Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 3rd 2013 Contents A5
November 3, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
A A A A A
The State has failed to provide security for Oppo-
sition Leader Dr Keith Rowley for the past three
It has forced Rowley to churn out thousands of
dollars to protect himself.
However, Rowley is not the only opposition leader
who was stripped of security by the State. Then
leader of the United National Congress, Basdeo Pan-
day, also had his security pulled by the People s
National Movement (PNM) while he served as oppo-
At the PNM s final public by-election meeting in
St Joseph on Friday, Rowley raised the issue about
not being provided with security. Rowley explained
that after the May 24, 2010, general election two
police officers were assigned to provide him with
security after he became Opposition Leader.
"That was in June of 2010."
In November of 2010, Rowley said, "I was informed
by the police that I don t need security."
Rowley said since then he has put in place his own
security. He said in T&T where every shadow walks
with a gun, this exposes him to risks. The PNM
leader said while he was denied security, the Gov-
ernment has been giving their friends state security
A PNM source revealed that Rowley has forked
out more than $500,000 in the last three years to
The source said Rowley has been spending on
average $15,000 for the last two-and-a-half years.
In recent months, with rising crime and election
campaigns, he was forced to double security, some-
times averaging $30,000 a month.
The source said this was unfair to Rowley since
government ministers have been taking advantage
of the "flashing blue lights" offered by the State to
go from one night club to the next.
Yesterday, National Security Minister Gary Griffith
could not say why Rowley s security was pulled.
"I don t know on what grounds that was done...if
it was based on the police stating that they did not
find it was warranted. I really don t know. That hap-
pened when I was not minister."
However, Griffith said he would expect that people
who hold public office, especially Rowley, be afforded
"I would fully endorse and support the fact that
it should be mandatory...that someone who is the
Leader of the Opposition should have that type of
security... To me, based on my security training, it
is natural that the person who is Leader of the Oppo-
sition, that can very well become the prime minister
and you have a support base of less than half of the
country of voters, that person should be provided
with that type of security by the State.
"But then again, that is all my personal view."
Griffith said Special Branch officers would normally
do a threat assessment of an individual in public life
to ascertain whether or not security from the State
"That is why the Attorney General, Chief Justice
and President are provided state security."
Griffith said he would speak to Rowley after tomor-
row s by-election.
"I will discuss it with him in his official capac-
Griffith said when he was appointed minister, he
spoke to Rowley unofficially about the issue.
Acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams
said "unless I can verify what was said by the Oppo-
sition Leader I would not comment."
Panday admitted that the PNM had pulled his
security while he served as opposition leader.
"They never gave a reason and I never took it up.
I simply ignored them."
Panday served as opposition leader four times, the
last being from 2001 to 2010.
"It might have been a burden to have security fol-
lowing me around. Right now I feel totally free."
He said if Rowley wants security, it should be given.
"I suppose he should request it, and the Govern-
ment would decide if he should have it or not."
If Rowley s request is turned down, Panday said,
he would be owed an explanation.
"I suppose a person like Rowley requires security.
He is known for his fierceness."
A A A A A
Political leader of the People s
National Movement (PNM) Dr Keith
Rowley intends to expose what he
sees as the wrongdoing of Ian
Alleyne s campaign to the Integrity
Rowley said once the party takes
information on Alleyne to the com-
mission, party members would wait
to see what the commission would
do.Alleyne is the UNC candidate for
the St Joseph by-election.
Speaking at the PNM s final public
meeting in St Joseph on Friday, Row-
ley told supporters the UNC had put
Alleyne to manage 25 government
projects in the constituency he is
contesting, using state resources.
Rowley described this move as
"wrong, unethical, illegal and a mat-
ter for the Integrity Commission."
Rowley said the PNM was gath-
ering evidence to take to the com-
The last time he spoke to com-
mission chairman, Ken Gordon,
Rowley said he found himself in
This time Rowley intends to write
Gordon on Alleyne s "misbehaviour"
and "naked abuse of office."
Rowley said the PNM would ask
for a public meeting with the
"whole" commission, to which the
media would be invited.
He said if the IC rules that what
has happened in St Joseph was okay
"it would clear the way for the Gov-
ernment to do that 41 times in the
upcoming general election."
Rowley said it takes years for an
elected MPs to get projects done in
their constituency, but projects were
being delivered to constituents in a
matter of days by Alleyne, who was
not even the incumbent for St
Rowley also called on Prime Min-
ister Kamla Persad-Bissessar to
explain what business arrangement
she made with Alleyne, the Crime
Watch host, to get him to become
"Have you made any arrangement
for the State or any state agency to
provide any payment or service of
any kind to any business interest of
Ian Alleyne or otherwise? We want
the answer before polling day."
Rowley said taxpayers should know
if a deal was brokered between
Alleyne and the PM.
Leader of Government Business,
Housing Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal
says United National Congress (UNC)
candidate for St Joseph Ian Alleyne
is not a person in public life and as
such cannot be referred to the Integri-
Moonilal s defence comes after Peo-
ple s National Movement leader Dr
Keith Rowley threatened to refer
Alleyne to the Integrity Commission
for alleged breaches related to some 25
community projects that he spear-
headed during the build up to tomor-
row s by-election.
"Mr Alleyne is a citizen calling upon
Government agencies to get things
done. He is an agent, there to assist.
He is the candidate of a party and not
a person in public life and Dr Rowley
knows this," Moonilal said in a tele-
phone interview yesterday.
He said Alleyne was not "in the pub-
lic life" as set out in the Integrity in
Public Life Act which is under the
ambits of the Integrity Commission.
"I hope the residents of St Joseph
who benefitted from the box drains
and paved roads can also refer Dr Row-
ley to the Integrity Commission,"
Moonilal described Rowley s state-
ments at the PNM s public meeting as
"heartless and incompassionate"
toward the people who have benefitted
from Alleyne s work.
He said Alleyne, by virtue of his
vociferous nature, was more attractive
to the St Joseph electorate that the
PNM s Terrence Deyalsingh or the
Independent Liberal Party s (ILP) Om
"Both of them are stoic compared
to Mr Alleyne," he said.
The Chaguaramas Legal Land Own-
ers are calling on citizens and disaf-
fected people from Mt Pleasant, Hart s
Cut, Chaguaramas, Teteron Bay and
Scotland Bay to come out and "protest
against recolonisation of the country,
land grabbing, neo-slavery and to
claim their heritage (land) which is
The demonstration is to held by
ALCOA, Western Main Road, Carenage,
on Tuesday, at noon.
No police protection
for Opposition Leader
m y C mm
m y B
PHOTO: ABRAHAM DIAZ
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