Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Visit to Trinidad

Excerpt from Jamaica Observer column - 1 February 2016
Short visit to Trinidad

Prof Trevor Jackson
It was a bitter-sweet visit to Trinidad last week, as we attended the funeral of the Professor Trevor Jackson, who retired five years ago as Head of the UWI Department of Geology.  It was heartening to see the strong support of family and friends who brought comfort to his widow, Jean and his children. 
A trip to the capital Port-of-Spain revealed the tremendous development that has taken place in the few short years since I last visited the country.  Digicel Foundation Trinidad CEO Penny Gomez and Chairman Garvin Medera described the excellent projects they have been leading over the past three years, particularly in the area of special needs.  Trinidad has been well attuned to this cause, with over thirty special needs organisations.
Trinidad and Jamaica have some challenges in common: crime, road deaths and the Zika virus. There are the various editorials and discussions around these issues, and as I observed our commonalities, I remember how disappointed my dear father was when Jamaica voted against a Caribbean Federation.  How much richer, better organised and more educated we would be if we had focused on regional development and less on political control of various fiefdoms.

May our leaders look beyond their backdoors to the promising horizon of regional unity and help CARICOM to fulfil its rich potential. 

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