A promise of immediate relief to National Scholarship winners from their frustrations.
The assurance was made today by newly sworn-in Public Administration Minister, Randall Mitchell. Speaking exclusively with Triniscene.com today following the swearing-in ceremony at Queen’s Hall, Port-of-Spain, Mitchell said he became aware of the plight of scholar’s through social media recently.
Several National Scholarship winners contacted Triniscene.com with complaints that they are constantly under severe stress and pressure owing to the fact that for quite some time, they receive their allowances from the Public Administration Ministry, three months late every quarter. Consistently.
The students say they are bombarded with eviction notices from property owners, and warning letters from their universities of being debarred from examinations. Law student, Elron Elahie shared a letter with Triniscene.com from his university, which stated, “You are responsible for ensuring your fees are paid on time and should be aware that students with unpaid tuition fees may face sanctions and lose access to various facilities and services. Non-payment could affect your future enrolment, graduation ceremony attendance and confirmation of an award.”
Another student, Deisha Lewis, received an eviction warning notice from her landlord. Lewis said she eventually had to borrow the money from her parents, putting undue stress on the family.
However, Public Administration Minister, Randall Mitchell told Triniscene.com today that there will be immediate relief to students. “Well, first I need to meet with the permanent secretary and get up to speed with what the challenges are and then we’ll take it from there,” he said. When asked how soon will the issue be resolved he said “right away, hit the ground running.”
The students, however, say they wait to see if those promises would materialise.