Everything Related to the Steelpan Instrument and Music
THE G-PAN AND PHI...
More questions than answers
Panman Patrick getting orn like he eat barbed wire.
The controversy involving the G-Pan (Genesis Pan) and the Percussive Harmonic Instrument (PHI) reeks like a nasty fart in an elevator. Everyone is looking at everyone, and no one is saying anything, everybody is behaving dumb as the scent disturbs the nose. Well I have news for all involved; the Pan Buzz is going to ask questions until I am blue in the face... and who vex lorse.
Readers of this column will know that The Buzz has been in the forefront of Pan development. I have been crying out loud for years for Trinidad & Tobago to take the lead in Pan technology, putting our young, inventive minds to work. From my perch, and wide and varied network, information reaches me on Pan development worldwide, even as I write.
I often castigated governments for not supporting Pan development, so when I heard about the developments taking place at UWI’s (University of the West Indies) engineering department under Professor Brian Copeland, I was so happy. I started to fart like an old train engine, the one from the Last Train to San Fernando. Now, when I read all the tantana (bacchanal), it makes me sad. I feel spat upon as this controversy festers like a sorefoot.
I have already explained why I think the funding for the project (TT $35 million smackers) was shrouded in secrecy. All the while I was thinking this grand zaffire (old people word) was ketching its tail for funding. With Pan development raging at UWI, I thought: here was a chance for the inventor of the bore pan, Denzil “Dimes” Fernandes, and the man who invented the Letterpan, to excel - but no such thing happened. They were ignored like a stale cornsoup. Now the mark buss, that the G-Pan and the PHI were the property of Copeland and company (cohorts), man start to run in lawyer office, rather than answer questions. What makes this really bad is that the Government found out about this because a patent agent was asking for his money.
Now I hearing from the greates’ non-playing panman that ever lived - Panman Patrick (Manning) - “don’t talk to me, talk to my lawyer.” So who to talk to? Everything happened on Patrick’s watch. But I have questions for Panman Patrick, Copeland and UWI jefes whose university has been dragged into this mud. Both ‘Pans’ (G-Pan and PHI) have been registered in several jurisdictions.
Now there is talk that Pans are being sold for as much as TT $15,000.00.
Now I am not so worried about the G-Pan, it is still a work in progress.
Talking about mud. I am not mud-slinging, I am just asking questions.
Already one of the students who has worked on the project is voicing concern over the deceit of working on both projects as a contribution to the University and the country. It must be galling to know you are making a contribution to a group of men’s pockets. However, here are some questions plaguing my mind, as I am going crazy:
Who controlled the money for the projects?
Who was responsible for the oversight of this project?
How was the money disbursed: through the Office of the Prime Minister, or UWI?
Did UWI give out this money in tranches?
Whose duty was it to check bills of expenditures?
How much has been spent so far on the project?
Is there an unspent balance, if so, how much?
What payments, if any, were made to directors of the project?
Will a national awardee hand back his award if found guilty of improprieties?
Why are the key players hiding under lawyers, if everything is above board?
Are there ghost banking accounts in foreign lands? After all, these two projects cannot, by any stretch of the imagination, cost TT$35 million
Are we playing with a stink bomb, if when fully exploded, several persons will have to run for their raincoats?
I intend to talk to students involved in the project, who feel deceived, and intend to mount a legal challenge for their share of the PHI pie; after all, it is their intellectual property too...
These are some of the many questions that need to be answered, because what my spies are telling me isn’t sounding too good... no wonder there is a mad rush for lawyers.
Until next week, wherever you are in Pan’s Diaspora, keep loving up The Pan