COP denounces cabinet changes

(Trinidad Express) – A letter of complaint from the Congress of the People (COP) denouncing changes in the People’s Partnership administration was delivered to Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar on Sunday night.

The letter was drafted by the executive members of the party after an impromptu closed-door meeting at the Tunapuna constituency office of the political leader Winston Dookeran on Sunday.

Sources said the letter, drafted by Dookeran, party chairman Joseph Toney and deputy political leaders Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan, Robert Mayers and Prakash Ramadhar and others expressed “strong disagreement” on the Parliamentary changes that surfaced after Saturday’s reshuffle.

The letter outlined the party’s overall dissatisfaction with the reshuffle and that the move resulted in a worrying “reduction of COP presence” within the coalition’s Government representation.

The letter, sources said, identified as a source of discontent, Seepersad-Bachan’s removal as the Minister of Energy and the proposal to move her to the Ministry of Public Administration.

Sources said it referred to the reshuffle as an “exercise (that) was not conducted in the spirit of the coalition”, and called for an immediate meeting between the COP leadership and the Prime Minister “before the finalisation” of the re-appointments.

Seepersad-Bachan, who initially refused the new ministerial portfolio made the last minute decision on Sunday to accept it.

“If it was up to me personally, I would not accept it. But I am a member of the COP and as such I must be guided by my executives. But if it was just up to me I would have been out of there,” she said.

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