Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00072147/00203
 Material Information
Title: Tapia
Physical Description: no. : illus. ; 43 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Tapia House Pub. Co.
Place of Publication: Tunapuna
Creation Date: March 7, 1976
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: UF00072147:00203

Full Text

30 Cents

: SUNDAY MARCH 7, 1976
, t

Vol. 6 No. 10




THERE was one consolation about going east on
Carnival Tuesday morning when everybody was
going west: the traffic was easier.
But at Morvant Junction from where an
unbroken line of traffic stretched east as far as
Sixth Avenue, Barataria, the air rang with excite-
The city-bound vehicles were packed with
people. Pieces of costumes hung from the
windows. It was when the road make to walk, and
the vehicles had to give way to the masqueraders

who chose to walk in

HAS "the Trinidad Carni-
val" come to mean the
Port-of-Spain Carnival?
The original plan had
been to spend the two
days of Carnival finding
the answer to this ques-
tion. But by Carnival
Tuesday morning it was
only shame that made
Lloyd Taylor and me still
head east to Tunapuna,
Caroni and Arima rather
than west to Port-of-
Spain where the jamming
was quite obviously going
to be.
Even then we gave
ourselves a 5 p.m. dead-
line by which time to
end up in the city.
Along the Eastern
Main Road to Tunapuna
there was the painful sight
of hapless hundreds of

the streets,

crisply brilliant in their costumes.
There is nothing quite like a Carnival Tuesday'
morning for that. The spirit is fresh and over-
flowing. The Jouvay spontaneity isn't there and
it's not as if the people suddenly found them-
selves in the streets, literally in dusters and pyja-
mas to greet the glorious dawn. The Carnival
Tuesday morning is more like a celebration of
For at Jouvay people just come out into the
streets. But in the sunshine of Carnival Tuesday
morning they come out to show what they have.
And it may be an eight-foot high float a
humming bird perched on a branch or just a

people awaiting trans-
port. It seemed almost
criminally wasteful that
two of us, with a whole
car to ourselves, should
be going in the opposite


And as much was sug-
gested to us at the main
junctions, the ('roisee,
Mt. Lambert, Mt. D'Or
Road, Curepe and Tuna-
puna, by people who
thought we were just
about to turn round( and
make another Pll trip.
Lloyd Taylor mut-
tered all the while about
the present "impoverish-
ment" of Tu napu na
Carnival which he had
known as a boy. It used

to be a big thing climax-
ing ata point on the Main
Road where the Fire
Station now stands.
So to the Fire Station
we went. Uniformed fire-
men stood about the front
of the station watching
the people pass by.
"You want a con-
ductor?" one of them
shouted to the driver of'
an open-tray van which
fast filled up with some
15 commuters.
Returning toC(urepe
Junction we saw thal (ihe
Main Road in Tulna)puna
bore some signs of prepla-
ration for a local carnival.
Many No-Parking signs
were ahol, aind seveCral
young policemeinn postal
on foot looking ,is be-
miused and lonely as I hey

small girl in Ma',in oraye cap ana jumpsuir, her
cheeks daubed with rouge.
From a distance of several weeks from the
actual Tuesday morning it's much easier to con-
ceive of turning your back on it and; with a hih
sense of duty, proceed to see what other people
do while so many' head for Port-of-Spain and its
storied Carnival.
"Carnival Off the Beaten Track" was how I
saw the stor'r. "The beaten track, I wrote in in
notes. "is the Grand Savannah horserace track
where the big Carnival bands increasingly' concen-
trate and where the media focus tends almost
exclusively to be."

do on such occasions.
There were also a couple
of makeshift refreshment
stalls and bars booming
hi-fi calypso.
The Southern Main
Road was quiet. We were
heading to ('haguanas to
test out0 the thesis that
the Indian population
don't take part in Carni-
val. And for a one-diay
snap survey, C('aguanas
seeCmed alutlhoritat iive
e'lnoui ll as a I'air-sized
o\\11n in the centre of
where Ithe largest numberI
Slindlian people live.
SI \\ ias clearly aI
holldal ;iiIlonlg (le Sonuthern
Main Road I, I ittle Iral ic.
shops cs closedl e trucks
loaileil \ ith cliairred
stilkl\s stood I:iirked at lie

Here and there we
saw knots of hot-shirted
people awaiting transport,
Indians ~ua Africans. We
wondered to which ('arni-
val these spectators re-


A little past Kelly
Village \\ve stopped at a
group of Indian mNasque-
raders holding bottles of
(Charlie's \ine. Thiey were
in brilliant pn.k, wearing
\ inLgs ol rich lace bor-
derIed in red velvel. Thlie
costuiie' \\ ere \well made.
neall \ I'i isliel. and I1 ,'-
spoke al-, iiferenC appuro.ieli
ifrom the foil-and-lainie

