Tancoo accuses gov’t of deliberately withholding funds budgeted for the Penal/Debe Regional Corporation

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Tancoo accuses gov’t of deliberately withholding funds budgeted for the Penal/Debe Regional Corporation

The government is deliberately withholding funds budgeted for the Penal/Debe Regional Corporation (PDRC).

This according to UNC’s Oropouche West MP Davendradath Tancoo.

Tancoo stated that this deliberate act is resulting in the hardship and suffering of over 90,000 burgesses as goods and services cannot be rendered to them as is their right as citizens of this country.

MP Tancoo was speaking at a media conference held by the PDRC to highlight the dire state of affairs at the corporation as they are being starved of funding. Joining him were Chairman Allen Sammy and Councillor Krishna Persadsingh, who shared details on the ongoing struggles.

According to Chairman Sammy, letters were written to Prime Minister Rowley and Minister of Finance Colm Imbert, who failed to respond. Budgets Division instead issued instructions that the PDRC should use funds from the Revenue earned by the regional corporations from fees collected from market vendors, building plans and other such services. The PDRC utilizes these fees to fund Social Outreach Programs which provided 298 tablets for students, 1910 hampers to needy families, outreach and educational programs for hundreds of citizens.

Since last year the PDRC has not received the allocations for diesel fuel which restricts their ability to provide goods and services to 90,000 people. These include everything from delivery of water through the truck system, to delivery of material to repair the roads, to diesel to power the grass cutting equipment. Citizens have been reduced to buying diesel to supply the workers to enable them to do their job of cutting the grass in their neighborhoods!

Tancoo said “imagine the Port of Spain City Corporation had plans for artificial turf for a whole park yet the PDRC cannot get the basic fuel funding to enable equipment and machinery to operate to fix roads, clear drains, cut grass and provide the services required by the regional corporation.”

Perhaps it is part of the political tricks being played by the government as a bye election is imminent in the Debe South district and this is one way to tighten the screws on the voters surmised MP Tancoo. But this will surely backfire as the people are utterly fed up of their rights being denied!

Citizens should not have to protest for their rights especially as the health and safety of their families are being compromised says MP Tancoo. The Government seems to have abdicated their responsibilities towards the citizens, and is only concerned about enjoying the rewards of office rather than their duties. This is totally unacceptable and will be not tolerated says MP Tancoo.