Editorial

Transparency for Maxie Bills

Transparency for Maxie Bills

The pavement talk during last week’s Parliamentary sitting has captivated the nation. Trinis like bacchanal and that was an incident fitting of the definition. And in true Trini fashion, the confusion allowed a very important issue to go unnoticed and unaccounted for. For those not up to date, this is what transpired. During the Prime Minister’s Question and Answer segment in the Lower House sitting, Oropouche East MP Dr Roodal Moonilal asked “Could the Prime Minister indicate the whether it’s the intention of the party he leads to help Maxie Cuffie rather than the taxpayers?” However, instead of “party he leads” it appears the Prime Minister heard “party elites”, to which he told Dr Moonilal to meet him outside on the pavement. It became the focus of headlines and spawned memes from both sides of the political divide. But, the question itself, which is a very valid one, was left unanswered, and it remains so until this day. Dr Moonilal was asking whether or not the PNM would take the lead in helping cover Mr Cuffie’s latest medical expenses. Would they? This country has already spent 2.5 million dollars on his medical bills, how much more does the Government intend to spend? The Prime Minister has insisted that when they agreed to help, that there would be a limit. But what is that limit? That too is a question that remains unanswered. Valid questions like these have no answers, and thus continues the lack of transparency in the spending of millions of our tax dollars. Would the Prime Minister even answer these questions in the near future? He hasn’t before, and some would argue that the Parliamentary Question and Answer segment is the best opportunity to get those answers. But, instead of depending on the Opposition to ask these questions, why don’t we? As taxpayers, we have a right to know how this country’s money is being managed. Maybe, with enough public uproar, the Prime Minister will come forward with definite answers. Citizens also need to start realizing our role in holding politicians accountable. Don’t be distracted by the bacchanal. Don’t allow issues to simply fall by the wayside. Start demanding better from those in charge!

Web Master

March 14th, 2018

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