( ollinUed on iPae 5

^ __ ___


IT WOULD surely come as a big surprise to many to learn
just who are the ones most interested in opening to its
widest the so-called backdoor to Parliament.
For many people would not have suspected that
Eric Williams is the man who has been and is now eve-n
more wanting to make the widest possible room for "back-
door entry" into Parliament. From there, eventually, into
the Cabinet of the country which he, of course,Expectsto
be his for another five years.
It is the same man who once sneered openly at his
party's Convention at Tapia's "backdoor entry" to Parlia-
ment. It is Williams.who loves, wants, and needs space for
roping into Parliament some of the nation's talented
ind ivid ials.
That is one pointed observation to be made about a
letter to the Guardian of February 28, 1976 by Dr.C.V.
Williams ishoping to make up for the deficiencies in a

party that is largely a
parade of time-worn and
inept people through a
constitutional amend-
ment of Section 58 (3) of
the Trinidad and Tobago
Constitution. That chap-
ter, Gocking reminds us,
has been amended once
before in 1970.
The Section sets
down the number of Min-
isters or members of
Cabinet who can be
drawn from the Senate.
Before the 1970 amend-
ment the number was
limited to two, but
starting with Overand
Padmore and Carlton
Gomes, there can now
be three Senator-Min-
But neither the
Amendment nor the men
it brought in affected the
paucity of talent in the
Executive of our country.
So Williams is at it again.
The evidence exam-
ined by Gocking is to be
found in two documents
that are related' in con-
tent and authorship. One
i's the Draft Constitution
of Trinidad and Tobago
1975 laid before Parlia-
ment by Cabinet.

The others the Joint
Select Committee's Bill
laid before Parliament by
a majority of parliamen-
tarians from the ruling
party. Neither of these
documents, in respect of
the quota that could be
drawn from the Senate,
carries, in the related
sections 86 (2) and 76 (3),
any curtailment on the
amount of persons that
can be made Ministers
from the Senate by the
Prime Minister.
In fact, the docu-.
ment produced by the
work of the Joint Select
Committee provides for
Ministers, from both
Houses, the right to speak
and join debate anywhere
in Parliament without
however the right to vote
in the House to which
they do not belong.
The consequences
which flow from these
measures are grave, says
More power than





Who wants the backdoor

Parliament to swing wide
Pariament I to IIl swn wId II"11I

ever would be concen-
trated in the hands of the
Prime Minister; the power
of the State may well be
wielded .by an extra-
parliamentary clique of
supposedly technocraticc"
senatorial Ministers res-
ponsible only to the
Prime Minister.
This would also
undermine "representa-
tive responsible Govern-
ment", and the "authority
of Parliament where the
people are supposed to
be represented."
The Government's
proposals also have con-
sequences for the Opposi-
tion as well.
This brings us to
the hard core of the
matter, the inadequacy

of opposition politics
which has long been a,
tiring constant, whatever'
the quality of the Gov-
ernment's several Cabinet
reshuffles. It has been
heaped scorn upon, and
at once, lamented as.
the peculiar failing of the
PNM by Eric Williams.
,The point, there-
fore, is that both Govern-
mendt and Opposition
have been wanting in
"talent" adequate to the
needs of a growingly
sophisticated nation in
which the young people
are likely to demand a
higher quality of repre-
That is the picture

everyone sees when the
several partial observa-
tions are put together.
We must, then, also
ask: what is fundamental
about the old regime's
"fundamental" constitu-
tion reform proposals
that are being put to a
citizenry anxious for the
new movement that may
chart the course out of
the morass lying all
around us?
The answer is that
nothing is earth-shattering
about them. Since the
Government is taking
care of itself only because
it thinks it is going to
remain in office. While
leaving the Opposition
comparatively more in-
adequate and less com-

,, I-~- --- -- -------------------------------


* Capaign Committee Citizens Advice Bureau

Is Venue for Council meetings

for Wednesday night rap sessions

and Cultural activities.

Check us out Tel: 62-25241

Cipriani Boulevard. P.O.S.



to the


petent to cope.
What is more, is that
Government's proposals
merely get around the
problem of harnessing
the nation's talent for
the good of Government
without really dealing
with the basic causes that
prevent our talented sons
and daughters from
facing fully the glare of
public s.rutiny.
And the factors res-
ponsible for the dearth
of talent in the politics
of our land go way.
beybiid Williams' obser-
vation that increasing
economic opportunities
have attracted people
away from the political
Cont'd on Back Page









Old mas band parades the Streets of Nottinghill. This area of Britain is mainly populated by black West Indians

To ease the overcrowd-
ing, Race Today recom-
mends that a larger area
be made traffic-free
Carnival territory.
The magazine refers
to the fact that the
authorities had sought
in Trinidad unsuccess-
fully to ban Carnival in
colonial days.


The London Carnival
grew out of the Sunday
evening calypso-and-jazz
sessions put on by Trini-
dadian musicians at the
Colherne Pub. in West
London from the late
The popularity of these
sessions "represented the
self-organised efforts of
West Indians to develop,
here in London, forms
of national cultural ex-
pression," the magazine
noted, adding:
"It was this success

that spurred the organ-
isers to give Carnival, a
Trinidad art form, con-
crete expression in the
streets of London."


Race Today is certain
that the call to take
Carnival off- the streets
and into White City
Stadium is an attempt
to destroy it.
It calls on the organ-
isers not to compromise
in their determination
that "Carnival remain on
the streets of Notting
Hill in an expanded
And in what sounds
like a call to arms, the
magazine urges: "We
need to begin to prepare
the mobilization of our
tremendous support to
confront the authorities
on the,streets on August
Bank Holiday."

