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 Braving Floodwaters, Dodging Bullets in Potholes

Floodwaters in Bamboo No. 2 earlier this week

Braving Floodwaters, Dodging Bullets in Potholes

 

‘So the rain came, as it does every year, but this time it fell for days and our neglected roads, rivers, and drains had no chance in hell’

 

By Alicia Chamely

MOTHER Nature dumped a bomb on us and we weren’t prepared.

I mean did anyone expect us to be. A couple of weeks ago, before the heartbreaking flooding that has caused millions upon millions in damage, our prime minister admitted road and other infrastructural work hadn’t really been a priority over the couple of years.

His reasoning? We were in Covid-19, and our government was trying to keep us alive!

Here’s the thing, a government cannot function on a “one thing at a time” system. Sorry, bud doesn’t work that way. I understand things were crazy during the pandemic, but it also gave you an opportunity to assess what needed to be done, move funds around and get those things done as soon as life normalised.

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And life did normalise… well as normal as life in T&T can be.

So the rain came, as it does every year, but this time it fell for days and our neglected roads, rivers, and drains had no chance in hell. The residents of Bamboo were particularly hard hit, as we speak there are still homes and businesses with a foot or more of water sloshing around inside.

Had small works been carried out over a period time, some of the flooding could have been avoided. But nah, we like the proverbial crap to hit the fan before we start finger-pointing and taking any action.

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You know what’s getting to me? Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan placing 100% of the blame on some shady moralless scumbag residents who messed with the riverbanks. Now they hold blame, but here is my question; how long ago was the damage done, are you only now finding out about it or had reports been made?

If reports were made, why wasn’t anything done? Where are our regional corporations? Our police? Apparently, you can just go mash up a riverbank and get away with it. Because believe you, me, no one is getting in trouble.

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So now the Government has put out $30 million in relief funds. We all know that was hard to pry out of the finance minister’s icy hands, which of course he will later complain about… we have no money blah blah. But had we spent a few dollars earlier in the year to do proper river inspections, drainage upgrades and repairs, rather than building useless flyovers into Diego Martin, we may not have had the severity of flooding that we did.

Pennywise and pound foolish.

Speaking of foolishness! We were also reminded this week, that along with roadworks, crime fighting hasn’t been a priority for a while.

At the Joint Select Committee of Parliament on National Security on Tuesday, it was revealed that over the last eight months, 19,000 shipping containers entered T&T without being checked by customs officials.


‘Together we shall brave flood waters, dodge bullets and feel our souls leave our bodies every time we hit a pothole’

That’s insane! Insane! Especially as we have been marked internationally as a transhipment point for guns and drugs. How has this been allowed to go on for so long?

Well here comes the excuses…. erm we are short staffed… and uh those scanners that were given to us by the US to detect drugs and guns and stuff, yeah well nobody maintained them, so now they are broken… don’t worry though cause we are in the “process” of buying some more, we only need US$4 million and we promise to use and take care of them.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph, how far we have fallen. Where is our Ministry of National Security? How could they not know this was happening? Did no one bother to check in on the Customs Division over the last few years?

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It’s this kind of ridiculousness that has contributed to our crime rate being out of control. So you cannot blame us for rejoicing at the news that someone grew a set of balls, held the minister of national security accountable and kicked him to the curb.

Oppps fake news! He is still nice and cozy in his office, nodding off while our nation burns. Silly us for thinking that a minister would be held accountable for doing a miserable job!

And so, it appears we continue to exist in a place governed by a roost of headless chickens, and we have been left to fend for ourselves. Together we shall brave floodwaters, dodge bullets and feel our souls leave our bodies every time we hit a pothole. But in all seriousness, someone better get a grip, it’s embarrassing now. It’s time take accountability, stop campaigning and start doing, because we’ve all had enough of the excuses.

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