FORMER Central Bank governor Ewart Williams says citizens should not expect “good times” economically with the country still facing so much debt.
He was speaking with the media last night after receiving his Chaconia Medal (Gold) at the National Awards held at the National Academy for the Performing Arts, Port of Spain and commenting on the economic situation ahead of the October 1 national budget
“The economy is turning around slowly in the sense you are getting some good news from the energy sector and I think that if you look far enough I think confidence of the private sector seems to be improving somewhat. The problem is that the public sector is still an issue. You are in the middle of Petrotrin and the debt is still an issue. And therefore the budget still requires significant adjustment.
“So people tend to be looking for ‘good times.’ I am not sure you could expect good times now because you have a serious debt problem that you need to deal with.
Williams, who served as Central Bank governor from 2002 to 2012, said he felt satisfied and elated to receive the award.
“Because it is a recognition that you did something that contributed in some way to improving the lot of the public.
And I think that leaves a good feeling.” He said one thing he is proud of is that there is a Central Bank and people know its function somewhat better.
“If I had succeeded in contributing to that achievement then I’m happy.”
TEACH CALYPSO IN SCHOOLS
Also receiving awards was calypsonians Willard “Relator” Harris (Humming Bird Medal Silver) and Winston “Explainer” Henry (Hummingbird Medal Gold).
Harris said he felt good and he was very excited about the award. Asked if he felt it took long to get an award, he responded: “I wouldn’t say so.
“Nothing happens before its time.”
Harris, known for the hit “Make a New Friend,” said the award will go a long way in recognition of the art form. Asked what was necessary to push the art form forward Harris said calypso must be brought into the schools and as part of the curriculum.
“We looking forward to the day that that will happen.”
Henry, known for his hit “Lorraine,” said it was nice feeling when you realise people have recognised what you have been doing in the past years.
“And they think it is time you are worthy enough to get something that could make you feel good for your work that you have done.”
He said many things have to be done for calypso in TT and firstly with calypsonians themselves.
“They are the greatest machinery at is disarming them and they should try getting themselves together with more unison and much more thought of progress.”