The United National Congress notes with more than passing concern the un-democratic actions of the Rowley-led PNM administration namely the dismissal of the Governor of the Central Bank, Mr. Jwala Rambarran.
As the PNM continues to victimise employees of the state the country continues to be at a standstill, the crime rate continues to rise, job losses are increasing every day, violence in schools are also increasing and lawlessness on the roads are cause for great concern.
In the meantime, the Prime Minister plays golf with his friends in Barbados, and in the absence of the substantive President, a known political activist and PNM sympathizer acting as President fires the Governor of the Central Bank on the instruction of the PNM Cabinet.
In addition to interfering with the independence of the Central Bank, the government’s actions through the Acting President has now dragged the independent Presidency into the political arena. This is not just about whether such action is legal. It is about perception of what is just, right and above all ethically correct.
This particular action follows the firing of Mr Indar Maharaj from NGC, sending HDC senior managers on administrative leave; the dismissal of hundreds of URP and CEPEP personnel as well as the refusal to renew contracts of hundreds of workers in the public sector.
The UNC recalls similar trends of interference from past PNM administrations into independent institutions of the Parliament and the Judiciary, when House Speaker Occah Seapaul was placed under house arrest and the attempted impeachment of then Chief Justice Satnarine Sharma.
However, the attack goes further. In the Parliament, oversight committees which under the PP administration were chaired by Independent Senators, have now been taken over by the PNM. This is unfortunate as it gives a lie to the promise of the Rowley led PNM that they are for transparency and decent governance.
We look forward to the voices of the Law Association, the Trade Union Movement and other civil society and professional organisations, who have in the past acted as a government watchdog.
The actions of this PNM government has created fear in the population and an uneasiness and anxiety in the people that is frightening. Today’s action can only be described as a day of infamy in Trinidad and Tobago where the desire for maximum political power has no respect for any person who stands in the way of Dr. Rowley and the PNM. Deep schisms have been created as a result of today’s actions.
The people must defend their freedoms, their right to work, to speak without political molestation and their freedom to either align themselves with a political movement or remain independent. Such freedom is now under threat in our country.
The UNC re-commits to its duty to defend these rights and invites the nation to also stand in defence and condemn this PNM administration for such blatant persecution.