The Hon Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit says he is appalled by the way previous governments have treated the Kalinago people and says this is why his Government has made education opportunities available for the Kalinago people.
He made the revelation on Wednesday, September 11th when the new Kalinago Council took office led by the youngest chief, 23-year-old Lorenzo Sanford.
Hon Skerrit believes that considering the proud history of the first people to live on this island, much more respect belongs to the Kalinago people.
Historically however, he says, whether in opposition or government, the Labour Party has always been good to the Kalinago population particularly in education.
“The first [Kalinago] doctor was trained by the Dominica Labour Party while in Opposition,” he began, “and when we got into Government, the first [Government-sponsored Kalinago] lawyer was under Labour. The first permanent secretary was [appointed] under Labour.”
He said, “We have a history of looking after the education of our people. There has been a revolution in education in the Kalinago Territory spearheaded by this Government.”
Today, the Prime Minister says, opportunities abound chiefly with the recent abolition of tuition fees for locals at the Dominica State College.
Hon Skerrit says with free college education plus the provision of transportation fees for Kalinago students, success is more easily reachable thanks to the DLP Government.
“This Government through the Ministry of Kalinago Affairs will provide each student with $1,000 per semester to defray the cost of transportation to the Dominica State College. So, there is no reason why you should not attend and why you should not do well.”
He says the Kalinago people will “be ok” with the DLP Government.
“I do not think that … anybody in this community or country can question the commitment of this Government, the investments that we have made in this Kalinago Territory.
“You have not seen anything yet. With… me there in the next five years, you will have some serious work taking place in the Kalinago Territory. The future for the Kalinago territory is extremely bright.”