Gopeesingh: Government mismanaged covid19
Former education minister Dr Tim Gopeesingh says the Government’s management of covid19 has resulted in TT's having one of the highest death rate per million population in the world, with over 4,300 people dying so far.
In a media release on Friday, Gopeesingh reflected on the third anniversary of the World Health Organisation's declaring covid19 a global pandemic on March 11, 2020, saying citizens endured “one of the worst managed responses” under Dr Keith Rowley’s administration.
He said failures included the fact that, before the declaration, the Government refused motions by the United National Congress (UNC) to debate the public health emergency, late procurement of vaccines, shortages in the health sector, inadequate testing, that about 48 per cent of the population remained unvaccinated, and more.
“The Rowley Government, without proper policy formation, indulged in reactionary, whimsical, economically-devastating lockdowns and border closures, resulting in thousands of citizens being stranded abroad, relegated to poverty and statelessness.”
Some of these failures, he said were listed in the 2022 report of the committee appointed to investigate the Factors Contributing To Clinical Outcomes of Covid19 Patients In TT, chaired by Prof Terence Seemungal.
“Most significantly, its findings also easily point to the possibility of serious criminal negligence involved in the management of patients. Nineteen major recommendations were made by this committee, but to date, none has been implemented. Now, amid the latest increase of covid19 infections and deaths, the Health Ministry continues in such dangerous incompetence. This cannot be allowed to continue!”
He pointed out that, according to the WHO, vaccinated people showed reduced risk of seven long-covid symptoms. And, between the number of unvaccinated people and the high incidence of NCDs in the population, if one in five people get long covid, thousands of citizens would suffer “serious, and even fatal, medical consequences, and cascading effects in mental health and disability” or, more likely, die.
He, therefore, again called for a commission of inquiry into the government’s handling of the pandemic.
"Gopeesingh: Government mismanaged covid19"