The History Of Trinidad And Tobago History Essay

The History Of Trinidad And Tobago History Essay

On Friday 27 July, 1990, the democracy of Trinidad and Tobago had experienced a most unfortunate series of events over what seemed as the longest six twenty-four hours period of all time. At the custodies of about one hundred and 14 members of the Jamaat Al Muslimeen, an effort to subvert the NAR Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, was on the docket. With Yasin Abu Bakr as their ring leader, the Trinidad and Tobago telecasting station ( TTT ) was used as a medium by Bakr to inform the populace of what was taking topographic point. The Jamaat members stormed the Red House and held the Prime Minister at the clip, Mr. A.N.R Robinson along with several other members of parliament surety and they suffered at the custodies of these Muslimeen members in the signifier of agonizing Acts of the Apostless. From the bombardment of edifices, to extreme instances of robbery and even deceases of citizens, the events of the 1990 putsch will everlastingly be a painful memory in the heads of many citizens as it the most serious event experienced by the province and though it is now 20 two old ages subsequently, the state still has non recovered to the full from it. The Muslimeen members were tried on lese majesty but were released due to a signed amnesty granted by the cabinet at the clip. Though Trinidad and Tobago are one Republic, there was no major impact on Tobago other that than of a curfew being set.

Mr. A.N.R Robinson was one Prime Minister who was known for his “ unpopular determinations, ” There are many factors that play a function in being the possible cause of the putsch. These include:

Peoples were upset by the fact that the Prime Minister had imposed a 15 per centum Value Added Tax on the state, although he made this determination in order to convey economic stableness to the province.

The fact that Abu Bakr ‘s position that “ society had become consumed by corruptness, harlotry, colza, incest, kid and adult female maltreatment, racism, slaying, baccy, intoxicant, and cocaine dependence, poorness and a impairment of the wellness services and that the NAR authorities was making nil about it. ” ( Ryan, pg 53 )

The possible hard-on of a $ 500,000.00 statue in honor of Gene Miles, an person who was instrumental in exposing “ corruptness during the PNM government. ” ( Ryan 53 ) Abu Bakr could non understand why in a state where the poorness rate was so high that the authorities at the clip would take to perchance raise such a dearly-won statue when “ people have no nutrient, shelter or medical specialty! ” ( McComie pg 78 )

Abu Bakr had made an attempt to help the sector by importing medicative drugs from the state of Libya ( Ryan 53 ) but the authorities refused his legion efforts due to the fact that Libya is a dominantly Muslim province and Bakr ‘s likely purpose was to hold the province of Trinidad be a theoretical account such as that as Libya. This would hold given Bakr ground to desire to collar the Prime Minister.

The land difference between the authorities and the Jamaat refering the belongingss on the compound at Mucurapo. The Jamaat claimed that they owned the land and that the authorities refused to allow them the title for the land. ( Figueira pg 85 ) This is another ground for the animus between the Jamaat and the Government. The undermentioned research paper would try to analyze the impact of such a flagitious act on the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago from an economic and social/psychological position. It would measure the causes for such an act and besides the events that followed after.

Impact FROM AN ECONOMIC Position:


Harmonizing to Dennis McComie ‘s “ 1990 The Personal Account Of A Journalist Under Siege, ” an estimated $ 150,000,000.00 was reportedly looted and burned. Major edifices included the Police Headquarters, the Red House and TTT ( Trinidad and Tobago telecasting station ) which came with a monetary value ticket of $ 50- $ 350 million to reconstruct and reconstruct ( Ryan pg 55 ) . Loss of stock was estimated at $ 72 million and loss to premises was said to be in the locality of $ 61 million ( Ryan pg 208 ) .

Besides, several edifices were looted though Abu Bakr ; ironically instructed the population non to plunder. These edifices included concerns in the Port of Spain country such as supermarkets, shops and service industries, of which were non granted compensation by their several Bankss doing them to travel bankrupt. There is one peculiar instance of the Sant Family who owned a concern which was looted at the clip the putsch occurred. Their boy took on the duty of surety to cut down the degree of fiscal emphasis on his parents and grandparents. However, due to non being compensated by their bank, their boy still owes the bank a amount near to one million dollars at present twenty-four hours. Other concerns suffered great losingss and were given small to no compensation by the authorities or their insurance companies. However the tops that came as a consequence of the 1990 Coup include:

A encouragement in the building industry because of the harm done to edifices. This harm required the work of contractors every bit good as laborers.

The cheques on containers done by imposts became more intense. At one clip a container incorporating ammo arrived on the port of which Abu Bakr suspected being responsible for. The arms were available for usage and because of this, betterments were made in the system to guarantee that no unwanted points whether it be ammo or otherwise, were brought into the state illicitly.

In 2004, the pieces act was passed. It was a measure that stated that individuals who wanted to have pieces must hold a licence to make so.

