Appointment to the Equal Opportunity Tribunal

Mrs. Lenore Harris has been re-appointed as Lay-assessor to the Equal Opportunity Tribunal. Mrs. Harris received her Instrument of Appointment today from His Excellency Nigel De Freitas, Acting President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. Mrs. Lenore Harris is a...

Courtesy Call: The Inter Religious Organisation of Trinidad and Tobago

A delegation from the Inter Religious Organisation of Trinidad and Tobago paid a courtesy call on Her Excellency Christine Carla Kangaloo, President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago today. Pandit Lloyd Mukram Sirjoo President; Imam Ahamed Hosein, President...

Her Excellency Declares Open the 7th Commonwealth Youth Games

Her Excellency Christine Carla Kangaloo O.R.T.T., President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago today declared open Trinbago 2023, the 7th Commonwealth Youth Games. The opening ceremony took place at the Hasley Crawford Stadium. Some 1000 athletes from 71 countries...

Message on Emancipation Day 2023

On Emancipation Day, the anniversary of the formal abolition of slavery on 1 August 1834, we do two things. We acknowledge and reflect on one of the darkest and most shameful chapters of human history. And we celebrate the resilience and courage of those who fought...

Courtesy Call: His Royal Majesty Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, The Asantehene

His Royal Majesty Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, The Asantehene, today paid a courtesy call on Their Excellencies Christine Carla Kangaloo O.R.T.T., President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago and Kerwyn Garcia SC, First Gentleman, at The President's House. His Majesty's...

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Her Excellency Christine Carla Kangaloo ORTT, President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, yesterday received the credentials of Ambassador Beate Stirø of the Kingdom of Norway.Ambassador Stirø was accompanied to The President's House by her spouse Mr. Diego Fernando Garcίa Quiroga and Ms Susanne Gjønnes, Counsellor, Royal Norwegian Embassy in Havana, Cuba. ... See MoreSee Less
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ADDRESS BY HER EXCELLENCY CHRISTINE CARLA KANGALOO ORTT, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO AT THE TTARP 30TH ANNIVERSARY EXPO— “TOGETHER WE ARE STRONGER”—19 SEPTEMBER 2023• The Honourable Fitzgerald Hinds M.P., Minister of National Security• Mr Peter Pena, President of TTARP and other Members of the TTARP Executive• Dr Jennifer Rouse, Gerontologist• Members of TTARP• Members of the Media• Other Distinguished Ladies and GentlemenI am delighted to be able to join you this morning, as TTARP celebrates its 30th anniversary. The theme of this year’s anniversary celebrations is, as we have heard, “Together We Are Stronger”. I could not have imagined a better theme, myself. In fact, when one thinks about it, the words “Together We Are Stronger” are apt, not just as a theme for our anniversary celebrations, but as a powerful reminder to the entire country of the need for our citizenry to collaborate and cooperate with one another in our march towards community development and national advancement. You will notice that I have spoken about “our” anniversary celebrations. This is not simply because I am qualified, by reason of my age, to be part of the organisation (my husband has already teased me and told me that I am way over-qualified where that is concerned); rather, it is because I have had not only the good fortune to have been invited to be the organisation’s patron, but, so my husband has also told me (although, in this respect, he happens to be right), I have also had the good sense to have accepted that kind invitation. And so, I have spoken about “our” anniversary celebrations, in thankful recognition of the gift which the Universe has so kindly given me of this opportunity to be joined with you, in more ways than one.For 30 years, TTARP has been working tirelessly to enable persons aged 50 years and over to fulfil their greatest potential. One of the reasons I embraced the opportunity to be patron of the organisation so readily, is the invaluable and essential service the organisation provides to people in their golden—and, I dare say, their best—years. The other is because TTARP, as a non-profit civil organisation, is, I believe, a reflection of what is best about Trinidad and Tobago – our people’s willingness to give of themselves, in service to others, without seeking the least reward.Honouring our forebears and all who have gone before us, by making proper provisions for them in their later years, is a noble endeavour. In the Christian Bible, it is the only commandment to which a promise is attached: “Honour thy Father and thy Mother, and thy days shall be long in the land”. In West Indian societies, elder people have long occupied a special place in the family unit. Elder persons help raise grandchildren or other children of the family; ensure that valuable life skills and wisdom are passed on; and are often the glue that binds together the entire family unit. In the wider community, they are the stalwarts, community leaders and people who can be counted on to impart pearls of wisdom, knowledge and experience. Having worked for decades; raised generations; and contributed to the social and economic wellbeing of the country in both tangible and intangible ways, elder people have earned the right to be honoured. TTARP helps our nation to honour our elder population by advocating for and assisting them in many ways. This year’s anniversary Expo showcases