THURSDAY 20TH MAY 2021: POST-CABINET MEDIA BRIEFING
I’m joined today by the Minister of Education, The Minister of Agricultural Land and Fisheries and the Minister of Foreign Affairs. They will each speak on some topics that we would like to bring to the attention the public and afterwards we will take questions. so let me move right away to the Minister of Education. Thank you very much. members of the media viewing and listening audience. wishes to announce a change in the date of the SCA formally scheduled for June 10th 2021. This has become necessary due to the trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing challenges posed by the health regulations at this time. during the stakeholder consultations held on April 22nd 2021, the COVID-19. Seven-day average for Trinidad and Tobago was eighty-nine with new cases at eighty-one due to concerns about the safety of face-to-face interactions with those numbers of positive cases and taking into account. the students who had been working diligently towards having SCA on that date. The decision was taken to leave the examination on June 10th with a clear understanding that physical preparation classes were not likely and desire to. Is the least disruption possible to the students who have already been through a challenging time over the past 14 months. when this decision was announced on April 28th, the numbers had increased from 81 to 223 with a seven-day average of 136 up from eighty-nine as we speak today, there has been an even more rapid increase in the infection rate of the virus with new infection. Reported that over 600 recent daily updates and the current 7 day average as high as 478 the government has put strict and robust measures in place to reduce the COVID-19 numbers and the Ministry of Education along with the rest of the country has been monitoring the COVID-19 numbers daily to gauge how quickly the decrease would be realized and we all acknowledged that the exam could only proceed in an atmosphere of safety for all stakeholders. This remain. The government’s first priority. on August 20th 2020 when the last SC examination was held the number of infections reported was eighty-one with a seven-day average of 52 compare that to a present numbers of 501 and a seven-day average approximate 478 and it is clear that the 3 weeks left to the scheduled June 10th date for SEE we’re likely. Enough to allow for the level of decreased needed to achieve an atmosphere of reasonable safety in which to implement the examination. in the consultations of April 2021, the Trinidad and Tobago Unified Teachers Association. Principal and parent associations along with the national boards, agreed that a reasonable alternative to the June 10th date for SCE was July 1st 6 weeks from today, which. Based on the current regulations should allow the lapse of enough time for the rate of infections and active cases to be reduced to a level deemed reasonably safe for the conduct of the examination. Additionally, in 6 weeks time with the second phase of the vaccination program well underway, the level of vaccinations among the population should be much higher teachers who are and will be in closest or repeated fiscal contact with students have been targeted. As a priority group and the Ministry of Health will accommodate this subset of teachers for priority vaccination. further discussions will be held on this issue, including with tutor. therefore, based on the health considerations as explained and mindful of the mixed views on the matter of the SCA deed and with the number one priority being the safety of our citizens, the government has taken the decision that the SCA should be postponed to Thursday, July 1st, 2021. While the examinations are important and all the preparations are being made for the safe conduct, they are not more important than the health of the population and the latter will not be sacrificed for the sake of the former. the Ministry of Education continues to collaborate closely with the Caribbean Examinations Council, the Ministry of Health and other public sector agencies to ensure the safety and protection of all concerned It should be noted that the CX, C, which examine which administers ASE examination. Was written to on April 23rd 2021 in light of the rapid uptick in COVID-19 positive cases to alert them to a possible date shift and the schedule was also at that time we would to accommodate that possibility The Ministry of Education is there on track with all the preparations and the results of the SCA are expected to be released in the second week of September to facilitate the placement of students in secondary schools by the third week of September. Thank you very much. Thank you very much. Minister of agricultural land and if you wouldn’t mind joining us. Good afternoon. Thank you very much. Thank you very much. mister Mcgregor since the start of COVID but the intensification in March. the appointed a subcommittee to deal with this issues related to business. jobs and food in particular agriculture included and that committee is shared by minister Go it involves Minister Johansen and myself as well as business representatives, including those from the supermarkets and various. Interest and I think that what what the farmers in particular in this country have demonstrated in the last year that they have the capacity even in the most difficult circumstances to feed this country, I think initially there were these reports of food being done to the closure of the restaurants and the food places and so on that that was never proven of price coaching and so on, but once agriculture was declared an essential service in the first set of regulations markets were able. The farmers have been able to plant and to to do what