By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Minister of Citizenship, Winston Felix has revealed that since 2012, Brazilians have consecutively topped the list of persons applying for employment visas in Guyana.
Felix made the announcement while presenting his debate on the 2015 Budget, where he noted that in 2012, 1,050 individuals received employment visas and of that amount, 999 were for Brazilian nationals who traveled to Guyana.
The trend continued in 2013 with 422 applications for Brazilians and in 2014 694 for Brazilians out of a total of 744. Thus far in 2015, 304 applications have been processed with 236 being Brazilian nationals.
While Felix made it clear that his revelations should not be seen as an attack on Brazilians, there is need for Guyanese to have equal access to the local labour market.
“We are not averse to visitors; what we are saying is that Guyanese must have an equal play…They (People’s Progressive Party) had no regards for Guyanese labour,” said the Citizenship Minister.
He explained that visas were granted for menial jobs such as cooks and cleaners.
“We must ensure that the interest of Guyanese citizens are protected and preserved…Our people should not be left to look on as other people come in and do the same jobs they can perform,” he said.