Central Gov’t, municipalities to work on single window for building permits

His Excellency Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali says he will soon be engaging the Mayors and their Deputies on the modernising of legislation to establish a single window approval system for building permits.

President Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali along with Minsters of Local Government and Regional Development, Hon. Nigel Dharamlall, Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance, Hon. Gail Teixeira and the Deputy Mayors from the 10 municipalities

He made the announcement after administering the Oath of Office to the Mayors and Deputy Mayors at their swearing-in ceremony on Friday.

Dr. Ali also pointed out that while the municipalities continue to change, the laws, regulations and building codes have all remained constant.

“These are some of the things that Central Government will be working on with you so that we can bring the laws and regulations and the codes up to speed with the changing dynamics that exist and that will be a critical part of our work going forward.

“All studies have identified one of our major deficiencies as the length of time for the approval of building permits. Some instances it stays at some town councils and city council for sometimes two to three years. So, what we have to do now is to work collectively on creating a single window approval system.”

President Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali along with Minsters of Local Government and Regional Development, Hon. Nigel Dharamlall, Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance, Hon. Gail Teixeira and the Mayors from the 10 municipalities

Dr. Ali said it will enhance the competitiveness and improve the ease of doing business. He added that the officials must understand the macro development agenda of the Government, which directly impacts the work they do at the level of the municipalities. The President noted that Guyana is embarking on a transformative agenda that would see key and critical infrastructural links being created, rehabilitated and re-established.

“It is therefore, imperative that we all not only embrace a common development trajectory, but that we consult, that we talk and we share ideas to ensure that at the end of the day, the people of Guyana get the best service that we can deliver to them,” Dr. Ali said.

President Ali said the Government has been assisting municipalities facing challenges in various areas. However, he noted that more is still to be done and the municipalities are pivotal partners. 

“The councils are a facilitator of development not a barrier to development. Sometimes in the eyes of the population, they see us as barrier to development, as causing hindrance, creating unnecessary bureaucracy and red tape, that is not what we are there to do,” President Ali said.

Minster of Local Government and Regional Development, Hon. Nigel Dharamlall and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance, Hon. Gail Teixeira also attended the ceremony.

The Mayors and their Deputies were elected last December.

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