Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 3rd 2016 Contents AUGUST 3-9, 2016
t's a simple request. The appeal
- one of few by the authorities -
to keep our surroundings clean
and not provide breeding
grounds for the Aedes Aegypti
mosquito, the carrier of the Zika
virus, may finally be heeded.
If we had some pride in our
environment, however, there would
probably be no need to make the
Be that as it may, the call for
cleanliness is certainly taking on a
new meaning after the discovery
that one symptom of the Zika virus
is paralysis which could result in
At present, there is sufficient
evidence to link the Zika virus to
Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), "a
disorder in which the body's immune
system attacks part of the peripheral
nervous system" (National Institute
of Neurological Disorder and Stroke).
The National Institute of
Neurological Disorder and Stroke's
website characterises the syndrome
as a "physical disorder (with)
degrees of weakness or tingling
sensations in the legs."
It said the symptoms can increase
until "the person is almost totally
paralysed ... potentially interfering
with breathing and, at times, with
blood pressure or heart rate."
At present, there are at least
twenty-nine cases of GBS in
Jamaica. The most widely publicised
is the case of Delano Franklyn,
former chief advisor to former
Jamaica prime minister PJ
Patterson, who shared his
experience with the media as a way
of sensitising the public to the
dangers of the syndrome.
He is hoping that telling his story
will result in the link between GBS
and Zika becoming well known.
Indeed, his account is a frightening
one of a near-death experience from
Add to that the fear that had he
not been able to afford the costly
treatment drug he would be dead
and his story becomes compelling.
He is now a willing poster boy for the
Certainly, knowledge of the GBS
link with Zika should turn all of us
into environmentalists and
Obviously, microcephaly is not the
only disease we should worry about
when it comes to the Zika virus.
Prior to now, the perception was
that only the combination of
pregnancy and Zika was cause for
concern. Now we know different.
What the GBS cases in Jamaica
have reconfirmed is the seriousness
with which we should treat the Zika
Thus the penchant to pass the
buck and blame the authorities for
not cleaning the drains in front of
our properties, cutting grass close to
our houses and emptying our
mosquito-breeding vases should
Given the crisis in our health
system, cases of GBS would present
an additional burden on care and
So far, the authorities are reporting
only two cases of Zika in Tobago.
We can keep it that way if we
would play our part and keep our
Florida resident Marisa Gopaul makes a phone call to family after putting her cellphone to
charge at a solar charging station set up by the Comprehensive Economic Development Program
Secretariat at Crown Point last week. The role of the CEDP is to assist in implementing the
policies with respect to sustainable development for the island. PHOTO: CASWELL GORDON
Tobago Today, Tomco Building, Plymouth Road, Scarborough.
Editor, Camille Mc Eachnie -
Sales Supervisor, Michelle Guy -
Sales Manager, Sonja Romany -
225-4465 (4GML), ext. 5552, 6130, 6131, 6132, 6133, 6134.
A product of Guardian Media Limited
NASSAU---Citizens for Constitutional Equality
(CCE) has joined in condemning opposition
legislator Richard Lightbourn, who last week
proposed a policy of sterilisation for unwed
mothers after they have given birth to two
"Remarkably, Mr Lightbourn is proposing state-
enforced violence against women, which is a
perverse violation of human rights.
"This brings to the forefront the immensity of
the failure to enshrine the principle of non-
discrimination on the basis of sex in our
constitution as the most recent referendum
initiative sought to do.
"The failure of the referendum now puts all
citizens at risk of these types of proposals from
policymakers for State violations.
"It is so unfortunate that we missed this
opportunity to enshrine formal gender equality
within our constitution," the CCE said in a
Last week, three female government ministers
condemned the statement, saying they were
"shocked and disgusted to hear the offensive
suggestion" by Lightbourn.
"While these kinds of outrageous comments
have come to typify the positionings of Mr
Lightbourn, his comments last night show that he
is unfit for public office and he should immediately
apologise to all Bahamian women," said Melanie
Griffin (social services), Glenys Hanna-Martin
(transport and aviation) and Hope Strachan
(financial services and local government) in a joint
Speaking at the convention of the main
opposition Free National Movement last Thursday,
Lightbourn proposed that unwed mothers with
more than two children should have their "tubes
tied" in an effort to curtail the country's social ills.
Lightbourn said children born in unstable family
situations often grow up to participate in criminal
"It is also necessary for us to consider as a
nation, adopting the lead of several countries in
the world which result in an unwed mother having
her tubes tied after having more than two
children," he said. (CMC)
Links Archive August 2nd 2016 August 4th 2016 Navigation Previous Page Next Page