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Monday 21 October 2019
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UNC Senate nominee lashes AG

UNC political leader Kamla Persad Bissessar.
UNC political leader Kamla Persad Bissessar.

EVEN though he is yet to be appointed to the Senate, Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar is already referring to Sean Sobers as “Senator.”

Persad Bissessar stated her party’s intention to advise President Paula-Mae Weekes to appoint Sobers to replace Ashvani Mahabir in the Senate.

However, even before the official announcement of Mahabir’s resignation, less than a month after he was appointed to replace Gerald Ramdeen, and the proposed appointment of Sobers, Persad-Bissessar referred to him as “Senator.”

She did so at the UNC’s Monday Night Forum at Naparima College, San Fernando.

As she mounted the platform, she thanked the youth speakers who came before her, including “Senator Sean Sobers.”

In his maiden address on the platform, the San Fernando-born attorney and past student of Presentation College, San Fernando, lashed out at the area's MP, Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi, for the poor state of the justice system in the southern city.

He pointed to the closure of the San Fernando Magistrates' Court “for over two years and which has been reduced to a shanty structure with a tarpaulin adorning its rooftop.”

Noting that the courts in that building are now operating on a shift system with the Supreme Court, he said, “And here we are, thinking we got rid of the junior secondary school shift system, but that’s just like the PNM, to regress and not progress.”

He took the AG to task for the “onerous burden placed on the court building by the sharing of the two court systems,” saying it was causing resources to run thin: “There is a lack of basic items such as toilet paper and kitchenette for staff, amenities such as airconditioning and recording systems in some courtrooms.

“The situation is so bad, it caused one sitting judge to declare that the court had neither ink or paper to print judgements of that court.

“And this incompetent government want to stand up in the Parliament and speak about a suite of legislation and a suite of law, but the judiciary can’t even buy a sweetie,” he said in reference to the Miscellaneous Provisions (Tax Amnesty, Pensions, Freedom of Information, National Insurance, Central Bank and Non-Profit Organisations) Bill, 2019, to be debated in Parliament on Friday.

Sobers said the city in which he was born is fast becoming a war zone as crime rises daily, but the greatest tragedy, he said, is the impact of the closure of Petrotrin on the people of San Fernando.

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