Originally published by Newsday here
Port-of-Spain: In addition to Eid ul Fitr being a national holiday in Trinidad & Tobago, the Government of T & T has provided grants to the country’s Muslim organizations and Masjids (places of worship).
Newsday reported that “Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar yesterday presented a $350,000 cheque to president general of the Trinidad Muslim League (TML), Dr Nasser Mustapha, during a function held after Friday prayers at the TML Mosque in St Joseph. This was the second time the Prime Minister has donated $350,000 to the TML. She first did so last year. With a big smile on his face, Mustapha thanked Persad-Bissessar for her continued generousity.
“I would like to assure the Prime Minister the money would be put to good use, and I wish to thank her sincerely on behalf of the council and members of the TML for recognising us and also for appreciating us. May Allah bless you,” Mustapha said.
Persad-Bissessar told those gathered in the hall next door to the mosque that similar donations were being made to other “large Muslim organisations in the country,” including to the Anjuman Sunnat ul Jammat Association (ASJA) of Trinidad and Tobago.
In a night of giving, the Prime Minister also handed over a $5,000 cheque to Imam Amzard Khan, for use in the St Joseph mosque’s Eid al-Fitr celebrations tomorrow (sun). This too would be matched in donations to every registered mosque in the country.
“As I did last year, again this year, we have tried to give to every mosque. A small contribution at this very special time that you celebrate.
So this is a symbolic handing-over, but all mosques in TT will receive a similar donation of a cheque from the Office of the Prime Minister,” Persad- Bissessar stated.
Noting that for millions around the world, Islam has provided peace, solace and strength, and has been hailed as one of the fastest-growing religions in the world, the Prime Minister noted that in TT, “Islam has blended itself into our diverse national structure of ethnicities, religions, social backgrounds and cultural heritages.” Persad-Bissessar said TT would not be celebrating so many achievements on our 50th Anniversary of Independence if it weren’t for the contributions of the Muslim community.
Additionally the Prime Minister gave her annual Eid message in Parliament yesterday.