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Suruj calls on PM Rowley to do more to alleviate poverty

Member of Parliament for Tabaquite Surujrattan Rambachan is calling on PM Dr Keith Rowley to do more to move more people away from the poverty line despite recent findings about the standard of living in Trinidad compared to other countries.

According to results released by the World Economic Outlook “This coun­try has ranked 49th—high­er than 142 oth­er well-known coun­tries glob­al­ly—in terms of stan­dard of liv­ing. That is, in terms of Gross Do­mes­tic Prod­uct (GDP) based on pur­chas­ing-pow­er-par­i­ty (PPP) per capi­ta. This is in­di­cat­ed in a Glob­al Fi­nance ar­ti­cle from the In­ter­na­tion­al Mon­e­tary Fund (World Eco­nom­ic Out­look) on the World’s Rich­est Coun­tries 2019.”

Dr Rambachan said that there is a vast difference between the statistics presented and the reality of how people are living and surviving. Reality checks of poverty stricken communities and families tell a tale of struggle and pain. As a politician Dr Rambachan said that it distresses him when he is is unable to do more to alleviate suffering. This Christmas was especially trying as so many came to his office with tears in their eyes. People have to reach a real low he said to be a virtual beggar at the office of a Member of Parliament. They strip Themselves of a Their personal dignity and self respect to Be a beggar. We are not to Judge them. Yes there will Be some tricksters among them but people are truly suffering.

The government must change its approach to how it deals with poverty. The culture Of self sustainability must replace the culture of state dependency. We must rethink how we are going to deal with Poverty. Look at he example of China in particular he declares.

He recalled an incident where just before Xmas he sent a mother to the Social Welfare Division whose daughter has been recently diagnosed with a hole In the heart. The mother told him that she was told to come back in the new year and that it will take some time. What can a MP do in such a situation.

Dr Rambachan feels that there is too much of a burden on voluntary groups to alleviate suffering. He feels that these groups must be integrated into a national program and given support by the government. Passing legislation to Decriminalize marijuana doesn’t not help to alleviate poverty. It might be a good political move to win votes but the poverty and social problems remain. This decriminalizing of marijuana is not about compassion and empowerment.

Let’s not be fooled. The social fabric continues to fall apart. There is need for a National Consultation and home by home visit to identify and deal with poverty. The social
Services are ill equipped at this time, he said the worst enemy of a society is poverty declared Dr Rambachan

Surujrattan Rambachan MP

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