they have to do and we’ve had no issues early on in relation to the supermarkets and so on, but with the support of the Supermarkets Association, the port Authority, the Minister of Books and transport and making sure that good are cleared and we’ve we’ve been able to maintain a very steady supply of the imported produce as we came into 2021, There were some issues that price increases and. Minister of trade and industry and myself we’ve made it clear that we’ve seen the optic, particularly in the relation to imported green at national flowers. They’ve put out a press release today point into some of those increases in prices and shipping costs, but they have been able to maintain their prices so we’ve had to deal with those issues, but perhaps the most important thing the ministry has done with the farmers has been the programmed to distribute packages comprising vegetables, fruit and locally produced. To persons across both both Trinidad and Tobago and we launched the the program last year by September last year, we’re able to do about 2000 families and and the quality has always been high very well received and distributed by members of Parliament and NGOs across the country. Faith-based organizations community organizations on May 3rd 2021 when the Prime Minister spoke at. The press conference he announced that we’re going to resume that initiative and in that first on May 2, what was announced with restrictions for that period of May 23rd and the figure was 25 thousand of packages of families to benefit and right now we are. on of course at about to start the distribution and the first was done on Friday, May 7th and today we’ve done about 13 thousand. Those packages we have of course in the first month to do 25 thousand. 25 thousand on May 25010, the Minister of Finance announced announced an expansion of the program. So we’re on May 3rd. We estimated that we are going to distribute it to 600 per member of Parliament we with the announcement on May 10th, We’ve been able to double that and spread it over 12 weeks at a rate of 100 per week per member of Parliament and we think. So far, it’s going well, it’s been well received We are on target and I want to thank the farmers of the country for being able to sustain us through this program and the staff at nada work around the clock to make sure that we get it out and we maintain the quality of the produce. Thank you very much. Thank you very much Minister I’d want to ask MP for the central I want to take an opportunity to tell you thank you. if my constituency office, we were distributing yesterday, so thank you very much. Thank you very much Minister of communication. The acquisition of COVID-19 vaccines that are approved by the World Health Organization remains a top priority of the government of Trinidad and Tobago for the benefit of all the people of our country. I am pleased to announce an additional development with respect to vaccine acquisition today. we have benefited from a generous donation of Astra Seneca vaccine by the government and people of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. A flight an air flight using a CW six B aircraft departed Trinidad and Tobago this morning arrived in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines was efficiently loaded with these Astra vaccines and has just landed at airport with vaccines to be immediately received and properly managed by our health authorities. This was the result of significant diplomatic work and communication at the highest levels between our respective heads of government Prime Minister The honorable Keith Rowley with Prime Minister of Gonzales, the Ministry of Foreign and Affairs has also been significantly involved and I have been working very closely with my counterpart in in Saint and the Grenadines the honorable. Peter’s these vaccines. will expire at the end of June and the Ministry of Health has indicated that they would have sufficient time to ensure that they are fully and properly utilized for the benefit of the people of Trinidad and Tobago. so they are currently within our country. We also had some further good news last night again. The prime minister has been centrally involved in these discussions. and I’m pleased to report that Bermuda has also indicated that they are donating eight. 8000 It could be a little bit more, but we’ve confirmed 8000 Astra vaccines from Bermuda The details of the conveyance of those vaccines to Trinidad and Tobago are being final. As we speak we anticipate they will be within our jurisdiction very early next week. So this is an addition to the diplomatic work that resulted in the provision of 100. 100 thousand Cfm WHO approved vaccines, which arrived on Wednesday morning yesterday morning. We have an additional sixteen. 16 thousand as that arrived this afternoon. We have 8000 further estrogen that will arrive early next week that has been confirmed and preceding all of this, you would recall was 48 thousand Astros donated by the Government of India again These are some of the rewards for ongoing diplomatic work and by now it is in the public record that we are working aid. at all levels. In pursuit of positive details associated with the announcements coming out of the White House and the Biden administration in the United States of America. What I can say at this stage is that the feedback and signals that we have been receiving have been extremely positive for as a whole and for Trinidad and Tobago in particular as further details. Come to hand, we will be certain to share them as appropriate with the people of Trinidad and Tobago. Thank you. Danke very much. Alles wollen wir loben. denn die Kontext auf die du nicht thank Significant degree during the crisis in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and