Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 14th 2017 Contents Participants during Naparima
College's walkathon, in
celebration of the school's 124th
anniversary along the Rienzi
Kirton Highway, San Fernando on
Sunday. PHOTO: RISHI RAGOONATH
Tuesday, March 14, 2017 guardian.co.tt
Our tourism is a
delicate tropical flower
With the greatest of good intentions Stephen Cadiz is
now pontificating on what was wrong with tourism
under him and the Partnership government.
Why was not enough money spent? Perhaps the for-
mer minister could have been more effective if he had
been more assertive regarding pressing for advertising
money. How can one advertise a destination without hav-
ing suitable accommodation for a huge influx of tourists?
The natural beauty of Tobago has been wasted because
much of the accommodation has not been available or
up to international standard.
The Tobago tourism package has to be specifically
designed to ensure Tobagonians derive the most benefit
from an upmarket package such as Sandals. It has to
be borne in mind that not every single Tobagonian will
want to be a hotel worker. Some staff will have to come
from Trinidad. Other smaller hotels will have to upgrade
significantly to match up and to enjoy spin-off benefits.
Tourism in Trinidad can be of the all-year-round variety
because of the varied forms of entertainment available.
The Asa Wright Centre, the Caroni Swamp, the Pitch Lake,
the river limes can be year-round attractions.
We possess a variety of birds that will delight bird
lovers. The night life on the Avenue and St James in
Port-of-Spain, appear very attractive to younger people.
Steelband shows can be put on every few months and can
attract music lovers world wide and provide employment.
Importantly though, where will all these new regu-
lar visitors stay if we do not have enough quality hotel
rooms? The idea of providing luxury homes for rental in
either Trinidad or Tobago should be considered.
We tend to overprice substandard room facilities ad-
vertised as being "quaint." T&T is too far, too expensive
a journey to realise that when you get here toilets don't
flush and towels are cheap and stringy; there are no lights
or water. Worse would be staff who are not fully trained,
unsmiling and unaccommodating. Tourism calls for the
quality participation of all stake holders.
Men under attack
Why does it appear that men are being targeted in
this campaign to protect the rights of women? The
overwhelming sense that one gets is that all men are
abusers and that all men should be viewed with suspicion.
There is no question that there are a lot of men who
are abusive and there is a need for serious work to be
done to reduce if not eliminate all such behaviour.
It is simply not acceptable for a man to strike a woman,
never mind the provocation. It may not be possible to
eliminate it totally but we must never give up the struggle.
Equally unacceptable, however, is the apparent painting
of all men with the same tainted brush.
There are still a lot of men who open doors for ladies,
who are polite to the point of obsequiousness, who treat
all women with respect and would not even allow inap-
propriate language to be used in their presence.
So why are we being made to feel that we are being
judged by the same standards as the Neanderthal next
door or that all of us subscribe to the same beliefs?
It appears that good men are being lumped with the
bad, which is a frightening development.
The elderly at mercy
of govt and banks
When senior citizen centres are being shut down
for lack of subvention, we know we are in a cru-
cial place in our history. To hear this news is definitely
worrisome. Many pensioners have paid dues, which is,
paid their taxes over the years and now are being cast
aside because of successive governments' failure to
put things in place for them in lean times.
Why target the elderly? Failed firstly by their own
kids (put them in homes and don't look back, however,
some need to whilst others choose to), and then by
the Government. Corruption and greed have been the
foremost contributors to this as well as successive
government playing musical chairs with policies in-
stead of continuity. Everybody wants money, back pay,
increases (entitled), but not at this time of no money.
Who's batting in the corner for the elderly?
In the same vein, those in authority boasting they
gave the elderly free bus pass, but over one-two hours
waiting for a bus.
They were forced to all get an ABM card for their
pension, many can't remember their PIN so their own
kids and family stealing from them (took away what
little independence they had). Then the banks are
stealing from them with exorbitant fees.
Politicians sit in high offices and make adhoc deci-
sions which always come back to bite someone, and
in most cases, it's the citizens, for example in school
violence. No long-term, rational decisions---only for po-
litical expediency which has negative ramifications.
