Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 3rd 2016 Contents The reshuffle should also have
included "bungling Anthony
Garcia as Education Minister,"
UNC MP Dr Tim Goopeesingh
also said on Tuesday.
He added: "Mr Garcia's
ineptitude is on daily display
before T&T and especially
students, who are enduring
schools in disrepair and a rollback
on the many crucial gains during
the People's Partnership's
"The spate of schools in poor
condition is a direct result of Mr
Garcia's inability to provide
effective leadership in the repair
"For the 13 months he has been
in office, he has ignored the
urgent need for restoration
works at several aging buildings.
He's also abandoned the
construction of schools and early
childhood care centres.
"His 'report card' also includes
reversal in the computer laptop
grant, scrapping of the
Component, abandonment of
After-School Homework Centres,
non-provision of new textbooks
and sharp cutbacks in the school
"He has removed significant
aspects of physical education and
visual performing arts from the
SEA curriculum. These subjects
were providing invaluable
contribution in the development
of the fullest potential of
"Overall, Mr Garcia's tenure is
characterised by retrograde
measures, which will have the
effect of stifling students'
education at a time that requires
an innovative, knowledge-based
"The Prime Minister must
arrest the precipitous decline in
the education sector by the
removal of his removal from
Education." (See page A16)
Minister Stuart Young who has
been elevated from Minister of
State in the Prime Minister s office
to Minister in the Office of the
Prime Minister, may now have
more responsibility there, PNM
officials said yesterday, as they
tried to explain the move.
On Monday, Young was among
three existing minister's whose
portfolios were affected by the
A press release on the reshuffle
had stated the President had been
advised to "re-assign" Young (who
was) "Minister in the Ministry of
the Attorney General and Legal
Affairs and Minister of State in the
Office of the Prime Minister" to
"Minister in the Ministry of the
Attorney General and Legal Affairs
and Minister in the Office of the
Officials said the change was a
technicality regarding movement
from one level to another.
They noted "minister in" any
ministry is a cut above "Minister
of State" since the latter involves
They, however, noted Young had
already been in Cabinet since being
appointed in September 2015 as
"Minister in the AG's office."
In a Facebook comment, Young
said there was no change to his
salary by the re-assignment.
In March 2016, Young was also
made a Minister of State in the
OPM following Cabinet changes
when Marlene McDonald was fired
from the Cabinet.
Opposition Leader Kamla Per-
sad-Bissessar said: "The seeming
promotion of Mr Young to minis-
terial rank confirms he's in the
Prime Minister's inner circle,
although the reason for this priv-
ileged status cannot be discerned.
"He's now even more secured as
the minister of everything. It is
puzzling he wasn't named as Min-
ister of Communications even
though he essentially undertakes
Meanwhile, several members of
PNM's D'Abadie/O'Meara con-
stituency executive were mum on
Tuesday on the sacking of Ancil
Antoine as Public Utilities minister.
One executive member refused
to comment on the statements
claiming Antoine, a former Chief
of Defence Staff, had "spoken on
I95.5 FM" on Monday on the issue.
Antoine said he was not part of the
group opposed to his dismissal and
thanked the Prime Minister for the
opportunity to serve. He said he
would now focus his time dealing
with issues in his constituency.
PNM sources said while Antoine
disassociated himself from the
angry complaints, he was a bit
"crest-fallen" by the dismissal but
will toe PNM party line. Antoine
didn't answer calls on Tuesday.
Constituency executive election
officer Sherwin Marcelle said the
unit was due to meet with Antoine
and a statement would be made
but couldn't comment before.
Persad-Bissessar had said
Antoine "may have lost his job
because of his blatant moves to
dismiss CEPEP contractors and
employees. New (Public Utilities)
Minister Fitzgerald Hinds, must
give an early assurance there would-
n't be mass lay-offs in CEPEP."
Political analyst Dr Bishnu
Ragoonath, when asked about
Hinds' track record and future per-
formance, said: "People should go
back to the PNM's one-year
anniversary publication and if min-
isters' names came up, they would
have performed and had a good
track record. If they didn't, perhaps
they didn't perform."
"They'll have to give him a
chance (in Public Utilities) and see
how it works."
Thursday, November 3, 2016 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
Technical shift for Young
Fire Education Minister too---Goopeesingh
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