we also quite generous to Barbados as well because they will also affected so in terms of the the most recent exchanges, there’s been a significant volume of resources transferred. from Trinidad and Tobago to Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and that’s certainly has engender some. Additional warmth and gratitude in addition the car and the the Government of Vincent and the Grenadines have been mindful of this serious situation with respect to the the pandemic here in Trinidad and Tobago they have been confronted by some challenges. I don’t want to go into all of the details. there’s some significant. vaccine hesitancy, particularly in some. Smaller islands in the region. and there’s a sense of responsibility that while they work on confronting vaccine hesitancy, no I wants to end up with. vaccines that would have to be discarded and therefore some of these elements came together. all anchored by the strong and consistent advocacy at the international. That’s from Saint Vincent. that’s that’s 8000 from Bermuda. These are not necessary vaccines that they need at this time. No where they aren’t and we we the discussion went into to explore those details and we certainly are not depriving anyone of vaccines they offer was made by Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and graciously. Accepted by the government of Trinidad and Tobago Okay. Minister Dolly I’m looking at this CC timetable here and the so he’s talking about SCA but looking at CFC, we have some very languages. We have the oral happening on June the first, which is a calculated about 11 days from now. maybe some new. And the mid mid month, I mean you’ll know this better than me actually mid month the rest of the music and so on these oral Portuguese French Spanish. any consideration to postponing them at all. just to note that as of. Monday, CFC would have written Monday or Tuesday they would have written. expressing their views on possible postponement and some other recommendations that have been forwarded. Notably from the Caribbean Union of Teachers and the recommendations also coming out of the different member states of Kari. so we have responded to us on these matters and we would have sent forward a position based on our circumstances at this time we would be in support of a postponement. not more than 3 weeks There are some issues surrounding the students, for example in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines that need a closer look and so. Of the member states have been asked to buy today. submit their views based on the recommendations of CFC and Trinidad Tobago would have done so today. another thing to mention with respect to oral is what has come out of the curriculum division and discussion with the local registrar and so on is the possibility of using the virtual technology and having the teacher and the student separate and interacting. On your technology so that the oral can continue if you’re not necessarily involve them being in the same space so as to maximize the health of both the teachers and the students so those discussions are also ongoing and so we look now to the response of CC as they collect the responses of the region on the recommendations that they have advanced based on the recommendations of course. That would have been involved the ministers of education and so that discussion is actively ongoing. However, we have indicated that we would not be against postponement of maybe 3 weeks because to go beyond that will lead us into other difficulties in terms of the timing of the exams, the results that the students will get and it catapults into a different level of difficulty with them getting into different universities. and so on, I’m just pressing on the 3 weeks the 3 weeks is specifically referring to the June 1st or or does it the entire start of the exam. That you. Okay, because let’s say about the twentieth the twentieth of June is roughly when some of the let’s say the science. with the 3 weeks be applied to all dates or just for the dates we are we are seeing all dates because there are other issues which are arising and which have been advanced that would support a postponement of students a bit more preparation time because the SBA is, of course have also been impacted by the events of different territories having to have. And so on, and so we are also supporting from and Tobago. increased deadline for the SBS and in a 3 week delay in the start of all examinations one question Kimberly, This is a continues my passion is to doctor Dolly just going back to the priority consideration for the school personnel. We have the 1000 of fantasies that was supposed to be running out tomorrow. We’re also getting donations from Bermuda and Saint Vincent. Can you just give us? Updates on how soon you think this school personnel will be vaccinated, but I can’t give you an update as to the schedule, but I can’t let you know that we have provided all of the information to the Ministry of Health and they have contacted us as of today indicating that they want to have that priority Subset given to them by next week and so we will be having that discussion to ensure that we follow those particular names of that subset to them by next week. To the education minister could you also give a sense of? mister Brown. You know that the and the embassy in Washington was supposed to have a meeting with the US and and mister Gilman, the meeting was supposed to take place yesterday. Could you give us an update did come up and is there anything you can share with us from that? Yes. Thank you for your question. the ambassador of Trinidad and Tobago to the United States of America is excellent. Anthony Phillips Spencer did meet yesterday afternoon