By Kurt Campbell
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Opposition Shadow Local Government Minister Ronald Bulkan while addressing the House in the opening of Budget debates has rubbished the administration’s initiative to implement a $1B countrywide cleanup campaign.
Bulkan has disregarded the move as an “invidious initiative” to make existing councils look bad, score political points, adding that it represents the height of lawlessness.
“This is not a clean-up campaign; this is an election campaign, instead of being the answer to the problem the government has chosen to be part of the problem,” Bulkan told the House.
Finance Minister Dr. Ashni Singh during the presentation of Budget 2014 on March 24 had announced the allocation of $1B for a ‘Clean Up My Country initiative’, of which $500M will be dedicated to immediate efforts to clean the capital city.
Dr. Singh had acknowledged then that there was a serious sanitation problem across Guyana and as such the initiative was necessary.
Bulkan however, believes it is centralist perversity, adding that it is designed to bypass local authorities.
“The government is making a mockery of democracy,” he added.
“Piles of garbage and litter abound. The national public health hazard that this presents especially in the face of emerging diseases can no longer be ignored. Notwithstanding the statutory responsibility of the local government bodies for maintaining the environment in our communities and neighbourhoods it is visibly evident that they have failed in the discharge of this basic duty,” Dr. Singh had said.
He told the House that the administration can no longer stand by in hope, waiting in vain for comatose local government bodies to address this problem.