Monday, August 12 will go down in history as a day of utter confusion when Marlene McDonald was fired for the third time and slapped with seven criminal charges. On this day the secret criminal record of PNM senator Garvin Simonette was also exposed and his appointment as Minister of Public Administration to replace McDonald ended in a fiasco.

By the end of the day he had resigned as a senator.

The day began with the media camped outside the Port of Spain Magistrates’ Court from early morning to cover McDonald’s appearance before a magistrate charged with corruption-related offences.

She never showed as she fell ill and was hospitalised at St Clair Medical Centre. She was however granted $2 million bail in absentia by the magistrate.

The media were also invited to President’s House, St Ann’s, where they waited for the swearing-in of Simonette, but that never happened either as the event was cancelled by the Office of the Prime Minister in light of “new information”—which turned out to be a driving under the influence (DUI) conviction against Simonette in the United States.


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