Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr. Frank Anthony in response to AFC MP, Trevor Williams in the National Assembly, informed that over $56.6M has been spent on the Caribbean Press between 2009 and 2012.
Of that amount, $7.8M was used specifically for administration of the publishing house, particularly as it relates to the hiring of secretarial assistance for the editors between 2009 and 2012. The editors on the other hand, are volunteering their services. The General Editor, Dr. David Dabydeen has been volunteering his services from 2009 to the present along with a pool of persons.
According to the Minister, plans are in progress for the founding of a permanent editorial board, which will be provided with financing under the Culture Ministry’s budget. The board will comprise professional writers from different Caribbean countries who will advise the editor-in -chief on what titles should be published.
“The Ministry will incorporate into its future budget, monies to employ one salaried worker (the administrator/secretary) of the Caribbean Press. This person would oversee the commissioning and publication of titles; liaise with writers, printers and editorial boards, and the government,” the Minister said.
Minister Anthony was also asked to provide the House with a breakdown of the books that were distributed in Guyana by title, location, and the number of copies as of June 20, 2013. He responded that a compilation of the said information is ongoing and assured that when completed, a copy will be table in the Parliament. He informed however, that publications by the unit were distributed to the National Library, University of Guyana Library Turkeyen, Walter Roth Museum, foreign embassies based in Guyana, Caricom Secretariat, and the Guyana Police Force among other entities.
Additionally, the Caribbean Press is in the process of preparing 12 books to be released. These include:
- Egbert Martin: Scriptology
- Twenty-Five Caribbean Poems for Children.
- Anthology of Caribbean Stories for Children.
- Six Anthologies of Contemporary Poetry by Guyanese Children (to be edited by Rev. Gideon Cecil).
- Four collections of Children’s short stories by Janet Jagan (Reprints)
- Three collections of the essays of Janet Jagan.
- Six volumes of the National Assembly Speeches of Desmond Hoyte
- Four additional volumes of the National Assembly Speeches of Forbes Burnham.
- Paloma Mohammed’s children’s short story, Marlee the Manatee.
- Two anthologies of Guyanese plays, (ed. A1 Creighton).
- Seven volumes of Kyk-Over-Al (Reprints from 1945 to 1961)
- Three volumes of Mittelholzer Lectures, (ed. Andrew Lindsay),
The Ministry will be making provisions to hire an administrator/secretary. Minister Anthony explained that, such a person will oversee the commissioning and publication of titles; coordinate with writers, printers and Editorial Board, and the government, be responsible for book distribution, for the publicity of the press, identify and organise the visits of writers to Guyana to carry out workshops and readings, manage the Press’s website among other duties. [GINA]