Public holidays ‘hijacking’ T&T enquiry progress

(Trinidad Express) The progress of the Commission of Enquiry into the collapse of the CL Financial and the Hindu Credit Union (HCU) is being “hijacked” by the number of public holidays this country enjoys, Sir Anthony Colman lamented yesterday.

Colman, the sole commissioner in the enquiry, made the statement as deadline dates for the next sitting of the enquiry were being finalised yesterday.

“Can I just make sure before we finalise any date that the progress of the proposed procedures is not going to be hijacked by some sort of local public holiday,” Colman said.

Commission secretary Judith Gonzales then rose out of her seat and spoke to Colman.

“There are two public holidays apparently one on May 30, I don’t know what it is, and another one on the June 7 ,” Colman said.

May 30 is Indian Arrival Day and June 7 is Corpus Christi.

Colman then spoke of the difficulties the enquiry faced last year due to the number of holidays this country enjoys.

“The commission did not find it easy to schedule anything last year because of the incidence of public holidays in Trinidad and Tobago and this period is no exception,” Colman said.

“The choice is we either work on the public holiday or work twice as hard on the days that are not public holidays,” Colman said.

Senior Counsel Reginald Armour, the legal representative for the Commissioner of Cooperative Development at the enquiry, then attempted to ask Colman a question.

“Mr Armour, you have a suggestion. Abolishing public holidays,” Colman said to much laughter.

The seventh evidence hearing in the enquiry is scheduled to last from June 8 to 15. There will be a sitting on Saturday June 9.

The eight evidence hearing which is expected to feature the testimony of HCU president Harry Harnarine is scheduled to last from July 9 to 13.


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