THE family of five-year-old Zakiah Lorde, who died last Saturday, has accepted the Tobago House of Assembly’s offer to pay for her funeral, on one condition.
In an interview on Monday at the Magdalena Grand, Chief Secretary Kelvin Charles said the THA had offered to pay funeral expenses for Lorde, who died at the the Intensive Care Unit of the Scarborough General Hospital three days after a tree fell on her.
Contacted for an update, a close relative told Newsday, “The family has requested the offer in documentation.
“In other words, what the THA is doing is only assisting, and that is not a pay-off for the pain suffered by the family, so they are free to take further legal action if they choose.
“But what they said is that they prefer to have this offer in written form rather than accepting any (oral) offer. So basically, they have accepted in principle but they just want it documented.”
On May 16, three workmen were trimming a tree at the front of Lorde’s house on Hopeton Road, Black Rock, when a branch fell on her as she was leaving for school just after 8am. Her skull was fractured and she fell into a coma.
Charles described the incident as regrettable, saying according to his information, even at the level of the infant class, Lorde was displaying tremendous leadership potential. He said he had spoken to her family before she died and visited them on Sunday, the day after her death. It was at that time that the offer was made, but he said the family asked for time to respond.
The family is still finalising funeral arrangements.