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Jack promises constitutional reform in 2012

By Cordell McClure

In his New Year's message to Tobago, Minority Leader Ashworth Jack promised to place the issue of constitutional reform on the front burner in 2012.

While noting that 2011 has been a mixed year for Tobagonians, the Minority Leader knocked the London-led THA for providing 'limited access to health care' in Tobago. He said Health services in Moriah remain non-existent and in Charlotteville and other areas, access to district health services has been difficult for residents.

He also said that the service at the Accident and Emergency (Casualty) Department continues to be inordinately slow despite the many attempts to remedy this age old issue. He however, commended health care professionals in Tobago for performing to the best of their ability in spite of the challenges.

Jack claimed the level of poverty in some households has risen, evidenced by the increased number of unemployed Tobagonians. He said that in the absence of a vibrant private sector and given the reduced fortunes of the ailing tourism industry, the demand for social support has increased.

He also bashed the London administration for failing to provide the framework for employment for young, qualified Tobagonians. Jack said immediate strategies must be developed and implemented to harness the full benefit of the available human resource pool as all of us have a part to play in the development of the island.

"In spite of many promises, work on major projects in Tobago drags on and Tobagonians continue to pay a high price for the inability of the THA Executive to deliver these projects: another cohort of Tobago students have made it through exams without a functioning library while money is being spent to redesign this facility for cosmetic reasons. Cultural events in Tobago continue to be hosted in car parks and other makeshift facilities without proper accommodation and acoustics, while the purpose built Cultural Complex project continues to languish," Jack said.

He went on to say that no new houses have been added to the THA's housing stock for the last three years and the distribution of the few available units has not been transparent.

He accused The Department of Housing of stopping new applications, adding that no developed lots for building have come on stream this year.

Jack also noted that traffic problems in and out of Scarborough have worsened. He blamed this on the absence of a working traffic management plan.

According to the Minority Leader, the coming on stream of new roads in the network has created additional hardship for Tobagonians. Jack added that the much needed beautification of Scarborough has not been given the urgent attention it needs.

"In fact, plans have existed since 2000 for both traffic management and the beautification of Scarborough, which if implemented would have eliminated the many problems now faced by Tobagonians," Jack said.

The TOP Leader also raised the issue of constitutional reform for Tobago. He said constitutional reform was within reach this past year as the Government of Trinidad and Tobago, for the first time in its 49 years of Independence, has written on two occasions to the Tobago House of Assembly registering its commitment to full internal self-government and seeking the THA's input in this process.

"The THA, instead of quickly coming on board, has sought to score political points by means of manipulations of the truth and the consultative process. We wish to remind Tobagonians that this process has been ongoing for more than 40 years and the events of 2011 have been the closest the island has come to realising this dream.

"We therefore continue to advocate placing island before party and before self and we use this opportunity to assure Tobagonians that I as Minority Leader and the Tobago Organisation of the People will continue to do all within its power to ensure that Tobago gets full internal self-government in 2012."

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who! said on Tuesday, Nov 12 at 12:42 AM

Is that Jack the ripper? He ought to be ashamed to even show his face in any part of Tobago! He is a proper mad man & needs a mental check up. Try not to print anything about this nobody please.

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citylimer said on Wednesday, Apr 24 at 12:50 PM

The RELEVANCE of this Article is for Tobagonians to be aware of the GAMES the PP is playing with Tobago.They came with a Subterfuge/Mercenary Bill which was INFLUENCED BY GREED-and not drafted without CONSULTATION -ROUND TABLE TALKS-with the THA.In typical Dictatorship modus operandi the Bill was DEAD BEFORE ARRIVAL. The Bill is on ICE just like the 'SOLDIER POLICE BILL'. Tobagonians have spoken by giving the PNM a RED SLIDE VICTORY which was based on Tobagonians Internalization and desire for GENUINE AUTONOMY by way of Internal Self Governmenr/Federal System and not via the PP/TOP COLONIZATION BILL which was designed to DEPRIVE TOBAGO OF AN EQUITABLE SHARE OF IT'S MARINE RESOURCES which holds the KEY for Tobago's Development,Diversification and Empolyment Strategy.My People it is TIME TO RUMBLE NOTHING IS GAINED BY BEING PASSIVE.Time to hold MASSIVE PEACEFUL DEMONSTRATIONS and to EXPLORE INTERNATIONAL LEGAL HELP i.e UN FOR ISG/FEDERAL SYSTEM and an EQUITABLE SHARE OF MARINE RESOURCES.

