$4 million can work

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar hands over a cheque for $2 million to chairman of the Emancipation Support Committee, Khafra Kambon, at the office of the Prime Minister in St Clair yesterday.

PORT OF SPAIN — Anger has turned to pleasure as the Emancipation Support Committee yesterday received $2 million with another $2 million promised from the State for this year’s Emancipation celebrations.

Speaking with the Express after receiving the first cheque for $2 million from Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar yesterday, ESC chairman Khafra Kambon said he was pleased as the $4 million was what they had asked for.

“We have gotten what we requested and we didn’t expect more than what we requested. The Minister assured us that he is working on getting additional funds and the Ministry of Arts and Multiculturalism sent us a letter indicating we will be getting $2 million from the ministry,” he said.

“This afternoon I enquired at the Ministry and I was told that it (the cheque) was being prepared. So if it doesn’t come this afternoon it will come in the morning,” Kambon said.

On July 24, the ESC held an emergency press conference at the Lidj Yasu Omowale Village at the Queen’s Park Savannah in Port of Spain, to announce that it had refused a $1 million cheque from the government for Emancipation celebrations on the grounds that it was not enough.

Reneged on promise

Kambon had charged that the Government had reneged on a promise to include funding for the Emancipation Day celebrations in the annual budget and that the committee was disappointed and angered by the lack of financial support for the Emancipation celebrations.

Asked by the Express yesterday about the Committee’s accountability for the funds, Kambon said there was thorough accountability by the Committee to the Ministry of Arts and Multiculturalism.

“It is very detailed accounting and we have done audited accounts. We have even had someone at the Ministry for about three years working with us on the accounting,” he said. (Express)

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