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Pan Trinbago spent an average of $25,627,000.00 to set up the I.A.S and no benefits for Trinidad and Tobago’s citizens or steel bands.

This was sent to my band's email address. What are your thoughts? 

 

An average of $25,627,000.00 to set up the I.A.S and no benefits for Trinidad and Tobago’s citizens or steel bands.

 

By Aquil Arrindell

 

In an effort to set up an International Association for Steelpan (I.A.S), Pan Trinbago (P.T.) decided to host an International Conference and Panorama (I.C.P.), which would have propelled the I.A.S. into action. The I.C.P. came off and as a result, more that 40 individuals signed a memorandum of understanding (M.O.U.), which indicated their intent to be a part of the association. One year after, Pan Trinbago held a meeting in New York where only 4 countries allegedly signed on. My sources explained that P.T. proposed an alleged budget of 24 million for the I.C.P. The government committed $15 million to the event and Pan Trinbago decided they would raise the next 9.08 million. Pan Trinbago spent all the money, which was promised by the government, $15 million of tax payers dollars and allegedly spent $1.5 million of Pan Trinbago’s money, to set up the I.C.P. event. They then allegedly spent an average of 47 thousand of our memberships money, for hotel accommodation, for the meeting in New York and they are still projecting 9.08 million in debt which is on the books of Pan Trinbago. Allegedly a total of $25,627,000.00 to set up an international association for steel pan.

 

How do local steel bands and by extension the tax payer, benefit from this investment?  After all, it is our money Pan Trinbago executives invested. Is the international organization a secret?  If not, then ask yourself what you know about this International Association for Steelpan (I.A.S.), an organization that Pan Trinbago’s executive is creating on our behalf. We know that around the time of the New York panorama, most of the members who hold office right now were in NY enjoying NY’s panorama. At whose expense, it is not yet clear, because reports are coming in that executive members who were supposed to be there on their own accord, allegedly got stipends from Pan Trinbago’s finances. And a few days after, some executive members spent about a week at a hotel where, allegedly, a meeting was held and four individuals signed as representatives of their countries to continue discussions. When asked for a report, executive members responded with, ‘it went good’. Well, my investigation into the I.A.S. reveals that things are not as good as they say and the countries’ member bands are not comfortable with the I.A.S. The concept was described to be, not thought out properly and has no value or benefit to the member bands. In addition, they are having problems convincing state officials to partner with an alleged corrupt lead organization and they take issue with the fact that the president, the secretary and the financial advisor are the organizers of this association.

 

Representatives for Canada, United States of America, Europe and one unnamed Caribbean country, who as a consequence I was unable to gather information from, signed on as intermediators between Pan Trinbago’s financial advisor, and the member bands of their respective regions. The countries are not fully on board because, according to member bands in each region, the representatives are having a hard time selling the concept of the international association to their membership. The United States of America’s members biggest challenge with going forward with the I.A.S is that the states where the member bands reside are resisting working with organizations which are alleged to have corrupt leaders. This is no different than the situation with our government and Pan Trinbago’s executive, where the government is avoiding putting money into the organization’s coffers because of alleged corruption. Among the members in Canada, their major issue is the fact that Mr. Diaz and Mr. Forteau made themselves automatic president and secretary of the I.A.S. They are claiming that the alleged corruption is an issue, but however, even if there was no allegation of corruption, there is doubt that the intellectual capacity of these gentlemen can take any organization from 2017 and beyond. This they claimed is evident with the state of Pan Trinbago under their leadership at present. Europe’s views on the matter is that the financial advisor has a history of allegedly draining organizations for all they are worth before leaving. E.g. the credit union matter; the land issue with P.S.A.; Pan Trinbago’s 30 million debt and other matters. They also added that the financial advisor’s contract also states, on the completion of setting up the organization, his company will receive $250,000.00 US for his service. Therefore, they believe that the only person to gain from this arrangement is the financial advisor and not their members or Pan Trinbago’s membership. According to them, the financial advisor’s plan to sell drums to finance the I.A.S. is unrealistic. They are saying that in Canada, America and Europe, there is no market for drums from Trinidad, because they have quite a number of drum factories with cheap, high quality steel drums where they reside. ‘His plans are weak and would bear no fruits’ said one European member.  

 

Steel band leaders from our diaspora appear to be brilliant enough be analytical, articulate their concerns and demand answers before signing on to any organization. However, what is a troubling question is how come band leaders from Trinidad and Tobago are not asking these same questions or voicing their concerns. Is it because we are not smart like our brothers and sisters in pan in these countries, or is it because the Pan Trinbago’s executive keeps manipulating information and not giving their membership opportunities to ask questions on matters other than panorama?

