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Every creed and race...
Peaceful co-existence in this multi-cultural society that is T&T doesn’t happen by chance, neither should it be taken for granted that it can be achieved with little or no effort. In fact, finding that equal place requires commitment and effort from citizens, particularly those in positions of influence and leadership.
Racism and discrimination has to be confronted and defeated on all fronts in any space shared by people of different ethnicities, cultures and beliefs.
It is a challenge that this nation must confront head-on given recent claims of racism and discrimination being raised in the implementation of the Property Tax and even in the now discarded process for selection of a Commissioner of Police.
These allegations must be dealt with swiftly and decisively if found to be true, or exposed as untrue.
Even the perception of discrimination can be destructive.
Leaders of this nation need to be reminded that regardless of their political or religious persuasions, they must act and speak responsibly in the interest of promoting peace and harmony at all times.
Let us live up to the words of the National Anthem.
Free, fair and clean
Now that the election machinery has been put into motion for by-elections in the local government districts of Barataria and Belmont East, this is a perfect time to appeal to all parties involved to ensure that their campaigns are conducted in ways that reflect the highest standards of democracy.
On the hustings there is bound to be a lot of passion and intensity as the various parties and their candidates court the electorate. However, those who had signed on to the election code of conduct of a few years ago, should make every effort to adhere to those principles and not descend into the mudslinging and loose talk that has, unfortunately, become a common feature of this country’s political culture in recent times.
All the elements exist under this country’s political system for free and fair elections. And we have managed for the most part to conduct elections which are free from election-related violence. Efforts should also be made by all concerned to ensure the polls are conducted in a manner that is clean and peaceful.
In a few weeks, Guardian Media Limited will have the privilege of working with Abigail Gittens, a student at the University of the Southern Caribbean, who will share her talent and ideas with the newsroom as Editor for the Day. Another promising young student, Sapphire Alexander, of St Augustine Girls’ High School, will be British High Commissioner for the Day. Both of these young ladies won the right for this once in a lifetime opportunity to earn experience in the world of work after participating in a recent competition launched jointly by the British High Commission and Guardian Media.
Well done young ladies!
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