Categorized | News, Regional

Turks and Caicos politicians preach education

Caribbean News Now

By Global News Correspondent

PROVIDENCIALES, Turks and Caicos Islands — Reported trimming of the budget of the Community College in the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI)  has prompted statements from a former Minister of Education, and the leaders of the two political parties in the TCI.

The college, which currently has an annual budget of $1.6 million, may have this trimmed by $350,000 as the interim government seeks ways to balance the budget, with financial advice now coming from Britain instead of former finance minister Floyd Hall of the Progressive National Party (PNP).

Hall has recently been the target of a court filing alleging that he and his wife, and the PNP itself, were the recipients of over one million dollars in bribes.
 
Former minister of education Carlton Mills
The former PNP minister of education Carlton Mills is complaining about the proposed college budget trim. Mills was appointed by former premier Michael Misick when it became apparent that overseas scholarships had begun to suffer from financial shortfalls while Misick himself was jetting back and forth to Hollywood.

This left Mills with the task of investigating the students and scholarships, which appeared in some cases to be the result of political patronage.

In fact, in a broadcast interview when Misick was questioned on this point, he said, “Well, in some cases we even gave scholarships to PDM (opposition) families,” but then attempted to correct himself, saying that political affiliation did not matter.

Mills, who has always taken the position that scholarships ought to be based on merit and academic achievement not political affiliation, found himself at odds with the administration he was aligned with during that period

Mills, who also runs a private school on Providenciales (Provo), which had students enrolled who had their tuition paid by government, had proposed a four-year undergraduate program when he was part of the PNP administration. This was never engaged nor funded. However, he is now stating again that this ought to be introduced, seemingly at a time when the country’s finances are least able to afford it.

Also chiming in to complain about the college budget trim was Clayton Greene, the current leader of the PNP, saying, “We must understand that, for the Turks and Caicos Islander, education continues to be the principal path to empowerment and a better life.”

The PNP leader went on to say, “Our forefathers were denied formal education because those who controlled their destiny understood that education made individuals and people less subservient. Unfortunately, that very same repressive mentality seems to be echoed once again by this administration.”

However, the PNP administration during their six years in office did not build one school nor could they fund the repair of schools damaged by the hurricanes of 2008 while they were in power.

Finally, leader of the Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM) Douglas Parnell stated his views on the potential budget trim: “Make no mistake, I don’t want to see any cuts to education but people need to recognise why it has to happen. It’s not just because of the economic situation but a destructive period in government.”

“All of the pain that the people of the country are now experiencing is the direct consequence of maladministration and poor governance on the part of the former government,” he said

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

Caribbean News Now

By Global News Correspondent

PROVIDENCIALES, Turks and Caicos Islands — Reported trimming of the budget of the Community College in the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI)  has prompted statements from a former Minister of Education, and the leaders of the two political parties in the TCI.

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The college, which currently has an annual budget of $1.6 million, may have this trimmed by $350,000 as the interim government seeks ways to balance the budget, with financial advice now coming from Britain instead of former finance minister Floyd Hall of the Progressive National Party (PNP).

Hall has recently been the target of a court filing alleging that he and his wife, and the PNP itself, were the recipients of over one million dollars in bribes.
 
Former minister of education Carlton Mills
The former PNP minister of education Carlton Mills is complaining about the proposed college budget trim. Mills was appointed by former premier Michael Misick when it became apparent that overseas scholarships had begun to suffer from financial shortfalls while Misick himself was jetting back and forth to Hollywood.

This left Mills with the task of investigating the students and scholarships, which appeared in some cases to be the result of political patronage.

In fact, in a broadcast interview when Misick was questioned on this point, he said, “Well, in some cases we even gave scholarships to PDM (opposition) families,” but then attempted to correct himself, saying that political affiliation did not matter.

Mills, who has always taken the position that scholarships ought to be based on merit and academic achievement not political affiliation, found himself at odds with the administration he was aligned with during that period

Mills, who also runs a private school on Providenciales (Provo), which had students enrolled who had their tuition paid by government, had proposed a four-year undergraduate program when he was part of the PNP administration. This was never engaged nor funded. However, he is now stating again that this ought to be introduced, seemingly at a time when the country’s finances are least able to afford it.

Also chiming in to complain about the college budget trim was Clayton Greene, the current leader of the PNP, saying, “We must understand that, for the Turks and Caicos Islander, education continues to be the principal path to empowerment and a better life.”

The PNP leader went on to say, “Our forefathers were denied formal education because those who controlled their destiny understood that education made individuals and people less subservient. Unfortunately, that very same repressive mentality seems to be echoed once again by this administration.”

However, the PNP administration during their six years in office did not build one school nor could they fund the repair of schools damaged by the hurricanes of 2008 while they were in power.

Finally, leader of the Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM) Douglas Parnell stated his views on the potential budget trim: “Make no mistake, I don’t want to see any cuts to education but people need to recognise why it has to happen. It’s not just because of the economic situation but a destructive period in government.”

“All of the pain that the people of the country are now experiencing is the direct consequence of maladministration and poor governance on the part of the former government,” he said