The Cabinet of Ministers has approved 14 five-year National Scholarships, five fully-funded three-year scholarships and 12 bursaries, whose recipients will have the EC$20,000 annual economic cost at the University of the West Indies paid by the government in addition to getting EC$20,000 annually.
Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves made the announcement in Layou on the weekend, saying:
“On Wednesday alone, it was the business of us to help approximately 100 young Vincentians, most of them from the poor and working people to advance themselves forward.”
Gonsalves said that he was sent last week the list of the persons in the recent Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) who had passed two subjects and communication studies, some 198 students.
There were also 547 secondary school leavers who this year passed five subjects, including English language and mathematics and the government approved that EC$500 be paid to each of them by month-end or early next month for their accomplishment.
“That is almost 850 people, one Wednesday and Thursday, young people that we have taken care of,” Gonsalves said at a rally to celebrate his Unity Labour Party’s 21st anniversary.
He said he has also told Director of the Community College, Nigel Scott, that his government will also give the EC$500 reward to Community College graduates “who did well in the B+ level and above”.
“I said send me the names for those and I will find money too to give them the $500,” said Gonsalves, who is also Minister of Finance.
“That’s a number which will go past 1,000. One thousand young people, Rejoice, that is a birthday present from the Unity Labour Party,” he said.
He further told the rally that he wants the elderly to rejoice as he has announced the government will increase the Public Assistance by 25 dollars a month, taking those who are 65 and older to EC$250 a month while those who are under 65 will get EC$225.
Cabinet last week also approved the enrolment of 65 persons in the School of Nursing, each of whom will receive a stipend of EC$1,000 per month.