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TT's opposition Senator Wade Mark said he was standing up for Petrotin workers against a ‘Slave Master'


Opposition Senator Wade Mark.

By Sean Doulas / TT Newsday

Petroleumworld 01 23 2019

OPPOSITION Senator Wade Mark alleged a modern day “slave master” had helped shut Petrotrin so as to reduce jobs in the local energy-sector to a slavery-like state, prompting an upset Senate President Christine Kangaloo to tell him to rein in his language. It all happened as the Senate yesterday debated an Opposition motion critical of the Government's shut-down of Petrotrin.

He alleged that on the advice of former bpTT head Robert Riley, the foreign firm Mc Kinsey was hired to examine Petrotrin, but the intention was to do a hatchet job on the firm that was opposed by one true patriot. “The new plantation owner of Trinidad and Tobago, the new Calder Hart, who lives in both Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago...” Kangaloo interrupted to say he may talk but must show restraint in speaking of people away from the Senate.

Mark re-doubled his efforts. “I'm talking about a new slave owner.” Kangaloo rose, chiding, “Senator Mark! Please.”

Mark sat, raised his hand in apologetic appeal. He conceded, “All right, I'm talking about a planter owner, a new planter class. Is that okay Ma'am?”

Kangaloo shot up again. “I'm asking just for restraint. You are speaking about persons who are not members of this house and cannot defend themselves.

“I'm just asking you...I'm not preventing you from saying what you have to say but please exercise some restraint.”

A defiant Mark stood erect and gestured towards Kangaloo intricately with his hand. “I want to tell the President of the Senate...” Kangaloo reined him in. She said, “Please, please. No Senator Mark, I have not finished. I'm not preventing you from raising your point. I'm not preventing you from raising the names you want to call. “I am asking you, though, to stop the hyperbole (in) some of what you are raising here. Exercise some restraint. Please!”

Hitting the Government for firing 6,000 workers and so ruining the lives of 100,000 people, Mark said he was standing up for workers.

Getting into a row with a female minister, he said the Opposition would win any snap general election called by the Government. Mark alleged a fire sale of assets of Petrotrin has begun. He expected 300 bungalows to be sold to the Government's friends and family, plus other property recently vested in Petrotrin's name, including St Peter's Church.

He named the firm importing refined gasoline to TT as BP International Sales and Trading (BPIST.) “The Government crashed the refinery and gave the contract to BPIST to bring in diesel. We don't know how this was done because the procurement law is still to be proclaimed.”

Mark said the top oil-broker exporting TT crude-oil was Trafigura some of whose former officials were now charged with corruption in Brazil in a scandal involving political bribery and former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

Presumably addressing Energy Minister Franklin Khan, Mark said, “Minister, be careful who you bring here to sell our crude.” Mark asked if crude-oil exported from TT (and so bypassing the Petrotrin refinery) is being refinery at the United States Gulf Coast and then being re-imported to TT.



Story from TT Newsday
01 23 2019


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