As he joined scores of citizens in lighting up Harris Promenade to spread the gospel of peace last week, Justice Vasheist Kokaram lamented that T&T’s legal system sanctions civilised warfare...
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Dr Rowley is just staying in touch
After looking at the Point Fortin Conversations meeting Tuesday night, it is clear that Dr Rowley is a Prime Minister that is determined to st ay in touch with the people. What is also clear is that this exercise is meant to be a check and balance on his Members of Parliament and Cabinet.
There were many residents who had legitimate concerns which were answered in a very open and transparent manner. Other residents were allowed to openly give suggestions and ideas to improve the performance of the economy and other agencies of the government.
Clearly there were attendees who were upset with the People’s National Movement (PNM) and or with the Government. The fact that Dr Rowley was able to take his kudos with his criticisms and respond accordingly while maintaining his composure is highly commendable.
In any functional democracy the will of the people must be expressed through a medium that reaches the decision makers directly. This Conversations series was not just a campaign gimmick but is now established as a commitment by Dr Rowley to stay grounded while in office. His Members of Parliament and Cabinet are also available at this event to answer to the people.
This style of leadership reminds us of the late Dr Eric Williams the “father of the nation”. Dr Williams continuously engaged the public in lectures at Woodford Square that were meant to educate, inform and communicate with the average citizen.
It is easy for a Prime Minister to get lost in meeting on state and international relations business with a busy schedule. However, making time for the people that put you in public office must be an act of duty.
The moderator at the Point Fortin Conversations could have been a little warmer and more accommodating with her interactions during the question and answer segment. This would have made the evening flow a little smoother and make Dr Rowley’s job a little easier.
All variables considered, our Prime Minister continues to make himself available to the public. Dr Rowley as Prime Minister has thus far been on several radio and television programmes, at cottage meetings, national conversations, community walk abouts, given several addresses to the nation and is consistent with his press conferences.
Keeping the population informed and staying in touch with citizens, especially in these challenging economic and social times is a significant signal that our Prime Minister is open, transparent, grounded and has the country’s best interest at heart.