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Wednesday 20 June 2018
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Apologise or don’t come back to Tobago

A visibly frustrated Watson Duke speaks to reporters on the issue along the seabridge this morning during a press conference at the Public Servants' Association office on Abercromby Street.

UPDATE:

MINORITY leader of the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) Watson Duke issued a stern warning to the Prime Minister yesterday as he blasted government for not doing enough to secure a working ferry between Trinidad and Tobago, during a press conference at the Public Service Association (PSA) office on Abercromby Street, Port of Spain.

Clad in a dark suit and sunglasses, Duke said he was in mourning for the people of Tobago, adding that Rowley owed them an apology. He urged the PM not to return to Tobago until he had done so. He also called on Works and Transport Minister Rohan Sinanan, to make the necessary arrangements for travellers who had already purchased tickets to visit the island using Caribbean Airlines.

“This is rubbish and it is total disrespect. Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley should get off the pavement, get out of Parliament and come out in the streets and villages of Tobago to apologise to the innocent people. I suggest that he do not return to Tobago until he is ready to apologise to the people.

“I call upon the Minister of Works and Transport, in my capacity as Minority Leader, to ensure that the same arrangement made for people traversing the islands, who had tickets in their hand, over the Carnival period, be done now for the persons who have tickets in their hand and who intend to travel between Trinidad and Tobago via the boat.”

Duke also questioned Sinanan’s competence in procuring an appropriate vessel, saying the Galleons Passage was woefully inadequate. Referring to it as a “river boat,” Duke said extensive repairs would have to be done for it to operate as a passenger vessel and said even after these were carried out, it was still uncertain whether or not it would be ready for use.

He also urged government to refrain from meddling in the affairs of the Port Authority (PATT), citing the resignation of chairman Alison Lewis. “The Galleons Passage is a glorified river boat. It will make people sick and it will make people want to jump overboard. It is not built to withstand the rough seas of the Atlantic.

“The Port Authority Board made several recommendations – they were good recommendations – but the minister sought to do it themselves. They are now spending $80 million repairing the TT Spirit and it won’t be ready until sometime in early June.”

Yesterday, a release from the TT Inter Island Transportation Company said the T&T Express sailed from Tobago at 6.35 am and the return trip departed Port of Spain at 2pm as scheduled.

 

ORIGINAL STORY:

Minority leader of the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) Watson Duke offered a stern warning to the Prime Minister this morning as he blasted government for not doing enough to secure a working ferry between Trinidad and Tobago.

At a press briefing at the Public Services Association (PSA) Abercromby Street, Port of Spain, office this morning, Duke said Dr Rowley owed the people ot Tobago an apology and urged the PM not to return to Tobago until he did so. Duke also called on Works and Transport Minister Rohan Sinanan to arrange transportation for those wishing to visit Tobago, using Caribbean Airlines.

"This is rubbish and it is total disrespect. Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley should get off the pavement, get out of Parliament and come out in the streets and villages of Tobago to apologise to the innocent people. I suggest that he do not return to Tobago until he is ready to apologise to the people.

"I call upon the Minister of Works and Transport, in my capacity as Minority Leader, to ensure that the same arrangement made for people traversing the islands, who had tickets in their hand, over the Carnival period, be done now for the persons who have tickets in their hand and who intend to travel between Trinidad and Tobago via the boat."

 

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