In 2010, when then Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar went to Jamaica and was caught dancing away with then Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding, Dr. Keith Rowley, then Opposition Leader, was highly critical of what she had done.
Fast forward to 2016, Dr. Rowley, as Prime Minister, has done the same thing, except that he held on to a Venezuelan Dame Lorraine and wined. Not forgetting his winning a teenager on Carnival Tuesday in 2015 during San Fernando celebrations.
Of course, Dr. Rowley would say he was encouraged by Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro to engage the dancers, but he should rewind to 2010 and wonder if Golding had invited Persad-Bissessar to the dance floor.
It is very easy to criticize when in Opposition, so one has to be careful when they enter Government, they do not to the same thing.
As he visited Caracas on Monday to sign a cross-border energy deal, Rowley danced, wined, and was part of a conga line with women, we know as Dame Lorraine, dressed in bright, colorful clothing at the Miraflores Palace in Caracas.
A female dancer held both of his hands and led him into a tight embrace with her, from behind. She then held the hips of another dancer while Rowley still held onto her waist, as a conga line was formed. At the back of the conga line, President Maduro also held firmly to the waist of a dancer, as the heads of Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela swayed and danced with the women.
The dance climaxed the signing of a deal in which the heads of both countries put pen to paper to approve three agreements on energy which involve natural gas and oil production.
President Maduro and Rowley signed three agreements:
I) A supply of natural gas from Venezuela to Trinidad and Tobago from Camp Dragon;
II) Shell Venezuela and Pdvsa entering in negotiations to evaluate opportunities to reduce gas flaring in northern Monagas state, and;
III) Agreement to obtain financing for a joint venture to encourage increased oil production.
Of the signing, Rowley said: “What we have signed today is opening up opportunities for various necessary projects in hydrocarbons.
“These will see the door opened for Trinidad and Tobago to enter the international market. Today we take the gas to expand our trade opportunities together.”
The natural gas from the Dragon Field in Venezuela will be used directly to service the downstream sector at Trinidad’s Pt Lisis Industrial Port Development Corporation (Plipdeco).
Rowley added that the signing was a “milestone that will enhance fraternal relations” between Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago.
For his part, President Maduro said that these “historic agreements”, mark the path of peace and economic expansion.
He stressed that the people of Latin America and the Caribbean must play a role in integrating with Latin America, “through the strengthening the relations of cooperation and brotherhood.” “We are signing three agreements, working on our maritime borders with gas blocks and reaching agreements for joint exploitation (it’s a) win-win for the good of both countries,” Maduro said.
Rowley’s visit was generally low-key and went largely unnoticed by persons in Caracas. Among those who visited Venezuela on Monday were Minister of Foreign Affairs and CARICOM Dennis Moses, Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister Stuart Young, and Minister of Energy Franklin Khan.
DR KEITH ROWLEY AND THE DAME LORRAINE