Opposition leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar issued a rallying call to citizens in her emancipation day message to make T&T better, stronger and safer.
According to her, the crime situation had severely reduced the quality of life of all citizens.
Persad-Bissessar recalled the determination and spirit of those who fought for and won their freedom from slavery.
She said the brutal conditions under which slaves lived and the indignities they suffered are inconceivable, and their strength, sheer will and capacity to hope are enduring reminders of the power of the human instinct to survive and thrive.
Centuries later, Persad-Bissessar said, the steadfastness and resolve in standing against their oppression, as well as their hope for a better future, inspire awe and deep respect and appreciation for their struggle.