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Anonymous said on Tuesday, Feb 5 at 9:08 PM

he right we did get reform we clear them out.

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Anonymous said on Tuesday, Jan 29 at 10:58 AM

Time to remove this article.Top aint no longer needed.

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Anonymous said on Friday, Nov 9 at 9:54 AM

WE STILL WAITING.

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MD said on Friday, Oct 19 at 3:16 PM

A politician would promise to build a BRIDGE even where there is NO RIVER.

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George said on Saturday, Sep 22 at 1:26 PM

Being an effective leader requires vision, honesty and integrity. One does not need a lot of degrees, qualifications or experience in public life. Mr. London might be working hard to make sure he retires well. Mr. Jack makes good promises and seem to know exactly what Tobago needs. How come when they get into office they become paralyzed. I don't get it.

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bang bang said on Saturday, Sep 15 at 3:26 PM

I meant non existant, the rest of my statement I stand behind , although I will add tobago is beatiful , so was the garden of eden

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bang bang said on Saturday, Sep 15 at 3:23 PM

Ask your selves people, why is tourism practically existant, time shares as already blogged will not happen, great damamge has been done to tobago most of which is her own fault, tourists are informned , and tobago has a mark against her for damage to tourists, all of which are never solved,you look upon tourism as a right , it is not,your attitudes to outsiders is arrogant rude and dismissive,

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Bago Boy said on Sunday, Aug 5 at 11:47 AM

A promise is a comfort to a fool. The PP which the TOP is part of promised Trinidadians constitutional reform....we got none. They promised pensioners an increase...they took that back. They promised us the right to recall members of parliament....we never got it. Tobagonians rest assured....Ashworth Jack has nothing to offer you but promises...

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the virginian said on Wednesday, Mar 14 at 6:32 PM

Citylimer,as you know,the devil is always in the details.If I were to say "today is partly cloudy" and you were to say"today is partly sunny."Both statements might appear to have similar values,but do they?The is s rhetorical question.

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citylimer said on Wednesday, Mar 14 at 4:19 PM

The main prerequisite for a referendum is the distilling of ALL the facts i.e a TABLE which will compare the proposals side by side and both parties indicating the pros and cons of each proposal. If Tobagonians FALL for the dDEVIOUS SPIN of THE PP/TOP and TOBAGONIANS vote for an inferior proposal which will deprive them of their birth right they will have to live by their actions. Based on the bitter experiences Tobagonians have had dealt on them by this PP/TOP CABAL they will get what they vote for. I doubt whether TOBAGONIANS WILL EVER VOTE FOR THIS DECEPTIVE PP/TOP. If they do they will EAT THE BREAD THAT THE DEVIL KNEAD.

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the virginian said on Tuesday, Mar 13 at 6:25 PM

Citylimer,if the electorate isn't sufficiently well informed,objectively,to enable voters to fend-off or decipher various self-serving and often heated partisan spins,a referendum might simply muddy the waters further and result in unintended consequences.In my neck of the woods,I've seen it happen and the havoc it reeked,after becoming law,and before eventual repeal.Folks saying after the fact:Oh!I didn't know this or that or,oh!I didn't really understand what was meant by this or that or nobody fully explained this or that to me and the possible implications before I voted,or else,I would have voted this way or that way instead. If you go the referendum route,you guys have a lot of work to do to get this thing right.To consummate a referendum,do the local laws require a super majority( at least 75%),2/3 or just a simple majority? Very important.

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citylimer said on Monday, Mar 12 at 3:52 PM

REFERENDUM LET THE PEOPLE DECIDE NO MORE RECOLONIZATION.

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Brilliant Ashworth jack said on Saturday, Mar 10 at 1:44 AM

Brilliant visionary leader of Tobago. The next leader of the THA. Worship Ashworth, he will lead Tobago now. The London brothers are moving on and looking to move away from Tobago.

