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Thursday, June 20, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
Roget also accused Finance Minister Larry Howai
of using the recently-published Central Bank Mon-
etary Policy Report to suggest that the economy
is improving and that growth is increasing.
"They pulled out from the report that in 2011,
growth was minus 2.6 per cent, and that in 2012
growth reached a positive of .2 per cent," he said.
"But what they did not and would not tell you
is that our debt to GDP went from 33.4 per cent
in 2011 to an unprecedented 39.7 per cent in 2012.
This means that our debt levels are rising and rising
He added that despite the wanton spending and
$50 billion-plus deficit budget, the minister had
requested an additional $8 billion dollars.
Whilst there have been little activity in the con-
struction sector, Roget said the Government has
not been able to stimulate the economy.
"Their excessive borrowing is an attempt to hide
the fact that the economy has contracted. Simply
put, we are spending much more than we are mak-
ing," Roget said.
He also said revenue in the energy sector has
"While LNG production remained the same,
indigenous crude production, oil exports and refinery
throughput have all fallen dramatically," he said.
He added that the PP was the most corrupt gov-
ernment in the history of T&T and this was fuelling
"There is a link between the corruption and
crime. It has been proven time and again, that with
the increase in corruption and white-collar crime,
there is always a corresponding increase in violent
crimes and murders."
Roget added that an examination of the recent
Auditor General s report, on T&T s public accounts
for the financial year 2012, shows incompetence,
corrupt practices and wastage.
Roget outlined the increases given to each min-
istry. He said the report also revealed that in seven
ministries, there were increases in expenditure by
more than 50 per cent from the period 2011 to
"The Ministry of Sport, expenditure increased
by 1,275 per cent, Ministry of Works increased by
378 per cent, the Ministry of Transport increased
by 386 per cent and the Ministry of Planning
increased by 232 per cent," he said.
He also disclosed that the Justice Ministry
increased by 222 per cent, Gender Ministry got 194
per cent and Housing Ministry increased by 90
He also said rental payments for various ministries
were totalling hundreds of millions of dollars and
yet signed lease agreements were not produced.
Roget urged Petrotrin workers not to accept VSEP.
"They are now offering VSEP, sending home
workers with many years of experience and com-
petence," he said.
"Today, I say to all of those workers, you must
stand your grounds and refuse those VSEP packages.
Do not be enticed into giving away your jobs. Let
them take God out of their thoughts and send you
home and all hell will break loose," he said.
After the rally, workers were treated to a cultural
levels rising fast
The Inter-American Devel-
opment Bank's executive direc-
tor in the Caribbean, Trinida-
dian Kurt Kisto, has been
accused by director of Finance
and Economic Affairs in Bar-
bados, Grantly Smith, of "mis-
management of the
The criticism is contained in
a strongly-worded two-page let-
ter in which Smith complained
about the deteriorating quality
of the office s services to Bar-
bados and the rest of the region.
IDB is the largest source of
development financing for Latin
America and the Caribbean. The
Caribbean constituency office
represents the interests of the
Bahamas, Barbados, Guyana,
T&T and Jamaica.
According to a report in the
Daily Nation newspaper, Bar-
bados was specifically concerned
that the office failed to live up
to standards established when
the recent IDB board of directors
met in Panama.
Smith claimed there had been
a reduction in the quality of
administrative services to the
He was quoted as saying:
"The service in the office was
adversely affected because there
was too much work for one offi-
Smith said members of Bar-
badian and Jamaican delegations
were forced to assist with the
copying and other preparations
of the documents when it was
recognised that an administrative
assistant, only identified as Ms
Maxwell, had too much on her
plate and would have had a hard
time meeting deadlines.
Maxwell reports to Kisto.
The report noted that also at
the centre of the contention was
another T&T national, Clarisse
Beharry who worked in the
office for several years but did
not have her contract renewed
According to Smith s letter,
Kisto reportedly told a meeting
of the Caribbean IDB governors
that Beharry was under inves-
tigation by the bank s human
resource department and that
was the reason for her contract
not being renewed.
However, it was later found
that the bank was not investi-
gating Beharry. The former
employee wrote a recent letter
to Kisto informing him that the
bank advised her it had no such
information and was not inves-
Smith has demanded that
Kisto provide the countries with
information to support his state-
He said Barbados has asked
for the bank s recruitment pro-
cedures which were used to ter-
minate Beharry s contract and
select her replacement. He said
this was important to ensure
selection was transparent and
open to suitable qualified people
from all of the countries.
He sent a stern warning to
Kisto: "We remind you that
regardless of the powers granted
to you by the bank, as an exec-
utive director, you are ultimately
accountable to the governments
of the member states of the
He said major changes, as in
the case of Beharry s, should be
approved by the governors
before taking action.
IDB's Trini director
comes under fire
LABOUR DAY MARCH
Nurses were among the hundreds of workers taking part in yesterday's Labour Day march in Fyzabad. PHOTO:RISHI RAGOONATH
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