[www.inewsguyana.com] – In anticipation of the upcoming National Toshaos Council (NTC) meeting, the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) of Region Nine held a Regional Toshaos conference to address issues affecting communities and satellite villages in the region.
The conference was held on Thursday and Friday under the theme ‘Overcoming challenges through good governance’ at St. Ignatius village and the Toshaos were addressed by Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Pauline Sukhai.
Issues dealt with included the roles and relevance of the Community Support Officer (CSO), the impact and effects of the 2014 National Budget cuts for hinterland development, and good governance.
Minister Sukhai in her presentation to the regional conference on Friday, said while the government in playing its role by investing in community development, it is equally important for the communities and their leaders to play their part effectively.
She implored the Toshaos to make use of the investment resources and support provided by the government to their villages and communities with the aim of further developing them in the best interest of the residents.
The Toshaos were encouraged to ensure that in the execution of all community projects, there is proper accountability.
Meanwhile the Minister called on the village leaders to be better examples to their communities and the people whom they have been elected to lead.
The Minister elaborated in her address to the village leaders on the new political dispensation in the parliament which is frustrating every developmental effort which the administration seeks to put in place.
Mention was also made of the cuts to the $200M Presidential grant funds for 187 villages, communities and settlements, withholding of development funds which will see key developmental works in hinterland communities being hampered and delays in the village councils’ development agenda.
Other areas to be affected due to the lack of funding will be the support for community tourism initiatives, cultural and language revival projects, and land and water projects.
[Extracted and modified from GINA]