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Allotting funds to train new Zika workers unnecessary – PNP

Published:Friday | June 10, 2016 | 6:55 PM
A man carries out fogging exercises outside a home in St Catherine.

The Opposition People's National Party (PNP) says the government should use the cadre of workers already trained to fight the spread of the Zika virus instead of allocating more money to train new persons.

On Tuesday, Health Minister, Dr, Christopher Tufton, announced in Parliament that $1 million would be given to Members of Parliament next month to help in their mosquito eradication programmes.

Tufton said the funds will be used to train 1,000 workers who will visit communities to educate residents about the Zika virus and to search for and destroy mosquito breeding sites.

He said these workers would be employed for six weeks beginning July 1.

However, opposition spokesman and former local government Minister, Noel Arscott, says the previous PNP administration had planned ahead and trained persons for the job.

Arscott says the government should engage these persons instead of starting from scratch, noting that this would be a waste of scarce resources.

He asserts that there is no need to reinvent the wheel on the community worker initiative.