
said earlier that everyone
knows. that the next
change of Government,
however it comes about
must be a radical
depar' uie.
Everyone has known
this for a long time in a
negative way. Even
Williams' greatest enemies
have' always identified
him with the State in
such a way that any
envisioned collapse of the

moment to imagine Wil-
liams as leader of an
opposition, least of all
Williams himself, the
collapse of the Govern-
ment always implied the
collapse of the system.
In a sense the question
always was "what we go
put?" But it took years
before it was even asked;
now we think it is being
answered, and that the
answer will be Tapia. At
least, we are here to do
all in our power to make
it so.
If Tapia had not existed

the country would have
been forced to invent it -
indeed, the country did
invent it or rather gave
birth to it after a gestation
far longer than the 9
months taken by the PNM
from conception to birth
as a government, springing
from the brain of Eric
Williams like Pallas
Athene from the skull of
Zeus, fully armed with
its slogans of Indepen-
dence, of morality in
public affairs, West Indian
We in Tapia are the

proclaimed foes of the
instant solutions and the
"deus ex machine." Any
success we have must be
attributed to organic
growth, of men and
women, within the society
that bred them, of atti-
tudes and philosophies
arising from the issues
exercising that society.
Therefore in the pro-
cess of self-examination
,we must conduct here
today the first thing we
must realise is that we are
essentially no different
from anyone else no

better, no worse.
Tapia is an idea whose
time has come; but no
more so than was the
PNM in 1956; the tragedy
of the PNM was that its
moment came and went
in the instant -between
the lowering of the Union
Jack and the raising of
the flag of Trinidad and
Tobago in August 1962;
One moment later it
was, as an idea, obsolete.
The only difference that
Tapia has to hope for is
that the idea it repre-
sents is an idea that relates

PNM was assumed to be not to a moment out to
the equivalent of political an era, and ti~t it can be
annihilation. "When they capable of tfie hardwuk
gone, they gone." necessary to give that idea
No one spares a flesh.


Vol. 5. No. 40

30 Cents



THREE weeks ago I
unceremoniously dumped
the affairs of this paper
in the hands of a surprised
but defenseless Lloyd,
Taylor and took off to
see what the world looked
At that point in time I
could take no more. For
during the past year or so,
from the time when I assumed
full responsibility for the
production ofthe paper, my
world had shrunk in size until
the time came when its
dimensions were exactly the
same as those of the Tapia
Administrative office.
Under any circumstances
such emotional isolation
from the currents of the real
world is bad. For a journalist
it is much worse. But for the
Editor of this paper it is worst
of all.

For the role of the Editor
of Tapia is a far more com-
prehensive and comprehen-
sively burdensome one than
that of the editor of any
other daily or weekly paper.
The Editor of Tapia is not
only Editor, but sub-editor,
reporter, Lay-out artist,
Feature-writer, _public rela-
tions officer, proof-reader,
production-supervisor and
even, at times, paste-up man.

The physical toll that is
taken on the man who is in
this position is enormous.
And yet it is not the physical
expense which irked me.
Rather was it the fact that the
longer I devoted myself to
these multitudinousduties the
less time did I have for the
political or even social pere-
ginations without which one
comes eventually to lose
touch with the pulsebeats of

I remember vividly the
shock I felt at one Council
of Representatives meeting
not so long ago to find that
over half of the people
representing local groups in
the communities were com-
plete strangers to me.
This isolation was inevit-
ably reflected in the paper
itself. Not that the quality
or the scope of our content
had in any way deteriorated.
I felt that in this respect we
were doing better or as well
as at any time in the past.
The difference was not in
the paper. The difference was
in the world outside. A world
in which, imperceptibly at
first but inexorably nonethe-
less, there had been, during
the year, a quickening of the
pulse, a heightening of the
tempo, a gathering momen-

tum of the rhythm of political
Politics had made the
leap from the subconscious
to the immediate. A leap
which I had, in these very
pages, predicted on many an
occasion. And it looked as
though it would pass me by.
Not that I did not or could
not observe its coming and its
progress. But I did so only at
second-hand. Only from the
reports of those members
who had plunged themselves
into the dizzying maelstrom
of political meetings up and
down the co'-ntry, surfacing
only to tell their excited
tales to those poor unfortu-
nates who could not be there,
before they submerged again.
And I found it impossible
to translate, or rather trans-

pose the electric vibrations
of the tales they told onto
the pages of the paper. So,
paradoxically, at a time when
the organisation as a whole
was making political strides,
the paper could not shake
itself out of its acquired pace
and so fell behind.


Mine was not an enviable
position. I knew that the
paper had come to lack the
immediacy and vibrancy
which, in less hectic days, it
had. I also knew, after several
fruitless attempts to get some
systematic reporting from
those directly involved in the

Tapia Sec.

Mr. Chairman,
I have one last statement
to make. It is this. The
leaders of our Movement
could not reasonably expect
Tapia to prosper and to
multiply if we ourselves did
not give our all.
We have permanent staff
in Tapia second to none.
They might not have any
clothes or any money to
blow on frolic and on fete;
but what they have is a total
dedication to a Movement
and a hope to which their

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SQuit Job

hearts are committed and for
which they are resolved to
give their life and if necessary
spill their blood.
Brothers and Sisters,
I have now decided that
the time has come to join
them. Tomorrow morning I
will be submitting my resigna-
tion to the UWI so that, with
due notice, I will be free for
the purposes of Tapia as and
when my teaching duties for
the Academic Year 1975-76
have been reasonably dis-
charged. Thank you.

Laucala Bay, Suva, Fiji


A Lecturer/Senior Lecturer is required for teaching at the under-graduate
level and in post-experience and senior in-service courses. The person
appointed will be equipped to apply the behavioral sciences and/or quantita-
tive techniques to management problems. He will have a sound academic
background; practical experience and previous experience in training will be
an advantage.
q Salary according to experience and qualifications in one of the following

Senior Lecturer

- $F5951 x 209 7832
- $F8096 x 230 9476

10% gratuity for contract appointment, superannuation contributions,
partly furnished housing at rental of 15% of salary, appointment and termina-
tion allowances. Other allowances in certain cases.
Formal applications should contain full name; date and place of birth;
nationality; marital status; educational qualifications; employment history
and experience; names and addresses of three referees; general statement of
physical fitness; date appointment could be taken up.
Further particulars including an outline, Terms of Service are available

The Registrar (Post 75/52)
University of the South Pacific
GPO Box 1168
Suva, Fiji
to whom 6 copies of applications should be returned by 29 November 1975.

political whirl, thatthe res-
ponsibility for energizing'the
paper rested with me.
Nonetheless the problem
still remained. So long as my
energies were so totally occu-
pied in simply bringing out
the paper every week there
was no way in which I could
get the necessary exposure to
the current of events which
alone could give me the
necessary materials for the
alchemy of journalistic trans-
Few of us, and I am not
one, possess the type of
imagination which allowed a
man like Stephen Crane to
write the classic tale on the
American Civil War without
ever having seen a battle.


For me it was necessary to
get out from behind the
Editor's desk and make my
way to the battlelines. For
who would dare say that this
is not what has begun. Our
own War of Independence.
So three weeks ago I un-
ceremoniously dumped the
affairs of this paper in the
hands of a surprised but
defenseless Iloyd Taylor and
went to war.

Our coverage of


is unsurpassed anywhere

for focus and point.

Keep a breast of the

real currents in the

Caribbean Sea.

Back Issues Available
Overseas Deliveries Airmail. Surface Rates on Request
Postage Extra on Bound Volumes.

Tapia, 82,St. Vincent St. Tunapuna,
Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. Telephone 662-5126.