 

The president is allegedly getting under $30,000.00 TT dollars a month for being president of Pan Trinbago, a local organization. To be the president of this international organization what would be his salary? What is the secretary’s salary? Would their salaries be coming from our drum factory? Would the $25,000.00 US payment for the financial advisor be paid from the profits of our drum factory? So when would our membership, who are the owners of this factory, going to benefit from it? By now it should be clear to all band leaders that the profit of Pan Trinbago goes to the executive members and the financial advisor. This I.A.S looks like our money spending to set up another pay day for executive members/ financial adviser and nothing for the membership.      

 

 Document of Concerned Individuals for Pan

 

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You know, Aquil, you force me to ask a very BLUNT QUESTION: How come Bryon Serrette and Rosemin and You (who were part of PAN TRINBAGO under KEITH DIAZ) did NOT KNOW that KEITH DIAZ was a CORRUPT THIEF whose only mission was to use the office of PAN TRINBAGO to FILL HIS POCKETS?

How come you three did not know that EVERY MOVE Keith Diaz makes is geared towards PUTTING MONEY in his pocket? How come?

I live thousands of miles away from Trinidad. And I knew from the FIRST DAY KEITH DIAZ was elected that KIETH DIAZ was a THIEF and that he was going to RAKE MILLIONS out of PAN TRINBAGO. And plenty plenty people ON THE GROUND knew that too. bugs has been calling them GANGSTAS for YEARS!!! Go back and read my postings from around the time of the ICP and see how many times I called the ICP a scam to cover FIVE MILLION IN DEBT. (Now you even add more corruption to my GROPE!)

So how come EYES are ONLY NOW OPENING? Makes NO SENSE to me!!!! I think that BYRON SERRETTE should go to PRISON before KEITH DIAZ DOES!!! However, unlike bugs, I know that NOBODY EH GOING TO JAIL because PNM IS NOT GOING TO LOCK UP PNM!!!

Aquil

Let me give you some advice. Claude has put you under oath in the court of PAN. If you answer this question 

How come you three did not know that EVERY MOVE Keith Diaz makes is geared towards PUTTING MONEY in his pocket? How come?

If you answer this question you can end up in "Club Jail" next to Rolly Polly. On the other hand if don't answer this question you can end up doing double time with Rolly Polly in 'Club Jail".

bugs

I still don't know the President to be a thief but I am sure he can't manage Pan Trinbago's money. Most of these things are allegation. Information gathered through asking question and research from the print and electric  media. The president needs to answer. Pan Trinbago can't go on having PRESEDENTS/CEO who can't manage money.

Cindy and I were there only for a short time and information were deliberately withheld from us and in some cases we were lied to. In addition, quite BLUNTLY I was very naive and I also defended the president because of this. I resigned as things began to the revealed it self. 

This is a totally flawed policy, not designed to enrich or sustain the pan movement but will definitely benefit the individuals concerned.

I could spend days evaluating and expanding on this email (above) because it is so FULL of revelations and complexities that need to be addressed. And at times I would be accused of speaking from both sides of my mouth. For example, I could read the email and say that KEITH DIAZ is a man of GREAT VISION but because he is a CROOK AT HEART (here is some BREAKING NEWS for you AQUIL -- KEITH DIAZ is a CORRUPT LEADER) he sabotages his GLOBAL VISION for the PAN.

That attempt to form that I.A.S. -- though it was hatched as a CORRUPT SCHEME -- has a lot of merit to it. I could go ON and ON with this aspect of the discussion but I think that should be a CLOSED DOOR discussion with some honest and insightful and visionary leaders of PAN TRINBAGO. And CERTAIN EXPATS should have LOUD VOICES if we ever get to THAT BRIDGE.

Now this paragraph below is a HOT POTATO!!! I would like some of our regular posters to read through that and tackle it.

Steel band leaders from our diaspora appear to be brilliant enough be analytical, articulate their concerns and demand answers before signing on to any organization. However, what is a troubling question is how come band leaders from Trinidad and Tobago are not asking these same questions or voicing their concerns. Is it because we are not smart like our brothers and sisters in pan in these countries, or is it because the Pan Trinbago’s executive keeps manipulating information and not giving their membership opportunities to ask questions on matters other than panorama?

But again I have to say that the CIP offers NOTHING to this FORUM other than to promote their PERSONAL AGENDA and I think it is an INSULT TO THE FORUM when you make POLITICAL MOVES like they did posting this email and still trying to FOOL BIG MEN into believing that they are an ADVOCACY GROUP.

