Sunday 29 November, 2020

Kamla: Cabinet stacked with more recycled, failed members

Pictured: Opposition Leader, Kamla Persad-Bissessar

Pictured: Opposition Leader, Kamla Persad-Bissessar

"Same ole, same ole."

That is how Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar has described the new 22-member Cabinet, which was sworn-in on Wednesday.

There are also eight supporting Ministers in various Ministries who may or may not attend Cabinet as required.

In a statement on Thursday, she said Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley failed to offer new hope to citizens as he "repackaged and repurposed his old team of incompetent Ministers and, added some re-cycled ones, with the task to clean up their own mistakes of the past five years."

The Opposition Leader described the reappointment of Stuart Young as Minister of National Security as "one of the biggest slap in the faces of the people of Trinidad and Tobago."

She claimed he did nothing to control the skyrocketing crime rate.

The Opposition Leader also criticised the appointment of "an elderly" Fitzgerald Hinds as Minister of Youth Development.

She said it was also reckless of the Office of the Prime Minister to suggest that some of the Ministers appointed are "supporting Ministers" who may or may not attend Cabinet meetings.

Persad-Bissessar said: "There is simply no provision in the Constitution or convention which allows for the appointment of ministers who are not members of the Cabinet or which allows some ministers to attend Cabinet ‘as required’ as was stated by Keith Rowley. To conduct a cabinet like this, as was suggested by the Office of the Prime Minister is illegal, irrational, unlawful and contrary to our Republican Constitution."

She added that the Opposition UNC will not sit idly by and allow the Government to conduct the business of the people unchecked.

This as, she said there will be "no honeymoon period for this incarnation of the Rowley regime."

The Government, she said, must get down to doing the work of the people immediately.

She said: "We will relentlessly hold the Government accountable to the people of Trinidad and Tobago. In the short, to medium term, we hope that this “new” band of ministers can move swiftly to adequately address the basic issues plaguing the population such as unemployment, crime, infrastructural decay, and the decline of the energy sector. In the past five years, we saw negligible improvement in these sectors, and we can only hope that some work will be done for the benefit of all Trinibagonians in the coming months."

Nonetheless, she wished the Government well in the best interest of the people. 

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