PRIME Minister Dr Keith Rowley has accused certain media houses of protecting their own interests.
He made the comment at a news conference at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann’s after the Cabinet met on Thursday.
Rowley said he also had the conference to show that he wasn’t hiding. The media questioned him about the issuing of a release by US Ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago Joseph Mondello about a meeting he had with National Security Minister Stuart Young.
But he did not reveal anything about the meeting he had with Mondello on May 20.
There were also calls by some for the prime minister to fire Young who said on Wednesday that he saw no need to resign.
Rowley said he noted the conversations in the media over the last week.
He said, “Last week, there was quite a bit of media activity and media energy about activities of the Government.
“Some persons who did not see the conclusion that they anticipated, took that to mean that my absence from the press conference meant that I was in hiding.
“Let me just say something very clearly now as we are approaching the end of this Government which I lead…
“I can say today without fear of contradiction that no other Prime Minister in the history of Trinidad and Tobago has ever been so accessible to the media and has ever made him/herself available so frequently and for so long at events where I give you the opportunity to ask as many questions as you have and I try to answer them.”
“And, of course another problem that the country has is, there is a difficulty in accepting truth because there has been so many lies being told to the country for so long, particularly by persons who are protective of their office and their position, that the population has been accustomed to persons lying to them.”
He said there were no independent media houses in TT.
Rowley said, “One media house is owned by a business conglomerate and the Government has taken decisions unfavourable to their interest.
“The other one has business with the state which the government is not facilitating. Then, obviously the Government is making enemies because they have interests to protect and we have interests to protect.”
Rowley said the Government has not taken any decision to pull out of the Rio treaty. “We have taken no such decision and we’ve told that to no one,” the prime minister said.
He said TT abstained from voting on an Organisation of American States (OAS) resolution not to recognise the Nicolas Maduro Government in Venezuela.
Rowley also revealed that at the meeting with Venezuela Vice President Delcy Rodriuez on March 27, the Government was offered Covid-19 test kits.
He said, “The Venezuelans offered us tests kits for them. We did not accept it.”