Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 4th 2017 Contents A14 news
guardian.co.tt Friday, August 4, 2017
soon to be
Clarence Rambharat is
of the Agricultural De-
velopment Bank (ADB)
that Government will
soon address their call
for outstanding salary
issues to be settled.
continued dedication of
the workforce despite
three weeks of ongoing
protests, Rambharat yes-
terday agreed the ADB's
contribution was an inte-
gral part of his ministry's
Commenting briefly on
the stalled negotiations as
he attended a function
at the Environmental
(EMA), St Clair, Ramb-
harat said the issue was
placed on the agenda to
be discussed when Cab-
inet's Human Resource
in the next two weeks.
Revealing it was men-
tioned during Monday's
sought to reassure the
workers that government
was committed to resolv-
ing the issue.
The Public Services
Association (PSA) is de-
manding a 14 per cent
salary increase for the
workers, who are owed
monies dating back to
They have since reject-
ed a nine per cent offer
which was last extended
when both sides met back
The PSA said to ac-
cept less than 14 per cent
would put the workers at
a disadvantage as they
would no longer enjoy
parity with the rest of
the public service.
Several of the workers
confirmed the protests
continued during their
lunch-hour and resumed
as soon as they closed at
4 pm. The ADB workers
are scheduled to join em-
ployees from the Customs
and Excise Division and
the Board of Inland Rev-
enue in today's march in
which hundreds of public
servants are expected to
converge on the Ministry
of Finance, Twin Towers.
The Joint Trade Union
Movement is also expect-
ed to lead various factions
of workers from private
companies and other
State agencies in a show
of support. (ALP)
CEPEP to be
Efforts are being made to review and re-
vise the current operations of the Commu-
nity-Based Environmental Protection and
Enhancement Programme (CEPEP) to ensure
a return to its original mandate to develop a
nationally green economy.
Although Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley has
spoken on the issue before, Agriculture Minister
Clarence Rambharat yesterday said a decision was
taken to divide whatever resources are allocated to
the CEPEP Company Ltd within the next fiscal year,
into three segments.
The CEPEP Company Limited is an agency of the
Ministry of Rural Development and Local Govern-
ment and is one of the main pillars in the national
strategy for development of the Green Economy of
Speaking during the launch of the national web-
site for Forest and Protected Areas in T&T at the
Environmental Management Authority (EMA), St
Clair yesterday, Rambharat said the funds would be
evenly distributed among the ministries of Works
and Transport, Local Government and Rural Devel-
opment, and Agriculture Land and Fisheries.
He said while the monies allocated to the other two
ministries was expected to aid in minor construction
works and rehabilitation projects in both urban and
rural areas, he intended to use the funds allocated to
his ministry to promote environmental activities.
Rambharat said, "We intend to use it for envi-
ronmental protection activities particularly along
the East/West Corridor and the Northern Range
particularly in the north-west of the Diego Martin
Hills and north-east in places like Matelot come
right down to Salybia."
Admitting that persons would witness a slight
adjustment away from the jobs currently being
performed by CEPEP workers, Rambharat said, "A
lot of people don't believe the resources allocated
to CEPEP are being used wisely."
He said although government had announced a
restructuring of the CEPEP, "I have already decided
in the first year of having access to those resourc-
es, that it would be used to get back to the original
intention of CEPEP."
He added that sufficient efforts were already being
made in the areas of reforestation and rejuvenating
burnt hillside areas.
Rambharat said he continued to be irritated and
irked by pictures of debris littering the Queen's Park
Savannah and beaches along the North Coast fol-
lowing the recent long weekend celebrations.
He said, "We have to continue to emphasise re-
Claiming that he was also pushing for an expan-
sion of the recycling project which was recently
introduced at the Emperor Valley Zoo, St Ann's,
to be extended into all regional borough corpora-
tions, Rambharat is hopeful budgetary allocations
would also be made for them to acquire the necessary
equipment to crush plastics and further encourage
recycling among the citizenry.
Also focusing on the fact that some of his sister
and brother ministries were undertaking projects
which would have a direct environmental impact on
certain protected areas under his purview, Rambharat
admitted that there was a lack of communication
even at the ministerial level as some persons con-
tinued to operate as if in a "silo."
Unwilling to disclose which project this was and
who was the minister, Rambharat would only say
that this was a clear indication of, "Too many hands
cooking the broth."
Pressed to say more later on, Rambharat assured
the issue would be resolved with the relevant min-
ister in due course.
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