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Long Mango said on Monday, Feb 27 at 8:56 AM

What a shame on all those persons who voted the current PNM Administration in office, this O london lead team is cluless as to advancement, progress, growth and development The big unanswered question is what qualitatively have we achieved, could any one say.Well as far as i can see and observed what has taken place over the last ten years no leader would be less effective.Mr Ashworth Jack will do a much better job than Mr O London is like chalk and cheese.The right man for this challenging time is no other person than Mr,Ashworth Jack.

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citylimer said on Sunday, Feb 26 at 5:34 PM

Could the TOP - Jack - please explain what is FULL INTERNAL SELF GOVERNMENT (FISG) and if the half baked duck he has proposed meets the criteria of FISG. According to Jack's proposals all the marine resources are given away without even a bargaing chip in hand and there will be massive temporary migration to Tobago just for voter padding purposes to win an election.Passages, accommodation and spending money will be given to persons belonging to the UNC/PP in Trinidad to come to Tobago just to vote thereby influencing the outcome of the next THA election. It will be MASS. SUBTERFUGE WILL BE THE ORDER OF THE DAY.True democracy will be turned aside.These people cannot be trusted.The SOE and the other actions of this present cabal has violated peoples democratic rights.BLACK people mainly were roundedup like cattle and thrown into vans and herded off to jail sorry the ZOO as said by JOHN WAYNE.Inspector you know who was the chief rustler who was instructed by Madame Tussaund and NERO.

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Tobagonian said on Thursday, Feb 23 at 9:22 PM

Ashworth Jack running Tobago! My! My! My! What have my homeland become? How could I stand up and tell people that someone like Ashworth Jack is in charge of Tobago? This will be a total disgrace! Existential Question: 1. How do we expect to find that which we are looking for, if we know not for what we are looking? 2. How do we expect to get where we are going, if we know not from where we are coming? "Tobago, for better or for worse, at all cost "SAY NO TO ASHWORTH JACK'S CURSE".

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Silent Observer said on Thursday, Feb 23 at 8:22 PM

When a Jack follows a Jack, chances are that at least one will get hang! Ashworth Jack closely attached to Jack ------(The man of many hats with the deep pocket)- "not a good combination".

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Trinbagonian said on Thursday, Feb 23 at 8:09 PM

I have one question for "ConsciousTrinbagonian": Where is the 'oil basin' presently located in Trinidad and Tobago? For a moment I thought it was off the waters of Tobago. Please do your research before you make your comments. "Potential Energy" my friend! All the best!

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Tobagonian connected from abroard said on Thursday, Feb 23 at 7:52 PM

Tobagonians, my people, please open your eyes. Forget all the old talk! Remember, at the end of the day, it is still "Tobagonians for Tobagonians". Gone are the days when our hospitality was forever mistaken for stupidity. I have one question for my fellow Tobagonians: After Ashworth Jack sat in the meeting with the Prime Minister concerning Tobago Affairs, did he come back to the people of Tobago to get their opinion, or did he just agree to terms ON THE SPOT? "Think my people, think!". As Karen Asche said last year: "Be careful what you ask for!" We, the people of Tobago, do not need someone making decisions for us without first getting our opinion. It seems to me that Mr. Ashworth Jack is on a "self-gain mission". Tobagonians, we are a very smart bunch of people, who, from my experience abroard, definitely rank amongst the Greatest Minds in the World. (As an example, search "Garrick Louis" online). Tobago, you may be judged by the person who will be leading you! BE VERY CAREFUL!

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Concerned Tobagonian said on Thursday, Feb 23 at 7:19 PM

It is quite clear to the educated minds that Ashworth Jack (along with the once beautiful Vernella Alleyne-Toppin) is on a power struggle. I hope that Tobagonians are not blinded, but, realize that Ashworth Jack is NOT the person to lead Tobago. What are his qualifications to lead? Such a motion will equate to "putting a donkey in a horse race" or "trying to force a cow up a ladder". PS. I am not connected to any Party. I will just like to see the best person in place to lead in my beautiful island of Tobago. Remember: Good, better, then best. Ashworth Jack has not even made it to being good, so, obviously, he does not qualify."Running your mouth about Politics for years" does not make you a qualified Politician. as far as I am concerned, Ashworth is just an Upstart who is power hungry. Tobagonians, we have leaders in Tobago, but, Ashworth Jack is not one of them. We need a very calculating person to lead Tobago, but, Ashworth Jack is not that person. Don't be fooled Tobago! WAKE UP!

