[www.inewsguyana.com] – The European Union (EU) has granted a total of $51.2M to the Justice Institute of Guyana for a project aimed at Empowering Amerindian Communities to build more equitable, democratic and open societies
On April 03, Ambassador Robert Kopecký, Head of Delegation of the EU to Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Suriname and the Dutch OCTs and Ms. Melinda Janki, Executive Director of Justice Institute of Guyana signed a grant contract to implement a project titled “Step by Step to Self-Sufficiency”.
The grant will be funded from the 2013 Non State Actors (NSA) country allocation for Guyana.
Ambassador Kopecký noted that, ‘The European Union recognises the integral role played by NGOs in the development of Guyana, and the Non State Actors and Local Authorities thematic programme provides funding opportunities to support civil society projects in Guyana. The proposal from the Justice Institute of Guyana convinced us in its approach of empowering Amerindian communities. We look forward to effective implementation of the project.”
The specific objectives of the action by The Justice Institute of Guyana are; to empower Amerindian Village Councils to function more efficiently and effectively; to empower them to develop Village rules; and to strengthen their capacity to enable them to become more productive and self-sufficient. Additionally, the action also foresees strengthening the participation of Amerindian communities in governmental consultation processes.
The aforementioned activities will be implemented primarily via the provision of technical legal advice and support, technical legal drafting expertise and legal representation. Further, it is foreseen that the production of model village rules, a code of conduct for Amerindian Village Councils, model mining agreements and the production of policy papers and DVDs will be financed under the grant.
The thematic programme ‘Non-State Actors and Local Authorities in Development’, introduced in 2007 is a development policy instrument of the European Consensus on Development.
It is envisaged that the grant to The Justice Institute of Guyana will supplement the work already undertaken by other grant beneficiaries locally and the organisation will be working over the next thirty six (36) months towards the effective roll-out of the activities foreseen under the intervention.
Moreover, the Justice Institute is, in partnership with the Equal Rights Trust, a UK registered think tank, holding a judicial colloquium in Georgetown on 4 and 5 April 2014.
The colloquium is funded via European Union assistance to the Equal Rights Trust and covers key developments and international best practice in the field of anti-discrimination law, with a particular focus on comparative jurisprudence from other jurisdictions, and is being supported by the Supreme Court of Guyana.