Although it was highly dearly-won, Port of Spain was finally rebuilt. The new face of the state ‘s capital was a drastic alteration in comparing to the face it wore before. The Police Headquarters was restored and the Red House continues to travel undergo Restoration and enlargement. Hotels such as the HYATT, was built which includes a waterfront. The HYATT is presently a popular hotel which brings in gross for the province. Though the money spent was plentiful, it brought new substructure to the metropolis of Port of Spain. Many concerns were non rebuilt after the putsch and this made manner for the enlargement that took topographic point.

Major betterments to national security: Due to the events environing 1990 Coup, the national security of Trinidad and Tobago has drastically improved. Servicess such as S.W.A.T and others have been implemented in order to guarantee proper security of citizens.

Though there are tops, there was one industry at the clip that “ took a hit. ” Foreign investors and bargainers lost involvement in their minutess with Trinidad because the state had become economically and politically unstable due to how easy the authorities had been overthrown.


Mr. Wendell Eversely was an single nowadays at the Red House at the clip of the 1990 Coup. Since that twenty-four hours ; every twelvemonth on the day of remembrance of the 1990 putsch he marches from “ the dial ” in Arima, his hometown, to the Red House in Port of Spain where the incident took topographic point. He was one adult male who was persistent in the petition for a Commission of Enquiry as to why the attempted Coup occurred. Every twelvemonth he wrote a missive to the President so that the Prime Minister would allow the release. However, his March would hold discontinued in the twelvemonth 2010, when the Commission of Enquiry eventually commenced. Though the Commission of Enquiry is viewed as a necessity in Mr. Eversely ‘s eyes, it continues to be the state 1000s of dollars as they have now began the 13th session and we are presently in the twelvemonth 2012 which is merely two old ages subsequently. The disbursal has been this high due to the British Council brought in by the authorities to help with the Enquiry.

Constitutional Gesture:

Due to the harm done to the edifices that the Jamaat purportedly claimed were theirs, Bakr filed a constitutional gesture against the province and he was granted a amount of $ 2.1m. However the province filed this same gesture against Bakr and his followings of the Jamaat for the devastation done to the Police Headquarters and the Red House. An estimated $ 15m was the result, but merely some of this money was repaid via the sale of belongingss around the Queen ‘s Park Savannah owned by Bakr. ( McComie pg 10 )



“ A reported 30 two people were killed and these included Leo Des Vignes, the MP for Diego Martin Central and seven Muslimeen members. ” ( McComie pg 9 ) . Besides, Acting Deputy Commissioner of Police, Leslie Marcelle suffered a fractured skull and left arm and Emmet Hennesey suffered a gunfire lesion to his arm ( ExpressA 06 Aug. 1990 ) . Hospitals at the clip were enormously busy with the sum of hurts and deceases. “ Twelve organic structures were in the mortuary and 100s were treated at the casualty section and two hundred and three people were admitted to surgery in the six twenty-four hours besieging. Ninety eight of those were rushed to surgery due to gunshot lesions. ” ( ExpressA 06 Aug. 1990 ) The Prime Minister so, Mr. A.N.R Robinson was shot in the leg by one of the Jamaat members and laid in tormenting hurting in the Red House. To this twenty-four hours, he is still covering with the reverberations of him being shot in the leg. Besides, there have been people that have fallen ailment and even died due to the wake of the 1990 Coup. This was due to fiscal emphasis among other grounds. One can put a monetary value on compensation for the losingss suffered by concern proprietors in 1990, but you could ne’er supply compensation for the households that lost relations on that twenty-four hours.

There were many people affected by the 1990 Coup. However, there are people who have been particularly affected due to their close experiences of that twenty-four hours. Jennifer Johnson claimed in the ExpressA 06 Aug. 1990, that she had “ seen decease on four occasions. ” Mr. Wendell Eversely who had marched on every twelvemonth of the day of remembrance of the 1990 Coup and persisted on Commission of Enquiry being granted, Mr. Emmet Hennesey who can no longer see films that contain any kind of gun force. This was a consequence of the hurt he suffered at the custodies of the Muslimeen members.


There are two ways to see this person. One as a adult male who went to great extents in order to do the society in which he lived a better topographic point for everyone, or a adult male who stopped at nil in order to do himself along with his followings the most powerful group in the society in which they lived. Regardless of what manner one chooses to see Abu Bakr, there is no justification for the improper act he committed.

Presently, there is a adult male by the name of Dr. Wayne Kublalsingh, who is on a hungriness work stoppage in order to halt the commencing of a authorities determination to construct a main road in the southern terminal of Trinidad. Doctors claim his wellness is at serious hazard due to the period he has been transporting on this hungriness work stoppage. However, he refuses to give up unless the undertaking is stopped. Dr. Kublalsingh may be seen like Bakr, which is as a adult male who is traveling to extreme extents to see to it that what he believes is non jeopardized in any manner. Regardless of what both work forces believe in, one would believe that there are other ways to acquire things done that does non affect a hungriness work stoppage neither an attempted Coup.