Indians in London are
resisting a demand by
the local authorities to
take their annual Notting
Hill Carnival off the
The Carnival has been
held since 1965 on August
Bank Holiday, and has
grown so much in popu-
larity with West Indians
that last year an esti-
mated 250,000 persons
took part as spectators
and masqueraders.
Late January this
year, however, officials
of the Borough of Kensing-
ton and Chelsea, sup-
ported by the Metropoli-
tan Police, called on the
Carnival organizers to
hold the event in White
City Stadium instead of
on the streets of Notting
The council even
offered to pay for the
hire of White City.


Backing this demand
with a threat of their
own, the Metropolitan
Police have declared that
they would refuse permis-
sion to street-sellers to
set up stalls and would
deploy a heavy contin-
gent of policemen to
harass the parade.
According to Race
Today, a monthly maga-
zine which services the
black community in

i.Bitain, "this is the first
serious attempt by the
authorities to challenge
the organisation of

The magazine sees the
demand by the police
and the local authorities
as an exploitation of the
"small murmurs of pro-
test (which) came from
white residents" after
last year's Carnival.
"Let there be no mis-
take about this," thunders
Race Today in its
February 1976 issue, "the
West Indian community,
40% of the local popula-
tion, view the general
attitude of the authori-
ties as a distinct attempt
to destroy what we have
painstakingly created
over the last tenyears."
While the magazine
admits that "there have
been difficulties" with
the Carnival, it argues
that the local authorities
should assist in over-
coming the difficulties
rather than try to
"banish" the celebrations
to White City.
"Carnival is a street
festival not a Park Fair.
To imprison the celebra-
tions in an enclosed area
is to destroy the very
basis of its structure and
organisation," Race Today
The authorities and

those elements of the
white community in
opposition to the Carni-
val have made the follow-
ing criticisms:
THAT the celebra-
tions have become too
large for the neighbour-

THAT the noise is
too much;

THAT front gardens
are used as toilets; and

THAT large-scale
picpocketing goes on.
Dealing with each
point in turn, Race Today
counters that West
Indians have put up with
the noise of fire crackers
and otherloud explosions
on the English Bonfire

Describing the pissing
in front gardens as a
reasonablee" complaint,
Se magazine refers to
tl. organising committee's
request of the Council to
provide portable toilets.
Then it points out that
"no more pockets are
picked in Notting Hill
over Carnival than are
picked on Oxford Street
and surrounding areas in
the Christmas shopping
season", and it calls for
warnings aboutpicpocket-
ing to be broadcast in the
pre-Carnival period.


PA 'GE 4 -1A I'lA


they say. The "two day
reign of the merry monarch"
has become a newspaper-
man's cliche. And at mid-
night Carnival Tuesday we
peacefully pass from one
reign to thenext.
If truth be told, in recent
times the spirit of the merry
monarch has seemed to
prevail for a good half of
the year. With a warm-up
at Eid and Divali, into parang
and Christmas, followed by
calypso, pan fever and end-
less fete, and the final fling
at Carnival.
And if we are lucky (or
unlucky, as you like it) the
season of gay spirits might
even be prolonged through
Lent if King Cricket is
around. This year, like the
"for cane" man, he is here


In any event, we no
longer relent during Lent in
order to lend ourselves to
the spirit of sackcloth and
ashes. A straight case of
constant jammin'.
This Carnival season,
amidst all the sounds of
revelry, there has been an
insistent note of seriousness
(pardon the expression).
That note has been struck
by the calypsonians Black
Stalin calling for piece of
the action; Composer with
his "True or Lie";Chalkdust
as is his wont; Brother
Mudada; and, of all people,
Blakic. Not surprising really.
After all, come to think
of it, 1976 is Election year,
and a bit of seriousness
can't' be entirely out of
The Government them-
selves have seen fit to bring
constitution reform at
(arnival time. And if
politics could intrude into
iIas', w (ho is to say that
m1;is' i;ls no place in
('C rl;iiiI!\ ot the editorial
wlil.Ir o lihe Trinidad
( ;'hii ian In its editorial
S iiinie 'il nii M i. Richard-
son's chin oI. Senators,
i l th, .iillian saiw he

";e 0

Leader of the Opposition
opening "a new mas' camp".
On the same day (Friday
27) the editorial writer in
the Express.camne close to
saying that Tapia's future
was jumping up in steelband
"You can't be put in and
out of Parliament by a
political nobody (in terms of
popular support) and not
suffer", intoned the Express.
If the levity of the
Guardian's response can be
excused by the high spirits
of the moment, the straight-
faced comments of the
Express Opinion invite no
such consideration.
Picong is one thing, out
and out inaccuracy quite
another. And to state that
Tapia has attacked the
present Parliament as
"illegal" or to suggest that
Tapia has branded the Gov-
ernment as "immoral" is to
be quite inaccurate.