Hang your heads in shame people. Yes, both public
and private sectors.
Senior citizens have organised themselves in groups
and organisations and contribute to the economy with
art and craft. Many are learning to use the computer
and in some case there are young people who visit
these centres and perform services (cosmetology---
hairdressing, manicure and pedicure.
Others spend time socialising with them by reading
and just learning from their experiences. Does this
count for nothing? Shame, shame! Remember, we
all hope to attain ripe old age with God's blessings. I
continue to pray for my country.
'VOLUME OF SEA SYLLABUS NEEDS TO BE CUT'
It is time for us to realise
that the one thing that
determines the direction
of our country, is our ed-
At present the primary
and secondary curricula
are so demanding that the
following features have
been showcased for the
past 20 or more years:
1) Students at primary
school have to become so
immersed in extra lessons
that there is never room
for holistic develop-
ment---no time for sports,
music, arts and even
2) The high level of
difficulty and enormous
volume of work have
caused many of the
students at the primary
level to become frustrated
and disengaged from the
school curriculum. This
eventually transfers to the
secondary schools and
results in school indisci-
pline which seems to be
the order of the day;
3) The failure rate at
CXC (Form 5) is exceed-
ingly high, resulting in
young people being left
unemployed, which leads
directly to our spiralling
What are we doing to
fix this education crisis?
Unfortunately, none of
the appointed individuals
at MOE has ever dis-
played any creativity and
innovative thinking in
addressing the following
a) re-constructing the
primary and secondary
school curricula to make
them more manageable
and relevant to our stu-
b) disallowing the CXC
board to dictate our syl-
labi at SEA and CSEC.
The volume of the SEA
syllabus needs to be cut
drastically if we want to
re-establish a passion for
learning, focussing on
holistic development and
make schools happy plac-
es once again. Do we have
intellectuals in our midst
who can formulate new
education programmes to
fit the needs and capabili-
ties of our students?
c) changing the way
students are examined at
the end of the five-year
period. Has anyone at
MOE given any thought
to modular exams? This
would allow exams after a
six-month period focus-
sing on a particular mod-
ule, giving the students
ample time to understand
and learn each topic. It
is possible that minds of
our education experts are
locked in a time warp and
can only think of educa-
tion as they would have
experienced during their
school days in the 1960's;
d) reworking the struc-
ture of student selection
into secondary schools.
In all of our DipEd and
CertEd programmes we
are constantly bombarded
with Howard Gardner's
Multiple Intelligences in
learning, yet at the level
of Ministry of Educa-
tion, all of the brilliant
thinking is thrown out of
the window. One of the
key aspects of the Mul-
tiple Intelligences is the
strategy, where students
help each other in the
classroom. In the Colonial
days, certain schools were
set up as elite schools (aka
prestige schools) and only
the top-performing stu-
dents were sent to these
schools, while students
with low scores were
corralled in other schools
which created a long
list of low-performing
The end result is that
we now have schools that
are labelled as "high per-
formance schools" simply
because the best students
in the country are sent to
them. At the same time,
principals and teachers
of the low-performing
schools are continuously
chastised by the MOE for
the high failure rates and
high levels of indiscipline.
One has to wonder if
the hierarchy in the Min-
istry of Education has the
capacity to understand
that if the schools were
mixed with varying abil-
ities of students, then
we would have a greater
number of high perform-
Perhaps some of the
top-ranked officials at
MOE need to admit to
themselves that they are
incapable of moving edu-
cation in T&T to a higher
level and should therefore
consider vacating their
posts to allow a new breed
of innovative thinkers to
fill the positions.
NAVIGATIONAL WARNING 043/16
TRINIDAD -- GULF OF PARIA
CHART BA 475
Pipeline operations by MVs MICHAEL M, KATHY M,
KENNETH O and barge WINSTON B, towing pipelines of
up to 2000 feet in length in progress between the Guapo
Bay Area and the Main Soldado Oilfeld will continue until
31st December 2017.
A wide berth and caution is advised.
6th February 2016 Signed
Director of Maritime Services
Maritime Services Division Ministry
of Works and Transport
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