BACK TO BASICS: Opposition Leader addresses several well-attended community meetings – ahead of LGE
The Opposition People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) has been doing its groundwork across the country with regard to meeting the populace at the ‘grassroots’ and community levels in the lead-up to Local Government Elections (LGE) which is just over two weeks away.
Spearheading these community-level meetings is the dynamic Leader of the Opposition, Dr Bharrat Jagdeo. For instance, over the past few days he held well-attended meetings in Best Village on the West Coast of Demerara; Patentia on the West Bank of Demerara; Diamond on the East Bank of Demerara; and Enmore on the East Coast of Demerara – just to name a few.
During his most recent meeting with approximately 400 residents of Enmore on Monday evening, Dr Jagdeo spoke about the recently passed $230 billion Budget, the ailing sugar industry and the upcoming LGE, among other issues of national importance.
He told those in attendance that the PPP/C had fought for the rights of Guyanese during the two-week long budget proceedings in the National Assembly – the first week of debates and the following week considering the estimates.
However, Jagdeo said the efforts of the Opposition parliamentarians were in vain as the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) Administration used its parliamentary one-seat majority to go ahead with its plans, despite objections and concerns raised.
One such objection, he posited, is the implementation of a series of tax increases, and in some cases, the introduction of new taxes. He pointed out to the gathering that instead of lessening the burden of citizens, Government sought to ‘further burden’ Guyanese.
Additionally, Jagdeo spoke about the crisis in the sugar industry and the fact that the coalition Government is not doing enough to support the industry and the workers. He elaborated on the Administration’s plans of shutting down the Wales Factory, putting workers on the breadline.
Moreover, the Opposition Leader also used the platform to talk about the upcoming Local Government polls, urging those gathered to go out and vote on March 18, so that they can have a say in who will look after the affairs of their community.
He also highlighted the importance of youths being involved in community-based activities and encouraged them to be active in activities that are aimed at developing the Hope West, Enmore, area.
On the other hand, those gathered at the public meeting heard from two PPP/C’s candidates contesting in the upcoming polls. Ramnarine Roopnarine and Mahadeo Panday both spoke about what they have in store for their respective constituencies if they are voted for.
The contestant outlined plans for prompt and reliable garbage collection, cleaning exercises and proper drainage facilities, among other things.
During the meeting, one resident raised concerns about the mining industry, particularly the gold sector. Dr Jagdeo, in his response, assured that the Opposition is willing to offer any assistance, if requested by Government, on reviving the industry.