Chop down barren old PNM tree


PDP deputy leaders Farley Augustine, right, and Dr Faith BYisrael. – PDP

“Let us transform Tobago.”

This was the message of deputy political leader of the Progressive Democratic Patriots (PDP) Farley Augustine as he addressed party supporters on Sunday evening during a drive-in meeting at the Gardenside carpark in Scarborough.

He said: “We have a simple message, and the message is: let’s transform Tobago. Speaker after speaker spoke to the need for us to transform this place called Tobago and change the way we govern – but if we are to transform Tobago, the first thing that we have to do is get rid of those who have been there for 20 years and have kept us in this rot. Let us transform Tobago.”

He recalled the old adage, “Manure cyar do nothing for old buck buck.”

He explained, “When the buck buck tree old, you could put horse manure, cow down…you could put all kind of thing – and it still won’t bear. When you have old buck buck tree, you have to chop it down and plant a fresh buck buck tree. And so tonight, Tobago I have come to you with this simple message, a simple reminder that if after 20 years this buck buck tree has not produced fruits, it’s time to chop it to hell down and plant a new tree.

“A tree may change its leaves, but the roots are still the same, so do not trust their changing of their leaves. It is the same old buck buck tree that cannot produce fruits. Chop it down and plant a new, fresh sucker that can produce fruits and PDP is that tree,” he said.

He criticised the PNM’s claims that it would expanding its housing projects, saying, “After 20 years, you’re now coming up with the ideas for housing on this island, when for the last four years we built zero houses. You can’t spend 20 years and all of a sudden you know that Town and Country Planning belongs to the THA. You cyar spend 20 years, like you blight, everything you touch wither and dry up.”

He said that he is happy to be the leader of the transformers, describing his team as transformational.

Augustine also addressed autonomy. He said the longstanding issue was alive long before he was born, and it was time for it to be dealt with once and for all.

“I want to tell Tobagonians tonight that the days of begging for autonomy have come to an end. Tobago deserves the kind of governance it requires, and we should not be crawling on our hands and knees to beg anybody, Give us what is ours. I am telling you tonight that Chief Secretary Farley Augustine will be demanding autonomy on day one.

“We are a generation of proud people. We might be proud, but we are pious, and there is no need to beg for your rights. Every group of people, every nation has a right to self-determination and Tobago, like any other people, has that right,” he said.

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