- I 1~- -- -------



INDIRA GANDHI's coup, which
ended bourgeois democracy in
India for the foreseeable future,
has met with a critical reception
in the Western press, particularly
in the United States.
One of the main reasons for
this is the blow dealt by Gandhi
to a pet subject of the editorial-
ists and columnists for the past
quarter of a century the con-
trast offered by democratic India
-to the totalitarian regimes in the
Soviet. Union, Eastern Europe,
and China.
When the capitalist system
was overturned in China and
replaced by a planned economy,
India was singled out as a Western
-showcase. Here the world was to
witness what free enterprise could
accomplish in contrast to planned
economy, while preserving the
"values" of democracy.
On the economic side, of
course, China soon proved -- as
had already been demonstrated in
the Soviet Union -the enormous
advantages of planning even if
hampered by all kinds of
obstacles, including the'shackles
of a bureaucratic caste. The
bourgeois propagandists had to
trim their arguments accordingly.
India, they- said, had at least
stoutly maintained democracy -
one of the great acquisitions of
That presentation of the
superiority of India over China has
now likewise gone. down the drain.
Of course, democracy under
both Nehru and Gandhi was feeble,
rickety, and corrupted. It existed
mainly for the rich. Nonetheless, it
offered certain safeguards and it was
possible to offer accurate information
in the press and to voice political


.The fate of democracy in India
offers fresh evidence of a general
phenomenon the growing incom-
patibility of capitalism and democracy
on a worldwide scale. Gandhi brought
down Indian democracy because she
would have lost office if she had
upheld it. The Indian bourgeoisie as a
whole backed her in turning to
totalitarianism because capitalism in
India would go down if it abided by
the norms and rules of democracy.
The same pattern by and large
was followed by the capitalists in
Chile, in Uruguay, in Brazil, and in
Indonesia, to cite but some of the
recent instances.
The erosion of democracy is
apparent in the most powerful capital-
ist country the United States. There
were the years of the McCarthyite
"aberration," then the presidential
assumption of antidemocratic powers
in violation of the constitution -
shown most scandalously by Nixon -
which has given the political police,
both domestic and foreign, an inordi-
nate place in the American system of
Moreover, American capitalism,
which is pictured by its propagandists
as the main bulwark of democracy in
the world today, has actually become
the worst subverter of democracy on
all continents. It is sufficient to point
to the long record of the CIA in top-
pling governments that did notmeasure
up to Wall Street's standards in insuring
the investments and superprofits of
Americari companies.
Washington's achievements in
this respect extend from Iran to
Guatemala, not to mention Korea and
, Clearly, capitalism in its death
_agony has become antithetical to
-democracy. .:

I S is

Jbseph Hansen.
International Press
Reprinted from

Democracy vs. Socialism

The socialist program, as con-
ceived by Marx and Engels and as
advanced by Lenin and Trotsky, takes
democracy as its heritage, defends it
against all encroachment, and proposes
to expand it and exteiid it so that it
becomes one of the main features of
the society of the future.
The only strictures on democracy
admitted in this view concern the
rights of the bourgeoisie if they open
a civil war against the working class in
hope of blocking a socialist victory.
During such a civil war, and only then,
the socialist forces would have to
restrict such things as freedom of the
press for the bourgeoisie. In this situa-
tion the rules of civil war would apply,
-a turn brought on by the bourgeoisie
refusing to abide by the will of the
majority and taking up arms.
Following the victory of social-
ism, the restrictions would be lifted.
It can easily be seen why. In a
society of abundance, the ideas of
capitalism would appear completely
irrational as they are in reality and
would soon have few advocates.
Those who argued for turning
back the clock and reestablishing
capitalism would find themselves
evaluated by the public as standing on
about the same level as those wh.o
might advocate going, back to feudal-
ism, slavery, or the stone age, or
those who still contended that the
available evidence sustains the long-
held biblical view that the earth is
To previous generations of the
proletarian vanguard, the importance.
of democracy was considered part of
the ABCs of socialism. Socialists
were the strongest advocates of free-
dom in all spheres. Unfortunately
this is not the case today.
The antidemocratic regimes in
the countries modeled on the Stalinist
pattern of rule have struck terrible
blows against the very concept of
socialist democracy. We are presented
with such a scandalous action as
Moscow's approval of Gandhi's coup.
In fact, totalitarian forms and
practices have been accepted by many
revolutionary-minded militants as the
norm in countries that claim to be
socialist. They have come to believe
that the abolition of democracy is a

distinctive and praiseworthy character-
istic of socialism.
This has not only inflicted great
damage to the cause of socialism
because of its reinforcement of the
erosion of democracy in the capitalist
countries, it has led to suicidal
political positions.
Some militants have not hesi-
tated to take the lead in demanding
restrictions on democratic rights in
capitalist countries. They believe that
it is correct for protagonists of
socialism to demand that a bourgeois
government curtail the democratic
rights ofreactionary currents, although
they thus set a deadly trap for them-
selves, for they have approved in
principle that a bourgeois government
should in certain circumstances deny,
freedom- of expression and assembly
to minority organizations. In this way
they help pave the way for suppres-
sion of their own democratic rights.


A case of prime importance is to
be seen in Portugal today. Here good
militants have been induced to
oppose bourgeois democracy and to
offer help to a bourgeois government
in narrowing it down if not abolishing
it completely.
They have, for instance, demon-
strated in favor of dissolving the
Constituent Assembly in favor of
dictatorial military rule. They have
joined in pressing for the curtailment
of freedom of the press (the Republica
case). They have even served as
activists for the bourgeois government
in attempting to block the rallies of a
Social Democratic party backed by the
majority of the working class..
These militants were thus
inveigled into acting as auxiliaries of
the capitalist class in Portugal, which,
like the capitalists elsewhere, cannot
live with democracy and are intent on
destroying, it the better to maintain
their outmoded economic system.
It is to be hoped that these
militants in Portugal,. who are now
following an ultraleft course that is

highly injurious to the proletarian
revolution.and that can doom them,
too,-will wake up to the danger.
The source of their error lies at
bottom in believing that socialism
simply abolishes bourgeois democracy
instead of expanding it qualitatively,
that is, extending it into the economic
structure and thereby liquidating one
of the features that distinguishes
capitalism totalitarian command on
the level of production.
From this error, these militants
derive the conclusion that the prole-
talian revolution can be advanced by
shattering democracy while the capital-
ist state remains intact.
Unfortunately, this does not
mean that proletarian democracy is
thereby advanced. That is a delusion
typical of ultraleft political cretinism.
Instead, the efforts of the most reac-
tionary forces to bring the workers
commissions and assemblies, including
those of the armed forces, under
bourgeois control are greatly facili-
tated. If the efforts of the reaction-
aries succeed, this would cut short the
possibility of these initial formations
developing into soviets. The final
outcome would be to liquidate them.
o Consequently the conclusion
that must be drawn is that those who
want to advance the struggle for a
soviet form of government in Portugal
must take the lead in defending dem-
ocracy against all its detractors and
would-be destroyers.
It would be a mistake to center
blame for this error on the Portuguese
militants. They are merely repeating
an error that has been committed
elsewhere and that reflects the think-
ing of various currents in the so-called
far left.
It is high time that revolutionary
socialists in all countries again examine
the fundamental postulates of social-
ism. Were the founders of scientific
socialism correct in championing dem-
ocracy? Is bourgeois democracy worth
fighting for in the period leading up
to socialism? Will socialism after all
offer a new birth of freedom?
Or do the antidemocratic forms
of government offered by Brezhnev,
Mao, and. Gandhi, however different
the- economic bases, represent the
wave of the future?

WED 1 2~*Z~8I~~6~

Brothers and Sisters,
I bid you welcome to the
most important General Assembly
in the life of the Tapia House
I do not think that anyone will
disagree with me that this is so. For
any group aspiring, as Tapia does, not
only' to take control of the country's
destiny, but to .do it in a way which
implies a radical departure from all
political habits, a fundamental change
in.po!itical and economic organisation,
the period since our last Assembly has
been an obviously crucial one.
For the events that have taken
place during this period, seen, as the,
have been by everyone, against :
background of an impending election,
have demonstrated as at no time in the
past the exhaustion not only of the
Government but of the regime; the
inadequacy, not only of our ruler
efforts to handle the political an(
economic machinery of the nation, ii
the nation's interest, but of tha
machinery itself.
The 1976 election, if it taker
place, will not be as other elections
That is understood by all. The nexi
change of Government, if there is a
change, and however it comes about
will be recognized by history as a
turning point in the life of Trinidad
and Tobago. The question of "Who we
go put?" is now understood, even by
those who are not sure of the answer,
to be the same as the question "What
we go put?"