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RJ said on Monday, Feb 20 at 3:33 PM

There is a lot that the country can benefit from if a sports academy should be set up. Just one medal by an individual athelete can bring so much fame and glory to T&T yet athletics has been neglected, even though it can assists in increasing our tourism resources. It appears because only certain sectors of the community may engage in athelitics it has been neglected. There would be so many more kelly-ann Baptiste, and Atto Boldon, if the govt had put a plan in place We have thrown away a lot of money at trying to rebuild the Shaw Park Stadium and the Hospital with cost over-runs. Also so much money was wasted in the Heads of the Commonwealth meeting and Summit of the Americas. These monies could have been spent in providing coaching for the youths in these depraved areas. IT APPEARS THAT IF SOME RACES ARE NOT DOING A CERTAIN SPORT IT GETS PUT ON THE BACK BURNER. IT IS ONLY IF YOU HAVE THE SELF DETERMINATION LIKE KELLY-ANN THAT YOU CAN SUCCEED WITHOUT HELP FROM THE GOVT.

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Adjacent said on Friday, Feb 10 at 9:47 AM

Belmont Rd is part of his constituency....why didn't he build his mansion there. I am sure it was done to avoid persons bothering him but he is attending meetings that does not concern him and then saying he is representing the people. Goodluck to all TOP supporters.

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Adjacent said on Friday, Feb 10 at 9:35 AM

Let me make this simple....if you believe you are not competent enough to run a country, don't elect someone that is just like you. You will ruin a country. Nothing is wrong with changing the current administration but do you want the entire island to suffer when all this man knows is how to steal? Ashworth has to prove himself competent for the job. And that will take just as long as him trying to get his law degree.

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Long Mango said on Tuesday, Feb 7 at 5:21 AM

This will be short,How could the PNM at this time be raising a hypocritical voice about Internal self government.They have no good intention,Mr London is afraid of the demolition TOP crew,so he has to say something to be relevant.But all Tobagonians know that performance beat ole talk every time and all the PNM has is flip flop ole talk.

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CONSCIOUSTRINBAGONIAN said on Monday, Feb 6 at 2:25 PM

TOBAGO IS NOT at present adequately contributing TO THE COFFERS OF THE TREASURY!!!!. We do not at present have an EFFECTIVE TOURIST INDUSTRY; NO SUSTAINABLE ARICULTURE, NO EFFECTIVE HEALTH SYSTEM, ect. Tobago still need to develop its full potential and utilise its resourses to the Max.!!! THERE SHOULD BE INDUSTRIES TO PROCESS AND MANUFACTURE OUR AGRI products, that often go to waste, ect.

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citylimer said on Thursday, Feb 2 at 4:57 PM

"Full internal self government" =Ido hope that what was presented by TOP/PP is not FULL INTERNAL SELF GOVERNMENT. Their version gives away the resources of Tobago and leaves Tobago wide open to significant cultural and demographic change which will forever haunt Tobagonians. Also the TOP/PP version will forever deprive Tobago of reaping the economic benefits which should accrue to Tobago by way of its Marine Resources both oil and fishing. In this regard, Tobago will always appear to be not contrbuting economically to the coffers of the Treasury - as is being presently said - thus Tobago will not be able to claim a higher percentage of the National Budget. Tobago will be perpetually economically shackled to Trinidad. TOP/PP version is designed to always keep Tobago several steps behind Trinidad not side by side. This PPG is afraid of the true potential of Tobago coming to the fore. And their objective is being assisted by the TOP who sees their only hope of governing Tobago is the PP.