just some of the many products and services that are geared specifically towards elder persons, by which TTARP tangibly honours our elder population. These include impressive discounts on a wide range of goods and services in more than sixty-two categories throughout Trinidad and Tobago. I look forward to viewing the ‘World of TTARP’ exhibition later, which is sure to answer more than a few of the public’s questions about TTARP, and provide a deeper insight into what membership in TTARP means and all that membership has to offer.Ageing can, and should be, a wonderful thing. In fact, some say that life begins at 50. However, growing older does come with specific issues and concerns, many of which TTARP’s efforts have gone a long way towards alleviating. One of the paramount concerns about getting older, is financial wellness. Retirement can mean financial insecurity as a result of the loss of an income. It can also leave one face-to-face with the inadequacy of one’s savings; and, where we depend on job-related retirement benefits, retirement can mean immeasurable stress when, as often happens, there are delays in receiving those benefits. Even if one is not retired, one can find oneself spending quite a lot of money on health and health-related issues, as one grows older. It is in this sphere - of mitigating the financial vulnerability of elder persons - that TTARP has perhaps most famously distinguished itself. TTARP has done so by entering into relationships with 400 discount partners and securing preferential rates for its members across a wide category of services, including optical, medical, dental, grocery items, insurance, utilities and much more. We—and notice I say ‘we’—are spoilt for choice when it comes to the products and discounts TTARP has made available to help defray our daily expenses and enable us to put up a better fight against rising prices. Thank you TTARP! Another challenge which many of us face as we get older, is that of isolation and loneliness. With time, children leave the home and get married; friends move into different neighbourhoods or pass away; and colleagues retire early and abandon us at our workplaces. Mobility and other physical limitations brought on by the ageing process, prevent some of us from participating in the activities we love – further reinforcing our sense of isolation. TTARP has stepped into this space as well, and provides a variety of opportunities for social engagement - with events such as international and local trips; and functions and limes as a TTARP family within various colourfully-named zones. I was amused to learn some of the zone names—the ‘Eastern Angels’ of Arima; ‘Royals’ of Princes Town/Rio Claro; ‘Purple Diamonds’ of San Fernando; and how can one forget the ‘Corals’ from Tobago!Outings and events such as these provide an opportunity for social engagement and promote a sense of belonging for us as we age. Events such as these also help make the case that I advanced at the beginning of this address, that there could not be a better theme than “Together We Are Stronger” where TTARP is concerned. As an organisation, TTARP truly understands and operates by this theme. Through TTARP’s efforts, many of us can now find community and friendship as we age, comfortable in the knowledge that we are not alone. Through TTARP’s efforts, our nation honours our elder population.I could go on and on, for days and days, about what TTARP has to offer - but then I suppose that would defeat the whole purpose of our Expo! Permit me, therefore, to walk down a slightly different road, and to focus TTARP’s attention on the critical role that I believe the organisation can, and should play, in what I described, when I began, as our country’s march towards community development and national advancement. I am speaking here about the role of mentorship. I referred earlier to the role that our elder citizens play in ensuring that valuable life skills and wisdom are passed on. I respectfully suggest that there is in our country, today more than ever, a growing need for elder citizens to mentor their younger charges. Looking around at our country today, we see too many examples of our youth gone astray – we see too many of them succumbing to the lure of all forms of antisocial and criminal conduct. I believe that positive and appropriate mentorship for our nation’s youth and younger adults, is a critical tool in showing our young people better ways to be; and in showing them better lives to live. And I wonder whether TTARP, by reason of the unique attributes of its members, might not well be in the perfect position to provide the very type of mentorship that I believe our young people need at this time. TTARP has, for example, among its members, some of the most distinguished and capable elder citizens this country has ever produced. As I understand it, TTARP’s membership comprises a wide cross-section of persons from every sector of the society, and from every field of social and cultural endeavour. And it is there, I believe, that TTARP has an advantage that few other organisations have – the advantage of a ready, an available, and an organised pool of mature members who have worked, lived and experienced almost every walk of life; many of whom are no longer weighed down by the responsibilities of daily employment and whose time and talents can therefore be turned towards mentoring youths and young adults. The beneficial effects of positive and appropriate mentorship upon the youth population and by extension, upon the wider society, hardly need to be stated. They include: increased secondary-school graduation rates; lower-secondary school dropout rates; healthier