...sees 'mayhem, bacchanal' with $10m fund
Opposition MP Marlene McDonald has said she has started getting calls from strangers who, were making requests for contracts as members of Parliament (MPs) get ready to receive $10 million each for projects in their constituencies.
"Two people, I don't know they got my phone (number) and 'mother! mother!, I have a company, I have to eat ah food too you know," McDonald said.
"MPs are not equipped to deal with things like that, you turning me into a project manager, you are telling me to go outside there, look for projects...hire contractors," said McDonald.
She said Government was looking at the Jamaica model where this was implemented but she urged that they also look at the repercussions.
This plan, she said, was geared towards destroying Local Government.
McDonald spoke on the issue following a meeting at the St James Amphitheatre on Wednesday night to discuss the new traffic plan.
"This is meant to mash up Local Government, this is meant to undermine the local Government councillors," said McDonald.
"It is mayhem and bacchanal that is being created with this $10 million, it is unfortunate that I will have to be part of this," she added.
Noting that some $1.2 billion would be spent on this system over the next three years, McDonald questioned why the money was not used instead to strengthen Local Government.
She noted that Port of Spain North and Port of Spain South would receive $20 million in total which was equivalent to the allocated for the Port of Spain municipal corporation and this in effect would cause works to be duplicated.
The Government, she said, has a majority in the Parliament to pass legislation for the $10 million plan.
She said the Opposition would have no choice but to accept the money as contentious as it is because their constituents would "come down our backs".