Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 24th 2013 Contents A7
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for JUNE 21st 2013
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Anglican Bishop Calvin Bess said
yesterday the restoration of munic-
ipal rights to the city of Port-of-
Spain in 1914 was a "defining
moment" in the city's history.
Bess made these comments during
his sermon at a thanksgiving service
hosted by the Port-of-Spain City
Corporation at the Trinity Cathedral,
Abercromby Street, Port-of-Spain.
The service was held in recognition
of the 99th anniversary of the restora-
tion of municipal rights to the city.
Bess said "city dwellers" should
"ponder the significance" of the
restoration and think about what it
means for Port-of-Spain in 2013 and
the next decade.
"It is a very important occasion in
our understanding of where we are
and who we are and needs to be
viewed with the seriousness it
deserves," said Bess.
The revocation of municipal rights
in 1899, Bess said, spoke of a "failure
to understand the inherent dignity of
all mankind" and the "indomitable
spirit of humanity."
He added that he interprets that
time period in Port-of-Spain's history
as being written in blood.
"It was written in the blood of
those who perished during that dif-
ficult time, which makes it
sacred...That sacredness was lost by
the removal of municipal rights. Our
city fathers were not seen as sacred,"
The city has a responsibility placed
in its hands by God, Bess said. He
added that people should take that
God-given responsibility and be
mindful of the environment.
People of the city should not only
be concerned with the economic and
social well-being of Port-of-Spain,
said Bess, but the also the spiritual.
He said policies, programmes and
plans for the city should be made
with human beings in mind.
"Human beings are made in the
image of God and it is through that
spirit that we all arrive at a restored
and renewed world," he said.
"Policies should have humanity at
The service was followed by a
reception at City Hall and was attend-
ed by city councillors, aldermen and
deputy mayor Keron Valentine.
Valentine said this week would be
filled with activities to commemorate
the restoration of municipal rights.
A highlight of these activities would
be an award ceremony held at the
Hyatt Regency on Wednesday.
Planning for the 100th anniversary
would also begin soon, said Valentine.
Deputy mayor of
Valentine says City
will get their backpay
Valentine, who is act-
ing as mayor, spoke to
the media yesterday
after a thanksgiving
service held in recogni-
tion of the 99th
anniversary of the
restoration of municipal
rights to the city.
In May, corporation
workers protested over
claims that they are
owed $61 million in
Corp marks restoration of municipal rights...
PoS's history written in blood---Bess
About Port-of-Spain's municipal rights
According to an article on the National Library Web site, A History of Local Government, the Borough
Council of Port-of-Spain was established in 1853 by the then British colonial government under the
Municipal Corporations Ordinance No. 10. The first mayor was Dr Louis de Verteuil.
In 1899, borough status was revoked because of continued arguments over money between the
council and British government.
From 1907 to 1914, Port-of-Spain was run by a Town Board. In 1914, under Ordinance No 24, Port-of-
Spain became a city and a City Council was created with both appointed and elected members.
cheques were already
written up and the cor-
poration was waiting for
a release of funding.
He said the matter
was not political but an
issue of miscommuni-
cation between the cor-
poration, Ministry of
Labour and Ministry of
Valentine said he
believed cheques were
to be distributed by the
end of the month but
said he was not sure as
the Port-of-Spain City
Corporation CEO was
the best person to
answer those questions.
Workers to get backpay soon
Officers of the Port-of-Spain Municipal Police march out the Trinity Cathedral with both the national and city
flags at the end of yesterday's thanksgiving.
Acting Port-of-Spain mayor Keron Valentine, right, enters the Trinity Cathedral for the thanksgiving service
yesterday. PHOTOS: NICOLE DRAYTON
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