Kamla Persad-Bissessar

Opposition Leader: Kamla Persad-Bissessar

Do not get angry with Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar for disclosing that Trinidad and Tobago recorded its first COVID-19 death. 

According to Opposition MP Dr Lackram Bodoe the nation must understand that the former Prime Minister may have "saved a nation" with her statement as he pointed out her "main" message was her call for a 14-day shutdown to effectively address the killer virus. 

Persad-Bissessar issued a release at 6.14 p.m. on Wednesday calling for a national shutdown as she cited the COVID-19 death. 

“A Covid-19 positive patient at the Couva Hospital has died. We extend our deepest condolences, and we must be cognisant of the serious implications and consequences which may follow,” she stated.

The death was confirmed by Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh at 8.01 p.m. on Wednesday. 

Persad-Bissessar has been criticised by persons on social media for breaking the news about the death and causing panic to the families of hospitalised COVID patients. 

Others have commended Persad-Bissessar for disclosing the truth and accused the Government of hiding the issue. 

In a Facebook post on Thursday night Bodoe stated that Persad-Bissessar's statement was to ensure that Government takes action to protect the people. 

He stated: "Before you get angry with Kamla understand how her statements may have just saved a nation.

1) This Government promised to be honest, forthwith and transparent about our COVID-19 situation however it took the Leader of the Opposition to tell us about our first COVID-19 death as opposed to the Minister of Health. Ask yourselves, had she not told us would they have told us & when? 

2) Announcing deaths in any crisis are not done to create panic but must be done in a timely manner which allows the country to monitor the crisis it faces and adjust accordingly . We have seen this done on the international level where each day we get a daily count coming out from Italy, London and other nations which has led to those countries taking more serious action to protect it's own. 

3)Announcing deaths in a timely manner in these cases cannot violate the families because from day one we literally did not know who these families are. However it makes the man on the street who is disregarding the situation know that this is serious, this is not mild and that he should take pre-caution. 

4) Kamla's actions have shown citizens that they have a Guardian who will hold this Government accountable in the methods they undertake to deal with this crisis. In essence she is spurring them on to ensure you and your loved ones are actually given the protection needed .

5) Do not forget the main part of Kamla's message was for a NATIONAL SHUT DOWN. Last week Thursday we had 9 cases, this Thursday we are over 60 with one death. We need a shut down. Citizens need to protect themselves. Our health system cannot cope with the levels that countries who acted too late are dealing with now.

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