Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 19th 2014 Contents A11
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September 18, 2014
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September 18, 4014
September 18, 2014
A San Fernando policeman is thankful to neigh-
bours who rushed to his aid after his pickup truck
was firebombed on Wednesday.
With numerous cases under his watch at the San
Fernando CID, PC Terrance Rahim said the explosion,
which destroyed the garage where he parked his Great
Wall Wingle pickup, was an invasion on his private
life by criminals.
Rahim and his 65-year-old mother were asleep at
their Poonah Road, Whiteland, home around 1 am
when they were awakened by an explosion. When he
rushed out he saw his pickup and garage on fire.
Neighbours helped him put out the fire before fire-
fighters arrived but the pickup, valued at $160,000,
was destroyed, along with a washing machine, dryer
and refrigerator valued at $20,000.
Rahim said when he reached the garage the back
glass of the pickup was broken and there was fire inside
and around it. He believes his attacker s intention was
to destroy his house because the tap on the water tank
"All I could have done was to throw water, call the
neighbours and get my mother out of the house because
the garage is in front of the house and almost adjoined
to the back. Everything burned down. It was concrete
and iron, not a wood structure," Rahim told the T&T
"They left the water running so the tank could run
out of water. Their intention was to make sure it was
destroyed," he added.
On Tuesday, the National Security Ministry revealed
that over the past two years 197 police had been shot
at while on the job. Although there was no gunplay
in the attack against Rahim, he said it was a direct
threat against his life and his family.
"If somebody makes a direct threat like that, or does
something like that, you must feel some fear or danger
for yourself and your family. If that should happen,
you must feel disturbed and distraught over the inci-
dent," he said.
Asked if his life had ever been threatened, Rahim
said: "Whether my life was under threat before, I never
took it on but people say all kinds of things. You hear
things from people but you don t hear it personally.
"The police are investigating the report. They have
a few leads and I have all faith in the investigation
process. I may have some ideas as to who did it but
at this time that is privileged information," he said.
Wala Wala Holdings Ltd, the own-
ers of the property which houses the
Eastern Correctional and Rehabili-
tation Centre in Santa Rosa, says it
is unaware of any approach by Jack
Warner to buy it.
On Monday, while delivering his
contribution to the budget debate,
Warner criticised the Government for
purchasing the property for a whop-
ping $230 million. He claimed the
property was valued at $15 million in
2007 and noted Government had
spent $70 million to repair it and $1
million a month in rent for two years.
But in a statement on that claim,
special adviser at the Property and
Real Estate Division of the Ministry
of Housing and Urban Development,
Asgar Ali, said the State began nego-
tiations to buy the property from Wala
Wala Holdings Ltd in 2012.
He said company had been the
owner of the property since November
2004 and the asking price at that time
was $295 million.
He said it obtained the impartial
advice of the independent office of
the Commissioner of Valuations on
the open-market value and got a val-
uation of $230 million for the entire
property, which included four build-
ings on 16.32 acres of land. Following
this advice, the purchase price was
negotiated with the owners at that
value, he said.
"This advice specifically did not
take into account any improvement
works which had been undertaken by
the State during the period of rental,"
He added that the State had rented
a portion of the property, including
two buildings, since October 2011 at
a monthly rental of $850,000 plus
"Again, this rental was consistent
with the advice of the COV. It is to
be noted that the other buildings on
the property, which are also included
in the final purchase, are also being
rented to another commercial organ-
isation for a sum greater than that
being paid by the State for the build-
ings occupied as the correctional cen-
Once the acquisition of the property
is completed, rents currently paid by
other tenants would go to the State,
Warner on Monday claimed in
2007, former Neal and Massy CEO
Bernard Dulal-Whiteway, who died
in 2009, approached him to buy the
property for $16 million. He added
that a deal could not be reached so
he did not buy it.
Contacted on Wednesday for com-
ment, Dr George Laquis, of Wala Wala
Holdings, said he bought that land
years ago and did not understand why
Warner chose to use a dead man s
Laquis added that it should be
ignored and he had no further com-
Sando CID cop's
Warner's Santa Rosa
valuation claim disputed
The remains of PC Terrance Rahim's Great Wall
Wingle remained parked in his garage which was
firebombed on Wednesday.
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