In fact, Tapia has made its
position plain so often, that
such inaccuracies border on
deliberate distortion.
For what Tapia has said
is that the present Parlia-
ment, while clearly legal, is
"illegitimate" aiqd that the
present Government is
"lacking in moral authority".
Whether the Government
is also immoral is quite a
different thing. And while
our entry into the Senate
did restore some measure
of legitimacy to Parliament
(testifying, no doubt, to
Tapia's own moral author-
ity) how can that be seen as
in any way giving "approval"
to the Government.
For that matter, how
can our entry be seen as-,
being "opportunistic'? -
Tapia entered the Senate
to challenge the Government
on the issue of constitution
reform, after the Govern-
ment had consistently
failed to heed the many


calls for a valid I'oruin of
the people to deal with
this all-important issue and
had taken it instead to a
PNM-domi na d Pl arliamn I.n
The Leadcir (l t ()ppo-
sition selected l piia for
this role, bcl aise. in hI s
view, Tapia wa;is the l iarest
anld mios t c'(olsisl eil lo Ir
on the is~ln.
O nce iii P il ;iiii cii I M I
Best and Ins o I l,\\ ,'iiw'e l
the call I : ii tn l ti

assembly. Tapia has never
never failed to use any
available medium for arti-
culating our position on
constitution reform, and
the Senate, even as part of
an illegitimate Parliament
was, and still is, a valid
platform from which to
broadcast a view in which
popular participation is seen
as being the vital element
in constitution making, as
indeed in the whole of


My dictionary defines an
opportunist as "one who
governs his course by
opportunities or circum-
stances rather than by fixed
principles or by regard for
consistency or conse-
quences". Tapia's principle
has always been to advance
the interests of the country
by the means of politics -
that is, by discourse and
persuasion. Mr. Richardson's
invitation was a further
opportunity to do so, part-
icularly in a situation in
which the Government had
designated Parliament as
the ground of battle.
In politics, as in life, one
is never in full control of
opportunities or of circum-
stances. To seize an opport-
unity is not automatically
opportunism, provided that
act is in the service of
clearly enunciated and con-
sistently held principles. In
fact, that is what the
"politics of principle" really
Similar con fusion attends

the attempt to deal with
Tapia's position on opposi-
tion unity and with the
question of constitution
The Opinion writer asserts
that Tapia "have been
branded as not being
genuinely interested in
opposition unity".
Presumably this conclu-
sion is arrived at because
Tapia was not part of the
merger of five so-called
organizations which was
the proximate cause of our
removal from the Senate. If
that is so, then the Express
is correct in stating that
Tapia is not interested at all
in opposition unity of that
Again, the record is very
clear. At every stage Tapia
has registered its lack of
interest in, in fact our dis-
approval of, any attempt at
opposition unity which
amounts to nothing more
than an opportunistic alli-
ance, a "marriage of con-
venience" in time for the
next election.

The Express would be
very wrong, however, if it
accepts at face value the
statement attributed to,
Mr. Richardson, that
Tapia "was not even inter-
ested in using a common or
united approach on any
particular issue in Parlia-
On the narrowest inter-
pretation of that statement,
Mr. Richardson errs. Tapia
was always open to a united
approach in Parliament, and
at one crucial juncture,
agreed with Mr. Richardson
to move a motion of no
confidence in the Govern-
In fact, representatives of
the so-called Lequay faction
of the DLP were present at
the meeting which settled
on that move. However,
there was never any link
between Tapia and Mr.
Richardson or his United
Progressive Party, and
naturally the Tapia senators
could only follow their own
party policy on issues as
they came up.


- _..iL. -..-..I

- .. -------------------------- ~----~ -- *

ow and wh]


Reform will t4

this governor

a g.a




On a broader interpreta-
tion, Mr. Richardson's
assertion also falls down. It
was Tapia which initiated
the call for joint action by
all the opposition forces on
a range of far reaching
In response to Mr. Simb-'
hoonath Capildeo's invita-
tion to Tapia to take part
in a move towards opposi-
tion unity this is what we
said in part: "From Tapia's
standpoint, any collabora-
tion among opposition forces
ought to serve the higher
purpose of securing national
unity Our proposal ...
is for a meeting of all
opposition forces for
the purpose of working
out a common position on
(electoral rules, constitution
reform and economic reor-
In pursuance of this, Mr.
Capildeo sent out invitations
to all the recognisable poli-
tical forces to meet. As is
now well known, only six
groups saw fit to do so -
the five which now con-
stitute the UDLP and Tapia.
On the evidence, there-
fore, it is certainly not
Tapia which is not inter-
ested in opposition unity,
defined as "a common or
united approach on any
particular issue"e
Because the Express
Opinion fails to grasp this
view of opposition unity,
it cannot help hut see
Tapia's pursuit of constitiu-
tion reform and our call
for a constituent assembly
as qCuixotic.
Speaking off constitution
refonn, the Opinion sltles

