Member of Parliament for St Lucy Denis Kellman has hit back at his critics who took him to task for opening his business during a national shutdown on Wednesday, resulting from the passage of Tropical Storm Matthew.
Kellman’s St Elmo’s Moon Town was among a few businesses which defied the order issued by the Department of Emergency Management for everyone to remain indoors until the all-clear was given.
Attorney General and Minister of Home Affairs Adriel Brathwaite branded their actions “irresponsible”. However, Kellman, who is Minister of Housing, said at the time that his Cabinet colleague’s criticism did not pertain to him as he was simply “accommodating some people like any normal country shop would”.
And in a Facebook post last evening, Kellman charged that those criticizing his actions were “jealous” that his “mall” was able to serve customers on the day.
“Moontown’s Hardware would like to thank all its critics who wanted services and could not get them, but were jealous because our mall was opened to serve Lucy’s children and her friends. We were there for you during [Tropical storm] Tomas [in 2010] and you praised us; during the flooding in Holetown you were happy that we were opened. I am sorry that we sold nails etc for you.
“The next time if the staff are there for you I hope I do not hear how I am rich now and do not like poor people. When you hear the experienced people say they went hungry because we let them down, do not blame me,” he said.
The Government MP posted the statements on the heels of a Cabinet meeting to discuss concerns over the businesses opening during a storm.
In a separate post, the Minister of Housing and Lands also thanked “those who came out to give moral support to the staff who came out while the owners were sleeping and to ensure the senior citizens in need were looked after”.
Other business places that were criticized for opening during the storm included Carlton & A1 Supermarkets and Lemongrass Noodle Bar & Grill.
Sealy noted that the Attorney General was examining the matter with a view to possibly making it mandatory to comply with orders to shut down.