Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 14th 2015 Contents Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley said
yesterday that once the T&T Debates Com-
mission puts its house in order he stands
ready for a leader s debate in August.
Rowley spoke during a news conference
in Port-of-Spain yesterday on heels of
reports that a scheduled debate with Prime
Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar for July 30
had been postponed.
Rowley sought to clarify the issue saying
that it should not be said that the PNM
pulled out of any debate in July. General
elections has been set for September 7 and
nomination day has been set for August 17.
The debate was set to take place against the
backdrop of nomination day. The Peo-
said he had been
informed that the
debate had been
scheduled for August
and once everything
was in place he would
participate. He said the
July date had never
been discussed with
stands in as
the debates negotiator for the Prime Min-
ister, said on Saturday that another organisation
should organise the debate because of its failure to
keep the July 30 date.
In a statement yesterday, the T&T Debates Com-
mission (TTDC) said it was still engaged in private
discussions with the People's Partnership and the
People's National Movement to agree the details of
"We had hoped that as a courtesy to all parties
involved, the discussions would have remained pri-
vate until all issues were finalised. This has clearly
not happened since the issue has gone public and
received extensive public coverage over the last few
"We have now proposed to the representatives
of the People's Partnership and People's National
Movement that as a matter of urgency, we meet
with both of them as the primary parties (yesterday
or today) to discuss the way forward. We are pleased
that those conversations have now progressed and
we are now finalising times," the organisation said.
The Debates Commission said that once the date
had been confirmed it intends to "close on any out-
standing issues and further understand the extent
of the concerns on either side as soon as possible."
The meeting with the representatives of the polit-
ical parties "will allow us to better gauge the level
of flexibility that exists on both sides as well as the
space for compromise that might offer an oppor-
tunity for the two debates to happen."
The Debates Commission has requested "in the
spirit of equanimity and transparency that the Com-
mission be permitted to relay the outcome of those
discussions and is holding to a request made for
non-disclosure until it has had the opportunity to
issue a statement." (See story on Page A5)
Family members of Jamaican civil rights activist
Marcus Garvey and Ghanaian politician Osagyefo
Kwame Nkrumah have been invited for this year s
177th anniversary of Emancipation Day celebra-
Garvey and Nkrumah will be remembered through
Dr Julius Garvey, a vascular surgeon, will speak
on behalf of his father Marcus Garvey, while Samia
Nkrumah, daughter of Kwame Nkrumah and cur-
rently the chair of the Convention People's Party
of Ghana, will also speak.
Both are carrying on their parents' activism in
different ways and will be speaking in a panel dis-
cussion on July 28 at the Central Bank Auditorium
at 6.30 pm.
The date is significant: Exactly 100 years before,
the United States invaded Haiti and set back its
development in several ways, including changing
the constitution of Haiti to allow free access of for-
eigners to own its land and resources at a time when
Haitians were struggling to repay a deeply unjust
reparation fee of US$26 billion to France---according
to Khafra Kambon, chair of the Emancipation Sup-
Kambon was speaking at a press conference in
Maraval to outline Emancipation activities.
He said the July 28 date chosen for the panel dis-
cussion is a symbolic statement against "the historical
and continuing plunder of Haiti."
He called for solidarity with the plight of Haitians
currently faced with prejudice and statelessness as
they face deportation by the Dominican Republic
(DR). He urged the public to boycott all DR
products as the Emancipation Support
Committee lobbies for the rescinding of
the DR law.
The Emancipation Committee is bringing
a range of performers for its July 31 Liberation "Songs
of Freedom" Pan African concert, including Mali
blues singer Awa Sangho, Jamaican reggae singers
Everton Blender, Ventrice "Queen Ifrica" Morgan
and Duane Stephenson, T&T singer Kushite, and
As Emancipation activities continue until August
2, Kambon noted that the Emancipation Support
Committee still has not received any state funding
to offset increased expenses of this year's events.
The committee had asked for a grant of $4.5 million
this year. The committee said it also raised some
of its own funds and that total expenditure this year
should be about $8 million.
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Dr Keith Rowley
• July 16: Rhythm and Voices of Africa on the
Brian Lara Promenade, 5 pm.
• July 16: Film showing/discussion of Selma at
Nalis, 7 pm.
• July 18: Day-long conference on Decade for
People of African Descent, at Hotel Normandie, St
• July 28: Panel discussion on Africa and the
Diaspora, featuring Dr Julius Garvey and Samia
Nkrumah, 6 pm.
• July 29: Grand opening of the Lidj Yasu Omowale
Emancipation Village at Queen's Park Savannah, 6
• July 31: Pan African Concert, Emancipation
Village, Queen's Park Savannah, 8 pm.
• August 1: Freedom Morning Come: Re-
enactment of the Proclamation of Emancipation,
All Stars Pan Yard/Treasury Building, 4 am to 7 am.
• August 1: Kambule street parade, Brian Lara
Promenade, 9 am.
• August 2: Family Day & Food Fair at
Emancipation Village, 10 am.
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