that "Whether it will be a
major election issue is
another matter entirely, for
the people can't eat con-
: it ution reform, orwear it,
or walk on it. They will not
get hot under the collar for
it, or topple a government
for it".
The philistinism which
informs such a statementlis
more usually associated with
certain sections of the left
which operate within the
framework of a crude,
materialistic philosophy.
Coming from the Express
leader writer, it betrays an
alarming lack of sensitivity
to the modalities of political
change in the country.
For the call for constitu-
tion reform is not a call for
a new set of laws written
on parchment, which is
what the Government would
like to make of it. The
Express writer ought to
know that, at bottom. what
is involved is an attempt
both to find institutional
expression for the realign-
ment of political forces
(transcending parties) which
has taken place and to help
that process of realignment
further along.
A constituent assembly
is merely a means for doing
so, providing as it would
for the expol 're of opinions
and interests uad the educa-
tion of the public, thereby
facilitating those legitimate
alliances which are the
foundation of valid and
enduring political parties.
Similarly, a meeting of
all opposition' groups could
help politicians and people
alike to. discriminate and
choose among the compet-
ing ideological and program-
matic options which exist.
It could spark a process
of activation and alignment,
which is precisely what the
Government hopes to fore-
stall by sidestepping a
constituent assembly and
popular participation in the
process-of reform.
Any such awakening and
alignment of forces would
indeed be a reconstitution
of the politics of Trinidad
and Tobago. And a seasoned
political observer ought to
know that that, above all,
is constitution reform,
which can be nothing less
than a fundamental change.
in the structure of power.
Unless in Election year
1976 we come to grips with
a structure of power which
has frustrated our people's
aspirations for bread, peace
and justice. there is little
chance of changing the
present holders of office.
('Consti tution ref Ior is
therefore the paramil()t
political isstI he tI1cl i ln
which the GoverniieuIIl i
'(ilt' It l IL I i" l pItpl'd

From Page 1

cliches of Port-of-Spain.
Where is the parade
of the bands? We asked.
Arima, the answer came.
Arima? We weren't
expecting that. Somehow
we tended to associate
Caroni more with San
Fernando than the north-
em population centres.
O u r ignorance
afforded us a further
surprise when we found
ourselves several miles
along the road to Arima.
We had missed a vital
So be it, we agreed.
After all. Arima was one
of the places that Indian
people play mas, it
And in a few
minutes we were in
Arima, being manoeuvred
by No Entry signs and
waving policemen into
Blanchisseuse Road where
we parked.
It was midday.
Arima streets were
crowded with people
and vendors, and here
and there a robber like
the hilarious King Blake
("Gimme de damn money,
nuh man, yuh giving
trouble, you know"). The
spectators had to wait
nearly an hour till the
first band appeared at the
It was Nuclear Sym-
phony playing "Sailors

In Soul". You know
you're in the country you
see that the poles of the
banner are made of real,
untreated bamboo.
Again I thought I
noted more care and
order in the making of
the costumes of this small
band of fancy seabees
and sailors. The steelband
was small, about 20
members in all, with a
dimunitive 12-year-old
Bert Gonzales spiritedly*
playing the traps set.
Just two tenors.


The next band which
followed in about 15
minutes was "Would You
Believe'?" With music
supplied by Nu-Tones, a
steelband of national rank
and size, whose arranger
is Pan Trinbago president
Bertie Fraser.
And appropriately
this was a much bigger
mas. including a spec-
tacularly deformed small
boy wearing only diapers
and a sombrero, his legs
twisted like an X and his
feet turned the other way
like a douen. But he was
doing a kind of weird
dance behind the banner,
an eve-catching opener
for the presentation of
"Would You Believe?"
The band contained
a portrayal of the comic
strip Phantom being

drawn on his throne by
a retinue of pigmies, a
section of the same Indian
masqueraders whom we
had seen in in Kelly and.
an open jeep gilded all
over being driven by an
Indian man ir an orange
The crowdsin Arima
were markedly multi-
racial. "Is a mix", one
middle-aged black man
told me in the Arima
Savannah, "a lotta Spanish
does look like Indian."
Round by the band-
stand Lloyd Taylor began
talking to some of the
many Indian people
sheltering under the sa-
maan. One man told him
he had stopped.going to
Port-of-Spain since the
railway had been scrap-
ped. The man is 55,
named Maharaj, and
employed with T&TFC.
Mr. Maharaj had
come with his grandson
to see Carnival. He wasn't
really looking forward to
seeing Carnival, that was
for the children, and were
it not for them he would
be home sleeping.
He had been to
Dimanche Gras, though.
"I found the designs
superb. The sea horse
was marvellous. Long ago
used to -be old crepe
paper, now it's something
Another of Lloyd
Continued on Back Page



Sub Editor Wanted

for working



Unequalled opportunity for

learning about journalism

and the world

Apply to the Production Editor

82-84 St Vinc t lrc t Tinaipun; i
haic _(,(1 1 :,12 i.Mon-Wed.)

_ I

SUNDA,. MIARCHI- 7. /6,7



IT IS nearly two monihis
since Bajans read that the
Government had received
a draft report on allega-
tions of racism -in the
Barbados Tourist Industry.
Late last year the
NATION published some
comments on this matter,
which the Minister of
Tourism made in an
interview with one of that
paper's New York corres-
pondents. Mr. Morgan
indicated that the draft
would be finalised into a
full report at a later date.
It is interesting that infor-
mation like this never seems
to be given openly to Barbad-
ians here at home. Very
often it comes to us via

.. .-." ..-....*.y,.. -
g.,,) -. .-*- ,,

Tourists enjoy the sparkling water of the Caribbean Sea.

