THA Minority leader: ‘Fire Infrastructure Secretary’

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Kelvon Morris, THA minority leader – Photo by Jeff K Mayers

THA Minority Leader Kelvon Morris is calling for Secretary of Infrastructure, Quarries and Urban Development Trevor James to be fired.

Speaking at the Office of the Minority Leader’s media briefing on Thursday, Morris recalled a no-confidence motion he brought to the Assembly Legislature in February.

The motion called on Chief Secretary Farley Augustine to advise the President to revoke the appointment of James.

He has since renewed those calls.

“Reign in this runaway horse. Reign in this arrogant Secretary that seems to care nothing about law, about process, about procedure, about planning. He seems to be his own man in Farley’s house. He seems to be his own Secretary in the Division. He seems to be a man on a mission and he don’t care. He has no regard for the law, he has no regard for the process and therefore I am calling on the Secretary based on all the evidence here today – a secretary that has flagrantly disregarded the EMA act, a secretary that has clearly in all the evidence flouted proper procurement process.”

He said a lot more was happening at the division than what meets the eye as he pointed to the recent development at the Shirvan-Store Bay local connector road.

On Tuesday, in a press release, the division said in about 120 days the Shirvan-Store Bay Local Road Connector was likely to be commissioned for use. According to the release, the project launch on May 8 was aimed at addressing a present and urgent emergency hazard resulting from rising congestion in the sub-urban Shirvan and Crown point zones. It said an alternative route was expected to bring easier access to the communities and support road safety, particularly during peak seasons.

Morris said now there was the embarrassing situation where the contractor entered a space which was awarded to a developer.

“The question is – were there any real designs for this road and if there were designs for the road, where are the various studies; the plans, the cadastral sheet to tell you where exactly you’re building the road. If you had the cadastral sheet like I do, then you’ll recognise that this was already allocated for. Then you may not have had, or you may have had the engagement in a way that you talk to – you have your various discussions.”

He questioned whether the road received the requisite EMA clearance before the work started.

“If they did not receive the EMA clearance, clearly this is a clear breach of the law and more than a clear breach of the law. I am calling on the EMA at this point to tell the public whether such an application was received and whether such an application was approved. If such an application was not received and if such an application was not approved, then clearly the secretary of Infrastructure is in breach of the law, of the constitution and in breech of his own oath of office.”