And the one and only reason for
this is Tapia. For as the crisisapproaches,
Tapia is constantly at the centre of the
maelstrom, the point of reference
against which the population judges
the tergiversations of the regime, the
endless self-justificatory buck-passing
of the rulers; and, equally, Tapia is the
one fixed quantity amid the recurrent
nine-days wonders of opposition
That kind of politics that esca-
lates harebrained -political confronta-
tion into definitive industrial defeat;
the politics, that while proclaiming
the union of oil and sugar, of African
and Indian, achieved only the marriage
of police and army; the politics that
seeks unity in declarations 'of unity,
that hopes to capitalise on the exaspera-
tion of the population to slip past the
election post and, in the words
of Uoyd Best "leave the throat-cutting
for last".
When the PNM's own Commis-
sion of Enquiry blasts both workers
and Government for corruption in its
report on the Special Works pro-
gramme, who puts the issue in perspec-
tive in a speech in the Senate and an
article in the Tapia newspaper? Tapia
.Senator Hamlet (yaxee) Joseph, himself
a project worker.
When the Prime Minister an-
nounced to the PNM Youth League
that he is starting a school to groom
young members for political stardom,
Tapia is turning the PNM Parliament
into a political school in which we
demonstrate at every opportunity the
faults of- the present parliamentary

At every Tapia Assembly no matter what its format or Agenda there is one item
which remains fixed and unyielding. The'Chairman's Address is the item which
has traditionally always opened the proceedings of the Assembly. And members
have come to look forward to it as the one Statement designed to overleap the
immediate concerns and to fix our gaze on the longer horizons of our spiritual
The Assembly last Sunday was no exception. Tapia Chairman Denis
Solomon, making his first address since being elected to the post earlier this year
.fulfilled all expectations and indeed set the standard for the entire day at a
gloriously high level. In a voice and with a bearing which has been described by
one Tapia member as "regally graceful" Solomon issued the call to arms to the
entire Tapia membership. And he ended by enjoining the membership "with
neither arrogance nor false humility but with charity" to unite for the struggle
The following are extracts of Chairman Denis Solomon's opening Address.

system, while adding to this negative
lesson the positive one of articulating
in the Senate debates, the people's
A lesson which the population
understands far better than the Presi-
dent of the Senate with his bray of
"irrelevance" or the so-called profes-
sional politicians of the conventional
opposition with their talk of "failure"
of motions -of condemnation, as if we
were attempting a legislative task in an
unrepresentative parliament, instead of
the political task of bringing the issues
before the public in the very back-
ground of the enemy and in equal
defiance of his manipulation of stand-
ing orders and his stranglehold over
the media.


And who dares to say that the
Tapia vote of no-confidence, I beg
your pardon, of condemnation, was
irrelevant or ill-timed or unsuccessful
when it was confirmed and reconfirmed
in quick succession by the Auditor
General's report for 1974; by the
reaction of the Prime Minister,which
was a reshuffling of the Cabinet,
including the creation of the remark-
able jackass troika at the Ministry of
finance: Prevatt, Robinson and Gomes;
and by Williams automatic reaction of
blaming the civil service for everything
20 years after taking power.
The reaction, incidentally, to the
education crisis, apart from firing
Gomes, was another old chestnut;
appointing a committee and* telling
them what conclusions to come to.
But what were the pre-deteimined
conclusions? Just look at them: a
guarantee of five years of secondary
schooling Tapia; academic and
technical training in the same schools
Tapia; and as a member of the
Committee, a known supporter of the
Tapia view of educational planning -
Dr. C.V. Gocking.
The crises are crowding in thick
and fast upon the Government, Roads,
water, health, (don't forget yellow
fever in King George V Park), schools,
inefficiency and corruption everywhere;
and the Government is destitute of all
responses save four; Threats (the
army must ensure national security,
especially in regard to petroleum
industries); Evasion (suppression of
Local Government elections); Bribery
(massive increases in Special Works
programmes; guaranteed education
without schools of teachers; promises
of hospitals ..... money flowing like
water) and Buck-passing; "I cyah
interfere with them but dey does
interfere wid me", and all that old
couillonnade we hear so often already.
Yes, Brothers and Sisters, the
crisis is at hand; on the one hand
desperate electioneering of threats and
bribery, evasion and buck-passing; on
the other, mindless confrontation and
back-room manipulation.
In the middle Tapia, engaged in
the world of articulating the issues and
working to establish the permanent
and professional political organisation
required to service the country when
the other options have been played
out. That time is here; and that work
must move into its final phake here and .





To Create

A Better World


On the evidence, there is
perhaps more logical reason
for pessimism the evidence
of India and Bangla Desh, of
Uganda and even Kenya, of
internecine struggles in re-
cently liberated Portuguese
Africa; the evidence of mili-
tary dictatorship almost every-
where in Latin America.
As Jacob Bronowski said
in his television series Ascent
ofMan, Western man has

absolutely no guarantee from
the gods that his philosophical
view of the world i4-any more
worthy of success than any
And biologists have always
pointed out the same thing
about the human race as a
whole; that Nature Creative
evolution, if you are a Lamarc-
kian, or Natural Selection if
you are a Darwinian has
made false starts before --
indeed operates on the basis
of false starts and that if
the human race is an evolu-
tionary dead-end nature will
abandon it and move-on to
something else.


But we are not pessimists
if we were we would not
be here but in a fallout
shelter and so we press on
in the belief that fruitful
change is possible. Man is
born free, equal and respons-
So whereas the task that
faces us the task of initiat-
ing a new departure for man-
kind as a whole in this micro-
cosm of Trinidad and Tobago
is in its political aspect a
task of organising and con-
vincing within the existing
framework it is not pos-
sible, said Gandhi, to be more
than one step ahead it is
also the task of creating a
new type of person, and new
type of relationships among
And as Tapia should know
better than anyone, this task
must begin with the group

WE are ordinary men and
women but we are faced
with an extraordinary
task. History moves in
cycles; evolution pro-
ceeds we leaps. The task
we have to perform is an
evolutionary one.
What I wish to stress is
what Keith Smith pointed
out so well in his article in
the sixth anniversary issue
of TAPIA "Tapia's world
of Tomorrow; that the job
this country has to do is not
a job of catching up, of
achieving a level of existence
already achieved by other
Naipaul called the Carib-
bean "the third world's third
world"; so it is; but by no
means in the way that
Naipaul meant. For it is the
epitome not so much of
distress as of possibilities:
here, as perhaps nowhere
else, are the conditions to be
found for a new type of


Our task therefore is not
the task of catching up but
the evolutionary task of
creating a system higher and
better than any so far created.
All the problems that face
us in the Caribbean are the
result not of some peculiar
deficiency in ourselves but of
the disfunctions of human
society as a whole which are
at the root of all the crises we
read of everywhere on the
All the questions so des-
perately asked; all the revolts

against the established order
- the rebellion of youth, of
women,' of urban guerrillas,
are attempts to discuss how
the materialistic, consumer-
oriented structure of Western
technological society can be
altered to ensure a decent
quality of life for all without
the reinforcement of authori-
tian control.
Everywhere in the world
monoliths multinational
corporations, large industrial
groups, powerful trade
unions, are threatening to
supplant popular institutions
of political control.


