Council furious at Mayor for taking Personal Assistant on Trinidad trip

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City Mayor Ubraj Narine has been invited to represent Georgetown at a regional event in Trinidad this week but his decision to take his Personal Assistant, Jefriana McCalmon on the trip has caused the ire of several councillors at City Hall who are not in agreement with the Mayor’s decision.

The Mayor was invited to attend the official launch the Global Covenant of Mayors (GCOM) for Climate Change and Energy in the Caribbean region set for June 12 to 14 in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad under the theme, “Urban Resilience, disaster and climate change resilience planning in the Caribbean.”

At a statutory meeting on Monday with councillors, Mayor Narine disclosed that he asked his Personal Assistant (PA) to accompany him at her own expense.

“I took it on myself and I asked my Personal Assistant actually if she can [be] able to buy her ticket herself and accompany me,” the Mayor said.

Several councillors stood to raise their dissatisfaction with the Mayor’s decision, noting that the PA should not be attending such a beneficial forum.

The Mayor then claimed he was not advised properly about the forum.

Town Clerk (ag), Sharon Harry-Munroe said she would advise that a member from the administration accompany the Mayor.

“You’re representing the City of Georgetown as the Mayor and that is why you would have a member of the administration who can liaise on that aspect,” Harry-Munroe said to the Mayor.

Following the objection of the coucillors, it was subsequently decided that the Deputy Town Clerk, Sherry Jerrick will accompany the Mayor and his PA to the forum.

According to the Town Clerk, at the launch of the GCOM, Caribbean cities and municipalities will sign an agreement that formalizes their commitment to voluntarily address climate change, focus on mitigation, adaption and universal access to affordable and sustainable energy.

This initiative is an international alliance for cities and local governments with a shared long term vision to combat climate change.

“The initiative includes over nine thousand cities and communities representing more than eight hundred million people worldwide and over 10% of the global population,” Harry-Munroe said.

The forum will be bringing together land use practitioners, municipal managers, policy makers, academic and allied professionals in an effort to address urban issues in the Caribbean.

Response mechanisms before, during and after disasters will be looked at through panel discussions and presentations while the strengthening of current systems will also be discussed.

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