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T&T | Rowley names West new Public Administration minister

Featured Senator Allyson West appointed the new Minister of Public Administration. Senator Allyson West appointed the new Minister of Public Administration.
PORT OF SPAIN, August 15, 2019 - Trinidad and Tobago's Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley has named Allyson West as the new Public Administration minister after he temporarily assumed responsibility for the portfolio following the sacking of Marlene McDonald earlier this week.
Ms McDonald and several others, including her husband, Michael Carew, have appeared in court on several offences of conspiracy to defraud the government.  She is on $2 million bail and due back in court in September.

This was announced by Communications Minister Donna Cox in a news release on Wednesday morning.

Cox said the Prime Minister had advised the President to revoke Garvin Simonette’s appointment as senator and to assign the Public Administration portfolio to West, in addition to her duties as minister in the Ministry of Finance.

Foster Cummings, who was removed as a senator recently to make room for Cox, has been reappointed.

Laventille East MP Adrian Leonce has been appointed Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Public Utilities.

McDonald, also Port of Spain South MP, had her appointment as public administration minister revoked after she was charged, along with her common-law husband Michael Carew and Victor McEachrane, with attempting to defraud the government by procuring funds for the Calabar Foundation which was identified as a charity group.

She was hospitalised at the St Clair Medical Centre on Monday after complaining of feeling unwell.

West was appointed Minister in the Ministry of Finance on June 30, 2017.

She is a former partner and territory tax leader in the tax and corporate services department of PricewaterhouseCoopers TT and is a senior member of the Law Association.

Asked her first priority for the ministry, as she spoke with members of the media yesterday, West replied that she would like to make a positive impact in the IT world, including having free Wifi areas, better co-ordination of the IT systems of the government and a wider use of e-payments.

West said she had reached out to former Public Utilities Minister Marlene McDonald by message, as the latter was still hospitalised and she did not want to disturb her. She said she asked McDonald if there was anything she could help with and wished her all the best “with the difficulties before her.”

She added: “Marlene was a very hard worker. She used to come to Cabinet – she knew what her ministry was all about and she had plans even in anticipation of issues that the Prime Minister would have to (deal with): she said, ‘Yes, I have already put things like that in place.’ So she was a hard worker, and I know there are big shoes to fit in.

“So I have to go the ministry and determine what her plans were and see if I can get those accomplished, in addition to introducing my own ideas," she said.

  • Countries: Trinidad_Tobago

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