Kamla Persad-Bissessar

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar said the Government has no clear plan on how to handle the COVID-19 situation in this country.

She was responding to the latest announcements by Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, to maintain the status quo for another four weeks to October 11.

“The definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over and expecting a different result each time. As the number of COVID-19 cases explodes with rising deaths, the Rowley regime is simply repeating the same tired propaganda lines over and over,” Persad-Bissessar said in a statement yesterday.

She said it is “depressingly clear” to all citizens that the Government has no clear and focused plan to adequately deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.

She added: “As the Prime Minister addressed the nation today, he said, “We could take some comfort that our situation has not worsened.” This, in spite of the fact that in the last month, we’ve seen an increase from 153 cases and 8 deaths to 2,076 cases and 50 deaths. Rowley has once again offered no new plans to curb the rising rate of infection.”

Persad-Bissessar questioned why at the end of the 28-day cycle of lockdown measures, the prime minister would announce yet another 28-day cycle of the same measures “that have already presided over exponential growth in COVID-19 cases.”

She said the Government continues to blame everyone else but “their failed response to this pandemic.”

She added: “The Opposition is pleased that the Government accepted our suggestion to purchase over 100,000 rapid testing kits, however, when asked today on their availability for use, Minister Deyalsingh said he had to wait “for the manufacturer.”

“Citizens continue to complain about the lengthy time taken to receive their test results which again limits our capacity to obtain true data and control the virus spread.”

On behalf of her party, she resubmitted suggestions for immediate steps that the party believes should be taken to slow the spread of the virus.

They include the establishment of a COVID-19 Intelligence Unit where all National Security and Health agencies will communicate and execute strategic plans and operations in unison and in real-time, and the deployment of teams of Health Officers to ensure COVID-19 regulations’ compliance by businesses and the public.

“Additionally, increase stocks of PPE for our frontline workers, and increase the number of beds available for patients suffering from more serious symptoms,” she said.

She urged citizens to follow the public health guidelines and take the necessary measures to protect themselves and their families.