with Miss Gail Smith, who’s the State Department’s coordinator of the global COVID response. What I’m able to tell you at this point is that the discussions were very positive. again they were conducted in furtherance of significant advocacy that is ongoing. that involves. Multiple levels of engagement. that has deployed of mission staff fully in pursuit that has involved engagement with the United States Embassy here in Port of Spain. virtually daily pursuit engagement. Follow up Communication Exchange of information with the embassy here it. Involves the prime minister remaining engaged with his contacts at the White House, most particularly we’ve been following up with doctor Beth Cameron, who’s a special assistant to President Biden and senior director for global Health security and bio defense It also involves engagement with Benny Thomson who is a senior US congressman representing the state of Mississippi who is also. Of the household and security committee and who is recognized he’s met with the prime minister before they, they know each other who’s recognized as. what I can say as an advocate for the Caribbean, someone who cares about our region we’ve been leaning on him consistently as well. add to that the advocacy with Maxine Waters multiple meetings continued engagement with her again. She’s a very senior US congresswoman representing. State of California and also critically the chair of the House financial Services Committee. so all of that to say that our ambassador met with. Mister Smith. the meeting was very positive. We are looking not just to receive the details of the vaccine initiative, but through the the levels that I have described to help make recommendations and to lean. Into the planning to help shape what we may be likely to receive, I’m not able to to share through the details, but it is my anticipation that in the coming weeks we should have great news for the people of this region and the people of this country. That’s our anticipation and hope based on the feedback we’ve been receiving. Thanks. Yes to the education minister in terms of the vaccination of teachers. Of holistic government that especially in the context of the exam. Administration certainly is something that is very critical and important and so we will come up on a position and as I express, we will discuss that position with tutor as well and get their perspective and we will make a recommendation of health early next week. is the government’s desire that teachers who are doing the exam conducting the exam have to be vaccinated It is not the government’s desire, but it really is a desire of the country because we want to ensure that it’s safety of our students are paramount so. Not only the teachers who are doing the SCA, but they’re also in terms of CSC and Cape the moderators for the different S vs and so on, so there are quite a few. categories of persons that we have to look at the various principles and principles who will be out all day. There’s also the staff in the school that would be assisting with preparations so we have to look around different categories of persons and make some incisions around that. What’s the question about deer’s requests for? I’m wondering if if if it’s like SCA and CXC level and you want to get like a feedback as to if people are taking off the off. Yeah and. yeah. yeah what sort of response? with regard to CFC for class? The number we have at this time based on the information from the local registrar would be 402 candidates broken up into 201 from public secondary schools. Private candidates 182 and from private schools 26 candidates, giving us a total of 402 candidates up to this time seeking deferral to 2022 CXE examinations and with respect to the SC we have. Of the 19008. 19829 students who registered to write the ICA 100. 178 requests for deferral coming from eighty to eight schools private schools. It would be the practicality also. in about two questions. Let me break this up into two sections. There will be a space. because a lot of schools will tell you that they are really packed and they really try and people are begging for a place and and you know it’s very soft hearted principles have always try to squeeze in one or more so there may be a space consideration. That’s a first thing and the second is where does the decision lie to ground the deferment? There’s a decision like. In the ministry or do you delegate that to each principle to say well we could fit in Tom and and so when this matter of SCA deferral us and our DC after a matter of CDs was raised, it really came out of the meeting with the stakeholders and they expressed that the repeats at Standard five would be a normal part of the education landscape There would have been some students who they feel based on the circumstances would need to. Pete and would not need to go through the whole SCA examination to be able to do so because that’s the usual thing you do the exam and based on the results you repeat and so the discussion really centered around principles being able to make that recommendation based on the request of the parents. so it comes the parents have to request it and the principals have to recommend it and certainly with all of the considerations of space and logistics included. So that was the se. and it was always recognized that they would not be a combination of large numbers, but it really was put in place to deal with the most vulnerable students who needed that. with respect to CC the students do have a right to defer because that is advanced to them from CC. so at that level, the principal does not make a determination about the ability to defer or to write the examination a later date. But the issue would be their ability to accept the student back into