TRINIDAD-$5,000 pension hike come January
PORT OF SPAIN –– Pensioners will continue to see Christmas in January with a $5,000 pension cheque.
For the public at large, there will be a 20 per cent discount on rice, sugar, flour and oil for the Christmas season, as was the case during Eid and Divali.
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar made the announcements yesterday at the Diplomatic Centre, St Ann’s, where thousands of food hampers were distributed to people from different constituencies.
She said pensioners would receive their increased $3,500 pension, plus three months of $500 increases owed to them for October, November and December. In October, Minister of Finance Larry Howai announced the pension grant would be increased from $3,000 to $3,500.
Persad-Bissessar, in response to questions from the media, said Howai had advised there was no need to panic because of the falling oil prices.
She reiterated her government continued to monitor the situation, and no cuts would be made to social programmes that helped the most vulnerable in the society, nor would there be any cutbacks in the health sector. The prime minister said she wanted the people of this country to have lives free from fear of crime and the challenge of poverty.
“As long as God gives me health and strength, I will remain committed to working with everyone here and in our country to create a better life for every citizen of Trinidad and Tobago,” she said.
Persad-Bissessar said the toys for the eight toy distributions she had throughout the country were donated by “good Samaritans . . . . I was just a conduit. There is a committee that received the toys and the treats and that committee organized it,” she said.