“Everyone in Guyana must have access to public information” – President David Granger at commission of Radio Bartica
DPI, Guyana, Sunday, November 19, 2017
With regional integration being one of the administration’s goals, the community radio stations project to link the indigenous communities with the coastland has proven successful thus far with the launch of four station to date.
The most recent to join the family is Radio Bartica 95.1 FM. The $30M state-of-the-art facility was commissioned by President David Granger and Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo on Saturday.
The radio station which is housed at the Bartica Learning Centre and which will provide local programming to the majority of residents in the Cuyuni-Mazaruni (Region Seven) district, signal reaches as far as the Upper Demerara-Upper Berbice (Region 10) district.
Delivering the feature address at the commissioning, President Granger commended Prime Minister Nagamootoo and the technical team for moving in the direction of establishing hinterland radio stations, noting they aid in bridging the hinterland-coastal gap.
This, he said, is an “important step for democracy,” as it will ensure citizens are accurately informed. The Head of State noted that public information must be accessible, appealing, informative and truthful and readily available to all citizens; “geographical locations ought not to be a constraint,” he said.
He remarked that no longer will development in the Cuyuni-Mazaruni district be hampered because of a lack of information. He noted that via, Radio Bartica, residents a will be kept abreast with the latest current affairs and government programmes that will create employment and new opportunities.
The President encouraged the broadcaster to be “accurate and truthful” at all times, as this will allow persons to make informed decisions. He also urged that Guyana’s culture, language, education and entertainment be disseminated through Radio Bartica, 95.1 FM.
Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, whose office has been instrumental in the hinterland radio project, empathically noted that, “We are all Guyanese, we will not be divided. Radio gives us the opportunity to heal the breach gaps and bring us closer”.
Radio Bartica 95.1 FM is a collaboration between the government and the Guyana Telephone and Telegram (GTT) company. The telephone company’s towers were used to mount the signals to allow the radio station to broadcast. The Chief Executive Officer, Justin Nedd said the company remains committed to being “a catalyst to the town’s growth.”
Meanwhile, Regional Chairman Gordon Bradford urged residents to embrace the radio station, noting the vital role communication plays in the areas of health, education, development and agriculture, among others. He disclosed that plans are on stream to have the Mayor and Regional officials provide updates on the radio.
President Granger and Prime Minister Nagamootoo together unveiled Radio Bartica commissioning plaque, following which they made the first live appearance on the radio with National Communication Network’s (NCN’s) Michela Abraham-Ali. The Prime Minister’s office also distributed 12 radio sets to residents of the Region Seven district.
Minister of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, Sydney Allicock; Minister within the Ministry Natural Resources, Simona Broomes; Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes; and Minister within the Ministry of Finance Jaipaul Sharma were also among the first guests to be interviewed in the studios of Radio Bartica.
According to Dr. Rovin Deodat, coordinator of the radio project, two other stations in Aishalton and Orealla, will be commissioned before year-end.
By: Zanneel Williams
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