the classes as a repeater as we know, there’s no that’s not a new concept in forms five a repeat of form five. That’s not new. However, it really does as as it always does come down to can the school accommodate the logistics the teachers and so on and also it has also to do with the student and you know their performance not just academic in the school so that has always been a part of the landscape so. Students who are seeking to defer their examinations at this time they are not necessarily going to have the ability to repeat it at the school. That is a decision of the difference well as it has always been and the ministry is moving now to deal with the. issuing of tuition in an online format so that some of these students would be able to because of course they would be the adult classes that were offered through the ministry of. Development They also used to be some lessons offered by the Ministry of Education. Those were all physical in our present circumstances, those physical classes have had to stop and so we are seeking out to institute that same level of tuition in an online environment so that students who are deferring and do not have the option of going back to the school environment, or maybe do not want to can take advantage of that. so we are in the planning stage. Of that virtual open school, we call it that the Ministry of Education, which will allow students who have referred to access tuition. What assurances from the a ministry that this will be used in time so that we don’t have a situation of vaccines have been expired. Yes, that’s an important question by nature of my duties I communicate and work very closely with the Minister of Health and the Chief Medical officer. what I can see on the issue of expiration of vaccines is that our health team in Trinidad and Tobago know exactly what they are doing and they’ve. The expiration dates of the various vaccines into their their vaccination roll out. already, including the currently considered donations, the ones that are coming in today and next week we do not anticipate was of a single vial so those issues are being well considered and bear in mind that we now have some. Runs under a belt in this country and in managing I think there’s been some good initial exposure and as more vaccines come in the the health team will be building on the experience and the lessons learned from the initial week. so it’s an important consideration, but that is being folded into the programming and being well considered at this time. I assure you of it conversations with the United States government. In a sense of the exploration of the vaccines that they plan on it to other nations, including ours to prevent it from no we we we don’t have those details as yet as we’ve continually indicated. some of the the technical specifics have yet to be finalized. and shared with the the global community and the potential beneficiary. So but again, the United States has made it very clear the White House has made it clear that what they’re seeking to do is to really establish themselves as the global leader in changing the paradigm with respect to constrained vaccine access for developing countries I am certain as part of those calculations they would ensure that the sufficient time after donations are made sufficient time would be. Would be formulated to ensure that the vaccines can be utilized again. We’re in constant communication with the decision makers with the technical people and I’m there’s AA very positive sense that what will be disseminated will be very useful to the global community and small Island states like ourselves. one more question for the education minister. Dolly’s. Percent of the population who are saying that you know my children have been preparing for the exam for June 10th and they’re wondering you know why they just can’t it over with or why they can’t do the exam is there anything you can tell these parents to kind of get them on board and support the extension of the CD. We would have waited until. now to announce any change because the government did not want to disappoint his students who have been diligently working the time. so when we discussed it in April, even though the numbers were higher than they were in February, when we did the first phase one reopening of schools and even in the face of not being able to open the primary schools on April 12th as we had hoped we still stuck with. Really hoping that the measures put in place to dampen the numbers would be effective, but up until last night, I think we saw how many persons arrested for breaking the curfew. so what has really happened is that even though the government has tried to put progressive measures in place to reduce the numbers even though we have been speaking about giving our children a chance to do this, it just has not happened and at this time looking at the numbers. We are now it be irresponsible of this government. to allow our children to come out in the atmosphere where they may not be safe and so we held for as long as we could trying to see if these numbers would come down, but we have seen what it is this week and we still see people doing things that would you know work against these numbers coming down and so it is with great regret. that we have. To push it back that was not the intention we didn’t want it to be like that But this is where we are. This is the highest that we have been dealt and we have to plead them that way so our number one priority is safety. We understand the disappointment of the students. I have been an SE a parent, three times and I understand what that means for a child preparing and then having to be told that the exam is going to be pushed back. We did wait as long as we could hoping. that the numbers. Decrease