Abu Bakr committed a awful act on that twenty-four hours 27th July, 1990. Harmonizing to one peculiar article, Bakr wanted a just test. There is a stating that goes, “ there is no large wickedness neither little wickedness, wickedness is sin. ” Possibly this was Bakr ‘s point of position when he requested a just test. The improper act of subverting the authorities calls for terrible penalty, but Bakr did non look concerned with this as he asked for just test wholly ignoring the extent of his actions. Besides, he could hold viewed himself as being above the jurisprudence which is another ground for bespeaking a just test.

Life IN Fear:

The 1990 Coup has affected everyone who experienced it otherwise. Sing your state ‘s authorities being overthrown by citizens like yourself, would evidently make a great sense of terror. Another factor being that it was a peculiar group of people ; Muslims that staged the act which would do you to ever hold a sense of fright regardless of how little that sense is ; of that group of people in your society. Particularly when the society is one consisting of a assortment of faiths, one of which being Muslim.

Another ground why people would hold a fright instilled in them because of the 1990 Coup is due to the fact that the term “ extremist ” is used so slackly when mentioning to Muslims. Peoples, who are of the Muslim religion, are normally highly disciplined and are grounded strongly in what they believe. Their positions are based entirely on what “ Muhammad ” tells them or steer them to make and that they will be rewarded for making consequently. Harmonizing to a peculiar web site, the term “ Jihad is considered to be every Muslim ‘s responsibility – be it the battle to better society, forestalling the development of the hapless and vulnerable or bettering oneself before the twenty-four hours of opinion. ” ( hypertext transfer protocol: // )

Since this definition includes the battle to better society and forestalling the development of the hapless and vulnerable, possibly Abu Bakr was trying to carry through the “ Jihad. ” He was non a fan of some of the “ unpopular determinations ” made by the Prime Minister at the clip Mr. A.N.R Robinson and Bakr had ways of trying to better the society ; which unluckily included a Coup. Additionally, he spoke about the impairment of the wellness services and at frequently times when people hear others mention that they are Muslim, there is some sum of fright that creeps in.

Young Moslems are frequently the 1s that are feared by some people. One may oppugn why it is a sense of age, but the younger the coevals, the easier to it go ill-conceived and Bakr used to this to his advantage as he knew that the younger work forces would experience a sense a belonging being in a “ brotherhood ” such as that as the Jamaat Al Mulismeen. One journalist in peculiar, even claimed that at the clip the Coup took topographic point, and the Red House was stormed, some of the work forces did non even cognize who the Prime Minister, Mr. A.N.R Robinson was. There is merely a sense of distorted power being a immature person holding the ability to command person with the usage of a gun.


Discrimination is ne’er a pleasant thing. Whether it be favoritism against faith, race, gender or sex, no single favors being discriminated against. Because of Abu Bakr and his followings ‘ actions with regard to the 1990 Coup, it is the instance of “ Peter wage for Paul and Paul wage for all. ” This statement is applicable because of the fact that when Abu Bakr and his followings committed the actions that they did, they made it really hard for Muslims to populate comfortably in the society of Trinidad and Tobago. Besides, chances that may hold been opened to Muslims, would now be given with a little addition of vacillation.

For case, mention can be made to the onslaughts of September 11th, 2001 on the United States ‘ World Trade Centre. Some of the terrorists that were involved in the onslaughts were pupils at some American flight schools larning how to wing aircrafts. Due to people cognizing that they were flight pupils and what they were involved refering the onslaughts, they have made it highly hard for any other person of the Muslim faith who truly wants to analyze at any peculiar American flight school. In some instances, when a individual of Muslim background or faith has to go abroad, there is ever excess question in comparing to an person of another faith.

The 1990 Coup has decidedly left its hallmark on the rug of clip, nevertheless until the Commission of Enquiry has ended wholly, the inquiry of how and why the Coup d’etat occurred will be in the heads of many citizens in Trinidad and Tobago. The impact it has had on the Republic is both positive and negative with respects to different facets In the words of Anglican Bishop Calvin Bess in an article written on 29th July 2005 in the Express newspaper, “ There was ne’er justification for remotion of an elective authorities by any means other than the democratic procedure and to me that is the message of July twenty-seventh 1990 and we must non bury it. July 27th has left us with a land that is wounded. Trinidad and Tobago needs to larn the lessons of the yesteryear to demo the present how the hereafter would be shaped. ” Though this statement was made seven old ages ago, the lesion that the Anglican Bishop spoke about is one that would ever be a small more sensitive on the minds of certain Trinidadians.