“If you were only doing your job I wouldn’t have to do it for you.”
That’s the clap back from Opposition Leader, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, to Ministers Terrence Deyalsingh and Amery Browne, after they slammed her for writing a letter to India’s Prime Minister, seeking a donation of Covid 19 vaccines.
In a statement to the media, Persad-Bissessar said she makes no apologies for writing to Prime Minister Modi on behalf of all people of Trinidad and Tobago.
She said “We need to act urgently to reopen our economy, protect our health care and frontline workers as well as return our nationals stranded abroad back home.
She referred to Deyalsingh and Browne as “deadbeat ministers”, further adding that “These PNM muppets must known that I have a constitutional duty to ensure the safe welfare of our citizens, especially in times such as these when it is clear that our government has abdicated its urgent responsibility to protect our citizens.”
She said “From day one of this Pandemic, we asked this Government to work together to protect our citizens yet they ignored our calls. As a result, I cannot sit and allow our citizens to exist in uncertainty as it relates to vaccinations while the Caribbean moves ahead of us.”
The UNC leader said Minister Deyalsingh recently displayed gross incompetence by not knowing that the Government of Barbados gifted Trinidad and Tobago 2000 Covid-19 vaccines.
She said Deyalsingh had falsely claimed these vaccines were a gift from India, which created massive embarrassment for our nation in the eyes of our CARICOM neighbours.
“That the Minister of Health had begun vaccinating front line workers with vaccines of origins he did not know is gross negligence for which Minister Deyalsingh should have been fired.
As for Minister Browne, I would like to point out to him that according to the latest news reports five more Caribbean countries are going to receive batches of Covid -19 Vaccines as a gift from India.”
These countries include Antigua and Barbuda (175,000 doses), St Kitts & Nevis (20,000 doses) , St Vincent and the Grenadines (40,000 doses) , Suriname (50,000 doses) and St Lucia (25,000 doses). This is apart from fellow CARICOM countries like Barbados (100,000 doses), Dominica (70,000 doses) and Jamaica. (50,000 doses)
Persad-Bissessar asked “How is it that our CARICOM partners have all managed to source vaccine donations from India, yet Trinidad and Tobago has not had a similar arrangement?
The country must ask Minister Browne what exactly has he been doing for the past six months? Is Minister Browne so bad at his job he can’t arrange to collect vaccines from a nation giving them away? Is Minister Browne the new Dennis Moses?”
She further added “This PNM government cannot on one hand tell us the Covid-19 pandemic is so severe that they need to immediately withdraw 3 Billion US dollars from the Heritage and Stabilization Fund and on the other hand say it’s improper to suggest Trinidad and Tobago is reeling from the pandemic.”