President names 4 new independent senators

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

President Christine Kangaloo – Angelo Marcelle

A journalist, an artist, a calypsonian and a university professor are President Christine Kangaloo’s picks for the Senate’s independent bench.

Sunity Maharaj, Dr Sharda Patasar, Helon Francis and Prof Gerard A Hutchinson were selected by the President to join the Senate and will be sworn in during the Parliament’s reopening ceremony on Monday.

The four replace outgoing senators Amrita Deonarine, Dr Varma Deyalsingh, Charrise Seepersad and Evan Welch.

In a release, the office of the President said Hutchinson is professor of psychiatry and the unit lead in the psychiatry unit of the Faculty of Medical Sciences at UWI.

Maharaj is a career journalist who has worked in print and broadcast for over 45 years. She has headed the Media Association of Trinidad and Tobago and the Commonwealth Journalists Association.

Patasar was described as a multidisciplinary artist who also teaches and writes on culture.

Francis won the Calypso Monarch 2018 title, and was Young King and Song of the Year winner in 2016. The release said he is not yet 30 and will be the youngest independent senator in the current Parliament.