Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 21st 2015 Contents GAIL ALEXANDER
You can take a man out of the gutter,
but you can t take the gutter out of the
So said Congress of the People (COP)
leader Prakash Ramadhar, as he voiced
concerns about the leadership of Oppo-
sition People s National Movement
(PNM) leader Dr Keith Rowley on Thurs-
Speaking at a COP meeting at the St
Dominic s Pastoral Hall, Diego Martin,
in Rowley s constituency, he said if the
leadership was like that, then he had
concerns about the followers.
"A fish rots from the head down and
the rest after," he said, noting he took
issue with controversial remarks Rowley
made at a PNM meeting in Brazil on
Rowley has been receiving criticism
for remarks he made during the meeting,
in particular, "She could jump high, she
could jump low, she could drink this,
she could drink that, she could bark at
meh dog, I go ignore she cat."
Ramadhar on Thursday said he had
to "mash up" Rowley since the political
parties were "at war" and T&T had to
know what it was facing.
"The character of the man is in ques-
tion and if it s flawed, he can t hold
leadership," Ramadhar added.
Saying elections were a straight PP-
PNM fight, he said it wasn t the PNM
of Dr Eric Williams or "the gentlemanly
leadership of Patrick Manning. What
we have is a return to thuggery, gang-
sterism and division."
He also criticised Rowley s wining on
a teenager during San Fernando Carnival
and his "shameful response on
that...This man has no respect for
women, it s an attack on every mother,
every daughter, every sister."
Pointing out that Rowley was a father
and husband, Ramadhar questioned
what there was about Rowley s upbring-
ing, his youth or background that made
him "spiteful, hateful, arrogant, cold
and abusive to women s dignity?"
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, March 21, 2015
Apologise to the nation.
That was the call to Opposition Leader Dr Keith
Rowley from Communication Minister Vasant
Bharath yesterday, in the wake of Rowley s alleged
"sexist" remarks during a PNM cottage meeting
in Brazil on Tuesday.
Debate has raged since the remarks were made,
with mixed reaction from the public.
At that meeting, Rowley said, "She could jump
high, she could jump low, she could drink this,
she could drink that, she could bark at my dog
because I will ignore she kyat."
Some sectors of society say Rowley was
extremely degrading to women. Speaking to
reporters at the opening of Yufe s Maraval store
yesterday, Bharath said Rowley should apologise
to the nation.
"It really is something which Dr Rowley ought
to retract and apologise to the nation, not nec-
essarily to just women, but to the nation as a
whole, particularly because he is someone who
is aspiring to hold high office."
Describing Rowley s behaviour as "reprehen-
sible," Bharath added, "It is an indefensible position
for Dr Rowley or Mr Al-Rawi and certainly Camille
Robinson-Regis, who really has no credibility in
this matter, in any event at all, to even discuss
it."Speaking on behalf of the PNM Women s
League, Robinson-Regis criticised the PP for taking
what she said was all political picong and making
it into a campaign issue.
Commenting on Robinson-Regis defence of
Rowley, Bharath said, "I don t think anyone would
be taking her seriously."
Ironically, at the UNC s Monday night forum,
Persad-Bissessar boasted about distributing "lap-
tops not lap dance."
Asked if this comment could not also be seen
as reprehensible, Bharath said, "I disagree, if they
are referring to the statement that the Prime Min-
ister talked about a lap dance, I don t see that as
sexist at all, simply because Dr Rowley, his behav-
iour was in open for everyone to see, so describing
it as a lap dance was an understatement."
Rowley s statement is expected to be discussed
by the Code of Ethics Committee next week.
Fish rots from head down
Prakash: Rowley not leadership material
Congress of the People leader Prakash Ramadhar greets a young supporter on his arrival at his
party's meeting at the St Dominic's Pastoral Hall, St Finbar's Church, Morne Coco Road, Diego
Martin, on Thursday night. PHOTO: JEFF MAYERS
Ramadhar also asked what
businessman Fen Mohammed,
the father of PNM candidate
Neil Mohammed, and Stuart
Young would say about
He also said he felt sorry for
PNM MPs Donna Cox and
Nileung Hypolite, who were
rejected by the party's
screening committee on
Wednesday, and wondered
what would happen to Diego
Martin MP Amery Browne
when he faced screening. He
said Browne was one of the
best and most decent, but
such people were being
removed from the PNM and
"what's left is a facade."
He later told reporters it
was for T&T to deal with the
situation and not allow Rowley
to lead the government. He
said an apology wouldn't
change one's character.
"We won't allow a character
flaw as obvious as this to be
translated to government," he
Planning Minister Dr Bhoe
Tewarie, also addressing the
crowd, asked, "What has
Rowley done to warrant your
considering him for leadership
of T&T. If you weren't sure,
then Tuesday night's platform
statements (by him) confirm
to you he's not leadership
material ... that's a man who on
a platform speaks like that in
the hope of getting support?
He compliments me for
removing (a CDA board
member), yet goes on to stoke
racial sentiments and
disrespects the Prime Minister
and denigrates all women. He's
achieved a new low for a
political leader of T&T."
Tewarie said Rowley had
been devoid of restraint and
judgment and had validated
former Prime Minister Patrick
Manning's description of him
as a "raging bull." He said it
was distressing that the public
had to see a leader who
aspired to high office behave in
"He lacks the temperament
and restraint to handle power,"
SORRY FOR REJECTED MPS
PNM PRO Faris Al-Rawi
yesterday said that a
subsequent statement by
PNM's Stuart Young on
Rowley's remarks wasn't an
apology and that Rowley's
remarks had only been Tobago
"Where was the UNC's
Women's League when Mrs
referring to Dr Bissessar's pipe
on the platform years ago?" he
asked, claiming PP's Roodal
Moonilal had also made
remarks about women and "a
sack of aloo."
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