COMMANDER IN CHIEF: President Christine Kangaloo waves as she leaves the Queen’s Park Savannah on Monday after her inauguration. PHOTO BY AYANNA KINSALE –
PRINCES Town MP Barry Padarath claims President Christine Kangaloo appears to be disconnected with what is the reality in TT today. This was his response to Kangaloo’s inauguration speech at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain on Monday.
“Kangaloo lacked finesse and the ability to inspire by anything she said or did today. It was a missed opportunity to offer a beleaguered population any hope, or to restore faith in independent institutions.”
Padarath described Kangaloo as “the emperor without clothes,” who is oblivious to a society where people see her as a puppet of the Government. He said only PNM supporters, members and apologists would welcome her speech
Apart from these people, Padarath said, “It was just another murder-riddled day on Monday, where citizens continue to ‘ketch their royal, while Government and cohorts sipped champagne.”
Padarath said he did not see Kangaloo, as President, having any impact “on the price of flour today, tomorrow or in the future.”
Princes Town MP Barry Padarath. FILE PHOTO –
Padarath said, “The failure of her inaugural address to tackle major national issues, that the presidency can be used to reflect the pulse and conscience of the national community, is an indication that things will be ‘same ole, same ole,’ at the Office of the President.”
He lamented not hearing how Kangaloo “would be a watchdog for democracy, how she would be accessible and open to listening and comforting citizens in natural and man-made disasters and how her presidency can encourage greater participation in nation-building.”
Padarath said, “I would have preferred a president who was frank and honest about what could be done to address the shortcomings of our constitution.”
Opposition Senator Jayanti Lutchmedial missed the inauguration ceremony and did not hear Kangaloo’s speech because she was in court at the time.
“I was in court doing my duty to a client. The UNC prioritises people over pomp and pageantry,” Lutchmedial said.
While she had no comment on Kangaloo’s speech, Lutchmedial criticised National Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds for describing the UNC as unpatriotic when it came to Kangaloo’s election and appointment as President.
“While he was sipping champagne and toting feelings over UNC MPs not being there (at the inauguration), the citizens who paid for that champagne continue to suffer.”
Chaguanas East MP Vandana Mohit recalled that the UNC’s position on Kangaloo’s selection and appointment as President is publicly known.
“The Electoral College voted and it resulted in the current office-holder being successful. This cannot be changed,” Mohit said.
UNC Senator Jayanti Lutchmedial. FILE PHOTO –
She added, “However, for the country’s sake, bearing in mind we are heavily polarised, I truly hope that after today’s inauguration, this office-holder should at all material time, discharge her functions in an impartial manner and especially devoid of political interference.”
Mohit continued, “clearly at this juncture of the nation’s history, what is urgently required is a healing Head of State. Her ultimate success will be contingent upon her impartiality.”
In a brief statement, UNC PRO Kirk Meighoo repeated the party’s position that Kangaloo’s election as President “is a dangerous step to a one-party totalitarian state.”