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PM: Coudray matter settled
“My Government is not under threat and will not fall.” So said Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar on her return to Trinidad and Tobago yesterday after attending the Sixth Summit of the Americas in Colombia and a state visit to Panama. PM Persad-Bissessar, at a news conference at the Diplomatic Lounge at the Piarco International Airport, said despite the alleged disenchantment by some in the Congress of the People (COP) over the Marlene Coudray matter it was resolved.
There is growing disenchantment with the COP, a member unit of the People’s Partnership (PP) Government, led by PM Persad-Bissessar, over her handling of the Marlene Coudray matter. Coudray, who was elected mayor of San Fernando as a member of the COP, left the party and was later elected as one of the deputy political leaders of Persad-Bissessar’s-led United National Congress (UNC).
The COP leader and Legal Affairs Minister Prakash Ramadhar has been insisting that, based on the agreement which established the PP, Coudray must resign as mayor and replaced with a member of the COP. But, Persad-Bissessar said, the matter involving Coudray was resolved at leadership talks which ended last week Thursday.
She said initially she had nothing further to add to that statement. She said if Ramadhar had other concerns she was prepared to meet with him when he returned from vacationing in Florida, USA. Meanwhile, founding leader of th COP, Winston Dookeran, told reporters at the same news conference yesterday he had some concerns over the matter and had arranged to meet with the PM for private discussions later this week .
Persad-Bissessar said there always would be differences but according to the latest ANSA McAL poll her leadership and Government were favoured by the vast majority of those polled. She said her Government would not fall as a consequence of the so called disquiet over Coudray.
Persad-Bissessar said the PP Government would serve its full five-year term. She also endorsed a comment by Dookeran over a statement by Justice Minister Herbert Volney over the killing of one of his constituents two weeks ago. The Prime Minister said she spoke with Dookeran about the matter while she was away.
She also commented on the recent death of two-year-old Aliyah Johnson. She said no one should have had to suffer a death like Aliyah.
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