foreign- media and foreign-
based correspondents. This,
of course, is only one techni-
que used to sweep 'difficult'
matters under the carpet in
the hope that they will be
ignored and forgotten by the
The whole device of
appointing special committees
of investigations is itself p irt
of this strategy, Openly con-
ducted investigations into
matters of public concern
would, of course, provide
one of the very rare opport-
unities for people to offer
open and frank criticism and
comment on the way their
country is being run. The
Government sees it differently.
They are afraid of any
such thing ever occurring.
When outcry and complaintF
were growing against the
administration of thehospital
we were told there could be
no commission of enquiry
Because it would allow

people to appear and make
' . Wild statements'. A
special committee (meaning
of course specially hand-
picked Government servants)
was to be appointed to look
into the Hospital administra-
Well the Bajan public
don't know what has hap-
pened to that. What they
know is that nothing has
changed at that Royal
institution except the trans-
fer of the then Minister of
Health. As recently as
February casualty patients
could hear a woman conm-
plaining of having had to
wait for over six hours
before being admitted to a
ward and this is after a
doctor had seen her and
recommended her immediate
The committee appointed
to investigate allegations of
racism in the tourist industry
seems to have been selected

on the same basis.

The members of the com-
mittee were the Permanent
Secretary in the Minisitr
of hInfonniation and Tour-
ism. the Director of
Tourism, the officer in
charge of development
and research and a repre-
sentative from the
Attorney-General's office.
(NATION, December
21st, 1975).

Immediately we can ask
whether anyone would have
total confidence in the find-
ings of a report submitted
by a committee composed
solely of Government
Tis is no1 to suggest that
the persons Ihiemselvcs would
be incomIpc ient or dishonesty
They may do as thorough a
job and he as Irank and
critical as they possibly could
be. Yet people need to be

sule of the Iullest I picscni
tion and exposuiic 10 factis -
ansd this c.an onlI be tuii ic
possible i c, mI i ccs ..:
ti ts k iiilnd i .',
lhli li Otl [hici L Ci uilill
sCrv\'ice s I w l i lli is,
especially so \.lhac, tie ic w olic
approach to 'o tliciui secicc '
can seriously' haliistling a
purely (;ovle inment investiga-
This approach to 'official
secrecy" haIs meant that vital
information about the ills of
tle nation have been held
back front the people before.
In 1)72 an international
healllh ortaniiisiation submitted
a report on lIood iid nlt lrilion
in Barbados which riev\clecc
aiong o(lher tlings. consider-
able malinuitilion among
children, cletard;ltiol of
growth among schoolchild enn
and a hiigh plpoportion of
anlacilic illfa t Is Iundei age 5.
Facts evcl'y Bij:in should
know. it wc ai to Iacill\

betier the l l 1 ol C ur people.
1he iC poit was Ircaled as
sccel. : (od knows what has
been dune about tie situation
Similarly, it is only because
of agitation and open discus-
sion by persons in the
teachers' unions, headteachers
and concerned parents that
much of the content of the
Shorey reports (minority and
majority) have been revealed.
Even now, this document
remains as scarce as gold.
Again, it contains findings
every Bajan should know
So the pattern is clear.
We have had far too many
secret reports on vital areas
of the nation's life. They
end up being secret and the
nation is no better for the
fact that investigations have
been conducted.


Racism is far too danger-
ous a disease to be handled
in thisway. It must be rooted
out at all costs. In their 1961
manifesto, the DEMS com-
mitted themselves to that
very objective. Yet today,
fifteen years after being in
power we can still have
foreign and exclusive enclaves
in our Tourist industry
against which complaints of
all sorts can be waged. We
can still have a Tourist indus-
try the very nature of which
is conducive to all kinds of
demeaning and discrimina-
The recent Hilton Hotel
incident only shows how the
people who run the hotels
and the industry are thinking.
They do not see the local
people as having any stake -
any place in the industry.
Ordinary people concerned
at least with making an
honest living are to be
excluded from even the
public beaches on question-
able grounds as borne out by
the Chairman of the Parks
and Beaches commission.
If the Government is
serious about the pledge it
made to the people in 1961 -
it will publish the report on
the allegations of racism in
the Tourist Industry. It will
facilitate the freest and- most
open discussion not only on
this whole question of
racism, but on the entire
industry and how it is organ-
People will be giveni an
opportunity to have a say
as to what kind of induslii
they think this country
should have and let us all
plan for it in a way that
brings about a complete
Itran s formation.
(Courtcsy MN \N.l \K

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

Kindly phone orders to: 662-5126.


&l *L

Gov't urged to let the public say

+ .,," '
.:- .!A
: . ; .; ; '


- ___ _.


