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Port of Spain was washed with colour today as hundreds of young masqueraders came out for the Junior Parade of the Bands.  Ranging from babes in arms to teenagers the young revellers danced, jumped and glided across the main stage displaying their band leaders’ interpretation of carnival.

Aaron St Louis retained his Soca Monarch title on Friday night, in front a thin crowd at the Hasely Crawford Stadium. The 24-year-old singer proved he was far from finished and held on to the crown as he defied technical issues to defend his title but for the second straight year the competition could not attract a large audience for one of Carnival's most prestigious events.

Fantasy and several large Carnival Bands have issued warnings against the use of fake wristbands. In a media release, the owners of Fantasy Carnival and Entice Carnival said reports have been made of third parties offering these wristbands to enter the parade of the bands on Monday 27th and Tuesday 28th of February 2017.

The management of the groups are cautioning persons to only purchase, and use, wristbands obtained from the official distribution Centre located in St. Clair. The Management said they would reserve the right to bar entry to any masqueraders who uses a fake wristband.

The owners of Mas band Yuma also issued a similar release saying that their costume and parade bands are only available through authorized costume registration.

The electricity supply in St James, Mucurapo & environs is expected to return to normal tonight after T&TEC completed repairs on the Mucurapo Substation. In a release issued earlier this evening, T&TEC said emergency repairs have been completed although there were technical issues.  T&TEC has apologised for the inconvenience experienced by customers.

Ministry of National Security says a full complement of Immigration staff is on duty at the Piarco International Airport. The Ministry issued a release earlier today after headlines and post on social media stated that there were delays on Thursday at the arrival lounge at the Piarco Airport.

The Ministry says “Immigration officials have noted that the increase in passenger arrivals is in part compounded by the arrival of several charter flights in addition to the regularly scheduled flights. Flights are coming in at the same time or very close together with hundreds of passengers disembarking from each flight.”

“The increase in arrivals on account of national festivities and the resultant longer wait time for passengers is not unique to Trinidad and Tobago and at times occurs at international airports in other parts of the world.”

“Immigration officials at the Piarco International Airport are monitoring the situation and continue to warmly welcome citizens and visitors upon arrival.”

Aaron “Voice” St Louis has retained his International Soca Monarch. The 24-year-old San Juan-born singer, who became the competition’s youngest ever winner in 2016, walked away with the top prize despite having technical issues during his performance at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain on Friday night.

Voice sang his popular song “Far from Finished,” which he wrote to follow up his 2016 “Cheers to Life,” to retain his title and finish ahead of Orlando Octave, who came second with “Single.” Devon Matthews picked up third place in the competition, his highest ever finish, after performing “D Journey” in a performance with included a cameo from veteran singer Ella Andall. Three-time Soca Monarch winner Neil “Iwer” George finished fourth in the competition with his track "Take ah Bathe."

Speaking to C News after her son’s victory Jane St Louis’ said “he came backstage crying” after having to do a second take on his performance following several audio issues in the first minute of his performance. St Louis said the show’s organisers had technical difficult and her son didn’t feel like the performance he gave was his best possible showing. She said: “You planned so much rehearsals and everything else… You tell yourself this is it and it ended up not his 100, especially the initial stage but God is good all the time…”

St Louis said she had to comfort her son following the performance: “I told him that he is my winner no matter what he is my winner… He was down; he was honestly down. That’s why he left; he was hurting because everything that happened didn’t add up”.

St Louis said she “doesn’t know” if her son’s performance was sabotaged but reiterated that she is thankful for the commitment he showed in returning to stage after the difficulties he had at first.

There’s no love lost between Fya Empress and Lady Gypsy, the central figures in the calypso fiasco that dominated the headlines this week.

Kambule 2017

It almost signals the start of the Carnival weekend - the dramatic retelling of the 1881 Canboulay Riot in East Port of Spain.

Gypsy Secures 10th Extempo Title

Winston 'Gypsy' Peters secured his 10th National Extempo Monarch, when he defeated Black Sage in the finals.

The Extempo was one of the calypso categories that was part of the Kaisorama show at NAPA on Thursday evening.

Ian Wason has the rundown.

Diego Martin Man Shot Dead

A man was shot dead in Petit Valley on Carnival Friday afternoon.

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