Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 5th 2013 Contents Minimum wage still to be reviewed --- McLeod News --- Page A6
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Wednesday, June 5, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
for 04th JUNE, 2013
KALIFA SARAH CLYNE
President of China Xi Jinping was not forced to
hold an umbrella for his wife, First Lady Madame
Peng Liyuan, when he arrived in T&T on Friday.
Chinese Ambassador to T&T Huang Xingyuan told
the T&T Guardian yesterday it was President Xi s
choice to hold the umbrella and it was a practice of
Chinese culture to do so.
The incident was described by former diplomat
Reginald Dumas as one of many protocol lapses that
occurred during the State visit last weekend.
In response, Huang invited media to the Chinese
Embassy in St Clair, where, using a translator, he
expressed satisfaction at the protocols observed by
T&T s protocol officers during the Chinese head of
state s visit.
He described the "umbrella incident" as a virtue
of his culture that had been twisted to appear as a
fault of T&T.
"This might be the difference between oriental and
western culture. This is a good habit. He (Xi) wanted
to hold the umbrella for his wife," Huang said.
He said he himself and several protocol officers
attempted to hold the umbrella for the First Lady but
President Xi refused.
He said a newspaper article that highlighted the
issue may have led to misunderstanding, as someone
reading could interpret that the State visit had been
Huang denied that, producing two letters sent from
Xi to T&T President Anthony Carmona and Prime
Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar expressing satisfaction
with the visit.
"Although T&T is a small country, the protocol
work was world-class. The Chief of Protocol and Min-
istry of Foreign Affairs did a great job," he said.
Commenting on reports about journalists being
blocked access to certain meetings on Sunday at the
Hilton Trinidad and Conference Centre, Huang said
that may have been a technical problem or a misun-
He said all media---local, regional and Chinese---
were supposed to be accredited to get access to meetings
and added if that was done there should have been
"We welcome T&T journalists to cover all our events
but sometimes there are technical problems," Huang
said, saying he regretted that journalists were not able
to get all of the interviews and access they required.
wanted to hold
umbrella for wife
The Children s Life Fund to
facilitate overseas treatment for
sick children stood at $62.4
million plus US$222,693 in
contributions at January 31,
Health Minister Fuad Khan said
Replying to an Opposition
query on the Senate s agenda
yesterday, Khan said at Decem-
ber 31, 2012, the TT value of the
fund was $56m and the US con-
tributions totalled $263,571.54.
He said sums were expended on
treatments out of the latter con-
tribution between December
2012 and January 2013
Khan listed those who donat-
ed to the fund, including gov-
ernment ministers who con-
tributed $1.3 million out of the
total figures. He said the PP
administration also contributed
$60 million in two tranches of
$30 million in 2011 and 2012.
The Government s contribu-
tion to the fund, Khan said, was
included in the annual budgetary
allocation for the health sector.
Khan noted that there had not
been any contributions from the
Opposition PNM members.
Listing those who contributed,
Khan said that included: T&T
consulate general Toronto
($15,935.62); T&T consulate
general New York ($31,280.50);
Arya Pratinidhi Sabha of
Trinidad ($20,000); Indian High
Commission women s group
($25,000); Consular Corps of
T&T ($100,000); Society of Tri-
bologists and Lubrication Engi-
neers ($10,000); National Energy
Corporation ($150,000); Arya
Samaaj Foundation of T&T
($15,000); Prime Minister s
Charity Gold classic ($75,000);
Xtatik Ltd ($100,000); Greater
Tunapuna Chamber of Industry
& Commerce ($10,000); A1
Auto Supplies ($1,008); Terri-
torial Services Ltd ($800);
Christmas Flea Market Com-
mittee ($1,000); Columbus
Ramdath Rampersad ($10,000);
Scotiabank TT ($15,000); ADM
Ltd ($100,000); Bombay Dreams
($74,060.77); Mission of Azer-
baijan $12,200) and Prime Min-
ister s Charity Gold Classic
Khan also said over-the-
counter bank deposits in TT cur-
rency totalled $203,757.03
Those contributing in US dol-
lars included CAL ($199,975);
Bank of Baroda ($7,000); Rotary
Club of Penal ($10,000); Al Razi
Mohammed ($5,000) and
anonymous contributions ($718).
Khan said 18 children have so
far benefited from the fund.
Sums afforded to the children
ranged from a high of
TT$874,690.92 to a low of
Children's Life Fund
...plus US$222,693 at January 31
Other companies shocked by bill
Yesterday, the owners said they
were at a loss as to what would
have contributed to such a hefty
Mohan scoffed at the $6 mil-
lion price tag, saying: "It could
have cost nowhere near that.
"We have been in the wrecking
business over 25 years, and did
several jobs like that in Maracas,"
"That job will cost no more
than $50,000, and that is the
"We have equipment to move
heavy vehicles like that and I am
sure we could have pulled it out.
"In no part of the world could
it ever happen...The vehicle is
not even valued at that price.
"For a crane to pick it up
means that it was not in such a
bad area. If it was in a dangerous
place, a crane could not even
reach there. Two wreckers could
have pulled out the water ten-
Fyzam Ali said based on his
calculations, he would have
charged a mere $25,000 for the
job.Ali, the owner of Fyzam
Garage, said after he read the
report in yesterday s T&T
Guardian, he tried to calculate
an estimated cost and was unable
to arrive at the figure of $6.5 mil-
"The most I will say is
$25,000," Ali said.
Told that the water tender had
plunged down 300 feet over a
precipice and three cranes were
used to retrieve it, Ali replied: "It
was to make the work look big.
"I am shocked. That is too
much money. I have been in the
business for 30 years and no job
has ever cost $6 million---not
"I think somebody is mad."
A truck-mounted crane lifts the
damaged firetruck off the flatbed tow
truck on the Junior Sammy compound.
Continues from A1
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