The Gaston Browne Administration has a fiduciary duty to replace all the monies taken from the Social Security Scheme by Antigua Labour Party Administrations, since they literally have rendered the organization broke.
This is the opinion of Pearl Quinn-Williams, the United Progressive Party (UPP) Candidate for St. John’s Rural North, speaking from the picket line on Tuesday, November 30.
Quinn-Williams says she took part in the action, organized by the Party, as a proxy for the elderly in her constituency who were unable to attend. She says the Government needs to respect the country’s seniors and their contributions.
Meanwhile, even though the fault lies with the Government for the late payments, Quinn-Williams says the Prime Minister continues to boast, and does not even have the decency to offer an apology to the pensioners.
She says that Government’s recent contribution of $10 million – from a US$25 million loan – was a short-term fix to pay pensions for September and October; but it is not sufficient, since pensioners have to eat and a holiday period is coming up.
Scores of senior citizens, their families, and other concerned citizens turned out to picket the Social Security office on Tuesday.
The pensioners complain of receiving their payments late on a monthly basis, with some insisting they are yet to receive monies for June.
Many are worried that they will not be able to enjoy Christmas, not knowing if they will be paid and with food prices skyrocketing.