PM says he is ideal person to take lead
August 24, 2007

PM says he is ideal person to take lead

This country’s Prime Minister has lashed out at persons who suggest that he should not be so intimately involved in disaster preparedness.{{more}}

Speaking at a press briefing last Monday, August 20, Dr Ralph Gonsalves said that what transpired after the passage of Hurricane Dean was further proof of the need for him to take the lead in such matters.

He was referring to the five one bedroom, low income houses that were given to displaced families at Colonarie and Sandy Bay, whose seashore houses were destroyed by powerful sea surges.

Three families from Colonarie were given houses at the Colonarie low-income house project, while two families at Sandy Bay were given houses at Langley Park.

“When you go into a disaster area like we entered at Colonarie, there is no person other than the Prime Minister who could send for keys from Housing and Land Development Corporation and assign three houses to people who are in dire straits,” Dr Gonsalves, who

is the Chairman of the National Emergency Council, said.

He noted that he had taken a decision to keep back houses at these areas with such a disaster in mind, knowing that the problem would have arisen.

Stating that disaster preparedness was hitherto downplayed, Dr Gonsalves stated that placing it under the Prime Minister’s portfolio was something that the World Bank also requested.

“When you want to do certain things authoritatively, you need the Prime Minister, you need the head of government,” he said, as he referred to those who question his involvement as persons with no knowledge on matters of leadership. (KJ)