Former Commerce Minister Emma Hippolyte has expressed concern over reports of late social welfare payments to needy Saint Lucians.
And she has urged Prime Minister, Allen Chastanet, who is also Minister of Finance, to address the matter.
Hippolyte is also a former Gros Islet MP and the current Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) candidate for Soufriere.
She is also a former Director of the then National Insurance Scheme (NIS).
She recalled that she wrote Chastanet on the issue of late social welfare payments about a month ago.
“I wrote the Prime Minister on behalf of Saint Lucia’s poor and needy, those persons who are receiving the social welfare cheques,” she told St Lucia Times.
Hippolyte explained that the letter was prompted by reports she received that people were getting their cheques late.
“I really thought that all of Saint Lucia would join me in calling on the Prime Minister to prioritise the payments to the poor and needy,” the former Minister stated.
“I am told again that this month those persons, almost at the middle of the month of November, and they have not received their October cheques,” Hippolyte told St Lucia Times.
“I think it’s little things like that which tell us as a people how we care for the underprivileged,” she declared.
“Those persons get two hundred and something dollars, some three hundred dollars for the month,” she observed.
“We want the Prime Minister as Minister of Finance to prioritise this so that those persons receive these monies by a particular date every month,” Hippolyte stated.
“It is extremely important and I believe all of Saint Lucia, yellow and red, would agree that we need to treat these people in a more humane way,” she observed.
Headline photo caption: Emma Hippolyte file photo