[www.inewsguyana.com] – Head of the Social Change Organization – Blue CAPS – and Former President of the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce (GCCI) Clinton Urling is of the view that local government elections (LGE) should predate general elections.
Urling, who has been very vocal on the issue of local government elections in recent times said while the entire issue of a possible “no-confidence” motion being presented in the National Assembly is one for parliamentary political leaders to pontificate and decide upon, 20 years of no LGE remains a contemptible and unconstitutional situation.
“If a majority no confidence verdict is carried, then Blue CAPS will respect whatever guidance is offered by the constitution to deal with such a circumstance,” he said in response to inquiries made by iNews.
To support his reasoning that LGE should precede general elections, Urling pointed to its ability to fix broken and neglected communities “which effects hits closer to home, then attempt to fix the national system.”
He believes that there is no guarantee that general elections will remedy the current governance issues between the legislature and executive; explaining that the country could end up with a similar dispensation which would further exacerbate and prolong the rot at the local and community levels.
“Local elections will give citizens a closer and more accessible say in the conduct of public affairs that affect their lives and communities than at the centralized national level,” he pointed out; adding that “local government structures and leadership have decayed and become ineffective. Fresh LGE will allow for new leaders to emerge and for the design of new approaches to solving community and municipal problems.”
Urling said new and more effective management can result from LGE which would allow central government and other bodies to focus more on issues of strategic national importance; relieving them of considerable administrative burden of managing both local and central demands.
The advocate is of the view that most young people have never participated In a LGE and many would love the opportunity to do so both as voters and contestants.
“The new local government system allows for individuals to contest their constituency, thus allowing them to potentially become leaders of their communities without having to align to any political party,” he concluded.