The CIP is a POLITICAL GROUP running a long-term POLITICAL CAMPAIGN using this FORUM as a PLATFORM to try to get their hands on the under $30,000.00 TT dollars a month for being president of Pan Trinbago. Nothing wrong with that in my books. But once in a while come on and put up a topic that is NOT SELF-SERVING or POLITICALLY MOTIVATED. Put a CALYPSO or a NICE PIECE of PAN MUSIC or even a little story about a PAN MAN. What the hell: Come and cuss out ANDY NARELL for TEEFING the PAN -- that is a GOOD STRATEGY for winning some friends and influencing some people on this FORUM.

ANY BREAK from the UNDILUTED POLITICAL CAMPAIGN!!!

CIP is just expressing their right to educate our membership, hence the email to bands. We are focus, and we know what we want to see happen. Our main concern is not WHO we going to get for president but more WHAT system we need to put in place to ensure the membership stay in control of our assets.

Aquil: I like your CIVIL RESPONSES. The idea to form that I.A.S. (in its purest form) is a good idea. And when you guys take over PAN TRINBAGO, I will personally give you an outline on how such an organization could be used to the BENEFIT OF PAN.

THE PNM GOVERNMENT PAN ORANGE has been SUCKED DRY. And there is a LOT OF MONEY in the OUTSIDE WORLD that could be SUCKED into TRINIDAD to support PAN. I tip my hat to KEITH DIAZ for recognizing that. (To be honest, I think that if KEITH DIAZ and I ever sat down to develop some of his ideas we COULDA MAKE A BIG MAS.) Too bad I went following bugs and alienated THE RIGHT HONOURABLE KEITH DIAZ.

Of course, I always recommend MAKING SOME PAN MUSIC that could APPEAL TO GLOBAL MARKETS. But that CANNOT be done by TRINIDADIANS in TRINIDAD without OUTSIDE HELP. (Now you get me in more trouble!!!)

MAKING PAN TRINBAGO RELEVANT is a MASSIVE CHALLENGE because THE PAN MOVEMENT outside of TRINIDAD is moving at the SPEED OF LIGHT. And you guys HAVE TO HAVE EXPAT INTERMEDIARIES if you are going to PLAY THE INTERNATIONAL GAME (that is where KEITH DIAZ showed some real good GLOBAL VISION). I could give you a good example to illustrate this point (two actually) but the forum will freak out. So just trust me on that one!

Don't try to work here by yourself. Bring some of your other CIP members to make their case on the FORUM. All in all that was a very MIND EXPANDING email that you guys posted and I wish more FORUMITES would delve into the issues raised.

Keep making your points. My biggest problem when I first came on this FORUM is that everybody wanted me to think the way EVERYBODY ELSE was thinking and that caused BIG BACCHANAL. The CIP cannot get me to think how the CIP wants me to think. But what we have in common is a desire to see a PROGRESSIVE PAN TRINBAGO moving PAN FORWARD.

Claude

You ran an ad last night showing Curry breaking the legs of a Utah defensive specialist 10 times on one move. Shameful. Please don't try that with Aquil. Leave that type of exposure for people who have no shame like Rolly Polly, D'Photo and their fake news PRO.

Aquil has shown us that can take cuff. He has not run off to the facebook where everyone is patting each other on the back and living in a 1960's bubble. .

Merrytones, we need expert ground surveillance.

 

bugs

bugs: Yuh misreading the EXCHANGES with me and Aquil. I am just buttering my bread with Aquil so that when he becomes PRESIDENT OF PAN TRINBAGO I could be part of the INNER CIRCLE OF EXPAT ADVISORS to the PRESIDENT. And nobody better doh come on this FORUM and criticize THE RIGHT HONOURABLE AQUIL once he takes office.

MERRYTONESTOTHEBONE desert we, boy. Once that man did not see his name on the CIP list of candidates for PRESIDENT he get VEX and leave the FORUM.

The only problem the WARRIORS have with UTAH is that when they REACH TO SALT LAKE CITY it eh have NO NIGHT LIFE!!!

CAVALIERS LOOKING GOOD!!! Two years of straight CONCUSSION sure to kill an old man!!!

  1. How exactly was Mr. Diaz and Mr. Forteau made themselves automatic president and secretary of the I.A.S. ?
  2. Who treated these officials to NY Panorama?

bugs

That is why I found the email so intriguing because it raises ISSUE after ISSUE across the board. But at the end of the FISCAL YEAR -- Keith Diaz still collecting over THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS a year and PAN MAN still SCRUNTING!!!

Ah hope dem CIP men realize we does keep dey TOPIC ALIVE!!!

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