The Opposition United National Congress has called on the government to account for the 1,000 COVID deaths so that the relatives will find some small measure of comfort.
The UNC made the call after the country recorded 1,000 COVID-19 deaths on Tuesday.
In a statement, the UNC said, ‘’This marks one of the darkest days in our history, and the PNM doesn’t care. The UNC stands in solidarity with the suffering people.... the 1,000 plus COVID deaths, including the near 100 per cent mortality rate at the Couva Hospital ICU, must be accounted for - we reiterate our call for a Commission of Enquiry and thorough investigation.’’
“Ultimate blame, of course, lies squarely at the feet of Keith Rowley himself,’’ the party said.
The UNC said, “We wait to see whether Government will let this grim milestone pass without any reflections to consider lessons learned, or any condolences to the 1,000 and more families affected by these deaths.
”Most astonishing is that roughly 800 of these deaths occurred in the past three months, during the State of Emergency which was supposed to prevent such an outbreak.
“Some of the most senior doctors in our health care system have alleged the Intensive Care Unit at Couva Hospital has a 100 per cent or near 100 per cent mortality rate. To be sent there, then, is tantamount to be given a death sentence - a scandal of national and historic proportions.”
Slamming Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh and North Central Regional Health Authority CEO Davlin Thomas, the UNC also said there were videos of health top brass saying COVID was not a serious threat to the country and accused them of flip-flopping over masks and other foul-ups.
UNC added, “The failed Health Team which has refused to accept any responsibility in this matter, needs to be held to account, not the population.“
The party also claimed it used, “every constitutional means to try to prevent Trinidad and Tobago from reaching this state” saying it tried to unsuccessfully raise the issue five times in Parliament for debate, sought a unified front to tackle the national emergency, lodged questions and wrote to other countries seeking vaccines.
“However, this PNM government continues acting like a dictatorship, ignoring Parliament and the Opposition, concerned only for their own advantage... while the population suffers and literally dies.”
Opposition Senator Jayanti Lutchmedial also questioned why up to Tuesday the government had not gazetted the new State of Emergency regulations allowing businesses to operate.
Opposition Leader Kamla Persad- Bissessar at Monday’s UNC meeting claimed she was vindicated about her remarks that sunlight destroys COVID, saying US expert Dr Anthony Fauci also made a similar statement.
The World Health Organisation and all health experts around the world say the only way to prevent contracting COVID-19 is by being vaccinated and following the established health protocols of wearing a mask, washing your hands and practising physical distancing.