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conscioustringonian said on Thursday, Jan 5 at 10:02 AM

!!!!!!! MR JACK YOU ARE IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. YOU NEED TO BUILD ON HEALTH TOURISM AND GET PEOPLE COMING TO TOBAGO JUST LIKE CUBA DOES!!!!!!!!! CREATE A NICHE MARKET USING THE LATEST TECHNOLOGY AND GET THE OTHER ISLANDERS COMING.!!!!!ALSO ANOTHER WAY OF DEVELOPING TOBAGO'S TOURISM IS BY HAVING FOREIGNERS BUYING TIME SHARES IN GUEST HOUSE'S OR HOTELS, JUST LIKE IN BARBADOS AND ANTIGUA.!!!!!!!!!! THIS WILL THEN ENCOURAGE THESE TOURISTS TO COME YEAR AFTER YEAR, OR THEY MAY ENCOURAGE THEIR FRIENDS OR FAMILY TO COME AND MAKE USE OF THEIR TIME SHARES.!!!!!!!!! THEY WILL THEN SPEND MONEY WHICH WILL INTURN BOOST THE ECONOMY. YOU CAN ALSO DEVELOP THE SCUBA DIVING BUSINESS TO INTERNATIONAL STATUS AS SOME TOURISTS BOAST THAT TOBAGO HAS SOME OF THE BEST OPPORTUNITIES FOR SCUBA DIVING.!!!!!!!!!!!

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Mr Jack said on Wednesday, Jan 4 at 8:38 PM

Now that His $5 Million home is nearing completion he would have more time for his political duties.

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Anonymous said on Wednesday, Jan 4 at 11:06 AM

Most important issue education, education, education, plus keep all promises made in 2011 , all these isues will haunt Tobago until well into 2012 if not honoured ,

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The Man said on Tuesday, Jan 3 at 8:55 PM

I do not see Jack as the person to replace Orville.The sensible people of Tobago know this.However there are those who are stuck in the past and will elect these donkeys anyway.I do pray that this is not the case and that good sense will prevail.

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RJ said on Tuesday, Jan 3 at 11:26 AM

MR Jack you seem to know what leadership is about. lets see some more positive action by you. Start by meeting with the grassroots and find out what their needs are and assist them as much as you can and you will earn their respect and get their votes. This will then enable you to win the next election.

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Anonymous said on Tuesday, Jan 3 at 1:09 AM

Mr. Jack! All well said, but everyting you said is exacatly a broken record to things said when we were growing up. The Health Care model of the 70's & 80's worked, but needed proper management and build upon and not dismantlement. You and the THA will not be sucessful until we stop the personal bashing and really look hard and give the people something to be exicted about other tha brohen record of self government. Stop talking and just do what is right for current and future generation. Show the world what we are made of by just doing thing better on which to build upon.

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Anonymous said on Saturday, Dec 31 at 12:25 PM

BOND TOGETHER AS ONE AND MOVE YOUR INEFFECTIVE POLITICIANS OUT YOU THE PEOPLE CAN HIRE AND FIRE THEM YOU ARE THE VOTER AND YOU HAVE THE POWER IN YOUR HANDS DONT LET ANY ONE TELL YOU OTHERWISE YOU HAVE THE MASTER KEY TO ANY AND ALL IN YOUR HANDS... YOUR VOTE IS A DIAMOND USE IT WISELY FOR THE GOOD OF ALL.. LISTEN TO YOUR HEART TO EVERY PATH THERE IS A HEART IF THAT PATH HAS NO HEART IT IS NOT A PATH PEACE JJ

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Anonymous said on Saturday, Dec 31 at 8:23 AM

jACK aSHWORTH ,i hope the people of Tobago is smart enough to give you a chance. Tobago is in desperate need of some positive change. Regardless of what is said about you,we the people of Tobago supports you,and hope that The majority will rise to the occassion of improvement for tobago, and vote for you.

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Poyer said on Saturday, Dec 31 at 2:48 AM

Ashworth needs to shut he ar$$e and instead tell us what his opinion is on the Ish and Steve issue, the Ganga Singh issue and even the Stanley Beard firing. After all, it was he who recommended him to be Chairman of TDC. There're a number of issues he stays silent on, unlike the other Partners in the Coalition who are airing their voices about things that they're not happy with. The Library and Shaw Park are his pet topics, no longer the Hospital that his PP government take over, with no changers to the progress. Didn't Dookeran say "by December" we getting it? He's looking for all sort of things to throw at Orville and the PNM, but they're not credible. His own credibility is under scrutiny, he MUST give account for his funding to build such a mansion and own all that land in Belmont Rd. He,together with his other 4 pardners heist 29 scoundrels on the nation, they've become the worst the country has ever seen, but focuses on London. Boy I tell you.

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