A collection of fridges, stoves and washers which were donated to victims of the 2013 Christmas Eve trough has been described as an extraordinary gesture and not one which citizens should expect to be done after every storm or major weather system.
On May 30, 2014, Digicel formally handed over four containers with 200 stoves and 200 fridges, along with 10 washers, to the government for distribution to families whose appliances were damaged during the trough.
Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony, in addressing a short presentation ceremony at the National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) office on Friday, said that all the individuals and families chosen to receive these donations were hand-picked by the Red Cross and NEMO personnel based on their need and not politicians.
“Not a single politician was involved in the selection of families to receive these appliances,” he stressed while pointing to similar gestures which he said have been labelled as political.
“I have had nothing to do with it. My cabinet has had nothing to do with it,” he said.
While alluding to the many challenges which some individuals and families faced following the trough and sympathising with them, Dr. Anthony noted that the Friday’s donation should be regarded as special and that citizens should not expect that they will be presented with new stoves and fridges after every storm or weather system.
“Why do I say that? … this is an extrodinary gesture. That it is not a rule of practice into the future that if you have a major storm or disaster that the government will come running and provide fridges and stoves. In other words, there should be no expectations into the future. And by assisting, the government is not saying and cannot say that every time we have a disaster, we’re going to come running and provide fridges and stoves. We have to treat the events on December 2013 as extraordinary as unusual,” he stated.
Some beneficiaries from the communities of Bexon, Anse La Raye and Canaries attended the ceremony to receive the donated items from PM Anthony.
The remaining beneficiaries are being contacted by NEMO to arrange for the distribution of the appliances.