Tobago House of Assembly (THA) Secretary of Health, Wellness and Family Development Dr Agatha Carrington has no difficulty in stepping down if called upon to do so.
Carrington was responding to questions from the media during Wednesday’s weekly post Executive Council news conference at the Victor E Bruce Financial Complex. It was the first post Executive Council media briefing for the year and came in the wake of the announcement by Chief Secretary Kelvin Charles that he would be demitting office on April 30, 2020. It was also announced that PNM Tobago political leader-elect Tracy Davidson-Celestine will be appointed a Councillor in March.
The decisions end almost two weeks of wrangling after a heated PNM internal election battle climaxed with a runoff between Charles and Tracy Davidson-Celestine on January 26. The latter won comfortably to become the first female political leader of the PNM Tobago Council.
After Tuesday's announcement, Davidson-Celestine said as councillor, she will also become a secretary in the THA but "the details will be conveyed to the public at a later date." Davidson-Celestine also did not say which of the three current councillors in the Assembly she would replace.
In response, Carrington said: “There are three councillors and if I am asked directly... I have no difficulty; I have no difficulty in doing so... I don’t expect to serve my entire term, I don’t expect that."
Carrington boasted of her qualifcations and said she feels no need to cling to the post.
“We come from different places. I come from a place, the day before I came here, I am a consummate professional and I am well trained in my area and I can work in any area that I have been called so to do. So I have no difficulty in terms of that, I have no difficulty at all.”
Carrington has been heavily criticised for the running of health although she was able to implement several initiatives which were well received by the public. Last year there was an online petition calling on Carrington to be replaced.
Rating her tenure as 8.5 out of ten, Carrington admitted she fell short of her expectations as she was "not able to do some of the things that I wanted to have done in the time, but there would not be time to do so.”
Questioned about her thoughts on Charles’ decision to resign, Carrington said she would express fact rather than feelings.
“If the Chief Secretary in his informed view felt that the circumstances are such that he must resign, it is his prerogative so to do. I have worked with the Chief Secretary for the past three years; a person and a human being in whom we are well pleased and I am well pleased and will continue to support him through whichever situation and circumstance that he is going through.”
The Health Secretary graded Charles' performance as Chief Secretary as “8.5, 8.75, 9” out of ten.
“Our results that we have declared and the results that we have achieved are in part – in a large part – based on his leadership.”