SHOWDOWN: Trinidad Parliament to debate motion of no confidence in Prime Minister

Both the five-party coalition and the main opposition People’s National Movement (PNM) have been seeking to mobilise support ahead of Friday’s debate that the government has already indicated will begin at 1.30 pm (local time) and continue until a vote is taken.

“The national community should stock up on coffee for the evening and the late night. We look forward to a very exciting debate. The matter is a very serious matter that has constitutional implications which can ultimately lead to a change of government and a change of policy and programmes…The Government is taking it very seriously.

“We will be speaking and using our most powerful and aggressive political team. The final batting order has not been determined as yet, but there is no shortage of resources available to the leader of the House  It is a performance appraisal type debate…We have several issues to raise, including some new ones which have only come to the fore within the last 48 hours or so,” said the Leader of Government Business and Environment Minister Dr. Roodal Moonilal.

He has said that all 29 government legislators will speak on the motion filed by Opposition Leader Dr. Keith Rowley.

In his motion, motion contends that “whereas an unending series of events have demonstrated :the Prime Minister’s gross incompetence; failure to stimulate the economy and create sustainable employment; a consistent unwillingness to act in the best interest of the people of Trinidad and Tobago; an absence of effective management of officers under the control of the Prime Minister, resulting in persistent confusion and encouragement of wrongdoing in the conduct of the national affairs of Trinidad and Tobago”.

Rowley has already dismissed suggestions from the government that he resigns when the motion is defeated and has told supporters that the motion presents an opportunity for the government to answer to a “number of mis-steps” it has done since coming to power on May 24, 2010.

“After 22 months of a 60-month term of the UNC (United National Congress)  government, we have seen enough to know that it is time to call them to order in the Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago,” Rowley said.

He said the no-confidence motion was filed because the confidence the people placed in the UNC on election day, May 24, 2010, “has over time been eroded to a point where we now need to demonstrate to the country that the trust you placed in those people ought to be remained and be reviewed”.

“That is what the no-confidence motion is all about…It is about the government being examined, being called to order with respect to its stewardship,” the Opposition Leader said.

“The vote of no confidence has absolutely nothing to do with Patrick Manning (former prime minister) and the PNM, it has everything to do with the Government of Trinidad and Tobago.” Rowley said

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