Ragbir stands by his vote; says Whistleblower Bill will benefit people of T&T

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Ragbir stands by his vote; says Whistleblower Bill will benefit people of T&T

Member of Parliament for Cumuto/Manzanilla, Dr Rai Ragbir has explained his decision for voting in favour of government’s Whistleblower Legislation.

In a statement last evening, Ragbir said that having read the legislation carefully and consulting legal experts, it is his view that this legislation will benefit the people of Trinidad and Tobago, as it will be tool to fight against corruption.

He said: “I understand that some of my colleagues will be disappointed in my decision today (Friday, 21 June, 2024), however, I must point out that no caucus was ever held in relation to discussing this important piece of legislation, nor were my views solicited from the Chief Whip or the Leader of the Opposition.”

Ragbir said this has unfortunately become the norm in the Opposition when important pieces of legislation are being considered and demonstrates, in his view, negligence on the part of the opposition.

“Far too often important pieces of legislation are brought to MPs without any research, consultation with constituents/ stakeholders or discussion among parliamentary colleagues,” he added.

“Simply voting party lines on this piece of legislation troubled me greatly in particular because as MP for Cumuto/ Manzanilla, I have received numerous complaints about the Sangre Grande Regional Corporation, but unfortunately when I told persons to take their complaints to the police, they were afraid of victimization, reprisals and losing their jobs in the Corporation.”

“I therefore voted to give these persons and other constituents a chance to bring their complaints forward without fear and in the interest of Trinidad and Tobago.”

Ragbir said he is a medical professional with decades of experience and he always believed that the health of citizens is of paramount concern.

“In this case I believe that the health of good governance, transparency and accountability are at stake and therefore I stand by my vote.”

“No doubt, in an effort to deflect from her own absence from Parliament and failure to lead a competent process in considering this bill, the leader of the opposition or some of her acolytes will simply shout that I no longer support the UNC. I reaffirm that I remain loyal to the members of the UNC because this legislation is in their interest.”

Ragbir said he’s confident that history will prove him right on this issue.