MP calls for equal distribution of State’s financial resources
February 6, 2015
MP calls for equal distribution of State’s financial resources

Vice-President of the New Democratic Party (NDP) and MP for Central Kingstown St Claire Leacock says there should be more equal distribution of the State’s financial resources.

During his contribution to the 2015 Budget debate on Tuesday, Leacock said this year, under the community development division, $661,600 is allotted for community development in St Vincent and the Grenadines.{{more}}

“Now remember, constituencies, Mr Speaker, are made up of several communities and you have $661,600 to do that and you have a staff of nine in that ministry to do that work for you,” Leacock said.

He said on the other hand, in the capital estimates of the Office of the Prime Minister, provision made for special development projects amounts to $700,000.

“This is for small development projects throughout the country. Now, you tell me, community development division has $660,000 for the whole country for 15 constituencies, but the Prime Minister, he has $700,000 for projects across the country, he alone,” the Member of Parliament stressed.

In the 2015 Estimates, an allocation of $416,000 has been made for refurbishment of the Prime Minister’s official residence, while special works and projects amount to $300,000 for miscellaneous, capital grants and works. Support and education and training programmes total $1.7 million.

“Now you [are] telling me that all of those monies couldn’t go the constituency development fund, so that representatives could do a little bit more in their constituencies. Why not, Mr Speaker?”

Leacock said, on close examination of the Capital Estimates, Dr Gonsalves is “virtually a government within a government.”