Daily Brief - Friday 17th February, 2023


Port of Spain mayor, top cop discuss easing traffic congestion

Mayor of Port of Spain Joel Martinez and Police Commissioner Erla Harewood-Christopher are in discussions to find effective ways to address traffic congestion in the city. Speaking with Newsday on Thursday, Martinez said while wrecking is one solution, it may not be the most effective. He added that with an emphasis on returning night life to the capital, wreckers operated a lot at night when the congestion was limited to nonexistent, creating unnecessary fear and anger among drivers. Read more here

800-strong security force for Carnival festivities

As thousands of nationals and visitors alike return to the streets of T&T this year for Carnival festivities, following a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the T&T Police Service (TTPS) is assuring that all measures are in place to ensure the safety of everyone. In announcing an over 800-strong unit of law enforcement officers to be deployed for the festivities yesterday, Carnival Gold Commander, ACP Collis Hazel, said 300 soldiers will be part of the show of force to ensure law and order prevails. Seated next to the newly-minted Commissioner of Police (CoP) Erla Harewood-Christopher during the weekly TTPS media briefing at Police Administration Building, Port-of-Spain, Hazel proudly declared, “We are ready. We have done our homework and we are prepared to address the challenges and all the issues we can mitigate in treating with Carnival 2023.” Read more here



Government releases $83m to NCC

The Ministry of Finance approved the release of $83,861,683 million to the National Carnival Commission (NCC) on Thursday making it the first tranche of the commission’s $147 million subvention for Carnival 2023. This release of funds comes on the heel of Carnival celebrations and complaints from regional bodies over a lack of funding. On Tuesday night, San Fernando mayor Junia Regrello blamed money woes for the cancellation of the city’s planned king and queen of Carnival competition that night. In response Winston “Gypsy” Peters, NCC chairman reportedly said, on Wednesday, that the NCC is yet to receive its promised subvention of $147 million from Government. Read more here

PM Rowley meets US Presidential Advisor

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, who is attending the 44th Caricom Leaders’ Summit in the Bahamas, met yesterday with former US Senator Chris Dodd, who is the Special Presidential Advisor for the Americas. And Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau yesterday told Caricom leaders Canada is working to expand and simplify access for trusted travellers from Caricom countries. This was the word from Office of the Prime Minister yesterday, as it gave an update on Rowley’s participation at the Caricom Summit. Dodd and Trudeau are among the foreign guests at the Bahamas meeting. The OPM stated that Energy Minister Stuart Young and Foreign Affairs Minister Dr Amery Browne were present for the meeting with Dodd. No details of what transpired in the meeting were given. Young had accompanied Rowley to Guyana’s International Energy Expo on Tuesday. When Rowley (and St Vincent PM Ralph Gonsalves) were leaving Guyana on Wednesday to travel to the Bahamas summit, they were refused use of American Airlines’ VIP lounge at Guyana’s Cheddi Jaggan International Airport. Read more here



Incus Services Ltd, the company that adapted to change

Automating and monetising data is no easy task. Seeing this is a global issue, Incus Services Ltd is offering companies ways to easily achieve both automating and monetising of data as well as offer consultations with the companies on how to cater to their current market and attract a new wider one in order to develop and earn more income. For the average person automating and monetising may seem like gibberish, but automating data simply means to let technology do its job with minimal input from a human. For example, instead of having someone sit and manually type personal information one by one for everyone in a company, the software would be able to compile all that information into one file. Read more here

‘ANSA Bank unlike any other in T&T’

ANSA Bank’s new digital-first touchpoint at Gulf City Mall seamlessly ties in with its overarching concept of digital banking as it plans to open three more of these facilities in Trinidad. The bank is also looking at the possibility of opening such a branch in Tobago. In an interview with the Business Guardian Kathleen Galy, the bank’s acting managing director described the Gulf City branch as “unlike any other bank” in T&T. “It’s bright, it’s bold, friendly and inviting and also in keeping with our vision to become a digital-first bank—designed specifically around motivating digital adoption,” she said. According to Galy, the elderly and those not digitally inclined can also access the facilities at the branch with ease with staff to assist. Read more here



Increasing energy demands being addressed through sustainable projects

Prime Minister, Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips has reiterated the government’s commitment to providing affordable, stable, and reliable energy for Guyanese households and businesses, through its Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) 2030. The Prime Minister took Guyana’s sustainable energy goals centre stage when he presented Thursday morning, at the International Energy Conference and Expo 2023. For context, the LCDS is a framework intended to map the path of a new growth trajectory in a non-polluting way. At numerous forums, the government has placed significant focus on efficient, flexible, and reliable energy sources such as hydropower, natural gas and solar, among others, to reduce carbon emissions. Read more here



Ohio town reflects on chemical train derailment aftermath

For East Palestine residents John and Lisa Hamner, life as they knew it came to a screeching, flaming halt at 8:55 pm on 3 February. It was that day that a toxin-laden train derailed just metres from their successful garbage truck business, which they had grown from five customers to more than 7,000 over an 18-year period in and around this close-knit Ohio town. "It's totally wrecked our life," he told the BBC, choking back tears in the parking lot of his business, where the stench of chemicals and sulphur from the derailment remains powerful. "I'm at the point now where I want out of here," he added. "We're going to relocate. We can't do it no more." After the derailment, emergency crews performed a controlled release of vinyl chloride from five railcars that were at risk of exploding. Read more here

17th February 2023


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