LGE necessary for local development – Lethem mayor
DPI, Guyana, Monday, January 22, 2018
Mayor of the Town of Lethem, Region Nine (Upper Takatu-Upper Essequibo) Carlton Beckles said he is grateful that Local Government Elections (LGE) has come back on stream, as it is now providing opportunities for development in local communities.
Speaking to the Department of Public Information (DPI) recently, Beckles said the new town of Lethem has seen major improvements over the last two years when compared to previous years; a success which he said, was made possible through the restoration of local democracy.
“Over a two-year period and I as the first Mayor of the municipality of Lethem, I recognise the importance of Local Governance because of the number of strides that we would have made over that two-year period. I did not see that amount of development over a number of years,” Beckles told the DPI.
According to Beckles, the improvements have been startling and range from the building of the labour force at the municipality to the improvement in the town’s infrastructure.
“When we took over there weren’t any street lights in Lethem, so far from our revenue, we would have installed 50 street lamps, with an agreement from the Lethem Power Company (LPC), we have an agreement for another 100. That is 150 street lamps would have been installed.”
Mayor Beckles said the council will also seek the assistance of central government to develop a few more roads in the area.
The Municipality has a workforce of some 10 persons who are employed permanently, including the Town Clerk and treasurer. This amount, the Mayor said could be increased in the near future, noting that it also has a functioning office.
Continuing with the developments for 2017, Beckles related that a number of playing fields were upgraded, including the sports complex ground. The municipality has also been assisting families by taking children to school with its school bus, at a much lesser cost attached than they would pay for regular transportation.
The Mayor said the municipality has a number of projects that it is hoping to pursue for this new year, however, will only be accomplished once revenue is collected. These include housing projects and an identified area to be dubbed “Education City” which in the long term will house a secondary school, Technical Institute and University in the same space.
With Local Government Elections slated for later this year, Beckles said he will allow residents to vote based on what has been accomplished thus far by the Council while expressing his satisfaction with the level of success since achieving township status.
“Our preparation for Local Government Elections, I do not want to divulge, but what I know, we are waiting and ready, we are going to enjoy it definitely.”
Lethem was declared a town in October 2015 and attained its official township status in 2017.
By: Alexis Rodney
For more photos, click on the link to the DPI’s Flickr Page