Fri | Nov 16, 2018

Simpson Miller disingenuous about disaster plan

Published:Thursday | October 6, 2016 | 12:00 AM


The Opposition Leader Portia Simpson Miller was asked by a reporter in an interview on TVJ's midday news aired on October 3 about whether she was satisfied with the plans that the Government put in place in light of the threat of Hurricane Matthew. Her response was that she did not know what they have done or what they were doing.

Simpson Miller had told journalists in the past that she does not watch the news to know what is going on in the country that she led up to February 25, and which she hopes to lead again. Therefore, I assume that her team members would apprise her of the economic and social issues that are affecting us all.

Similarly, I expect that somehow she would have been made aware of the plans that were implemented, and being considered, to mitigate against the devastation that Hurricane Matthew would have caused if we got a partial or direct hit.

Thus, it was incredibly disingenuous of her to suggest that she was not cognisant of the well-publicised plans that Prime Minister Andrew Holness and his officials put in place.

In demonstrating commitment to the safety and well-being of all citizens and, particularly, the most vulnerable, shelters across the country were activated and water and other necessaries provided, as best as possible, from days before the system was expected to unleash its wrath upon us.

Although there were weaknesses in the disaster plan, in particular infrastructural deficiencies, including inadequate drain cleaning which requires major work to prevent flooding before the threat of another disaster, Holness and his team toured the island to determine what communities were in need and allocated resources accordingly.

I commend the hard-working government officials, the Church and volunteers, and private-sector interests who worked tirelessly to ensure the safety of others during this ordeal.

The opposition leader must set aside her own political expediencies and stop demonstrating flagrant ignorance of the serious issues. Instead of trying to undermine the work of the Government, she should work with them for the betterment of our country.