Reema Carmona was a victim at the hands of, “evil, classless and clueless” people in this country who circulated, out of jealously and spite, rumours that she had died.
In defending his wife, President Anthony Carmona said people posted on social media that his wife had died, shortly after she was awarded a Global Leadership Impact Award by the Board and Management of the Centre for Economic and Leadership Development in collaboration with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.
Carmona made the revelation at the 15th anniversary celebrations of the Rotary Club of Penal at Doc’s Ranch, SS Erin Road in Phillipine on Saturday night. Carmona said the Office of the President did not influence the award because it was given by an international body.
“My wife and I have been negatively targeted. The world was listening and appreciating her advocacy on many social issues. And the litmus test of that International Organisation were not those in our island tied up like crabs in a barrel, fighting each other and fighting people who advocate better for persons with disabilities. The Every Caribbean Woman and Every Caribbean Child Initiative and the victims of child marriages, were some of her initiatives,” Carmona said.
“The Global Leadership Impact Award with four other First Ladies of the World, was not regional, certainly not local but international. It was not the result of propaganda and public relations because the Office of the President doesn’t have that kind of budget or the propaganda machinery.
“Rather, the award was based on sheer unadulterated merit and an advocacy that went beyond these shores. Some of us in Trinidad and Tobago cannot handle the international stamp of approval. That toxic minority that cannot handle the advocacy and volunteerism that the Office of the President engages in and encourages. They put out fake news on the internet when my wife had received the international award, that my wife had died in a car crash and that I had confirmed it.”
Carmona said he received frantic calls from family members from both home and abroad, who became emotional on reading the fake news. “Why are people so evil, classless and clueless,” Carmona asked. On September 19, Mrs Carmona addressed a conference hosted by the Organisation of African First Ladies against HIV/AIDS. And on September 21, she received the Global Female Impact Leadership Award from the Centre of Economic and Leadership Development.
On both occasions, she called for equitable treatment of women and young people. Despite those negatives, president Carmona said that Trinidad and Tobago is still a “great place” to live and raise a family. He said that one method of volunteerism was by stimulating the dying art of reading. He said, “We need to engage our children and our young people into reading, not just headlines but essays and books.”