Tancoo: Nothing useful from PM after US talks

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

UNC chairman and Oropouche West MP Davendranath Tancoo – Courtesy TT Parliament

UNC chairman Davendranath Tancoo says the Prime Minister had nothing useful to report to the population about his trip to Washington, DC.

Tancoo was responding to Dr Rowley’s news conference at the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) at Whitehall, St Clair on Friday.

The conference was held for Rowley to brief the media on his talks with US government representatives and other officials in Washington, DC.

He went there on Sunday and returned on Thursday.

Tancoo, who is also Oropouche West MP, said Rowley had nothing to tell the country.

“We are now familiar with the Prime Minister making grand announcements after his excursions and nothing coming out if it.”

He recalled at a previous news conference, Rowley spoke about significant funding coming to TT from a major US conglomerate.

Tancoo said that initiative never happened.

“That turned out to be a hoax. You simply cannot believe anything this Prime Minister says. Going on nine years since he assumed office, with all kinds of promises.”

Tancoo was unhappy that Rowley had no reassurance to give the population about reducing crime.

“This country’s crime level remains one of the highest in the world. Nothing said by Rowley today offers any hope that citizens will feel safer now or in the future.”

Tancoo said the UNC will give a full response to every statement Rowley made when it holds a news conference at the Opposition Leader’s Office in Port of Spain on Sunday.

UNC deputy leader and Oropouche East MP Dr Roodal Moonilal and Tancoo will chair that briefing.

At his conference, Rowley spoke about talks with US government officials about setting up vetted units in the police service to deal with crime.

Rowley, who is also National Security Council chairman, said the resources of the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Department of Homeland Security are being made available to help Government fight crime.

He also said the US and TT will collaborate closely on improving maritime security in TT’s territorial waters, retrieval of illegal firearms and combatting cyber security threats.

A subsequent statement issued by the UNC supported Tancoo’s views.

The UNC said Rowley did not address matters such as the failures of Commissioner of Police Erla Harewood-Christopher and National Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds to deal with crime.

The party said Rowley relied on rambling bureaucratic language and generalities on crime instead of frontally addressing the relentless slaughter of citizens and the absence of arrests and convictions.

“There was no accountability or the announcement of any effective policies or measures but reliance on officialese and verbose speech.”

The UNC said citizens remain overwhelmed by criminals and stressed by a faltering one-track economy.

“This is the result of the rank incompetence and horrible cluelessness of the Rowley administration, the worst in the country’s history, which has brought nationals to their lowest depths of despair.”