OPPOSITION Senator Fitzgerald Hinds yesterday sidestepped Attorney General (AG) Anand Ramlogan’s claims that Hinds lives in a $14 million mansion and has probably never invited poor children to visit, despite Hinds recently having told needy persons not to accept charitable school-supplies from the UNC Youth Arm.
Newsday asked Hinds to reply to Ramlogan’s Budget speech in the Senate on Wednesday. Ramlogan had said a 2010 news story about a land dispute between Hinds and a neighbour had valued his house at $7 million, even as the AG said it is now worth $14 million. The AG said the house is at 11 Barry Avenue, Hillsboro, Maraval, overlooking the upscale Andalucia neighbourhood.
Ramlogan had asked how many children from Laventille — a deprived area where Hinds was once an MP – had Hinds invited to swim in his pool or eat from his marble table. He had accused Hinds of pretending to care for people but not being true to the Rastafarian ideals in threatening to cut off an “idiot Rasta boy” who had kissed the Prime Minister’s hand.
Yesterday a combative Hinds told Newsday the country had so many pressing problems that he did not have time to reply to the AG’s remarks.
“Crime is too bloody and rampant in Trinidad and Tobago, in many cases through blue-collar and white-collar crime,” stormed Hinds. “The economy is at risk, and the political stability in my county, and for these reasons I have no time to waste with the Attorney General and his foolish irrelevance.”
Newsday said he had failed to answer Ramlogan’s remarks.
Hinds replied, “There are far too many serious issues in front of me as a servant of Trinidad and Tobago to waste time on the Attorney General.”
Newsday pressed Hinds to say whether he lives in a $14 million house and whether he has ever invited underprivileged children to visit. Hinds said he had no time to reply to the AG’s “irrelevant stupidity”.
Newsday again pressed Hinds. He sternly replied, “You asked for my reaction and I have given my reaction.”
Newsday told him he had not yet answered Ramlogan’s allegations. Hinds replied, “I have given you my reaction, and that is the extent of my reaction”. Newsday asked him if his house is worth $14 million? Side-stepping the question, he replied, “You could get a valuator if you want to. God bless you.”