As Member of Parliament for Point a Pierre & Deputy Political Leader of the United National Congress, I would like to congratulate all our citizens who have given yeoman service in the past days by helping those affected by floods. However one person who has played a pivotal role, setting the standard for effective relief and the level of true human compassion which should be offered to our fellow citizens in their time of need has been the Leader of the Opposition, the Honorable Kamla Persad Bissessar. The UNC Leader on her own accord, without requesting any assistance or support from her party ventured into the areas which were severely affected on Saturday, not to observe but to deliver warm meals , key relief supplies and even offer the human element of kindness that those affected required. She operated like the “people’s ODPM” as she has always done in these times of turmoil.
This selfless and proactive approach demonstrated by the Leader of the Opposition sparked a chain reaction of dedicated action throughout team UNC as without any command or mandate all UNC Members of Parliament, Senators, councillors, executive members and hundreds of supporters began mobilizing relief efforts in all forms and fashion to work towards alleviating the dire circumstances faced by tens of thousands. Many citizens and key figures within our society took pattern after the inspiring efforts of the Leader of the Opposition. As a matter of fact, it was heartwarming to see the significant flow of support and aid which followed from NGOs and the business community. Never in the modern history of Trinidad and Tobago has “Corporate TT” reacted so quickly and to this extent, but they must be commended for standing up with our nation when our people needed them the most.
This wasn’t about Politics but rather it was about leadership and an individual in high public office taking the time to set an example to show that no one is too important to be involved or be on the ground in the floods with those suffering and more critically, to demonstrate that at times like these all citizens must have hands on deck and give of their time and resources to rebuild the lives of those who had their safe spaces, prized possessions as well as peace of mind destroyed in a few hours. The actions of the leader of the Opposition truly set the tone for others to get involved from both the civil and business sector.
Given the magnitude of the damage and destruction caused it is clear that relief efforts will take some time as well as commitment to be successfully completed.
This is a time in our nation’s history which requires more public officials and leaders to stand as Mrs. Persad Bissessar has done to inspire more hope and assistance for those who need it.
Our nation must applaud all those who have or are assisting at this point as they are true patriots.