- -


i I.-i




the .&

Carnival is

Chalkdust calls

it a victory

for calypso


THE PANS are back in
the yards. The mas camps
are deserted. The Queen's
Park Savannah pavilions
are coming down. But
who say the Carnival
This weekend, what is
virtually a calypso tent
opens up in Port-of-
Spain at Queen's Hall
where Friday, Saturday
and Sunday nights the
Mighty Stalin is appearing
in a calypso show called
"Black Gods & Kings."
This show was staged
at the Little Carib Theatre
in Woodbrook late last
It's being organised
again by Astor Johnson
who also helped to pro-
duce Valentino's success-
ful "Poet & Prophet"
calypso show at Queen's
Hall, and then at centres
throughout Trinidad and
Tobago, in May last year.
Stalin, who drew
repeated encores in
Kitchener's Revue Tent

Trinidad & Tobago
Caricom countries
Other Caribbean
E.E.C. (incl. U.K.)


this year with a song
called Run Something,
a mocking appeal to the
Government to share the
oil money, did not place
in the Calypso King
The Queen's Hall show
this weekend, however, is
bound to draw large
audiences, particularly
including nationals back
home for Carnival who
will want to see this new
trend in calypso after
Ash Wednesday.
It's a trend that has
been developing slowly
but surely. For Carnival
'76 several tents opened
their doors to the public
as early as Boxing Day,
right after Christmas.
The move towards
staging calypso as a con-
cert, outside of the tradi-
tional Carnival season,
will involve Calypso King
the Mighty Chalkdust's
Regal Tent later this year.
Chalkdust disclosed
last week that Regal is also
planning to go to Queen's
Hall later in the year to
stage a one-week pro-
gramme, entitled "Nos-
talgia." (R.P.)

$18.00 per year

Surface rates and rates for other countries on
request The new rates are effective February 1, 1976.
Tapia. 82, St Vincent St Tunapuna, Trinidad &
Tobago, W.I. Telephone 662-5126. & 62-25241.

"I DON'T feel terribly
majestic or walking on
air or anything like that.
I feel a certain sense of
pride. But my feet remain
on the ground."
That was how Hollis
Liverpool, the Mighty
Chalkdust, summed up his
reaction to being named
Calypso King 1976 at the
Dimanche Gras show at
the Grand Stand, Queen's
Park Savannah, last
Sunday night.
Chalkdust, who also
won the calypso king
crown at the Buy Local
Carnival show put on by
the People's National
Movement (PNM), was
standing there in the
wings when the Calypso
King" 1976 was an-
nounced. But he didn't
oome out to be crowned.
It wasn't his mood.
After all, the two tunes
that won him the Crown,
Why Smut and Guns, were

point-blank criticisms of
both current trends in
calypso and corruption
in high places.
What Chalkdust did
after being named Calypso
King was what he usually
does every Carnival "I
just spent the time after-
wards living around and
enjoying the Carnival."
Yet, this Couva Secon-
dary School teacher saw
in his victory a triumph
for calypso.
"That's the one thing
I'm happy about", he
said. "My winning the
crown means there's an
area of hope for young
calypsonians who are
interested in singing my
type of calypso."
Chalkdust added that
in his songs he placed
emphasis on the lyrics,
"delivering a message, a
song with some kind of
moral in it."
That, Chalkie added,

"is different from the
kind of calypso that has
become a kind of threat
- all that tempo and pace
in songs that say nothing."
The 1976 Calypso King
also said he was pursuing
plans to enter Howard
University in Washington
where he wants to do a
Master of Teaching (MAT)
Degree. Chalkdust con-
firmed that his song, Guns,
which said he had been
on the verge of entering
Howard University but
had postponed his plans
to attack backward deve-
lopments in the country,
was based on truth.
Chalkie, who has been
singing calypso since 1968,
intends to continue to
produce his kind of
calypso perceptive and
critical. Winning the
Calypso King crown
won't interfere with that.
"Them cyar change me",
he said.

Our coverage of


is unsurpassed anywhere

for focus and point.

Keep a breast of the

real currents in the

Caribbean Sea.
OWING to the recent increase in the postal
rates, the Tapia House Publishing Co., Ltd., has
found it necessary to increase the subscription
rates for TAPIA.
The new rates are as follows:



/S Stephens


II --I


Mrs. Andrea Talbutt
Research Institut for
Study of Man,
162, East 78th Street,
New York, N.y. 10021
U.S .ehdO 5 8448.



Caesar Open!

From Page 2
arena an arena to
which they had once
instinctively looked.
What has suddenly
happened to the Donald-
sons and Winston Maha-
birs who once found their
way into the old regime?
Has the nation been in'
any way short of these
men in other areas of
human endeavour?
That drying up of
competence within the
regime is 'explained by
the: sentiments of a pros-
pective PNM candidate
who once told me that
giving up his job to
tangle with Williams is
the last thing he wants
to do. He cited a long list
of political casualties,
that has once been refer-i
red to in TAPIA as the
Siberian roll call.
The fact is that
politics here exactsia high
degree of risk from its
participants, manifested
especially in purely econ-
omic terms. As Naipaul
has pointed out in his
book The Mimic Men
politics here is a do or die

So it has happened
that without the generos-
ity of spirit that makes
some people give of them-
selves willingly for the
public good, political
democracy is well-nigh
impossible without some
measure of economic
And that indepen-
dence is the one thing
that the Regulations gov-
erning the teaching and
public services give no
guarantee for those who
feel politically inclined,
or motivated.
Those who are
opposed are effectively

denied open political
participation, and by
extension the experience
by wvich alone they can
know what must be done
in order to deal with their
opponents. They reflect
the failures of opposition
For those who sup-
port the regime the effect
is to reinforce the old
colonial habit of the pro-
fessional elites to seek
political gratification
through the influence
they gain by having
access to the ear of the
Chief Executive.
These men are now

to be found among the
Chairman of the public
Boards doing mercenary
work. They are the ones
Williams wants to squeeze
into Parliament through
the backdoor.
Politics among oppo
sition forces have, within
recent times, become even
more hazardous. Since
the repressive string of
measures that have pro-
hibited political marches,
and set limitations on
the use of loud-speakers,
it has become progres-
sively difficult to mobil-
ise large numbers.

