If we hadn’t already been plagued with bad news, murder tolls rising to an unprecedented 73 persons for the year 2013, civil unrest was the case yesterday, early on Sunday 24th February, a mother and her two children along with another man were struck down in the Sea Lots area literally dragged and killed on impact, 26 fatal road accidents so far for the year of 2013. We’ve seen this happen before, we’ve heard of vehicular accidents that have taken the lives of persons and the Police Service afterwards issue warnings to the public on road safety, but what happens when the person at fault is one of their own? This was the case yesterday…. Now we have to ask ourselves….Is it because the person behind the wheel of the vehicle was an ex police officer that this was the reaction the people took?
On this same day, in Laventille a woman’s son was murdered, on his way to meet his mother as he does every Sunday, shot in the back when a lone gunman told him to run in a most callous manner, somewhat taunting the young man to his already determined fate…. Where was the protest? Where was the tire burning? Where were the disgruntled citizens who are fed up with the state of lawlessness in the country? Nowhere to be seen, only a mother, a news camera, Policemen/women and caution tape. Doesn’t this type of unwarranted callous/merciless action deserve to be highlighted if not in the same light but more so because at this rate we may exceed the toll of 550 in 2008?
As is the case with disgruntled persons in Trinidad & Tobago the case of action/reaction requires old tires, old refrigerators, signs and a couch set that needed to be thrown away and Fire. Today has to be the worst that Traffic has been for the month so far could this disaster have been avoided? The Minister of National Security (who still believes himself to be the Minister of Works) advises that a walkover will soon be placed near the sealots area for the utilization of the public, but that isn’t the problem is that the driver, met those who died on the pavement. As a result of protest actions in the bigger picture, production of today was very slow, and internal revenue was lost. Who’s at a bigger loss?
The TTMA wishes to advise that the Minimum Wages Order of 2010 became effective on Saturday 1st January, 2011 signaling an increase in the minimum wage in Trinidad and Tobago from $9 per hour to $12.50 per hour.
Please note that this increase will not be applicable to:
“a. trainees in training schools approved by appropriate Government agencies such as the(i) Youth Training and Employment Partnership Programme (YTEPP); or (ii) National Energy Skills Centre;
“b. schemes developed from time to time by other Government ministries, departments or agencies;
“c. other schemes submitted to and approved by the Minister to whom responsibility for labour is assigned;
“d. registered apprentices;
“e. students on vacation jobs;
“And f. persons who volunteer services to registered charitable organisations and social services agencies registered with the Ministries responsible for social services, youth, sports, community development or gender affairs.”
Shifting from a large increase in kidnappings, this didn’t seem to be enough. In the year 2008, Trinidad and Tobago has seen its worst when it comes to murder figures as the count of homicide rose to a startling 550 persons, murdered in cold blood. As of today 21st February, the murder toll for the year of 2013 has climbed to 70 in 52 days. As a result of this, there has been a call for gun control laws in this country, not only this but the public begins to beg the question, “does the Government have the answers to the crime” this question is so frequently raised. Sociologist Emile Durkheim gives us from his theory of Crime and Deviance, his explanation for crime in society, he argued that “crime should be seen as something functional and necessary for society”. Durkheim further states that “If crimes were not committed, then the values of society would become blurred”. To some extent Durkheim validates his point by stating that “Crime rates fluctuate over time, due to the complex nature of society..” and that “Deviance is relative…” This means that there is no absolute way of defining a deviant act. An act defined as deviant in one society may be seen as perfectly normal in another. But how in such a short time, that murder has been a name etched in the fabric of our society? Remembering Stacy Ramdeen, in 2012, when “it is alleged” police officers from Central Division in Chaguanas killed her to claim deeds for land in Tobago, or maybe when police firearms and bulletproof vests or army fatigues are “stolen” or “lost” and are found or involved in illegal activity what does this tell us? Where are the guns coming from? And who has the authority to get them? Who can the people really trust? Who? The sickening part of all this is that now officers are becoming targets of crime, and as such we have lost a few good men. How many more mothers will cry? What will it take to put an end to the madness?
The more I try to understand what is considered to be justice in my country is the more i become baffled, confused, aggravated, disheartened and discouraged, maybe I should have become a politician like my mother wanted me to be, but unlike my character I cannot become included into the bullshit that plays on the names and on what people see, there’s so much more to it than meets the Eye…… Think deeper, and harder, never take anything for face value anymore