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Monday 9 December 2019
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Roget: Point Fortin being taken for granted

JTUM members on a walkabout in Point Fortin on Friday. PHOTO BY CHEQUANA WHEELER
JTUM members on a walkabout in Point Fortin on Friday. PHOTO BY CHEQUANA WHEELER

JOINT Trade Union Movement (JTUM) leader Ancel Roget on Friday took to the streets of Point Fortin saying the government had taken the people of the borough for granted.

In a walkabout to rally support for the trade union movement in the area, Roget, president of the Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU), said, instead of People's National Movement, the PNM actually stood for "promises never materialise."

Roget asked: “Where is the hospital and fire station promised to Point Fortin? Promises cannot protect the people when there is an emergency.”

This August, Roget said, there are single mothers and parents in Point Fortin wondering where they will get money to buy books.

"This government does not care about that," he said.

"Just before the election, the government will come and give some CEPEP work, just so that they can get into back into government. And when they do, the cycle continues again."

Roget said many businesses were on the brink of closure or merely struggling to stay open and many thousands of workers had been retrenched under this government and many more were going daily.

“It is the truth that no labour legislation to protect workers was brought to the Parliament.”

He said, starting in Point Fortin and moving through the country, JTUM was putting a system in place for the people of the country because both the PNM and the UNC were different sides of the same coin as both were corrupted.

Roget said the greatest atrocity done to the people of TT was the closing down of Petrotrin.

“They shut down the potential for us to continue to make ourselves economically viable and to earn very scarce foreign exchange which the country needs.

“The country is starved of its ability to produce a product that services our local economy.”

He said the government closed down Petrotrin because they wanted to spite the Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU) and the labour movement.

“We were speaking out against the injustice, against the high amount of murders and their inability to govern properly. Against their neglect for communities like Point Fortin.”

He said government wanted to give Petrotrin to its friends who were the "one per cent" but JTUM got involved in the bidding process.

“We would have satisfied all of the requirements to purchase the refinery and to operate it safely and efficiently for and in the interest of this country,” he said.

Roget said the OWTU's company, Patriotic Energies and Technologies Services Ltd, had been formed to acquire the assets of the Guaracara Refinery and to operate it. Once Patriotic's bid is approved, he said, an experienced team of foreign professionals with expertise and years of experience in refinery operations will be running the facility.

Commenting on the arrest of Public Administration Minister and Port of Spain South MP Marlene McDonald and her husband, Roget said what PNM politicians were gloating about not too long ago, was now happening to them.

“Like the shoe is on the other foot. When you fit that crime of corruption we see it is on both sides.”

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