No one knows how the
destruction of the planet by
pollution, both physical and
spiritual, is to be prevented
without powerful authoritarian
institutions. The institutions
of so-called democratic
parliamentary organisation
that not so long ago seemed
unassailable are severely
In Britain, the two-party
system, seemingly so well
entrenched, appears unable to
achieve a solution to the grave
economic crisis, for neither
party has been able to get a
satisfactory majority in three
And the alternative system
of Proportional Representa-
tion, judging by the decline
in the Liberal Party's success
between the last two polls has
been rejected.
In France, President Giscard
d'Estaing claimed, at his first
press conference after his

election, not to see any evi-
dence, of the split between
right and left that had been
predicted after the death of
In fact that split is staring
him in the face, and has since
deepened to such an extent
that it is obvious that it had
only been papered over, not
healed, by the regime of
deGaulle and Pompidou.
When Western capitalist
society vaunts itself on the
individual freedom and creativ-
ity it supposedly,enshrines, it
is given the lie by the infla-
tion, unemployment and
economic injustice which
make nonsense of individual
When the socialist world
boasts of its exemption from
economic insecurity, its stif-
ling authoritarianism is pro-
claimed by the voices of
Solzhenitsyn and Sakharov,
Sinyavsky and Daniel.


Even the bitter conflict
between Russia and China is
not an ideological conflict but
a racial one a manifestation
of that antipathy between
European and non-European
that characterized, indeed
underlay, the Enterprises of
the Indies which gaye birth to
our part of the Third World.
Do not forget that Christopher
Columbus died thinking that
he was enslaving Chinese.
In the final analysis, whe-
ther one is an optimist or a
pessimist about the outcome
is perhaps simply a matter of

Brothers and Sisters,
As we approach the
electoral homestretch, we
must finally fix we busi-
ness as a nationwide
political organisation. As
has been acknowledged in
our deliberations here this
morning, Tapia stands in
need of many crucial
ingredients if the victory
must be ours.


The most awkward thing
we need is money so let us
deal with that first. Money
is the root of all evil; we
cannot afford to leave too
much of it in Tapia pockets
where to make endless
trouble and mischief.
Tapia is a Neediest Case
We need the financial re-
sources with which to secure
the material requirements for
a viable organisation politi-
cal, professional, permanent
- and to mount a vibrant
and successful election cam-
We need money to main-
tain Tapia offices in at least
the twelve regions into which
we have agreed to divide the
country; we need money to
pay our full-time staff which
soon we will have to expand;
we need money to purchase
equipment and transport.
We need money, above all,
to put up deposits for a full
slate of Tapia candidates
whatever that magic number,
be it 36 or 360.
When you check that
together and you get the


score, it sounds like $150,000. CONS
Since we have no angels and
godfathers and big-shots to
put up bread for Tapia, we PAR1
could only foot this bill by
the multitudinous little en- e
deavours of all those grass- need al
roots brothers and sisters who in the
are sworn to sacrifice their at t
soul in order to win our groups
freedom back. and fl
sion ac
We need: country
more Parliamentary proceed
salaries (in both A r
Houses) country
more and larger pu
monthly pledges from
Tapia people Ti
more printing jobs St A
for our printshop P
increased sales of Brea
the Tapia weekly paper .D
and more of thereturns Port
from sales Port
many more annual L
and life subscriptions Spai
expanded revenue Spai
from advertising P
more patronage of Ferr
the Tapia Bookshop Ferr
greater demand for T
Tapia backnumbers in- Tow
cluding Bound Volumes S5
wider fund-raising Juar
activity among the S
local groups Spai
vastly increased in- Dieg
come from members A
dues nilla


second ingredient we
re Constituency Parties
regions to bring together
local level all those
which should multiply
ourish in great profu-
cross the face of the
y as our mobilization
realistic division of the
y produces the follow-
unified regions for
es of campaigning:-
unapuna, St. Joseph,
'oint Fortin, La
i, Fyzabad, Siparia
)iego Martin West,
-of-Spain West,
-of-Spain Central
aventille, Port-of-
n East, Port-of-
n South
ointe-a-Pierre, San
iando East, San
iando West
abaquitje, Princes
an Juan West, San
I East, Barataria
It. Ann's, Port-of-
n North East,
go Martin East
rimaa, Toco-Manza-

a a)

Naparima, Naparima
South, Oropouche
Couva, Caroni, Cha-
Nariva, Ortoire-
Tobago East, Tobago
We must hasten to equip
each of these local areas with
the means for effective politi-
cal action.
Once we have this local
scaffolding, it becomes so
much easier "to allocate
work, develop the education
and the propaganda, select
candidates and above all,
establish the Campaign Com-
mittee that we have been
trying to bring to life for so
The local political leaders
are the ones to .see that
groups are formed and ser-
viced and that the campaign
tasks are properly organised
and successfully performed.
This is the correct way of
destroying oligarchy and of
laying the foundations of
participatory politics, local
government and power to the
people." (The Last Hope, p.






\ -.

_ I i,
. *& :;
. _t. : -. .. ,

-------" -- I




The third ingredient we
need is a parliamentary
branch composed not only of
actual Members of Parliament
but. also, at this stage, of
candidates for elections who
are necessarily prospective
members of parliament.
This agency of the move-
ment must of course be
equipped with such rules and
constitutional provisions as
are necessary to ensure the
proper selection of its mem-
bers and leaders and its
proper operation under the
umbrella of the entire or-


Finally, we need respons-
ible government in Tapia in
the form of a National Execu-
tive, a Council of Representa-
tives and Standing Com-
mittees which are efficient
and in which those who hold
the sacred trust of office are
accountable for their steward-
ship and responsible for their
In this regard, we must
hasten to define Executive
responsibilities more exactly
than we have done in the
past; we must have rules of
campaigning, nomination,
election and ranking which
would recognize merit, com-
petence and healthy competi-
tiveness and penalise intrigue,
cabal and faction.




Mr. Chairman,
The most important
single source of self-
doubt among our people
has been the tragic
degeneration of the old
national movement to the
point where manipulation
of people is its only
resort and the Govern-
ment automatically treats
the people like a pappy-
The historic reaction to
this reversion to the worst
pattern of colonial govern-
ment and politics was the
resounding Black Power
Revolt of 1970 which finally
shattered the old regime of
After the young blacks
finally repudiated a black
Government and called for
power to the people and
unity of African and Indian,
no longer has it been possible
to assume that one race
would vote for Tweedledum
and the other race for
The new realities of race
have thrown our bigpappy
leaders into a tizzy, into
total panic, into complete
All that now holds that
rickety tinning structure up
is the cement of being in
office, the power of Govern-
mentpropaganda on Radio
and on TV not to mention
the old rusty nail from 1956.
The Government have
become so powerful stupid
that all they can now do are
negative things. And they
are doing more negative
things now than ever, as if
failure gone to they head.
And since they got the
lucky oil bonanza at the end
of 1973, since they win the
lottery, they like they drink
four cents rum and they
twelve cents drunk.
We are now on a trip to
endless projects, projects, pro-
jects, projects. That is the
scene we going off on.
Grandiose projects for
n a t i onal reconstruction;
hastily conceived projects...
Since April 5, 1967, we
have been waiting for big
tourist hotels in Tyrico Bay
and Mayaro.
Since April 5, 1967, we