in response to the behavior of the population, but it just hasn’t happened that way so at this point, that is where we are and it is you know I know it is disappointing for quite a number of children and we are very sorry that it has come to this, but we look forward to us being able to reduce those numbers through our own self responsibility. reduce those numbers so that, at least these children can look forward to. July 1st As that set date and they can get out there to this examination and get it over with. we are I think the third week in September for placement so we want is going to start at a later date than it usually does we look at those discussions but I can tell you interestingly in 2020, The students came out in October before months and I can tell you that on the basis of the feedback from the principles of secondary schools associations they. That the integration went very well into one, so it is not anticipated that even if the school term begins as it is to begin before the forms one get into the school system with that, very small delay is not anticipated that there’ll be any great problems with integration into the school. There’s more. anyone who can answer that I thank you. given that the. Parliament of Representatives is to be. Design from me this government looking as be consider of such financial So I think you you will recognize that this is all happening in very challenging times economically for us I do believe that the Minister of Finance is going to be having a press conference and I’m sure he will be addressing that directly and I wouldn’t want to preempt his comments on it. Let the Minister of Agriculture off easy today. الصور c’est c’estime on est de tout We’re doing a delivery tomorrow. we’ll get back to 14 thousand 14 thousand by me. first, we’ll get to the 25 thousand now. somebody asked me that on social media. Why don’t we do this and in fact it was suggested that we send a social welfare officer to every constituency with the with the hampers or the packages and I said to them if you can’t trust members of Parliament and if you can’t trust staff. Paid paid by the department, than who we we Will trust so the reliance is on the members of Parliament they submit the names in advance. We ask them to submit it so we can do the packages They submit the names at some stage. The time is too rushed to have the Ministry of social development and family services, verify the names, but we will just for good order, double check when we can, but it is for the members of Parliament to provide that assurance of those persons are the ones who would who are. War im Namen der With more NGOs who represents specific. vulnerabilities and that would bring even more assurance now that I distrust the members of parliament that it is reaching where it should be. Jews in terms of anything that they receive to give assistance and sort of seizure Yeah, they would also supply supply the names we we need the names for for some sort of assurance and for verification, so we ask all them. so so far we’ve been able to work through a few NGOs and we have we have request from. The national Aids coordinating Committee they have NGOs that work with them and they’ve identified 439 families. We have, for example, the Mount Moriah Baptist Church, which operates in you know enterprise they have asked for single mothers association. They’ve made a request they’re based in so they’ve asked and we’ve offered them tomorrow and now, they’ve said They’ll take delivery on Monday, so we have those requests and then we have unfortunate unfortunately. And you have this responsibility individuals every day people assume this so how to get a harmful to get a hamper. so I also get names via social media and I submitted to nada and ask them to to do the verification and but when you have somebody like last night, a lady called Flora from from long reached out to me via social media and she said. our home is 13% and nobody’s working and I said to her have you gone to social welfare and she said No. And have a responsibility to pass on. In fact I listened a little bit a little a little bit of what MPs was saying yesterday and and it it it surprised me because it surprised me that that of all the Mps he would be one out in the public talking about that because I received several messages from and his constituency and and and they were saying we have been told there’s one lady K Williams and is one I remember and in her mess. To me, she said she’s written and I was surprised at that, she said She’s written and she’s been told that they have no packages and I know for a fact we’ve we’ve sent 200 to that constituency and member of Parliament, but as I said. what was being said yesterday at the press conference was that we we have promised 600 it was reduced to 400. that is not so it was doubled to 1200 but you will only get your hampers if you indicate, I have 100 names, I have 100 families to give it to so MP. ist But please let us know when is going to get some ham for distribution to the poor. every time I ride to Saddam Hussein office. they keep saying they have have none. so why are under the constituents receiving and we are suffering so that I had to act on that and I told her that that that was. packages have been given but if we are moving so quickly to give the the people who need them the package. MP and you. have and so has only been able to give 200 names and goes on a press conference and said well, the government is denying me the piano is something is wrong with him he needs to get his head examined and because I will tell you this. because we monitor it and as a minister I monitor the packages the packing process and the records I know who who get and who didn’t get answers on and