Govt’s COVID-19 grant reaches Region Four

-Cane Grove first to benefit

Today, the Government rolled-out distribution of the $25,000 COVID-19 relief cash grant in Supply, Mahaica, Demerara-Mahaica (Region Four).

Residents were elated to receive the grant, with many telling DPI that it will help them sustain their households.

“Thanks very much for the $25,000 cash grant because it will put me somewhere good. I can buy some rations for me and my wife…Cleaning trench, you have to wait two months before you get paid, so I thank the Government for this initiative,” Mr. Devon Gomes said.

Mother of two, Ms. Lillowtie Ramnarine, said that her family has faced many adversities amid the pandemic.

“Some days you work, and some days you didn’t have work, but with the Government’s cash grant we will be able to buy some groceries and I thank the Government very much for it. I am grateful because I collect the $4,000 school voucher and now, I collect this $25,000,” she said.

Ms. Raynetta Gomes, a single mother of two, also lauded the Government’s grant. “It’s a good initiative because it will help out in some way because due to the COVID-19 pandemic, things have been hard for us and it will help us a lot,” she said.

Mr. Rooplall Pramlall said he has been doing several jobs to make ends meet during the pandemic.  “I live alone…I try to work all round from security guard to farming, and the [grant] will help me to pay some of my workers…Farming here isn’t easy, but with the Government’s help it will be easier,” he said.

Mr. Pramlall cultivates coconuts, rice and mangoes.

Similar sentiments were expressed at Cane Grove, whose residents were the first beneficiaries of the grant in Region Four. Distribution started in that area on Tuesday.

Distribution clerk, Ms. Hemmala Seedyal said at Cane Grove residents of single households received their grant.

“We had some instances where two families were residing in one household and what happened there is that the primary owner of the home received their money right away, but the other person signed up a pink slip and someone will return to them to give them their money,” she explained.

The names, addresses and contact data of persons who were not at home during the distribution exercise were collected and arrangements will be made for them to collect their grants at a later date. 

Meanwhile, primary homeowners have been advised to have a valid form of identification in their possession to receive the grant. A valid Guyana Identification Card, a valid driver’s licence and a valid passport are all forms of effective identification.

Minister of Local Government and Regional Development, Hon. Nigel Dharamlall has said that $3.4 billion will be distributed to 136,000 households in Region Four when the grant is disbursed.  

“The position of the Government has remained constant, and that is we will be issuing to primary households, and those households that cannot be verified as independent, they will have to fill out a ‘pink’ form to be verified. Following the verification, the secondary households will be provided for,” theMinister had said in a DPI interview on Friday.

Distribution began in September in the hinterland regions with disbursement in Regions Three and Five in the final stages.

A disbursement schedule has not been published to ensure the safety of the distribution staff and residents.