Third Vice President and Minister of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan has lied to residents of East Canje on the issue of a school bus for children of severed sugar workers.
The Minister met with residents of East Canje to address some of their concerns. As Ramjattan made his way into the Adelphi Market building where the meeting was held, scores of residents carrying placards picketed him.
Insults were hurled at the minister suggesting their distrust in him. “Ramjattan can’t be trusted,” “This is the good life?,” “Open you eye and see,” “Come an meet us out here.”
As the meeting started, some from the protest line attempted to enter the building but were prevented from doing so by the police. At the time they were still carrying their placards.
Meanwhile, several issues were raised by residents including concerns of workers who were sacked from the Rosehall Sugar Estate which has been closed.
Lance Boatswan, asked the Minister whether the Government had been thinking about strategies which could be implemented to cushion the negative impact the closure of the sugar estate is having on the community. He noted that they have been calling for water and electricity subsidies and also for the government to provide a bus to take the children of the sacked workers to school.
The Minister in response said the Region Six (East Berbice/Corentyne) Administration has money budgeted to purchase a bus to take children to school.
“Apparently they don’t want to spend it, I don’t know why. But alright, Central Government can come or some businessmen can come and put some money just like how we have gotten busses other places. In relation to the water, I am in no position to answer your question but I am certainly going to raise it with Richard Vanwest Charles about the increase and for those people who were terminated, whether there can be something done. I don’t think that everybody were sugar worker in Canje, there are other people who are other workers who will have to pay…”
In an invited comment Regional Chairman David Armogan said there had been no money in the regional administration’s budget for a bus.
“So any Minister or any government that comes and says so, is lying. In fact, I am now preparing to write the President to see if he can get a bus for the Canje area and I am going to do that on Monday morning but for the Minister to came and say that it is ridiculous.”