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$$ for soldiers

Soldiers march in unison during the Trinidad and Tobago Regiment Golden Anniversary parade.

PORT OF SPAIN — National Security Minister Jack Warner yesterday attended the Trinidad and Tobago Regiment’s 50th birthday celebrations bearing gifts.

“I must tell you that I will give you the resources and the tools to make you do your work better,” Warner said yesterday as he delivered the feature address at the Trinidad and Tobago Regiment’s Golden Anniversary Parade at Teteron Barracks in Chaguaramas.

“Top priority” in Warner’s bag of gifts is a plan to “amend the very obnoxious Defence Force Act which is in dire need of reform”.

Warner said he contacted Attorney General Anand Ramlogan on the issue and the matter will be addressed when Ramlogan returns from overseas.

Also in Warner’s gift bag is the plan to “fix the compensation package” offered to the Regiment personnel.

“A package which was last fixed in 2007. You have not taken the government to court. You have not protested, you have been to work diligently. Well this country must not take that for granted and we therefore have to give you the means of comfort so you can do your work better,” Warner said.

“We shall investigate to see how far it is possible to even consider for you and the other arms of the protective services a military hospital for you and your families because the time has come when we have to lift this to the higher level,” he said.

Warner promised that the Coast Guard would also be provided with the equipment they need.

He said there will be an increase in the size of the Defence Force Reserves and that they will also be provided a with a “separate budget which they do not have now”.

“The strength of the Army shall also be increased because I am advised that the Army is almost 1,000 men short,” Warner said.

Warner said the gifts will be delivered before the Regiment celebrates its next birthday.

“I tell you today that those are the things I will deliver for you in less than 50 weeks,” Warner said.

“I did not come here today with any prepared speech by anybody to talk to you nicely because I want to talk to you from my heart, from my heart because every promise I make to you today is a promise I shall keep,” he said.

Warner said his expectation in this instance is that the Regiment will aid in the fight against crime. (Express)

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