relationships and lifestyle choices; better attitudes about schooling and education in general; higher tertiary-enrolment rates; higher educational aspirations; enhanced self-esteem and self-confidence; improved behaviour, both at home and at school; stronger relationships with parents, teachers, and peers; improved interpersonal skills; and a decreased likelihood of starting drug and alcohol use.This is why I believe that, with appropriate mentorship, our country will put itself in a better position to develop healthier, happier communities and to advance as a people and as a nation. And, as I have said, I believe that TTARP’s membership are perfectly poised to provide the required mentorship. Perhaps, for example, such mentorship might include inviting more young people to TTARP’s outings and events, where they can mingle with their elders in a relaxed environment. It is said that the ‘4 Cs’ of a successful mentoring programme are Conversation, Connection, Community, and Culture. TTARP’s outings and events supply them all, and in ample measure. Whether by means of these outings and events, or by other, more formal means, I am confident that TTARP is possessed of both the imagination and the human-resource capacity, to mentor our nation’s youths and young adults, extremely successfully. And so, I want to encourage TTARP’s leadership, not only to keep up the Herculean work that it has been undertaking for the last 30 years, but, in the months and years ahead, to add to its already impressive body of work, a focussed concentration on mentoring our nation’s youths and young adults. When he was alive, my father, who was perhaps the greatest mentor in my own life, was often fond of saying that ‘The only reward for good work, is more work’. And so – there it is: for all of TTARP’s good work for the last 30 years, I have taken the liberty this morning of suggesting that it might consider undertaking some more work, this time in the area of concentrated mentorship. If my suggestion diminishes the likelihood that I will be invited to deliver the feature address at next year’s anniversary celebrations, at least it will have made my father proud. I know that I am certainly proud this morning. I am proud to be the patron of this organisation. I am proud of how TTARP has continued to advocate for the elder population of Trinidad and Tobago, and of how it has kept pace with the times, allowing persons to apply online to become members and providing other valuable information via its social media pages. And I am proud of all that I know TTARP will continue to do and to accomplish in our country as we, all of us, pull together in the knowledge that “Together We Are Stronger”.And so, let me in closing, once again wish TTARP a happy 30th anniversary. I am happy to join TTARP as we host our 30th anniversary Expo. I look forward to viewing the many products and services on offer— and who knows, perhaps I will yield to my husband’s teasing and avail myself of some of them!Happy anniversary and I wish you many, many more productive years to come. ... See MoreSee Less
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In a simple ceremony at The President's House on September 6, 2023, Mr. Tommy Elias, Ms Suzette Baptiste, Mr. Dexter Jaggernauth and Ms Candida Hart were reappointed as Commissioners of the Port Authority of Trinidad and Tobago.They took their oaths before Her Excellency Christine Carla Kangaloo ORTT, President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, who then presented each with their instruments of Appointment. ... See MoreSee Less
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ADDRESS BY HER EXCELLENCY CHRISTINE CARLA KANGALOO ORTT, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO, ON THE OCCASION OF THE CEREMONIAL OPENING OF THE FOURTH SESSION OF THE 12TH PARLIAMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGOMr. President of the Senate; Madame Speaker of the House; Honourable Members of Parliament…I would like to begin by thanking Madame Speaker for her kind invitation to address you on this, the occasion of the Ceremonial Opening of the Fourth Session of the 12th Parliament of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. I would also like to thank all of you, our nation’s Parliamentarians, for your service in, and to, the Parliament and by extension, the wider society. I especially wish to thank those outgoing members of Parliament who have, for years, served selflessly and diligently in the Senate, as well as those incoming members of Parliament who have answered the call to national service in the Senate for the first time. To all who have ever answered; who are continuing to answer; and who are, for the first time, about to answer the call to Parliamentary service, you have a nation’s thanks.Like the Presidency, Parliamentary service is often misunderstood. For many of us, the sum of what we understand to be Parliamentary service, is what we see on the Parliament Channel, when we arrive home, tired from work on afternoons, and we look at Parliamentarians debating Bills on Tuesdays (when the Senate usually sits) and on Fridays (when the House of Representatives usually sits). The Parliament Channel has done tremendous work in bringing the business of Parliament to the notice of the public. But, for all of the Parliament Channel’s efforts, and for all of its value, the sittings of Parliament, twice a week, remain all that a significant segment of our society knows about the workings of our Parliament. Given the tremendous scope of work that the Parliament does, this is regrettable. One of the initiatives to which the Office of the President is committed, is better