NOW is not the time for crocodile tears and political rhetoric; rather, it is the time for action.
These were the words of interim political leader of the Independent Liberal Party (ILP) Jack Warner yesterday, as he walked through Laventille.
Warner said he and his supporters were all “shocked and surprised” at the conditions in which the residents were living.
Warner said the people wanted jobs and homes, and now was not the time to deceive them with crocodile tears and other political gimmickry.
Questioned by reporters about setting up an office in the community, Warner said he would be doing more than that.
He said he would put a homework centre and would lobby for a community centre.
Walking with the ILP leader was ILP interim deputy political leader Lyndira Oudit, who told reporters it was a “cultural change” taking place.
She said the ILP was about changing the minds of the people and not merely giving handouts.
Asked about the possibilities of his sons joining his political campaign since his wife, Maureen, was present with him yesterday, Warner said he did not speak about his family.
Warner, who has been calling for the announcement of the local government elections, said his walkabout was not the last, as he would be in Carenage on Tuesday and soon after would host a public meeting in Gasparillo.
He suggested the People’s Partnership Government and the Opposition People’s National Movement (PNM) were joining forces with the notion that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”.
“For both of them the ILP is the enemy, so for them now the enemy of my enemy is my friend,” Warner said.
One resident, Kirk Forde, told Warner of the incomplete recreational structures in the Beverly Hills area. Other residents told Warner of the crime in the area, while some spoke of the hopelessness because of poverty and the lack of employment.
Residents were given T-shirts and bandanas, and children were given canvas bags with copybooks, rulers, crayons and other back-to-school necessities.
Warner walked through Beverly Hills, Pump Trace and Pleasant Terrace before ending in St Barbs.
Four people handed out what were said to be ILP membership forms, with 150 forms handed out in the Beverly Hills area alone.