meant's Collapse

were to construct a ten-
Sstorey project on the site of
the Old Fire Brigade Station
on Hart Street. I feel that is
a Nancy-Story Project.
Since April 5, 1967, we
were to have a Ministry of all
the Talents in the Ministry
of Finance, Planning and
Development with the Prime
Minister in charge and endless
Ministers under him dealing
with day-to-day matters with
this, with that, with the
other and the thorough.
There is a complete paraly-
sis of the administration in
this country. You go to the
hospital and it is prowling
beasts about thy way; stone
thy pillow, earth thy bed.
It is pointless to go over
the sad tale of sanitation,
drainage, water, roads,
schools, the complete incapa-
city of the Government to
plan and deliver the ordinary
necessities of life. These com-
pletely academic Ministers
cannot even organise a dance.
Waste, incompetence, in-
sensitivity and inefficiency
Everybody knows the score
and it is easy for those
responsible to take before
before before take them and
the real issues in public
accountability are exposed to
the public gaze.
The biggest issue in public
accountability are the out-
rageous profits which the
oil companies are taking
home and the losses which
this country is incurring
probably in the amount of
$800m between 1971 and the
end of 1975.
The Attorney General is
scrutinising some chickie-
chong irregularities, losses and
thefts, in the amount of less
than $/m. The thiefing is bad
enough but the taking is
nearly 2,000 times more
The most sinister develop-
ment of all is the escalation
not of pruriency and corrup-
tion and immorality in public
affairs but the overtones of
Amidst all the robber-talk
of smelters that only melt
away and the sweet talk
about I am for black dignity,
the most insidious develop-
ment of all is the sabre-
rattling, the emergence of the
Ministry of National Security
as one of the top two Min-

sitries along with the Ministry
of Finance.
It is now a straight case of
money and guns, of pointed
consultations with the Brig-
adier,of Police Paradise.
NotV.to mention the other
kind of terror such as the
spate of firing now taking
place at the National Broad-
casting Service, Six-Ten Radio.
The thread in every one
of these cases is that the
money'of taxpayers is being
employed to satisfy sheer
whimsy and to ensure the
zigzagging survival of a single
Brothers and Sisters, We
frying, in we own fat.
If you fear the fruit, pluck
the blossoms early. You can
see now why the Senate
could not allow the Tapia
Motion of No-confidence to
come before thecountry. We
would have cut this rotten
Government to smithereens.
Rather than face that annihi-
lation, they preferred to block
the process of free discus-
sion even in Parliament itself.
You may think they have
gone stark, raving mad, as do
all those whom the Gods will
destroy. When God ready to
kill bachak, he does give them
wing to fly.
The inevitable result of this
madness is that the country
shudders in fear.
On top of that, people are
intimidated by the tentacles
of the State which are reach-
ing now into all the corners
of business and snuffing out
our freedom.
Half of the jobs in the
country are directly under
the party's control. It is not
simply a question of appoint-
ments in the Public Service,
appointments in the agencies
of State, where, constitution-
ally the Prime Minister is
Czar and King and Caesar.
The Government now has
probably half a billion dol-
lars tied up in T&TEC;
PTSC; Trinidad Telephones --
Port Authority; TTT, Six-Ten;
Caroni Limited, Orange
Grove; Tesoro; TRINTOC;
the National Commercial
Bank; the Hilton Hotel; the
Flour Mill; the Lime Factory;
Trinidad Printing & Packag-
ing; and a vast number of
little enterprises which are in
hock to either the DFC or the







Seven Lea

Mr. Chairman,
When we embarked on this journey,
nearly seven years ago, it was a quest
for grass roots development by com-
munity self-help
for illumination on our degradation
and the source of our division by intel-
lectual exploration
for subversion of the consciousness
formed by centuries of imperial bullying
and brutality and years of neo-colonial
domination and duplicity
for self-knowledge and self-confidence
and elevation of the spirit
for psychological and moral engage-
ment to the task of reconstruction.
When we launched the ship of Tapia we did
not glory in the power of large numbers. We wanted
instead political associations small enough to permit
individual participation a climate of equality ...
genuine conversation and exchange.
When we began, we had visions of:

Tapia economic enterprises;


Tributes to Tapiamen

Mr. Chairman,
I would like to report at this point that,
just as we anticipated when in 1968, we
disagreed with Dr. Moko and decided to take
the long road, the evolution of Tapia,
especially in the last two years, has thrown up
a whole cast of community leaders, dedicated
political brothers and sisters, the men and
women who will make or break our future
and by extension the future of the country.
These -soldiers of the Movement, whether they
be from Sangre Grande in the East or Diego Martin
in the West; from Maracas or Morvant or Laventille
in the North; or Siparia or Santa Flora, La Brea or
Fyzabad or Point in the Deep South; from Marabella
or Vistabella; from Arima or Arouca; wherever they
hail from, these are our fishers of men, the pushers of
Tapia. They alone are our miracle workers. We must
count our blessings that we have them and bring
them to the forefront of our politics.
We must count our blessings too that we have
had and continue to have a committed full-time staff
at the' Central Office. I want to pay particular tribute
to: Lloyd Taylor, the first Tapiaman to abandon a
career out of dedication and love for country;
the Harris Brothers, Allan and Michael, whose
extraordinary commitment to our Movement is an
everlasting source of wonder;
the noiseless cadres whose political leadership is
anchored not in the glamour-world of platform antics
but in the Committees and in the backroom work .
that keeps our fund-raising moving, our printing
presses rolling and our precious newspaper going
strong after six years to the day.
Permit me to pay tribute here to the people
who have given their all and retired for a hlle.
Lennox Grant and Ruthven Baptiste are perhaps the
ost worthy of the names.





Opposition Unity


National Unity ?

Brothers and Sisters,
Tapia is ready and there
is only one final question.
Should we go alone or
should we -carry the
assembled opposition
with us? The country
wants to know the
The answer is the answer
we have always given. We
anticipate a lasting alliance
of all those forces, inside and
outside of the governing
party, which oppose the
regime of racial politics,
Doctor politics, protest poli-
tics and the politics of
Put it another way. Tapia
will find it congenitally
impossible to enter any
marriage of convenience with
any forces, in or out of
opposition to the Government,
which are ideologically com-
mitted to old-time opportunist
What we are always willing
to do is to enter joint action
with any valid political
interest if the aim is to create
for Trinidad and Tobago a
workable political system
capable of containing legiti-
mate political differences.
In short, Tapia is pursuing
the unity of our Nation as
distinct from mere unity of
the Opposition.
Against this background,
we propose to participate in
a properly constituted as-
sembly of opposition forces
which we expect, not to form
any shot-gun alliance, in time
for the election, but to decide
on certain concrete areas of
collaboration to win back
political rights and freedoms
for all the people and to give
Trinidad and Tobago a chance
to put in office a competent,
committed, multi-racial party,
capable after it takes office,
of rallying the entire country
to creative effort and endea-

I do not know what is
going to happen after the
Opposition forces convene
their meeting.
All I can say is that we
anticipate a Grand Remons-
trance in this country,
another rising among the
people, as has recurred over
and over and over during the
February Revolution and will
doubtless recur until the
climax finally comes.
In that final alignment of
forces, Tapia will inexorably
be a cutting edge.
We see that vast multitude
shouting for freedom.
We see farmers, organised
workers some in their unions;
we see unorganised workers,
see the unemployed;
We envisage, the youth,
the women, the professionals;
we envisage intellectuals;
teachers, students; we see
businessmen, artisans, trades-
men, craftsmen.
We see black, we see
brown, we see white, we see
pink and yellow; African,
Indian, European, Syrian,
Portuguese, Jews and Gentile.
We see a colossal gather-
ing of the people. In fact, we
are sounding the reveille to
summon them to action.
On the other side, will be
the flatterers, the deceivers,
the time-servers; the yes-men;
the big-pappies and the
exploiters and all those big
or small who will never bite
the hand that feeds them.
We see two sides shaping
up to settle the constitutional
question as to what kind of
Trinidad and Tobago we are
going to have.
Public Order or Popular
Participation? That has always
been the choice.
I am proud and happy
that so many of us have
come here today to say where
we stand without equivoca-
tion and without fear.


