Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 8th 2015 Contents A5
Friday, May 8, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
Rowley's absence, no
impact on House---PM
The Parliament would continue to
function without an Opposition Leader
if one is not chosen.
This was the view of Prime Minister
Kamla Persad-Bissessar who spoke to the
media yesterday after the sod-turning for
the ceremony of the Arima Hospital.
On Wednesday, Opposition Leader Dr
Keith Rowley was suspended from Par-
liament following the approval of a motion
of censure against him over his parlia-
mentary statements relating to Emailgate.
Now the Opposition, which consists of
Members of Parliament from the People s
National Movement (PNM) and one mem-
ber from the Independent Liberal Party
(ILP) may have to choose a new leader.
"I would not want to speculate if (the
PNM chooses a new leader). I would con-
tinue as we are. There is a duly constituted
Parliament and if the Opposition chooses
or does not choose an Opposition Leader,
that is an issue for the PNM," Persad-
Responding to accusations that sus-
pension was an abuse of power, Persad-
Bissessar said that the debate and vote
went along with the expected process and
the Opposition offered no defence.
"We gave due notice, we gave our evi-
dence, the Opposition chose not to give
one word of defence. Imagine yourself, if
someone accuses you of conspiring to
commit murder, should you allow that to
remain? That is what we have been facing
for two years. We obtained evidence where
the accusations were made in the Parlia-
ment and they had a duty but they chose
to run out of Parliament. There was no
abuse of Parliament," she said.
Persad-Bissessar also noted that sus-
pending the Opposition Leader was not
unprecedented in the country as former
opposition leader Basdeo Panday was once
banned from Parliament as well for using
his laptop computer while the House was
"Mr Basdeo Panday was suspended
when he was the Opposition Leader you
know, and the Parliament continued to
function without him," she said.
Addressing questions about the date of
general elections, Persad-Bissessar assured
that an election date would be called short-
ly. She stated that it was not her intention
to postpone elections and the date would
be called when it was constitutionally due.
"In a very short space of time we will
be calling elections. I just want to make
it clear that I have no intention to postpone
the elections...We will call elections, yes,
the answer is yes. Within the time frame
I have according to law," she said.
A police special branch officer removes Richard Burnett for disturbing Prime Minister
Kamla Persad-Bissessar during her speech at yesterday's sod-turning ceremony for
the new Arima Hospital. PHOTO: SHIRLEY BAHADUR
murder in Valencia
JENSEN LA VENDE
A daylight gun
left two men dead
in Valencia, East
around 1.30 pm
police were called
to Old Valencia
Road, Valencia after
the two, Cyrus
"Fish" Fulchan and
Francis "Ricky" Charles, were found dead outside s
Fulchan s business-place, Top of the Hill Proprietor s
Police said Fulchan, the driver of a silver Nissan
Tiida had just pulled into the parking lot of his business
place when a gunman opened fire on the car shortly
after appearing in court on drug-related charges.
Fulchan, 31, died behind the steering wheel while
Charles, 39, of Sierra Circular, Guayaguayare was
shot, ran out of the car, and collapsed a short distance
Fulchan appeared before a Sangre Grande magistrate
yesterday morning on a possession of marijuana
charge. It is alleged that after he walked out of the
courthouse he was pointed at and threatened by a
In March, he and his wife, Felicia appeared on
CNC3 s Crime Watch programme where they com-
plained that they were robbed of over $20,000 in
cash. It was shortly after that, that both husband and
wife were charged for possession of marijuana.
Police said Fulchan was linked to a triple murder
of two cousins and one of the cousin s girlfriend last
year as well as the theory that the two are involved
in the drug trade.
On December 12, Keron Ruiz, 29, Eric "Rumple"
Ruiz, 33, and Tenika Bartholomew, 23, were all shot
dead. Police said the triple murder was linked to the
sale of a parcel of State lands.
Police said yesterday s killing was well-planned
and the killer/s were awaiting the return of the two
men. Investigators said there were no witnesses to
the double murder.
Superintendent Neville Sankar, Insp Ken Lutchman,
Sgt Allana Lopez, WPC White-St Clair and Insp
Thom from Valencia Post were among the officers
who visited the scene.
Homicide Bureau Region 11 are continuing inves-
tigations. The murder toll is now 134 for the year
while for the same period last year the murder toll
In an unrelated shooting, police said, a man was
attacked by three gunmen while at a funeral.
Police said the victim, who identity was not released,
was at Allen s Funeral Home, Tunapuna when the
gunmen stormed in and opened fire on the man
around 3.30 pm.
The man was shot in his chest and taken to the
Eric Williams Medical Complex where he is warded
in a serious condition.
After 45-years of waiting, the people
of Arima would finally have a hospital
of its own.
The sod for the new hospital was turned
yesterday at the Arima District Health
Facility. Costing approximately $1.5 to 1.8
billion, the hospital is expected to be com-
pleted in two and a half years.
Among those there to celebrate the sod
turning ceremony were Prime Minister
Kamla Persad-Bissessar, Housing Minister
Roodal Moonilal, Health Minister Dr Fuad
Khan, Arima MP Rodger Samuel and Chi-
nese Ambassador Huang Xingyuan.
"We are pressing for T&T to become
the region s major healthcare hub. This
will help to diversify and grow our economy
exponentially while creating sustainable
jobs," said Moonilal.
The hospital is being constructed under
a government to government agreement
between T&T and China. China Railway
Construction (Caribbean) Company Ltd
will build the facility.
The new hospital which would fall under
the purview of the North Central Regional
Health Authority would function as a part-
ner with the existing Arima District Health
Facility. The hospital would be built on
the same ground as the health facility.
The hospital would be equipped with
150 in-patient beds. The hospital is expect-
ed to generate direct employment for more
than 200 people. As well, there would be
employment for 450 staff members in the
Addressing criticisms that building the
hospital was an election ploy, Persad-
Bissessar said that the hospital was a nec-
essary plan that needed to be done as soon
Persad-Bissessar promised the people
of Arima that if the People s Partnership
is re-elected, they would begin work on
a new Arima Market.
New Arima hospital in 30 months
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