APNU/AFC Chief Whip calls GuySuCo bloodsucker, Minister Mustapha demands apology

Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Zulfikar Mustapha has demanded a public apology from Opposition Chief Whip, Hon. Christopher Jones for the “blood sucker” statement he made on Monday during the first day of the Budget debate.

Speaking against the 2021 Budget, MP Jones said the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) was supposed to be the mainstay of Guyana’s economy but instead, “GuySuCo is the blood sucker on the backs of the taxpayers.”

Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Zulfikar Mustapha

Today, Minister Mustapha condemned MP Jones’s statement saying that he “taking his eyes pass the sugar workers.” He also said such a comment from a Parliamentarian was shameful.

“Mr. Speaker before I go further, I would like to say I am disappointed. I was not here in the National Assembly last Monday for some part of the debate, but when I learnt what took place and what was said I was very disappointed.

You have an Honourable Member or someone who calls himself an Honourable Member who is supposed to set the example, who is the Chief Whip of the Opposition is calling GuySuCo ‘blood sucker,” he said.

Minister Mustapha is adamant that a public apology is warranted.

“Anyone who has decency, anyone who is supporting the workers must condemn that blatant, wicked statement. That is the kind of way they treat workers, that is why they are over there. They tried their best to rig the elections to stay in power because they know people will not vote for them.”

The Government has committed to reopening the sugar estates closed by the APNU/AFC Coalition Government, a move which put some 7,000 sugar workers on the breadline.

Minister Mustapha noted that the Commission of Inquiry Report had advised that investments could have been made in the industry to revitalise it and return it to profitability.

To this end, $7 billion was pumped into the industry last year to restart and boost operations. As major rehabilitation at the mills continues, this year, the Corporation is expected to receive an additional $2 billion from the budget.   Cane harvesting has started at the Albion and Blairmont Sugar Estates.

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