explaining to the population what the Office of President involves. I respectfully suggest that we, in the Parliament, might also wish to consider showcasing, even more than we are showcasing now, what it is we do, beyond debating Bills. I say “we”, because, by section 39 of the Constitution, there shall be a Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago which shall consist of the President, the Senate and the House of Representatives. So, the President is in fact part of the Parliament. But I also say “we”, because I have been lucky enough in my lifetime to have sat where you are sitting today – on both sides of the floor, at different times, as it turned out; and eventually in the Chair in the Senate. Serving as a Parliamentarian was among the greatest privileges of my life; and I don’t imagine that my heart will ever truly abandon this institution that I have come to admire and to respect.All of us ‘Parliamentarians’ can be sure, though, that that admiration and respect are not universally felt. This, I believe, is at least partly because the public whom we serve has, for so long, been fed a constant fare of negativity about Parliament. Parliament has certainly been an extremely popular target of critics in recent years. I often wonder whether matters haven’t got to the stage where the population is almost programmed into a certain cynicism about Parliament, and about Parliamentarians. When I sat where you sat, I experienced the effects of this cynicism, firsthand. The year was 2007. I had just been elected to the House of Representatives, as the Member for Pointe-a-Pierre. On a thank-you walkabout in my Constituency, just a few days following the elections, a gentleman complained to me, outside of his gate, that he had not seen me since the elections. Such was the negative programming, that the gentleman’s reasoning could not yield to the fact that there had practically been no time between the elections and my seeing him, to found the basis of any legitimate complaint as to my absence. Many of you have faced, or will face, similar unjustified, knee-jerk cynicism. This is not to say that some of the cynicism surrounding Parliamentarians has not been earned. Far from it. But, like in the case of that gentleman, one is left to wonder at how much that cynicism is simply an autonomic, and an unfair, reaction to all things (and all persons) having to do with Parliament.I have gone as far as to say “unfair” because, from my own experience of the institution of Parliament, I can give the population the assurance that there is an enormous amount that our country has to be proud about where our Parliament is concerned. In a society in which we are programmed to believe that “nothing works’, I can tell you that, as an institution, Parliament most certainly does. When, as Senate President, Madame Speaker and I had the privilege of meeting with colleagues throughout the Commonwealth on Parliamentary conferences, our colleagues would often tell us how impressed they were at how efficiently Trinidad and Tobago’s Parliament functions. That, I can assure you, is by no accident. Our Clerks are regularly invited to other jurisdictions as subject-matter experts, to deliver presentations on the working of Parliament’s various Committees and the like. Beyond the customary sittings on the Tuesdays and Fridays, our Parliament is always at work, including by way of its numerous Joint Select Committees.Let me say a word about these Joint Select Committees. Joint Select Committees provide valuable oversight over Government agencies, and foster public accountability and public engagement. Several recommendations by these Committees have been adopted and implemented. One of the recommendations which has been adopted and implemented during the last Parliamentary Session, was the publication by the Central Bank of the fees charged to the public by Banks, and the fee structure of banks in general in a sample of Caribbean countries. The Parliament Channel carries the sittings of Joint Select Committees, too – but it is only that their sittings are often held during working hours, so that the majority of the working population misses the opportunity to witness them, live. Even in respect of the more familiar Tuesday and Friday Sittings, Parliament’s staff is always working, including in the way of assisting Members with research on their various presentations. It was by no accident, and it is to our country’s credit, that, during the COVID 19 Pandemic, our Parliament was quickly able to adapt – more quickly than many – and put in place mechanisms and measures that allowed us to continue sitting, safely, throughout the length of the Pandemic. These matters I have been describing are just some of the operations of Parliament that are perhaps not as well-known or as appreciated as they should be. And it is, I think, this lack of appreciation of all that our Parliament really does, that allows the cynicism in our society about the institution, to rear its head and to fester. While others, on the outside, see and value the work and the worth of our Parliament, here at home, our Parliament is sometimes cast in the role of the biblical prophet, who is not without honour, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house.Moving away from Parliament as an institution for a moment, permit me to venture into potentially even less popular waters, and to say that there is also an enormous amount in terms of the sacrifices and the stresses that Parliamentarians undergo, that our country can, and should, be grateful for. I appreciate that this sentiment is probably less palatable than anything that I have said thus far. But that doesn’t