Member of Parliament Rodney Charles commented:
Is Urvashi’s removal another example of the PNM’s direct and indirect influence over all independent institutions including the media?
Why are hard hitting reporters not invited to Rowley’s news conferences?
If our suspicions regarding the reported – and as yet unexplained – removal of journalist Urvashi Tiwari- Roopnaruine from hosting Friday Morning Edition programme are correct then our democracy is in trouble and we may be witnesses to a galloping dictatorship.
A reasonable man may well ask if this is just another example of a galloping dictatorship.
Her removal comes suspiciously close to her humane, empathetic and frank comments concerning the unacceptable levels of crime in TT and the unfortunate murder of Tyrel Webster Thomas, an 18 year old engineering student who was reportedly used as a shield.
Suspicions are high that her comments on our worsening crime situation did not find favor with the PNM in general, and in particular with Dr Rowley and his inept Minister of National Security.
If our suspicions are correct it confirms that our democracy is in crisis and all institutions appear to be taking conscious steps to remain in the good graces of Dr Rowley and the PNM.
In the interest of transparency, MP Charles is calling on PM Rowley to remove all doubt in this matter and confirm that he and his government had nothing to do with her removal.
At the same time Dr Rolwey must tell us what is the policy regarding journalists invited to cover news conferences by his government.
Is Robert Amar for example invited?
Is Stephan Reis invited?
Why am I not hearing Prior Beharry asking pointed questions at those news conferences?
In the US the independent White House Correspondents’ Association controls the 49 press seats in the James Brady Briefing room.
Why is MATT not performing a similar role?
In TT apparently it is Dr Keith Christopher Rowley in his infinite wisdom who determines which reporters cometh and who goeth to his state funded press conferences.
And given the tameness of the questions asked, only friendly reporters are apparently invited.
The time has come for Dr Rowley to recognise that he is doing untold damage to the fragile institutions which protect our democracy.
He is showing future dictators the handbook on how easy it is to win elections (minus foreign election observers) and subsequently dismantle all the guardrails set up by our founding fathers to protect our democracy