I I ---


From this upheaval, we have emerged with
clear vision of the Tapia New World and with a
vanguard party in the good sense of
"a seasoned cadre, philosophically coherent and
tightly organised against the background of a
tolL. 7hle spectrum of genuine political and
ideological differences with a tested and proven
capacity to survive as a cohesive political
organisation." (The Last Hope, p. 5)
We must now convert a vanguard party into a
popular movement. We must widen the circle of
excitement, involvement, commitment, dedication.
Every Tapia person can doubtless remember
the excitement when they first discovered the move-
ment and the process of growth to full or fuller
dedication with all the doubts and fears, and ups and
downs, the hot and cold; the anguish, the agony, the
Today September 28 is a day fornrededication.
In a sense, there must first be a mortification, a killing
off of the old self as our Movement is born again for
redoubled purpose. Tapia has gone through such
development many many times before.
This time is perhaps the most important time
of all because we are taking the plunge into the sea
of power. And either we go sink or we go swim. It
all depends on what we do, all Tapia supporters,
sympathisers, friends, associates and members. All of
us who share the Tapia dream must speak now or
forever hold our peace.

Tapia Rehabilitation Committees in the
Tapia political clubs;
Tapia cultural centres; and
some kind of Tapia paper as the voice
of the New National Movement.

We knew that the time would come for a
political party, one that would emerge from the work,
with confident, competent membership, well organ-
ised in the constituencies.
You can see why we have called These seven
lean years. Tapia has only partly fulfilled its promise.
I must confess that we underestimated the task; that
we have had to learn by bitter experience how little
can be done when control of the State is in other

Fortunately, the explosion of the February
Revolution relieved us of the responsibility of forging
a national conscience by ourselves. In the crisis, the"
communities and the interests have been finding their




A Memorable Day

AS I look back after the
event I remember, with
a smile, many of the
little moments which pre-
ceeded the big day. I can
still hear Beau Tewarie's
voice, at many an Execu-
tive and Council meeting,
passionately urging on us
the importance of this
Assembly and how neces-
sary it was for us to
bring out our people.
I can still see Ivan
Laughlin, looking haggard
and drawn, saying with-
out raising his voice, "If
it is that we cannot, after
all this time, bring out a
large number of people
then we spinning top in


Or even theExecutive
meeting prior to the
Assembly when passions
ran high and much
energy was expanded on,
*of all things, Food.
_And on Sunday 28
September all the
anxieties, all the tensions
all the extraordinary
effort proved not to have
been wasted. For not

only was this Assembly,
the first in a series, a
roaring success, but in
many ways it far exceeded
our wildest dreams.
The success of a politi-
cal occasion, for histori-
ans or even for non-
participants, must always
be judged on such issues
as the size of the crowd,.
the impact on the
country, the quality of
the politics.


History will undoubt-
edly bear out, on the
basis of such criteria, the
opinion ", advanced by
speaker after speaker at
the Assembly,' that the-
occasion represented the
most important advance
ever made by Tapia,and
held great significance for
the country itself.
But History will never
be able to document
what was easily the most
noteworthy feature of
the occasion. For' the
success of the Assembly
was crowned not by the
size of the crowd, as large
as it was, not by the
formal speeches, as

effervescent as those
were, but more than
anything else, by the way
the membership of the
organisation took over
the entire proceedings
and made it their own.
Indeed the Agenda
called for a long period
of time to be devoted to
general discussion and
debate, and this we had,
but we had much more.
It was a family gathering,
symbolized by the fact
that the Executive mem-
bers were asked to leave-

the stage, but made real
by the determined parti-
cipation of all the mem-
bers, both those who
spoke and those who
merely listened.
Indeed the reai joy of
the day was the fact that
'there were several
Assemblies in progress at
the same time. Discipline

and Order and "rules of
conduct" went out the
door and Participation
was the order of the day.
In short for those with
the sensitivity to recognize
it, The Tapia House Group
finally went out of
existence on Sunday and
the National Movement
of Tapia was born.



Letters to

The Editor

A Comedy

of Horrors

The Editor,
Almost two years ago
this country was enter-
tained by a comedy
entitled 'Resignation of a
Prime Minister.' This was
in three parts. A resigna-
tion speech. A delegation
to beseech this Prime
Minister to come back
and finally the trium-
phant return of this P.M.
Recently, this country was
again treated to another
comedy this time entitled 'An
Interview with a P.M.' And,
more recently another 12
minutes play was staged
entilted 'Reshuffling of a
Let us now examine some
of the full implications of
these comedies In this resigna-
tion speech the P.M., in his
performance before a packed
house mentioned that he was
totally fed up with life as a
politician because everything
that he worked for was
betrayed by the people around
him, the citizens, and even his
Caribbean colleagues.
He also mentioned that all
his aspirations have been
dashed by ineffeciency, in-
competence and dishonesty
of his Cabinet and party
colleagues and that he thinks
that it is time for him to step
down and return to his trust-
worthy books. This raised an
uproar that sent people scat-
tering to this speechmaker for
him to 'Please Stay Don't


For a while, this actor
remained behind the curtains
and would not acknowledge
the cheers of the audience to
'come back.'A delegation was
appointed to go and get him
and the audience waited
patiently. He came out at
This time he was over-
joyed, no longer dismayed
and downspirited by all that
his Cabinet colleagues were
doing but happy to see old
faces again. And so, .that
brought down the curtain on
a fine Sunday afternoon in
September 1973.
Let us now examine the
second comedy entilted 'An
Interview with a P.M.'. The
co-star of this play was an
interviewer whose main qualifi-
cation seems to be a 'trip to
In this comedy the P.M.
was- taken aback by all the

complaints of ineffeciency
reaching his desk, he was also
very concerned about the
Public Treasury what he
calls accountability of Public
funds and recommended that
the Auditor-General's report
should go to Parliament and
not to any minister.


He was also very concerned
that the National Housing
Authority was mismanaging
the affairs of citizens by way
of arbitrary increases, shoddy
workmanship and so on.
He felt something should
be done. He said that the
Auditor-General's department
is 'one of the few Gov't
dep'ts where work is per-
formed'. He was shocked to
know that the public was so
dissatisfied with the running
of the affairs of the country.
He also said that as far as
he was concerned there
would be no interference
with the Junior Sec. Pro-
gramme, but what he did not
say was 'Who don't like it get
to hell out of here' or as
Jamaica's Manley 'You can
catch the next plane to


I turn now to the last play
'Reshuffling of a Cabinet'.
This one is really a tragi--
comedybecause it means that
the country will be saddled
with these same incompetent,
corrupt men again. Between
Dec. 1969 to now there have
been four Cabinet re-shuffles.
Within this time there have
been two new faces 0.
Padmore and G. Chambers.
So, in essence we are
saddled with the same bunch,
Corrupt to the hilt, spineless,
unprincipled, totally inefficient
the whole bunch of them.
No manhood. Only aspirations
are to drive a big car, appear
at cocktail parties, mis-
appropiate public funds, and
build a mansion for a house.
This is their burning ambition.
This latest re-shuffle is non-
sensical, the height of stupid-
ity for nothing will change.
The same people the P.M.
has accused of incompetence
and inefficiency are the very
same people he has around
him only in a different posi-
tion. So,same team. Different

Continued on Page 11.


