Opposition Member of Parliament for St George North Gline Clarke has called for mechanisms to be put in place within the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to ensure effective distribution of disaster relief. And he wants Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, the CARICOM Chairman, to lead the charge.
Clarke gave his support to Government’s plans to donate over $2 million in financial aid to Dominica, which was ravaged by Tropical Storm Erika in August. However, he questioned how the funds would be disbursed.
“Will it be distributed in one tranche? Will it be sent directly to the people of Dominica through Foreign Service, or would it just be given? We need to know this because one of the things we have learnt overtime is that many times people who really need the help do not get the help and I am aware that there are several communities in Dominica, in the rural areas that [are] really in need of help,” Clark told the House during today’s supplementary debate.
He said he had information that residents in areas that were among the worst affected by the storm had yet to receive any of the international aid which was delivered to the country.
“I believe a mechanism must be set up not only in Dominica’s case but throughout CARICOM [but] in Barbados as well. We need to provide a system of fairness, equity as you call it and to help those persons who are in need of this help,” he said. (FW)