Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 19th 2014 Contents A8
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Gender, Youth and Child Devel-
opment Minister Clifton De Coteau
says his ministry intends to add to
its community-focused parenting
programmes as a means of curbing
the high incidents of deaths among
children across the country.
He was speaking at a graduation
ceremony for Standard Five pupils
of the New Grant Government
School at the Hindustan Commu-
nity Centre, Princes Town, yester-
"We have had a lot of critical
incidents with those children in
recent times," said De Coteau.
"Again, what it comes to is that we
need to be more vigilant. We cannot
believe children know what they are
De Coteau said there was a need
for public sensitisation on proper
"We need to pump some more
money in the PR department to
sensitise the public on this. We also
need education on sex and teenage
sexuality," he added.
De Coteau called on parents to
take their jobs more seriously and
lashed out at those who blamed the
Government for their children s
He added: "Parents, discipline
begins at home. You are the first
role model your child has because
when something happens, the first
thing you say is, the government
not doing this and that, but are you
looking in your children s books and
De Coteau named several pro-
grammes that went into commu-
nities to train parents on how to
take care of their children properly.
"We currently have the Male
Masculinity Programme, Women in
Harmony and our parenting pro-
grammes that go into communities
to help parents," he noted.
He urged parents to be patient
with their children, telling them not
to condemn them as everyone made
Point Fortin community activist
Lionel Shade, who fatally kicked his
friend in the stomach with his steel-
tipped boot 12 years ago, was sentenced
yesterday to three years and ten months
Shade, president of Brotherhood Unit-
ed Egypt Village, pleaded guilty last
month in the San Fernando First High
Court to unlawfully killing Wayne Abra-
ham, who died in the San Fernando
General Hospital 19 days after the inci-
dent, which happened at Shade s home.
Describing the circumstances as pecu-
liar, Justice Hayden Douglas-St Clair
acknowledged it was an unlucky blow
which resulted in the death of Abra-
Defence attorney Jason Jackson had
submitted that there was no premed-
itation, just a single blow struck in
annoyance rather than anger.
"The facts demonstrate the ease with
which evil can come seeking out a man
even when he has not gone out of his
way to do wrong," the judge said.
However, despite Shade s previous
good character, his good standing in his
community and his remorse, the judge
noted that a man s life was taken.
"The court has a responsibility to
demonstrate abhorrence for this type
of behaviour," he added.
The State s case, accepted by the
accused, was that on July 27, 2002, Shade
was installing louvres when Abraham
came to his Egypt Village home.
Shade told the police he asked for the
money Abraham owed him but Abraham
said he was not in a position to repay
Other people who saw what took
place said Abraham also persistently
disturbed Shade, making an annoyance
and mild nuisance of himself. Shade
returned to his work but Abraham pulled
his shoulder three times.
Each time Shade asked him to leave
and continued working. On one occasion
Shade physically put Abraham outside
When Abraham tugged at his shoulder
for the fourth time, Shade staggered
and when he regained his balance he
slapped Abraham and kicked him in the
Abraham doubled over, sat down and
then left. Later that day he went to the
hospital but never recovered.
An autopsy said he died from com-
plications of blunt-force trauma to his
Boost for parenting plans
Minister in wake of deaths of children:
Man jailed for kicking friend to death
Wiping away tears, Shade's mother Linda Shade, 67, said she did not
believe her son deserved to be jailed.
"It was unjust. He should have been put on a bond," said Linda Shade,
who was among a group of members of the United Brotherhood who
came to court to support him.
Describing him as the best of her four children, she said Shade and
the deceased were friends.
Although she was hoping Shade would be given a non-custodial
sentence, another member, Shannon Adams, said she understood that
a life had been lost.
However, the members took comfort that the sentence would work
out to no more than two years, according to their calculations.
MOM: IT WAS UNJUST
Minister of Gender, Youth and Child Development Clifton De Coteau poses for a photograph with the New Grant
Government Primary School graduating class of 2014 after the ceremony yesterday. PHOTO: RISHI RAGOONATH
Also speaking at the
ceremony was WPC
Melissa Phillip of the
Princes Town police who
is assigned to the school.
She warned the
students to be wary of
peer pressure at the
secondary school level,
encouraging them to be
leaders and not followers.
Phillip said: "There will
be others who will
encourage you to smoke,
drink alcohol and have
"You have to be a leader
and not a follower
because as we see too
often now the
consequence of bad
choices is death."
graduated from the
school which has been
housed in the community
centre since last year as
the school building is
WPC: BE LEADERS,
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