It is two months since the THA Elections, and Tobago is at a standstill, courtesy Chief Secretary Orville Delano London. Meanwhile, he has turned his back on the most vulnerable within our society, the CEPEP, URP and Development workers, who voted solidly to ensure that he remains Chief Secretary. The result of the elections was 12 nil, which means that he is free to deliver on all his promises to these workers. However, once they reelected him, he has declared war on these very workers.
Right before the elections, these workers were told that their jobs were secured, and if they voted for the TOP, the TOP would send them home. What they did not tell these workers was that the PNM would have no use for them after the elections. Today they are all feeling the pain. They are receiving notices of separation left, right and center. In addition, hundreds have not been paid for as much as four fortnights, and are threatened with instant dismissal should they publicize the situation. This situation is driving some of these workers, many of whom are single mothers, to actually become temporary prostitutes in order to feed their children and also send them to school, while Emperor London fiddles. Today, this Organization would like to let all these workers know; single mothers in particular, that the Tobago Organization of the People is standing in their defense and would ensure that their most important heritage; their vulnerable offspring are well protected, by ensuring that the Orville London led THA pay them all that is due to them; their front pay as well as back pay which will enable them to put food on their tables and send their children to the best schools, just as Orville Delano London would want for his children. In addition, we will work to ensure that their election promise of continued employment after election is kept.
What we find to be very interesting and vexatious, is that whilst this level of pain is being inflicted upon the poor, the Chief Secretary has moved with great dispatch to fix cousin Anslem.
If it is so necessary to pay cousin Anslem $60,000.00 per month for him to work along the current finance Secretary, then it simply means that one of the two, or both, are collecting money under false pretense.
As if this is not enough, he also moved with dispatch to bully the Prime Minister to Amend the THA Act to allow his two partners to become Independent Councillors. When that fell through, moving true to form, a suspicious, unholy, unchristian, unjust, unconscionable, and unclean arrangement is being made with the MDD, where close to $25 Million of public funds would be paid to an affiliate of this political entity that is parading as an NGO whose pseudo name or alias is “Center for Development and Democracy”. What is very interesting is that the half of a dozen principals in this Center, are the same as in the MDD. The TOP says that this is scandalous. The reasonable questions to ask are;
Is this close to $25 Million, pay back to the MDD for their open support in the just concluded THA Elections?
How can the Orville London led THA agree to give close to $25 Million of public funds to a political entity or its affiliate?
The TOP has absolutely no problem if the MDD has to be paid $25 Million or even $100 Million for its pound of flesh, because in our view the MDD worked very hard to ensure a PNM victory, so if they have to be paid then so be it. All the TOP is saying is, it must not be with Public Funds. Especially at a time when CEPEP, URP and development workers are not being paid, and the back pay to workers at the Quarry and other areas has been outstanding for so long. We wish to put the Chief Secretary on notice, just as we did with Milshirv, to bring the project to a halt, and which is now before the Courts. This document will be sent to the Attorney General for further action. Enough is enough.