make it any less true. As I have said, some of the cynicism surrounding Parliamentarians has certainly been earned. We do not always conduct ourselves in accordance with the Standing Orders of the House or of the Senate. Truthfully, sometimes we go too far and descend to depths of which we should be ashamed. But, equally truthfully, the work that Parliamentarians - particularly elected Parliamentarians – do, is fundamental to the well-being of our society. And that kind of work is, I fear, also under-appreciated.Many elected Parliamentarians have had similar experiences to the one that I had, when, as the Member for Pointe-a-Pierre, just as the Constituency Office doors were being closed late one evening, a young mother appeared. She was heavily pregnant – so pregnant that I was genuinely fearful that she might actually give birth right then and there in the Constituency Office, casting me into the role of midwife for the first time in my life - and her landlord had just evicted her for not paying the rent that she simply could not afford to pay. It fell upon me then to work out a solution for her and her children (both alive and unborn), at that hour of the night. Elected MPs face and have to deal with these, and sadly, far worse situations, sometimes many times in the course of the same day. People in need sometimes expect their elected MPs to pay their grocery bills; buy schoolbooks for their children; and take on the role of plumbers when pipes in their homes burst. Many elected MPs actually do these things. Yet, far from being appreciated for their efforts, elected MPs are often ridiculed just for drawing a salary. I recall when a colleague from the Opposition related to me the story of his leaving the supermarket after having made groceries at month-end, and being accused by a Constituent of having the Government pay for his groceries. There is often a mistaken belief that the State pays for everything where an MP is concerned; or, even worse, that MPs do not earn their keep and have no right to a salary, like everybody else.Truthfully, there is no salary scale that can begin to compensate a Member for the emotional and the mental stress that are routinely undergone when he or she tries to do his or her best to serve at the Constituency level. When the responsibilities of debating Bills, participating in Joint Select Committees and sitting as Cabinet Ministers, are superimposed upon those of servicing one’s Constituency, and are mixed in with a dismissive cynicism of even one’s very best efforts, it is a wonder that anybody offers himself for national service by way of Parliamentary duty, at all. This is why I began this address by thanking all who have ever answered the call to Parliamentary service. Until you have tried it on for size, it is far too easy to be cynical about what Parliamentarians do and the sacrifices they are called upon to make. I appreciate that I might well be criticized for mounting what might be construed as this robust defence of Parliamentarians. I am not fearful of that. What I am fearful about, is us devolving into a society where cynicism and criticism are our default attitudes about institutions and people who, as flawed as they are, are only there to try to help make our lives better. I believe that it is only when we come to understand the full scale of what elected MPs do, and have to face, that we will be able properly to hold them to account. I am not for one moment advocating a disregard of those voices that rightly speak out against the abuses suffered at the hands of some errant Parliamentarians. Rather, I am advocating that due and proper consideration should be given to the value and the importance of the roles Parliamentarians play when, more often than they are given credit for, they try to, and actually do get things right. My hope is that in this Fourth Session of the 12th Parliament of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Parliament will continue further along the road of getting things right. There are a number of areas on which I hope Parliament might see it fit to focus during this upcoming Session – areas of focus which I hope Parliament will agree can help Trinidad and Tobago to get things right. Permit me to list just five (5) of them.First, I hope that there can be greater collaboration across the aisle – particularly where legislative and other measures designed to help us fight crime, are concerned. The urgency is obvious. The pain and the suffering are unbearable. These alone should drive Parliamentarians to put aside their party rivalries, join hands across the aisle, and collaborate on how to stem crime and criminal conduct. I appreciate that some will say (as Samuel Johnson once famously said) that that, like a second marriage, is the triumph of hope over experience. But I prefer to associate myself with the more uplifting philosophy contained in Alexander Pope’s equally famous statement, that ‘hope springs eternal in the human breast’.Second, my hope is that Parliament will, in that vein, pull together to enact laws that are even more reflective of our society’s goals and vision – including in relation to legislation that both protects and advances culture and the arts. In particular, I hope that it will be seen fit for there to be an urgent Parliamentary intervention that results, at long last, in the steelpan being firmly and irrevocably declared our national instrument. Those in the industry will tell you that giving the steelpan formal and official ‘national instrument’ status, is critical to opening doors for the industry in international markets. The General Assembly of the United Nations has formally recognized the universal