As the news broke on Friday afternoon that the independent consultants hired by Petrotrin to investigate the allegations of “Fake oil” confirmed that these claims were true and Trinidad and Tobago had indeed been defrauded of hundreds of millions, many thought to themselves ; “If Kamla had not buss the mark,would this have occurred?”
Our nation must remember it was the Oppostion Leader while speaking at her party’s Congress in July revealed to Trinidad and Tobago for the very first time that an internal Petrotrin Audit had listed discrepancies with oil production or rather the fact that the state company was paying for oil that it had not received. At that UNC Congress she listed that A & V contractors had possibly overstated over 350,000 barrels of oil while being paid over 80 million TTD for the ghost oil. A figure which was subsequently confirmed by Kroll consultants ; the independent foreign firm hired to investigate these allegations.
So the big question is , “Had the Opposition leader not brought this to light, would our nation ever know ?” . Trinidad and Tobago must accept that this Government is the most transparent administration of being corrupt. Never have we seen blatant corruption as this. Had this not been highlighted by the Opposition there is not doubt that the Keith Rowley led administration would have done all in their power as they actually did to have this fiasco covered up.
Therefore Trinidad and Tobago must thank Kamla Persad Bissessar for highlighting this issue.
This isn’t a simple act of corruption but rather represents a true form of PNM wickedness. In a time when they are firing hundreds of workers, working towards starving our nation’s children by not paying school feeding contractors and neglecting our hospitals while telling us we must “share the burden” their friends are running wild with our tax dollars.
This is money which could have been spent to keep Gate & UTT running . This is money which could have been invested to open the Children’s hospital. However thanks to the Leader of the Opposition we are aware of this great atrocity but we must be even more assured that Kamla Persad Bissessar will lead the charge to ensure justice is delivered on behalf of our citizens.
It is acts like these that demonstrates the real grit of Kamla Persad Bissessar and testimony to why she will be returned not only as UNC leader but Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago.
In the past two years the Leader of the Opposition has not relented for a single moment on keeping the Government accountable. One remembers how she battled tooth and nail against the draconian measures of FATCA, ensuring proper legislation was enacted.
Therefore it is laughable when individuals like Vasant Bharat who cannot win a curry corn competition against himself look to brand the UNC as ” they cannot win”.
Trinidad and Tobago’s citizens are suffering, but in Kamla Persad Bissessar there is vision and courage . The same vision and courage that took us to victory in 2010.
Few Carribean leaders have shown the tenacity as Kamla has shown. There is no doubt our nation needs her. The question is how long will Rowley avoid the inevitable?
Former Commonwealth Youth Ambassador
Former UN Habitat Youth Ambassador