CMHAM -Chairman’s Message:
As we celebrate International Museum Day 2014, We at the Chaguaramas Military Museum are saddened by the way the State is treating the largest museum in Trinidad and Tobago and by extension the Caribbean. We have been systematically starved for funds over the past three years with the cutting of our annual subvention,this subvention was started by the N.A.R. government and was increased by the former P.N.M. administrations and the Basdeo Panday led U.N.C. administration now it has been drastically cut almost becoming non existant by the current regime. We are currently operating under the threat of eviction by an agent of the state. It seems that we are not part of the local/regional historical community and that the space we occupy are being sought after by many.
Today as we celebrate International Museum Day 2014 we feel left out as our line minister failed to mention our name in his list of museums in Trinidad & Tobago. Is that we are not recognised by our government anymore? Is it that the memory of every man and woman who are currently serving or served before and those who died while serving are not worth remembering. Is it that it was an error? We would like to know what is the government of Trinidad and Tobago policy towards the Chaguaramas Military Museum? I sincerely hope that someone in high office answer our questions.
Over the past 23 plus years Lt.Commander Gaylord Kelshall (Ret) his wife Linda together with a group of friends and well wishers have painstakingly built the Chaguaramas Military Museum using all their personal funds. They have developed a “NATIONAL TREASURE” that has become one of Trinidad’s largest internationally recognised charitable educational institutes. We at the museum assist scholars, students and families of those who have served whether with local or foreign forces in Trinidad trace their ancestors footsteps thru time.
Lt Commander Kelshall has put his life on the line many times during his military career defending the democracy of Trinidad and Tobago. He was involved in the defence of our country during 1970 military uprising and the 1990 attempted coup. Just imagine that a man who was on the frontline defending our democracy not once but twice in his career now have to fight against the State that he so proudly defended in his younger years. “Oh how we honour our own.”
Today we are calling on the national, regional and international community to rise up and send a message to our beloved government- “That we are not giving up, we will continue to fight to honour and protect the memory of all our brave and heroic warriors”.
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