Director of NEMO Michelle Forbes has debunked claims that they are hoarding mattresses and other supplies meant for displaced people. During a visit by Governor General her Excellency Dame Susan Dougan on April 3rd to NEMO warehouse at Campden Park, photographs of mattresses being stored at the warehouse were taken and disseminated by local media who had accompanied her excellency on her tour of the facility.
This display has resulted in widespread social media allegations that NEMO is engaging in the hoarding of bed mattresses and supplies meant for evacuees throughout SVG.
Addressing the issue on radio today on the request of prime minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, NEMO Director explained the pictures of mattresses taken at the warehouse paints an incorrect story.
According to Forbes, mattresses in demand are for double, and the ones in the picture are single mattresses which recently arrived in the state from Trinidad and Tobago, being prepared for distribution.
Frobes said, close to 2,000 matresses have been distributed thus far to both Government designated and private shelters. she noted that cots were earlier used by evacuees, however they were replaced with mattresses as they became available.
The NEMO director also pointed out that they have been working closely with local, regional and international partners to ensure accountability in the distribution of the relief supplies. She said inventories are done at all warehouses including the eight (8) mobile units on the decommission ET Joushua airport tarmac at Arnos Vale.
There are more than 7,000 people in private shelters. In a news release issued last evening NEMO assures the public that it has no interest in withholding supplies necessary for the comfort of those who have been displaced due to the eruption of the La Soufriére volcano and that it will continue to coordinate the response to this national emergency with its stakeholders in accordance with humanitarian principles.