The People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) today (Saturday) held its first General Council Meeting for the year 2017 at the Party’s Headquarters, Congress Place, Sophia. The meeting was held under the theme: ‘PNCR – Vanguard of a Green Economy’, was chaired by the Party Chairman, Basil Williams, S.C. M.P.
According to a statement this afternoon from the PNCR, Williams welcomed the members of the General Council especially those who had travelled from hinterland regions and overseas. The Chairman said he was confident that government would quicken the pace of development in many sectors during 2017.
“We must take up the many opportunities for employment that our pursuit of a ‘Green Economy’ together with the imminent ‘on-boarding’ of our oil and gas industries will bring,” Williams said.
According to the PNCR statement, Williams told the meeting that for the “first time in 23 years, orders have been made by Judges in our courts against the President (who has Constitutional Immunity from suit), Prime Minister and Attorney General, without giving them a hearing”. According to the Chairman, the good news was that the PNCR would continue to support the Coalition government in its efforts to restore the rule of law in Guyana. The Chairman urged Party members to enhance their contact with the Guyanese people in all communities and to continue to work to bridge the coastland and hinterland divide.
A minute of silence was observed for Party members who had passed away in the period between General Councils.
The General Secretary’s Report was presented by Mr. Oscar Clarke, CCH, General Secretary of the PNCR. He brought General Council up to date with the state of the Party’s Secretariat, the youth and women’s arm and all Party regions (local and overseas) and the work of the Secretariat during the period between General Councils. The General Secretary reported to the Council that the state of the Party was strong, poised and prepared to participate fully in all events planned for the 60th Anniversary events of the PNCR.
The feature address was delivered by His Excellency, Brigadier David Granger, Leader of the PNCR and President of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana. In an address that covered a wide array of issues, Brigadier Granger reminded members of the PNCR that the Party was founded to serve the people of Guyana. The PNCR Leader said that during the Party’s Diamond Jubilee year (2017), homage will be paid to the founders of the Party and plans drawn up for the next sixty years.
President Granger said “The PNCR is committed to coalition politics; we are better to together.” He said that the PNCR remains committed to the coalition APNU +AFC.
Focusing attention on the family, the President said that our society was founded on the family, that the family was sacrosanct and urged Party member to protect and preserve the family. He said that the PNCR must examine what is happening to families in their communities and make efforts to confront teenage pregnancies, juvenile delinquency, crime etc.
The Leader reported to General Council that the 5 B’s (Boats, Buses, Bicycles, Breakfast and Books) initiative was working. President Granger said, “the 5B’s is working, but we need to do more, we must do more. Every child in school; our Party regions must work to ensure that every child remain in school.” President Granger said that regions must focus on education and it was imperative that employment be found for the young people of Guyana. “Despite the challenges, we have to find employment for the young people of Guyana. We have to develop the village economies; we have to start producing things at the village level.” The Leader asked village leaders to take rebuilding the village economy seriously and pledged government support for such initiatives.
The PNCR Leader reminded the General Council that it was the Coalition government that brought back local democracy to municipalities and local government areas all across Guyana. That it was the PNC that established a policy of hinterland development and built the first secondary school in the hinterland. President Granger highlighted the PNCR’s contribution to the development of Guyana over the last 60 years.
Speaking to the Diaspora, he said that “the Diaspora is vital to the PNC; it is a vital component. I trust the Diaspora and I believe in the Diaspora.” The Leader saluted the efforts of PNCR members in the Diaspora and said it has always been an essential element in the PNC and will continue to be important to the Party’s efforts.
Executive member, Ms. Annette Ferguson presented to General Council a Power Point presentation on plans for the Party’s 60th Anniversary this year.
A lively plenary during the second session examined the Party Leader’s address, the General Secretary’s Report and plans for the Party’s 60th anniversary. “A Motion giving full support to the Government in the action that was taken to retake the Red House, a National Heritage building was presented to General Council by the Vice Chairperson of the National Congress of Women, (NCW), Ms. Carol Smith-Joseph,” the PNCR stated.
The General Council concluded with a summation and charge which was given by Party Leader and President, H.E. David Arthur Granger.
General Council is the second highest decision making forum of the PNCR.