when I. Heard from Nam. that they were preparing for but not getting the names and had received a request from two NGOs in Samaria and in the third one today the single mothers Association, two NGOs and soar reached out to nam. and they got got packages for distribution that gives me some assurance that while sits it sits wherever and does nothing somebody in. Two NGOs and two long-standing ones in Insta. they got they got packages and and people I carry Williams, who wrote to me may eventually get via an NGO so the two from the. Improvement group and I can’t remember the name of the other. One progress is the name of the other one. they they got and we do that. As you as you prepare your packages for distribution, you’ll find that because of the volume of the produce you may have some extra packages. We’re able to generate more than than we thought, and it is the NGO we reach out to to say well, okay, we estimate that in today’s distribution we have 5050 extra and we can we can give it to you The people who have asked as I say at the national a coordinating committee Single Woman Association, Mount Moriah Baptist Church. With it we would we would deal with it and this continues to into June and July and the minister for answers to the country that if it needs to go beyond that to the end of September, he’s prepared to do that contact with the people here. Well. II am I am MP Hussein has the luxury of going to press conferences and so on I do the people’s work so I would reach. I mean he’s my friend and I will reach out to him. I made a point that we are the only two youth parliamentarians in the current parliament problem is that I moved. On to the adults and he’s not so I will reach out to him and tell him to send send send 400 names and get his pocket get a business going and then IM is at 400 so while Saddam is at 200 is at 400, he will get his packages This morning I spoke to MPD Nana’s and I said to him this is having a very important impact on your constituency and I would like if you get involved by for coming what we are doing these packages that would. Wholesale market. has been available to us. We completed it. We made it the borough corporation is making a lot of noise, saying they want it. We offered them it. They never took it up and we’ve decided to use this to prepare all those all those packages so some economic activities being created in. Some jobs are being created and about 2 weeks ago the cabinet. decided after a long discussion and so on that this. This is going to generate a lot of opportunity for your farmers. I want you to come and see the house and come on city workers. what they’re doing and I also want you to talk to your farmers to explain to them you long term opportunities that have been created and you know. I must say he was very receptive and he promised to to to make the visit and I’m looking forward to doing it doing it with him and this represents. important opportunity and long-term opportunities both for our families in this country the farmers. And also to Will come forward and and we will try to over over the the 3 month period. We’ll try to satisfy as many of them as we could so the processes that they would reach out the restriction of the current restrictions mean that they may not bring a letter to the office. They may not be interviews. A lot of them are doing things via social media and we are accepting that. des des des Er hat kein so sold. Minister Really stand in the gap and work very hard and I’m speaking about across the divide in being the first responders to this situation with the hampers and so on and I can tell you that many MPs are in contact with village councils with NGOs in various areas as well. MPs like myself who have been here last year, we would have a database of persons who would have come in last year. I myself do monthly hampers that has been a standing. Feature of my office as many other MPs as well, so we do have a database of persons that we know from our communities that need assistance and that information rolls in from your different groups in your area as well. And so that is how you are able to build a list that are quite long longer than your are able to supply for persons that do need assistance. so it is not simply about giving who you know, but it is also about collecting information and being that. Repository for building these databases, the public and you know MPs. we do work very hard on this and the staff of the offices we at this time, we are very very impressed in getting the response from person. I can tell you in my own constituency of Saints is we have over fifty requests coming and we have a hotline that persons can WhatsApp send the information and so we are very very active at this time, getting all the inflation from the public and trying as we get to the hampers to give out. As many as possible to those who need not just those that we know so on on behalf of the MP, I can tell you that it is a lot of work to be able to rationalize and organize and respond to ensure that because these hampers are perishable so when they arrive at your office and you have 100 frozen chickens, the 200 frozen chickens you have to put all of those. arrangements in place to handle those out very quickly and we really work hard at doing so. Okay everyone. I want to thank you all for attending. Do I think that was perfect way to end it before we go. I just want to reiterate to the viewing audience that while we are pressing to get vaccines in vaccines or a first line of defense. please continue to follow the health protocols wash your hands. Watch your distance limit your movement as much as possible and please wear your mask. To cover your nose and your mouth, Thank you very much.
Posted 8 days ago in Politics