Tokyo players in compound stand-off with used-car dealer. Pan in danger.
The Tokyo Steel Orchestra will not be competing in this year's Panorama competition, in large part due to a used-car dealer from the John John area allegedly refusing to remove dozens of vehicles from their pan yard.
This is the first time since the inception of the Panorama in 1963 that Tokyo Steel Orchestra will not be participating in the competition.
Earlier this week, Tokyo Steel Orchestra's chairman Oswald Goddard wrote Pan Trinbago informing them of the band's decision not to participate in this year's Panorama citing "financial difficulties" as the reason for the pull-out.
Judges were originally scheduled to visit Tokyo's pan yard next Sunday as part of the Panorama preliminaries.
The owner of the car dealership Anthon "Boombay" Boney has, however, denied those accusations. Boney had previously been held during the 2011 State of Emergency in connection with an alleged assassination plot against then prime minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar.
He was eventually released without charge and was awarded $70,000 in damages for unlawful detention.
In 2014 he was also faced with five charges under the Anti-Gang Act, including one for being a gang leader.
'The state of the pan yard haunts me'
The Tokyo Steel Orchestra's pan yard is located at 2 Plaisance Road in John John, and is one of the last places people see before they leave Port-of-Spain via the Beetham flyover.
Painted on the wall of the pan yard facing the flyover is an advertisement for the car dealership which proudly states "we are located at Tokyo Pan yard".
By Joel Julien
Trinidad and Tobago Guardian Newspapers