While the Opposition has agreed to the Prime Minister’s announcement that certain sectors of the business community will
be reopened on a phased basis, it wants details on plans to stabilise the economy.
Dr Rowley announced on Saturday that Government has decided that food establishments will be allowed to reopen but
with no in-house dining, street food sellers can operate but will have to observe strict hygiene, people can come out
their homes but not congregate.
Public relations officer for the UNC Anita Haynes said the PM’s announcement was not unlike what the Opposition had been
“This is something that the UNC has been saying from the onset that we need to protect the livelihoods of Trinbagonians
because TT was in a tenuous economic situation before covid19. What was absent to me was any references to medium and
long-term plans to stabilise the economy.
“We understand very clearly that the situation is red and no one can know what to expect on a day-to-day basis. However, in
this situation you must be able to put some measures in place to cushion the impact of covid19. We have the national
economic transformation plan that was presented to the nation in October 2019 what would happen globally and locally in
such a situation.
“It was very difficult to be comforted when the PM when asked what was the state of the economy and the response was to
brush it off and say we know where we are.
“That is not an answer to our state of economic affairs. Again we are aware that there is a global pandemic, but he needs
to be very clear and very direct as to what we are facing.”
She said the country was facing significant unemployment and under-employment prior to covid19 and no one knows what the
figures will be post covid19, but predicted it will be worse than before.
“There was no discussion or element of medium and long-term planning when asked about the Road Map to Recovery that would
come later on. The only way we can feel comfortable or going forward is by the testing figures. With a population of about
1.4 million people we have tested about 1,900. I believe the figures are accurate, but not adequate.”
Leader for the Movement of Social Justice David Abdulah said he expected a gradual opening which was something the
organisation had proposed.
“We expected curbside pick up food from food service providers. We have always agreed and respected the high degree of
professionalism of our public health care professionals.”
Abdulah said the reopening of the country was good news for the economy.