Such Acts are a
natural product of a
movement on the wane.
These laws serve to,
whittle away the. little
freedoms the constitu-
tional space we once
had to exercise with some
greater ease our- opposi-
tion to the regime.
Fundamental con-
stitutional reforms must
be calculated to alter the
causes restricting political
participation on the part
of our potential repre-

sentatives and the little
people themselves. That
is, if they are to be fun-
damental at all.
The way out as sug-
gested by Tapia is a com-
bination of measures
designed to liberalise the
teaching and public
services, decentralise
power between central
and local government,
and to redistribute the
power in Parliament that
is now concentrated in
the hands of the Prime
Minister, between repre-
sentatives and the repre-
That is, to be gov-
erned with an economic
perspective that guaran-
tees full employment.
The proposals that
Gocking exposes d-o no
such thing. Far from
revoluting Parliament,
they merely repose in
greater concentration
power that puts Parlia-
ment more firmly into
the hands of one man,
and opens the representa-
tive principle to com-
plete abuse.

Off Beat Carnival

From Page 5
Taylor's interviewees was
64-year-old Mrs. Bidaisie
who has 17 grand and
five great grandchildren,
who regularly comes to
see Carnival in Arima,
mainly to look after the
What about this
year's calypsoes? No she
hadn't heard many of
them. "You see I belong
to a faith. When you're
old you have to respect
everything. This 'saltfish'
thing is for the children.
I can't like it. I leave that
for the children."
By mid-afternoon,
Carnival in Tunapuna is in
full swing. The Eastern
Main Road is as crowded
as Charlotte Street, Port-
of-Spain at the same
The difference is in
the people who are over-
whelmingly Indian in
Tunapuna with Africans
in just about the same
proportions as you would

see Indians in Port-of-
Three judges Elaine
Clarke, Julian Harper and
Merle Dunmore preside
from the gallery of the
courthouse where all the
bands come from east and
Mrs. Beryl Henry,
Secretary-Treasurer of
the Tunapuna Carnival
Improvement Committee,
explains that six bands
have been registered
Fancy Sailors, Sailors
Gone Funky, Fiesta In
Mexico, Faith of the
Transgressors, 1,000 Pri-
mitive People and Some-
body Cares.
They compete for
prizes of $800, $400 and
$200, with $150 each
for the King and Queen,
and $100 for the best
beating steelband. The
Tunapuna Comm i ttee
which is affiliated to the
Village Council, anid is
African-dominated, get a

grant of $4,000 from the
national CDC to run their
Mrs. Henry and
another Committee mem-
ber Gladys Moore say
they got assistance from
the Warden, the doctors
and the merchants in the
area. "And next year we
going to put Tapia on the
The masqueraders
and spectators come from
Caroni, Tacarigua, Lopi-
not, Curepe, El Dorado,
St. John's Village and
Piarco. It is clear from
Tunapuna that it is the
African people who are
going to town while the
Indians stay in their
communities, but both
are playing or showing.
interest in inas.
The sight of all-
Indian steelbands is one
would hgve like to share
with readers, but a defec-
tive camera mined all the
film, and of course, the
rest of the world's photo-
graphers were on the
beaten track of the Grand
Savannah in Port-of-Spain.

P.O.S. Centre opens

this weekend


TAPIA Port-of-Spain Centre,
located on premises at 22
Cipriani Boulevard will be
formally over the course
of this weekend.
On Saturday March 6,
1976 Ihe opening will be
marked by a series of cul-
tural events centred around
drama, poetry and music.
Artistes performing on
the occasion include Lancelot
Layne, Christopher Laird,
Victor Questel, Le Roy
Clarke, Clheryl Byron, Malick
and P. Douglas. Starting time
is 5 p.m.
On Sunday March 7.
1976 addresses will be
delivered by Denis Solomion.
(Chainmani, Angela ('oppei.
Managerof the Poilt-o)l-Spain

Centre, Beau Tewarie, Uom-
munity Relations Secretary,
and Lloyd Best, Secretary.
Starting time for the
Sunday programme is 3 p.m.
Rum-punch will be
served, other drinks and eats
will be on sale and collection.
boxes will be ready for
donations. All members, sup-
porters, and well-wishers of
Tapia are invited.

Public Meeting

in the city

ON Thursday March I 1, 1976
the after-Carnival leg of the
Tapia House Movement's
campaign for the upcoming
General Elections will begin
with a public meeting.
The meeting will be
held at the Besson Street
area at h.30 p.mn. Speakers
will include Uoyd Best.
Allan Harris. Ivan Laughlin,
Mihliael lHarris,Denis Solomnon
and Beau Tcwarie.
1Tle lteme of tlic meet-
ing will be 'New Politics'.
Thle public is invited.

~r~ ~ r II I .I I _