CURBING a rat infestation and flood waters will be amongst the first goals of councillor Sharon Maraj-Dharam of the United National Congress (UNC), who was sworn in and took her seat at MTS Plaza, Aranguez yesterday. She won the July 16 by-election for Barataria on the San Juan Laventille Regional Corporation (SJLRC).
She told Newsday she felt “happy and excited” to be sworn in and was ready to serve her people.
“I had promised to walk my area after the election, and have done so. The drains on Third Avenue (Barataria), when you look through the manholes, are clogged with bottles. When we were walking before, there was a flood on Third Avenue.” She said she wanted to see how the SJLRC can alleviate this.
“On Twelfth Street the people are complaining about a rat infestation. Everyone you talk to is complaining about rats.”
Asked the significance of her win, Maraj-Dharam said it signalled UNC leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar’s return.
“She is going to be the country’s next prime minister. We shall keep fighting. The result says the people are ready for change. Last time it was 1,500 and I went up to 1,933 votes – a big improvement.”
She said locally many people want help with many issues.
“Every day somebody is coming to you seeking a job. So many people are unemployed. How do I deal with that right now, I don’t know. I wish I had a magic wand to give these people jobs.”
Chairman Anthony Roberts advised her, “Sometimes we want to learn everything in one day. That is not possible. It will take some time.
“I want to wish you well in this and may God bless you.”
PNM councillor Kwesi Antoine said when an election is over, elected councillors put aside their differences to work for their burgesses. “You are my councillor for Barataria. Any advice, I’m willing to assist.”
Contacted yesterday evening Maraj-Dharam was in Mohammedville thanking residents.
“I try to do a couple of streets each day,” she told Newsday.