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Our responsibilities as citizens of this Republic

Photo courtesy: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

On September 24 we celebrate the 43rd anniversary of Trinidad & Tobago becoming a Republic. We gained independence on August 31, 1962 and Republican status on August 1, 1976. The event was celebrated as a public holiday September 24 because this is the date when the first Parliament met under the new Republican Constitution.
Daily, as I drive to Archbishop’s House around the Queen’s Park Savannah—next to Whitehall, which is once more the Office of our Honourable Prime Minister, my heart fills with pride as I see our national red, white and black colours adorning these two majestic edifices. As usual, the buildings were dressed up for Independence Day and Republic Day celebrations.

From September 10–12, I attended the Second Joint Regional Dialogue with Parliamentarians, Faith Leaders, Civil Society Leaders, National AIDS Programme Managers and Youth Leaders, to reflect, inter alia, on progress to end HIV and AIDS by 2030.

One of the speakers asked us to close our eyes and imagine that it is 2020 and our region and the world have achieved the 90-90-90 targets which state that by 2020:
• 90 per cent of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status
• 90 per cent of all people with diagnosed HIV infection will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy
• 90 per cent of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression. (visit pancap.org for further information and for the media release regarding the three-day session at Hyatt Regency Trinidad).

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