New PPP/C Gov’t to meet with Amerindian leaders sub-regionally

DPI Guyana, Sunday, August 16, 2020

The new PPP/C Government is ironing out plans to meet with Amerindian leaders sub-regionally within the next four months. This disclosure was made by the Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Hon. Pauline Sukhai, during a press briefing on Saturday.

Minister Sukhai said the PPP/C Government is committed to convening the National Toshaos Conference (NTC) within its first month in office, to engage the leaders on plans for the development of Guyana’s first peoples.

“We believe in all Amerindian consultation and engaging our leaders,” she said.

The Minister relayed that a planned schedule will be developed with COVID preventative guidelines to ensure the safety of all.

The Ministry is also preparing an alternative approach to have the NTC conference closer to the end of the year; however, this will depend on the country’s ability to flatten the curve.

“We are looking at it in a two-prong way because we need to ensure that there is full engagement on how the Government proceeds with the intervention for their development.”

The National Toshaos Council (NTC) is a semi-autonomous body comprising all Toshaos in Guyana. It has an executive committee including one Toshao from each of the ten administrative regions.

Each year, the body organises a national conference which brings together the leaders of the over 212 Indigenous Villages in all of the 10 Administrative Regions. The conference is an important forum that allows village leaders to have engagements with the president and ministers, and officials from various Government Agencies.

The forum is aimed at consolidating and expanding the national development and transformation processes to cater to the needs of Indigenous Peoples. It also addresses issues such as land titles and demarcations, education, health, social services, security and infrastructure.

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