Daily Brief - Friday 9th December, 2022


Rescue-attempt divers in Paria tragedy: We were prepared to die

LMCS dive operator Andrew Farah testified at the Paria Commission of Enquiry (CoE) on Thursday that he and his team were willing to die to rescue their colleagues who were sucked into a 30-inch undersea pipeline at Pointe-a-Pierre on February 27. But he expressed frustration about continually being told he had to await approval from Paria officials to carry out rescue efforts, and being asked to get out of the water when he tried to carry out his plans despite being aware of the risks. The CoE continued at Tower D of the Port of Spain International Waterfront Centre. Read more here

WASA seeks $1B loan for upgrades as floods cause new issues

The Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) is attempting to obtain two loans from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) totalling US$180 million (TT $1.2 billion), in order to improve the country’s nagging water problems, carry out its transformation plan and implement critical projects. WASA is expected to receive its first IDB loan of US$80 million as early as next month, and will soon go to the American-based bank for an additional US$100 million. The US$80 million loan is contingent on a national water sector transformation programme that will significantly improve WASA’s operational efficiency and reliability of water services in T&T, while the US$100 million loan will provide the cash-strapped State company with technological advancement to address climate change. Read more here



Moody's withdraws THA ratings

On Tuesday, Moody's Investors Service (Moody's) withdrew the Tobago House of Assembly's (THA) Ba2 issuer rating and ba3 Baseline Credit Assessment (BCA). Before the withdrawal, the rating outlook on THA was stable. According to the release, Moody’s rationale behind the withdrawal was for its “own business reasons.” The THA outlook was changed to "rating withdrawn" from "stable" the same day. Farley Augustine Chief Secretary and Secretary for the Division of Finance and the Economy could not be reached for comment. Read more here



EU Ambassador: T&T capable of being innovation change agent

Energy Minister Stuart Young says a balance must be found between T&T as a hydrocarbon-based economy and the right blend of renewable energy driven by cleaner technology which would fetch green commodity prices on the international market. This as Young received a report on the outcomes of a “study tour” of Chile from the United Nations Development Programme of T&T (UNDPTT) at a meeting hosted recently by the UNDPTT at the Brix Hotel, Port-of-Spain. The report entailed key findings and recommendations to advance renewable energy in this country based on the tour which took place between September 26 to 30 in Chile, a statement from the ministry explained. Read more here

Fyzabad residents protest T&TEC tower

Residents at Siparia Old Road in Fyzabad are against the Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission (T&TEC) building an electrical tower in their area. The residents said it is too close to their homes. On Wednesday, they held a peaceful protest as they cited health and safety issues in relation to the 100 metre high tower, expected to be constructed 20 to 25 feet away from their houses. Read more here



Greater transparency, accountability achieved

Significant progress has been made over the past two years to fortify Guyana’s anti-corruption framework and policies, thereby fostering greater transparency and accountability, Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance Gail Teixeira has said. Minister Teixeira outlined the government’s achievements and plans in her statement commemorating World International Anti-Corruption Day, which is being observed under the theme, “Promoting Transparency and Strengthening Institutions”. She related that Guyana’s anti-corruption framework and policies are implemented through constitutional, statutory and parliamentary oversight bodies. Read more here



Brittney Griner lands in US after prisoner swap with Russia

Ten months after she left the US to play basketball in Russia, WNBA star Brittney Griner has landed in her home state of Texas. Griner was jailed for carrying cannabis oil at a Moscow airport in February, and was exchanged for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout on Thursday. The pair were seen crossing on the tarmac at Abu Dhabi airport. President Joe Biden said Griner was "in good spirits" and needed "time and space to recover". She was flown to San Antonio, near her hometown of Houston, where she will be offered medical care after her time in a Russian penal colony. Read more here

9th December 2022


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