value and significance of the steelpan. I believe that it is high time that we formally do the same. Third, I hope that we will see the appearance of additional legislation that helps us further entrench our country’s place in the modern age – including in areas such as persons with disabilities. More than 20 years ago, when I held my very first Cabinet position as Minister with Responsibility for Social Services Delivery, it became clear, from the many protests that were held at that time, that it was urgent for more attention to be paid to the needs and the rights of persons with disabilities. Over the years since then, there has been a great deal of consultation over a Persons With Disabilities Act. It is my hope that these consultations will bear fruit during the life of this Parliamentary Session, and that this country will have legislation that better protects and promotes the rights of persons with disabilities. If we are to become a developed country, we need to have laws that create a more inclusive society.In terms of legislation that further entrenches us in the modern age, my hope is for a Parliament that is bold in its legislative agenda. I hope that this Session’s agenda will be as forward-looking as practicable, and will include legislation that treats, at one and the same time, with the awesome potential and the looming threats of Artificial Intelligence. I hope, as well, that consideration will be given to treating legislatively with the new realities in the post-Pandemic world of work, such as ‘Working From Home’ and ‘Hybrid Work’. These are not merely passing ‘fads’, which have gone the way of the Pandemic – they are what our younger generation is demanding from us, as they insist upon their right to a higher-quality work-experience.Fourth, I hope that Parliament will give consideration to reviewing its Standing Orders to create a committee like the Public Bill Committee in the United Kingdom, which is a committee of the United Kingdom’s Parliament set up to examine the details of particular Bills and report thereon to the Parliament. In our Parliament, the experience has been (at least when I was there) that it is a struggle - often a vain one - to try to get through the entire Parliamentary agenda in any one Session. A single sitting of each House, once a week, dealing with one Bill at a time, is not likely to result in all of the business of each House being completed in any given Session. Adopting the model of a Public Bill Committee is likely to prove a far more efficient way of bringing legislation to the floor, and actually getting it passed, before the clock runs down on a Session. Using a Public Bill Committee to undertake more in-depth studies of proposed legislation, will save time on the Parliamentary floor consumed by clause-by-clause debating, and will allow Parliamentarians to spend more time treating with wider issues of policy. I am aware that this suggestion has implications for whether we ought, or ought not, to have a system of full-time Parliamentarians; and that that idea has, in turn, financial and other implications. But there is so much work to be done, that I fear that unless some creative and different way is found to enable us to get through, and then add to, our Parliamentary agenda, we will forever be playing catch up.Fifth, and importantly, I hope that Parliament will see it fit to develop an annual timetable or fixed agenda, which will serve to promote certainty and efficiency by allowing, among other things, for better planning. The Parliament of Ontario, in Canada, has, for example, developed an annual agenda, which our Parliament can perhaps consider using as a prototype. These are just some of my hopes for this next session of Parliament. I offer them, not as directives (which, of course, I have no power to issue), but for consideration as potential targets (which it is, I think, my duty to help identify). It has been my privilege to have been able to share them with you.I end now, as I began, by thanking you - this time, for listening to me. When next we meet, I hope that I will be able to thank you, not just for listening to me, but for having heard me. I hope that, at that time, we will be able to say that we are further along in building a Parliament that is better understood and better valued. I hope that we will be able to say that we have made greater progress in fostering a better understanding of the demanding roles that our Parliamentarians play. And, armed with that better understanding, I hope that we will be able to say that we held them to greater account. I hope that we will be able to say that we have advanced even further in creating a Parliament that collaborates, legislates and acts, boldly and decisively, in essential areas of our national life, and that is even more efficient than undoubtedly it already is. In short, I hope that, when next we meet, we can share reports of a Parliament and a society that continue to work hand in hand to create a better Trinidad and Tobago.May God bless you all. And may God bless our nation. ... See MoreSee Less
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Her Excellency Christine Carla Kangaloo ORTT, President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago commemorated World Literacy Day by reading to the children of the All in One Child Development Centre and Each One Teach One ECCE, Beetham Gardens.To the delight of the children and even the adults in the room, Her Excellency read from a book entitled Avocado and Zaboca by Sonja Dumas. The visit was organised by the Rotary Club of Central Port of Spain. ... See MoreSee Less
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