Lindeners urged to get involved in agriculture

– at info fair and town hall meeting

Residents of Region 10 have been assured that the door is open for job creation and economic empowerment.

Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill gave the assurance at the Regional Information Fair and Town Hall Meeting in Linden (Region 10), on Friday.

Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill addressing the gathering at the Info Fair and Town Hall Meeting in Linden

The information fair was organised by the “10 Forward” Civil Society Group, devoted to disseminating information about ongoing projects and other government initiatives of benefit to the region.

In delivering his feature address, the minister commended the efforts of the group in serving as a conduit between the government and the people of Linden.

He emphasised the importance of having the relevant information at the disposal of the residents, so that they can be empowered to take full advantage of all opportunities.

Minister Edghill reiterated the PPP/C Administration’s commitment to fostering job creation in Region 10.

“This government was bold and brave enough to put the legal and administrative framework in place to ensure job creation for our people, to get involved in something that is meaningful, economically viable, and good for the development of our country.”

The gathering at the opening of the Info Fair and Town Hall meeting in Linden

The minister noted that the recent passing of the Hemp Bill provides lucrative avenues for persons to venture into the Agriculture sector.

“Based on the instructions given by the Attorney at law, you can plant, you can manufacture, and you can process [hemp] , in keeping with the law, and there is a wide market that is available,” the public works minister relayed.

He highlighted the remunerative potential of farming, pointing to President Dr Irfaan Ali’s recent engagement with students from the University of Guyana’s Agriculture programme, related to shadehouse farming. This goes hand in hand with government’s intention to engage youths especially in the Agriculture sector, providing them with access to a sustainable source of income.

The minister also noted that while not everyone will be employed within the oil and gas sector, there is a strong demand for workers in other sectors, urging the residents to take advantage of these opportunities.

“Diversifying of our country’s economy is key to our development. And while we are happy to be engaged in the oil and gas sector, oil and gas won’t last forever. We have to think about what is sustainable and what can build and catapult us into the future. So, I am urging our Lindeners to get involved in agriculture. Whether it is in livestock, farming, hemp cultivation, or agro-processing. We must get involved,” he implored.

The gathering at the opening of the Info Fair and Town Hall meeting in Linden

In presenting the government’s plans for the cultivation of hemp in Region 10, Senior Research Scientist at the Ministry of Agriculture, David Fredericks, said that Linden’s ecosystem provides the perfect environment for hemp cultivation and established the potential benefits of venturing into the trade.

He also outlined several agricultural issues associated with hemp cultivation, providing a brief overview of likely causes and course of action. Moreover, he urged all in attendance to reach out to NAREI for additional information and assistance.

Principle Legal Advisor of the Ministry of Legal Affairs, Ronetta Sargent, presenting on behalf of the Attorney General’s Chambers, provided the regulatory legal framework for hemp cultivation.

Region 10 Deputy Regional Officer, Assistant REO, and representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Human Services and Social Security, Ministry of Housing and Water-Central Housing and Planning Authority, and the Attorney General’s Chambers were also present at the Information fair.