‘We Don’t Plan Crime at Balisier House’ – Rowley

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Caption: Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, left, speaking with his National Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds on Tuesday at Balisier House

By Sue-Ann Wayow

PRIME Minister Dr Keith Rowley will respond on Thursday evening at a political meeting in San Juan to another call for a State of Emergency to deal with crime.

The call follows the first townhall meeting at La Joya Complex in St Joseph on Monday by Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar.

Dr Rowley, at a People’s National Movement (PNM) Mix and Mingle event on Tuesday said he will not be discussing the issue of crime.

The event took place at  Balisier House, Tranquility Street in Port of Spain. 


Dr Rowley said, “Please members of the media, don’t ask me tonight anything about any crime talks, I am not talking about crime tonight because we don’t plan crime in Balisier House.” 

He instead invited everyone to attend the first PNM public meeting on Thursday night to be held at the Croisee in San Juan. 

In a brief address, Dr Rowley chose instead to highlight the positives of the PNM, a party he has been part of for 49 out of 67 years and reflected on the changes made to the Trinidad and Tobago due to the PNM being in Government for most of its years since independence. 

Branding Balisier House as a legacy building, he told attendees, “Don’t take for granted what the PNM has done for this country.” 


He said Balisier House represented the service of a political party that has served the nation for 67 years adding that the PNM will continue to serve for more decades. 

What citizens may take for granted now such as development in education and developments in the health sector, Dr Rowley said that was the PNM changing lives. 

“This building is a legacy building in this country and it is not only for PNM members it is a legacy to all the people of Trinidad and Tobago,” he said. 

Businessman Andrew Gabriel with PNM operations officer Irene Hinds at Balisier House

Dr Rowley added, “There isn’t a single thing in this nation of any great or substantial value that does not involve the People’s National Movement (PNM). Not one.” 

While Dr Rowley did not mention anything about crime on Tuesday, PNM’s chairman Stuart Young spoke briefly about the proposed State of Emergency by the Opposition. 

He said while the media carried reports of a renewed call for an SoE from the Opposition crime talks on Monday, there were no reports of how many lawsuits came out of the SoE back in 2011. 

Finance Minister Colm Imbert, right, makes a point to Minister of Works and Transport on Tuesday evening

Young said, “No one countered that with the truth of what the 2011 State of Emergency really was, the number of lawsuits that flowed through it, the illegality of it, et ecetera  and those are the things we, the citizens are counting on you all (the media) to remind us of and to provide the truth  and put aside the narratives that can’t be supported.” 

Dr Rowley also encouraged members of the media to practice responsible journalism. 

Attending the event were several government ministers, PNM stalwarts and members of the media. 



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