That Cabinet Reshuffle

Same Old Folks

Same Old Hoax

THE Prime Minister's
Cabinet reshuffle is most
disheartening. It shows,
after 17 or so years in the
saddle either a complete
lack of understanding or
appreciation of the Coun-
try's problems, or a lack
of concern for this
Country and an overriding
concern only for vote
Our Country is falling
apart at the seams. School
children even are refusing to
go to school, teachers are
boycotting, workers of all
classes and levels consider
it the height of achievement
to do as little as possible.
Schooling is inadequate,
public buildings are inade-
quate, and unhabitable (the
Princes Building, the old Fire
Brigade building and con-
demned Ministry of health
building on Hart Street, the
Central Library both in
Port-of-Spain and Couva -
the Ministries of Planning and
Development and Works, the
Red House, Post Offices.etc.),
roads our only means of
internal transportation are
grossly inadequate causing
deep frustration, loss of pro-
duce, most expensive damage
to vehicles and wastage of
productive time.
Our attitudes of superiority,
arrogance, and selfishness
have made us most unpopular
with all our Caribbean neigh-
bours even in sport. Town
and Country Planning is a
fasco. Financial control has
shackled output.
And what does our P.M.
do? After nearly 20 years of
guiding us, leading us, setting
our example and surely
observing us, noting needs,
requirements etc?
He reshuffles his Cabinet a
few months before an elec-
What can Messrs. Prevatt,

Robinson and Gomes in
Finance, Barrow in Labour,
Padmore in Agriculture,
Campbell in National Security,
McLean in Works etc., do in
the time remaining before the
next election? Barely learn
the workings of their new
Ministries. Just what does the
P.M.hope to achieve?
It seems to me that all he
hopes to achieve is to again
fool the people by professing
to be dynamic and 'taking
But surely these moves in
fact amount to nothing!
Surely the P.M. should address
himself to the more basic ills
of the Country like trying to
reverse the current trend and
start attracting the most able
citizens to senior professional
and administrative posts in
the Civil Service._

At the present time the
Service only gets the dregs of
the available talent, the
better talents being attracted
to the more lucrative and
rewarding positions outside
the Service.
Let us face it, it is these
Civil Servants as the P.M.
must realise who are really
responsible for the achieve-
ments or lack of achievements
of the Country.
The only qualification a
politician really needs is the
ability to win votes, and this
places him in the highest
executive position in the land.
A recognized ability to lie
and connive is a known and
accepted technique of win-
ning votes. When this type of
character is backed up and
advised by the dregs of the
available talent you have the
Trinidad situation.
No amount of shuffling of
iCbinet will alter the basics of
the problem. We should be

examining the means of
getting the best brains avail-
able applied to our problems.
SThe best talents in the
land must vie for senior pro-
fessional and administrative
positions in the Service and
this can be achieved by:
a) making these positions
comparable, in terms of
conditions etc., to those
offered in non-Governmen
tal organizations,
b) streamlining the bureau-
cratic processes so that
achievements can actually
be made by such people
and their ideas and pro-
posals not get bogged down
in the ridiculous time and
effort wasting channels
now necessary,
c) making ability and not
seniority the most impor-
tant factor in promotion.
The P.M. must recognize
that it is.not necessary or
desirable that each and every
matter, decision etc., must go
to and be taken by the
vote winners' in Cabinet.
The day to day running of
the Country would actually
be possible, smoother and
more expeditious if every
matter did not have to go to
Cabinet, and through the
lengthy processes to get to
and from there, before any
action could be taken. There
is a need to decentralise the
decision making processes, Mr.
Surely these should be
some of the lines along which
our P.M. should be thinking
at this time. Just shuffling
Cabinet can achieve nothing
but the winning of votes and
this only if we are still
gullible enough, after all
these years, to fall for it

A Seriously
Concerned Citizen.

Dear Sir,
Please allow me to
express my feelings
through your medium on
a matter which concerns
me personally, likewise
my counterparts. How-
ever, I shall refrain from
mentioning my name for
fear of victimization.
It is over two years now,
almost three years that my
batch of Nursing Assistants
who are trained; have
attended Nursing School,'
taken Examinations and were
successful and are working at
various hospitals and health
centres throughout the coun-
try without getting a salary.
We have been made to
work night shifts, and perform
all duties just like any other
staff nurse or nursing assist-
ant. We had to purchase our
own uniforms and buy books

for classes out of our own
Now after completing
training and everything; No
Appointments, No Salary.
When we inquire at senior
administration level about our
position we are givdn the


Back pay was paid to
public and civil servants and
also daily paid government
employees. Not a cent back
pay has been paid to our
batch of Nursing Assistants.
Can Government, a responsible
Government run such a dis-
criminating operation?
This is defrauding labourers
of their wages. It is crying to
heavens for vengeance. To
what ends are we being used?
We have asked the Minister
of Health, time and time

again about our appointments.
His reply is always one of
"promises and later". Trans-
port cost has gone up, the
cost ofliving has also gone up,
rent etc.
Yet no 'back pay, no
appointments. We are tired of
keeping quiet, we want the
public to know whats going
on. We have to work night
shifts this entails an extra
meal. Where are we to get
this money from?
The Hon. Minister of
Health Mr. Kamalladin
Mohammed on his first day
as Minister of Health, toured
the General Hospital and saw
it fit and appointed Indian
Dieticians and cooks to the
institution. He as a Cabinet
minister has such authority -
delegated authority.
We the Nursing Assistants
who have been working for

Continued on Page 11.

The Invisible Nurses


From Page 10
positions. The P.M. should
know because he used to piay
This move shows that the
Gov't has reached a political
cul-de-sac. No avenues open
to it. Political pollution all
pathways clogged up like the
drains and toilets in most
primary schools. This Gov't
has outlived its time.

Dear Sir, i
On Monday 29th Sept-
ember at Vessigny Village
La Brea about 9.30 p.m.,
three boys between the ages
of 13-15 years old were
chatting, up comes a police
jeep at a very slow pace and
stops, in front of them.
Out comes the policemen
from their jeep and ordered
the boys to pick up a big
"Macco" plank that they
were sitting on to carry it
across the road.
After the policemen had
made the boys lift up that big
.piece of plank finding that
they did'not do enough bad
turn for one day got back in
their jeep and drove about
one hundred yards from the
first incident.
The policemen then started
to break down a shed, which
.the unemployed fellows in
the village built.
In. the shed the fellows
used to make all kinds of
handicraft and sell, well now
they have nowhere to make
and sell their handicraft now,
because the police broke
down their shed and if they
ever attempt to build another
it would be broken down
On the same afternoon I
spoke to one of the boys and
asked him why he had lifted
the heavy plank and also if
he had put that plank there.
He told me he did not put it
there and he then told me
"Boy yuh mad or what yuh
ent see how them police and

Comedy of Horrors

This reshuffle just shows
up its further incompetence
because the P.M. has taken
-over the Finance Ministry but
he has linked this up with
Planning and Development

them only shootingand killing
little boys all about the
country and they dosen 't do
them nothing, boy dey wid
ah well shoot mih dead."
The other boy told me
that his chest was hurting
from the time he picked up
the plank until now, and that
he would have to go to the
doctor at the La Brea Health
Office on Tuesday because
his groin had begun to swell.
When -i was a Scout my
Scout-Master used to tell me
that I must do at least one
good turn a day, but what I
would like to know if when
someone joins the Police
Service if the Commissioner
of Police tells them that they
must do at least two bad turns
a day.
The people of Vessigny
would like to know if Tony
May is training his men to
protect and serve the people
of Trinidad and Tobago or
to plunder and terrorise the
people of Trinidad and
If he is training them to
protect and serve, then May
knows nothing about the
meanings of the words "To
protect and Serve".
If he is training them to
plunder and terrorise, as they
are presently doing, then,
May should change Police
Service to Pirate Service and
May should let the Prime
Minister appoint him the first
Commissioner of The Pirate
Angry Villager.

and Housing. What rank
stupidity in, view of all the
talk of Development and Aid
Housing which the P.M.
was so concerned about -
yet this is an attached min-
istry. With all this talk of
Petrochemical complex, Petro-
dollars, OPEC, new tax pro-
cedures, new drilling instilla-
tions etc, the position of
Petroleum in the Economy
- one wonders how this could
be attached to another area
- CARICOM and be given
to a man who already has his
hands full all with these greedy
food importers and the
Gov't own senseless but
profitably corrupt importation
of food and inflation.

This is only why I say for
too long has this country
been saddled with political
dead-weights. Three of these
have been demoted and given
positions under the P.M. in
his Finance ministry. In addi-
tion to this
A lawyer is now Minister
of Works.
An accountant Minister of

A clerical officer Minister
of National Security.

And so the absurd list
reads on. This latest move has
fooled no one. Neither has
all the other plays. The whole
bunch of political traitors

must go. No reshuffling. The
whole Cabinet must be expel-
led lock, stock and barrel. No
change is going to come to
this country unless:-

(1) this capitalist system is

(2) the political structure
is totally re-organised;

(3) the people have a real
say in the running of
the country.

