[www.inewsguyana.com] – The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) today called on the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to provide “hard evidence” justifying a $20M expenditure for Duracell batteries.
This follows an announcement by government on Wednesday (January 7), that a total of $20 million would be used to purchase batteries for the elections body as general and regional elections loom.
But the GTUC says it does not accept the “flimsy excuse” made by Cabinet Secretary Dr. Roger Luncheon that the batteries would be “for all other purposes and in the event of blackout.”
The Union said in a strongly worded statement that “this seemingly wanton expenditure following the revelation of billions of dollars in corrupt practices by the PPP regime suggests that the State’s coffer, filled with hard earned taxpayers’ dollars, is ripped open to feed the hunger for personal wealth accumulation for government and PPP officials who continue to feed off the fat of the land.”
It added, “As these fat cat politicians, friends and families fill their pockets, public servants and other workers are left to eke out a living on starvation wages, and the nation’s debt rises astronomically. Children of the working class will inherent the brunt of this in a cycle of working class poverty.”
The Union reasoned too that the “continuous pillaging” of the nation’s resources is further reason why Parliament needs to be reconvened.
The statement went on to explain that an active parliament, which is a constitutional requirement, would have allowed for careful review not only of the GECOM’s budget but specifically review of this item and any other “suspicious slush fund” created by the government.
GTUC calls on Opposition Leader David Granger to up the ante to have Parliament reconvened lest it is feared that the government will continue to use this prorogation period as a cover to engage in corrupt practices due to lack of oversight.
Government will also be spending US$169,000 on items such as ballot boxes, security seals and paper.