Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 11th 2014 Contents A25
Saturday, October 11, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
It doesn't matter which political side
you sit or stand, the precedent Dr
Kublalsingh is setting is a very bad one
for the future development of T&T.
No matter how much compassion or
emotion you feel to see the demise of Dr
Kublalsingh, if the Gvernment should
fold and accede to Dr Kublalsingh's de-
mands then what is there to prevent
every disgruntled Tom, Dick and Harry
from going on hunger strike and holding
the country to ransom?
As a commuter to Port-of-Spain
every day, I decided to pay a visit to
Wayne, after following his story ca-
sually in the media. I decided to find
out what really was the story be-
hind this man.
makeshift residence I saw but a
handful of supporters, not a battal-
ion of soldiers as I expected. And as
I made my way towards Wayne, all I
could see was a frail, grey-haired,
hollow-cheeked, gaunt-looking man.
He was sprawled comfortably on a
lounge chair looking like he was sit-
ting in his backyard under the shade
of a coconut tree and not on the
pavement outside the PM's office.
I shook his soft slender hands
and I listened to his voice, weak yet
strong, through parched lips. He
spoke to me about the movement
and his convictions, his passion, his
ideals, the broken trust of the PM,
his betrayal at the promised word
being broken, and to the average
man, one's word is not a powerful
thing, because we break our prom-
ises every day, say things we do
don't mean and deceive and lie with
But to Wayne the words of a
man are the most powerful thing he
has, something to be valued, cher-
ished, revered.They are something
not to be taken lightly, and to be
told by a PM that she would agree
to consider something and abide by
it and not do so is like a poisoned
dart in Wayne's heart, the ultimate
And in the same vein, as he has
made a promise to the HRM, to
save their homes, their communi-
ties, by the spoken word, he cannot
break this promise and will do all in
his power to keep his word, even if
it means a second hunger strike.
Not many of us may be able to
comprehend this because our
truths are not always truths, our
words are but words, our promises
are not always promises.
So to some of us, Wayne may
seem a bit eccentric, a bit crazy, but
centric enough, just crazy enough to
change this land.
Fellow Trinbagonians, your nation
is facing a dire crisis and needs you
now. We have a lot to be proud of but
at this time we are on the brink of
being shamed globally.
It has been more than 21 days since
Dr Wayne Kublalsingh began his sec-
ond hunger strike, having exceeded
the number of days of the previous
strike, and as each day passes we are
now in uncharted territory. His health
is declining and we must all unite and
do our part to prevent things from
getting any worse. If serious harm
should come to him, the world will
The colours red, white and black
define our flag but there is no space
for any more blood on it. The guilt and
shame will not be on just the Prime
Minister, who refuses to act with rea-
son and compassion, but on us all.
We need to get her to act now.
So many of our finest upstanding
countrymen have spoken out in sup-
port of Dr Kublalsingh, but the Prime
Minister also needs our support.
It is easy for anyone to choose
sides in this standoff---truth and self-
less heroism versus lies, selfishness
and greed---and the numerous facts
have been clearly stated and restated
so many times that they practically
scream in our faces so that any sensi-
ble person must agree that the con-
struction should not be taking place
and the PM should yield.
So why hasn't the PM responded
as the populace has demanded?
When my aunt was leaving for
Port-of-Spain last week to lend sup-
port to Dr Kublalsingh, she told me to
pray that the hearts of the PM and
her ministers will be touched. I coun-
tered that any normal human being
should be feeling compassion, so
there must be something else pre-
venting the PM from doing the right
I can only guess that she might be
under external pressures. With cor-
ruption and hypocrisy too common
among our politicians, she might be
protecting others or perhaps is even
being threatened. She has received
outspoken support from businessmen
in the very same area that the HRM
movement is protecting---one went so
far as to threaten a hunger strike for
the highway so his business can bene-
fit. These selfish individuals clearly are
shamelessly driven only by greed and
do not give a damn about the people
or environmental impact.
The PM does not need that kind of
support (and the local community
should consider boycotting those
businesses); she needs support to do
the right thing.
Whose side are you on? Either side
will lose if Dr K does not end his
hunger strike now. Let us as a nation
urge the PM to stop the highway con-
struction and await the courts.
Whatever wrongdoing might be
hidden now, the truth will come out
eventually when the courts are in-
volved and guilty parties are exposed.
It's now or later and there will be a
price to pay, but you can lessen the
cost by ensuring no harm comes to Dr
K. If the Prime Minister is too
ashamed of herself for her stubborn-
ness and failure to act, let her know
that to admit error in judgment and
do the honourable thing is leadership
that the people will respect her for.
Madam Prime Minister, don't play
"wrong and strong," the nation wants
to help you...we clear and light the
way...all you need to do is go down the
path. Be honourable and take the po-
litical road less travelled---stop the
Mon Desir Highway construction and
agree to abide by the Armstrong re-
May God bless our nation.
A promise to change the land
PM should 'take highway less travelled'
Say no to ransom demands
Dietitian James Harper, left, measures Brennon Edwards' waist during an
initiative titled Help the Homeless, hosted by the North West Regional Health
Authority and the Police Service at Town Council Street, Port-of-Spain, on
Tuesday. PHOTO: ABRAHAM DIAZ
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