Anum Bankole.

like he. Can the minister
imagine having hungry child-
ren to feed? One girl who has
since married, husband gave
her a good licking because
she could not show him her
back pay.
It is not for wanting to
talk that I write to you but
it is just that we are so
frustrated, tired of walking
back and forward from the
ministry getting all sorts of
answers and having to be
insulted by other nurses and
clerks, who throw slangs at us
like, "what you bothering me
for? Don't you know that
you en't employed."
Thanking you for this
A Disgusted
Nursing Assistant.


From Page 10
three years, performing all
duties faithfully; no salary,
no appointments. If he
dosen't want to appoint us,
well at least for Christ sake,
please give us a salary.
What is more disturbing
and ridiculous is the fact that
the Minister of Health could
publicly state that the hos-
pitals are over staffed with
nurses, and on another
occasion that the hospitals
need more nurses and that he
is going to accommodate
locals who were trained

The key to

What then is our presence
there at these medical institu-
tions providing? Are we not
working steadily for these
years providing service?
Hospital authorities say
that thy know nothing about
us. Service Commission says
that the Minister of Health is
the person to whom we
should go.
Tell me, is this a respons-
ible minister? Is this true
ministerial responsibility, even
more so cabinet responsibility?
He should be made to j-rsign
for it is a disgrace.
My God, we are hungry,
we have children to feed just

a secure

Insurance policy.


TRINIDAD, W.I. Telephones: 31421 7

Police harassing


in Vessigny

Invisible Nurses



Employers must certify for their
employees who claim benefit -
absence from work and loss of earn-
ings. Do this PROMPTLY. Don't
delay payment of benefit to your

For further information
See your district NIB office





Mrs. Andrea Talbutt,
Research Institut for
Study of Man,
162, East 78th Street,
New York, N.Y. 10021, TRINIIOc
Ph. L. h 8448. ***


We find it utterly
impossible to continue in
silent hope while we
suffer the inconvenience
of life in the John John
Community Centre and
the inadequate hearing
that our plight has been
given by the reputable
authorities in housing.
We are without proper
homes and it could be said
that we are today virtually
unsheltered. We form part of
an original number of 17
families, who were rendered
homeless by a fire which,
one Tuesday morning in
May, 1975, razed to the
ground the 8 houses in which
we lived.
We are from John John
located in the political con-
stituency of South East Port-
of-Spain. And we feel and
know that we are more than
just fire victims.

A few/ favoured ones from
among us have secured shelter
in the' decanting centre. But
the large majority of us have
failed to impress upon tbe
Minister of Housing and the
National Housing Authority
the urgency of our case.
Some persons have managed
to beg a lodging from good
But the greatest number
still ketching we nennen. We
have had to make do with
the John John Community
Centre. There we have had
to put up in the crudest of
conditions, turning it into
literally a house of refuge.
We are therefore unwillingly
depriving our community of
communal space.
It is 16 long weeks now
that we have been seeking
without fail the assistance of
the responsible authorities.
Yet we have not only failed
to find shelter but as well,
some promise of hope for the
To make our case abun-
dantly clear we feel compelled
to detail the disregard we
have had to endure while we
sought redress.
a) The first day of the
fire. Our visit to NHA was
for the most part futile as
one Mrs. Harewood found
it impossible for her to
give us a hearing thatmorn-






ing. During on the spot
investigations later that
same day she found the
dwelling previously occu-
pied by Maggie Shallow
burnt, sagging, and doused
'in water. Yet that was
good enough for Maggie to
b) Monica Hackshaw, in a
bid to by-pass the red
tape, decided to go straight
to Ivan Williams. Her
speed was out by certain N
officials who told her that
Mr. Williams was not avail-
able. Only moments later
I. Williams was seen. In a
fit of anger Monica kicked
up a stink with her
deceivers. For this she was
labelled a whore.
c) For the delegation that
went to Mr. B. Barrow,
the then Minister ofHous-
S ing it was more hopeless-
ness as the Minister urged
us to look for place to
rent. There was nothing
that he could do. It was
impossible for him to lay
hands on' houses to help
all we people.
d) Eya Baptiste, an
ageing pensioner who prior
to the fire lived with an
aunt. It happened that the
poor aunt is too ill and too
old to rough it in the com-
munity- centre. Hospital
authorities had to treat
the old aunt but could not
discharge her since there
was no place for her. NHA
was contacted but from
them there has not even
been an acknowledgement.
e) Week before Friday
(Sept. 19, 1975) saw signs
of a little concern. Mr.

Cheeseman and Mrs.
Harewood came to see we
in the Community Centre.
But Madame Harewood
could not resist going to see
if Maggie Shallow's house
was still standing. Then
she enquired of Shallow:
"Who give you permission
to go in the centre but
yor house ain't burnt?"
f) Monday September 22,
1975. Both Mrs. Louisa
Ross and Mr. Gabriel
Richards hustled down to
see Mrs. Harewood having
been told of her visit the
previous Friday.

"We hear you want to see
us. 1"
"No, who could say that.
I didn't leave any message. "
Then ups with the phone
to her ear and dialled:
"You want to see them?
Send them over to you?"
But we failed again. "Well
we have no houses. Any-
way don't come back.
Well come to see you

g) Medford Home. He
went to see yet another
official. Mr. Carrington.
Same story. No house
available. Horne should
look for a house costing
$20,000 and under. NHA
could give a loan for that
kind' of money. But
Home cannot foot that
$20,000 bill, nor can he
get a house for less.
h) Barrow again. This
time Charles Elliot decided
to take a lag herself at the
Minister in one of those
futile Tuesday morning

secessions. Two months
ago. Another repeat per-
formance. But why not
ask you friends to take
you in. Elliot's predica-
ment is such that he like a
newly born baby. He
without passport, ID card,
National Insurance Certifi-
cate and the very paper
that proves him to be a
fire victim.
i) That is the sum total of
our- plight and'-we do not
know where next we could
turn. We doh even have
the means to help we bring
our predicament before
John Public. We like black
sheep way get tied up
without grass or water.
Now we turning toweselves
and we community for help
and for advice as to what
should be done. We refuse
to continue to be in the way
of a community that needs
space, the little way God
bless we with, for communal
and cultural purposes. So we
have been searching weself
these last days.
In John John we find
many vacant rooms owned
by the National Housing
Authority. In Quevedo Cir-
cular buildings Nos. 1,2 and
3, with lights and constructed
2 years ago, are all empty.
Building No. 5 in Pleasance
Terrace we found six vacant
In Marcano Quarry over 5
empty decanting centres exist.
Rent ranginf from $9 to
$50 per mth. Twin-planning
buildings, Blocks A and B, in
all 3 family flats and 1
bachelor's quarter empty.

Here too rent ranges from
$9 to $60.
That is enough evidence
to satisfy we that we under-
going unnecessary wooding.
Even so the Urban Redevelop-
ment Council's schemes must
mean that our age-long fire
harzards were to be demolish-
ed in'any case. Weren't we to
be sent temporarily into
decanting centres?
We have seen and have
been seen. We have spoken
and have been spoken to.
Now we writing. We don't
know whoelsebesides us this
matter concerns. That is why
we copying our plight through
the Media and the Press to
John Public.


In a population of over
one million people some
good Samaritan go hear we
cries. We refuse to believe
that the Carrington's and the
Williams', the Cheeseman's and
the Harewood's and even the
Barrow's cyar help because
they bad-mind. We believe
that they don't even have
control of their very lives.
So we want to broadcast
the issue far and wide. We
anticipate that we go need
police protection from those
invisible forces that control
Housing officials and the
empty flats that we have un-
covered in our community

Residents of
John John
Community Centre.

Our printing-plant is open at
The Tapia House 82-84 St. Vincent
Street, Tunapuna.

Kindly phone orders to: 662-5126.

- I I'.I'C


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