COVID-19 claimed the life of a 49-year-old acting police inspector yesterday.
He is the second police officer to have died in May.
Acting Insp Mukesh Sookram, a father of two, passed away at the Tuesday night at the Couva Medical and Multi-Training Facility yesterday morning. He had been admitted last week Friday afternoon (May 7) at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope, after complaining of feeling unwell.
Sookram, a devout Muslim, was laid to rest shortly after 6 p.m. yesterday, at the St Thomas Cemetery in Felicity, Chaguanas, following a closed casket funeral at Sham’s Funeral Home in Chaguanas.
His nephew Anand (who declined to give his surname), who spoke with the Express at the gravesite yesterday, described Sookram’s death as a shock to both his family and his neighbours in Jerningham Junction, Charlieville, Chaguanas.
“If people don’t take heed, we are going to be in a lot more trouble,” he said.
He said their family was a close-knit one and he (Sookram) lived with his wife and two children. His elderly parents also lived with him.
Anand called on the public not to dismiss Covid-19 as a hoax or something that will not affect them.
“We the people are encouraging stupidness in this country as today self, I saw four men without masks casting nets in the Caroni River, and I’m asking myself if they don’t have families, too,” he said.
Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith and the executive of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) yesterday also extended condolences to the relatives, colleagues and friends of Sookram.
Police said he worked in North-Eastern Division (NED) for almost all of his career and was the inspector in charge of the Morvant Police Station.
He enlisted in the TTPS on April 8, 2002, was promoted to the rank of corporal in 2010, sergeant in 2019 and began acting as an inspector earlier this year.
He was conferred with two letters of commendation for dedication and devotion to duty in 2005 and 2010, respectively.
The senior officer had also attained an associate degree in management and a diploma in security administration and management. He was versed as a gunsmith, a green belt in karate, and in auto electrical and craft.
Snr Supt of the NED Winston Maharaj yesterday described Sookram as exemplary, saying he was “always professional and serving with extreme pride”.
Maharaj said: “Since I met Insp Sookram, I have known him to be an industrious and efficient worker, taking a very hands-on approach to policing. So much so, he was an excellent team player and motivator of his junior officers.”
He lamented: “At this time, his staff is very traumatised at his passing”.
• number of police officers/TTPS employees currently in quarantine: 726
• police officers in quarantine: 705
• civilians in quarantine: 21
• police officers/TTPS employees tested positive: 119
• police officers tested positive: 117
• civilians tested positive: 2
• police officers/TTPS employees who were in quarantine and have since resumed duty: 2,540
• police officers who were in quarantine and have since resumed duty: 2,473
• civilians who were in quarantine and have since resumed duty: 67