…isn’t right

Who’s the man? Nagamootoo’s the man – if you listen to him, of course. Even though he didn’t get to chair Cabinet meetings as was promised to him when he was being courted to deliver his 11 per cent to the PNC, Nagamootoo believes the political solar system still revolves around him. He does get to sit on the left hand of President Granger, and even though they’re pretty tight-lipped on these things, we do assume he gets to speak at Cabinet meetings.

So when the Private Sector (being the “engine of growth”) and the Trade Union bodies (being the fuel for the “engine of growth”) requested some of his time to discuss a number of discomfiting proposals in the latest Budget, your Eyewitness figured Nagamootoo would jump at the opportunity to show what a BMIG he was. That’s “Big Man In Government” for you readers who aren’t too au fait with the lexicon of governance.

But Nagamootoo coyly declined the rendezvous and averred as to how the “timing wasn’t right for talks on the Budget with the social partners”. What the heck’s going on? After all, being the “representative of the President in the National Assembly” is about all the “power” that’s left to Nagamootoo after he was spayed following the elections. Which power gives him the authority to speak ‘as if he was the President’ in those hallowed chambers! Has this also been plucked from him? And he has to content himself with speaking after Jagdeo – albeit to empty Opposition benches?

Anyhow, Nagamootoo came up with some cockamamie excuse about not wanting to violate “the separation of powers” doctrine and deny the “legislative branch” their day in the sun!! What a crock!! When the Executive has a majority in a Parliamentary Legislature – as they do now – the legislature’s just a glorified rubber stamp. Or, in the vernacular, a “Christmas Blow Blow”!! The Social Partners – as Nagamootoo called them, know this – and were conceding the only possibility of introducing any change to the universally condemned Budget is to have the Executive take a second look.

That they equated “the Executive” with Nagamootoo should have been seized by him as a bargaining chip with the PNC types that are running the show. He’s the man!! As for Nagamootoo’s point that the social partners could’ve met the Budget Team before, that’s beside the point! They did in fact meet – to no avail. But then what else is new? The Government actually appointed a Tax Review Committee (TRC) – with their blue-eyed accountant Chris Ram on board – and didn’t incorporate their major recommendations!

What Nagamootoo rejected was a face saving “out” – both for himself and his Government.

…and the Mayoralty

They do say hope beats eternal and all that. Even in the heart of your adamantine Eyewitness! But seems it died on the vine with Sherod Duncan on his promise to challenge the gang of Four at City Hall. Now not many expected him to wrest the mayoralty from Patricia Chase Green – since, as Burnham was wont to say, this was ‘tzAZzzzhe’ occasion for the war and not the cause of the war.

The “cause” of the war is to keep control of Georgetown in the hands of the PNC. Duncan’s quest to have the City Council function more transparently is seen as “Quixotic” by the fellas at the centre pulling the strings of their marionettes. As Burnham was also wont to say, when it came to “democracy”, Duncan was reading ON the lines and not BETWEEN the lines.

Someone from his own AFC party must’ve hauled him behind the woodshed and explained the lay of the land.

The AFC has no cojones to rock the boat!!

…and scholarships

Imagine the Government supported the raising of fees at UG, but yet can see fit to award two Ministers – earning more than $695,000/monthly, plus perks – scholarships worth more than $3 million annually!!

Brother, can you spare a dollar?