Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 1st 2016 Contents to serve as chairman. The question
of libraries and our whole infor-
mation system was a very integral
part of the ministry when I served
as minister," Parsanlal said.
Parsanlal served as information
minister prior to the 2010 general
"I am not coming to a situation
that I am not aware of; there have
been some changes in the last five
years. The importance of libraries
and what we bring to the table, I
think, is going to be critical for us
as a society."
He said the board would look
at the way T&T looked at libraries,
the way the country invested in
libraries and the question of the
heritage library that is going to
cost the country $21 million.
He said the board would also
look at libraries in Toco, Mayaro,
Moruga and Chaguanas.
He said when he looked at the
front-page picture of a daily news-
paper and saw students of
Chaguanas North going into their
schools he thought they were vis-
iting a maximum security prison.
"I keep wondering whether if
we build more libraries, would we
need more prisons, and that is
going to be one of my emphases.
"We will look at how we can
use libraries, raise our literacy levels,
encourage more people to read on
a wider basis so that the language
skills and literacy become more
important for us, because when
language ends that is when vio-
lence begins and, therefore, part
of my remit as chairman is going
to be to drive home that we must
become a more literate society."
Cuffie said he had been anx-
iously awaiting the appointment
of the new board.
"There are several urgent matters
to attend to. It has taken longer
than we anticipated because it
takes care in appointing the boards,
getting the right people. Now they
are on board, we have some urgent
matters, construction of the
Chaguanas library, Mayaro, and
we have some issues with the Toco
"Those are the matters they will
have to attend to immediately."
The new board of the National
Library and Information System
Authority (Nalis) will focus on raising
literacy levels and encouraging more
people to read.
Newly appointed chairman of the
board Neil Parsanlal said this yesterday
during an interview with the media.
Parsanlal and seven other people
were given their instruments of
appointment by Communications Min-
ister Maxie Cuffie at the Old Fire Station
on Abercromby Street, Port-of-Spain.
"I am quite happy for the opportunity
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, March 1, 2016
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HDC Tarodale residents seek help
Tarodale residents are calling for
the urgent intervention of the health
minister, as they say a lack of action
by the Housing Development Corpo-
ration (HDC) has left their community
open to the Zika virus.
About 60 residents staged a protest
on Montserrat Drive, Tarodale, yesterday
hoping to bring attention to clogged
drains in the area.
Vice president of the Tarodale Devel-
opment Community Group, Rexford
Graham, told the T&T Guardian that
drains leading to a catchment pond in
the community have not been cleaned
for the past two years.
"We are here today because this
catchment area is full of bush, which
can be housing the Zika virus or the
Aedes aegypti mosquito," Graham said.
"For two years this area has not been
cleaned and because of that, there is
stagnant water. There are children in
the area and this virus can come to our
"We don t want to wait until some-
one is sick to say clean our area, we
want it cleaned now," residents
Graham said given the risk of Zika,
more should be done immediately to
protect the residents of Tarodale.
"This is what happens in our country.
When someone dies of the virus or
something happens, then they come
in full force with tractors and machinery
and start to clean but prevention is
better than cure. Let them come now
and get it done before somebody gets
"All we ask is that whoever you have
to give contracts to or employ, come
see our plight and get the job done."
Bearing placards with messages such
as "Public health emergency" and
"HDC clean up your act", the residents
lamented that they have been forgotten
by those in authority.
"They will only send in engineers to
take pictures and that s it, nothing is
being done," said resident Maria
"We are seek a meeting with the
minister of housing, we have a lot of
other issues with the lighting system
and with the roads.
"It s like we are out of sight and out
of mind, because you don t hear Tar-
odale in the news, so they assume we re
all right, but we are not. The whole
place is getting more and more
deplorable," Alexander added.
New Nalis board chairman
Bid to create more literate society
Protest against stagnant
pond, clogged drains
An employee from the Ministry of Health Insect Vector Control Division in a
mosquito eradication exercise at Friendship Village, San Fernando, yesterday.
PHOTO: RISHI RAGOONATH
Chairman, Neil Parsanlal,
deputy chairman Charleen
Philip, a former permanent
secretary; Elmelinda Lara;
Cathyan Townsend; Indrani
Rampersad; Lynette Tyson-
Noel; Karel Douglas; and
Jefferson D Guy.
Nalis' executive director
Elizabeth Mahadeo is the ex-
officio member of the board.
Communications Minister Maxie Cuffie, left, presents Neil Parsanlal,
chairman of the NALIS board, with his letter of appointment during the
installation ceremony at the National Library, Port-of-Spain, yesterday.
Parsanlal served as information minister in a previous PNM regime.
PHOTO: NICOLE DRAYTON
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