NTC gets $20 Million in subvention from Govt for 2019

DPI, Guyana, Monday, December 10, 2018

The National Toshaos Council (NTC) will receive an increased sum of $20 Million in subvention from the Government in 2019, a $4 Million increase when compared to 2018.

The increased sum was catered for in the proposed 2019 National Budget under subventions and contributions for local organisations for which a total of approximately $80.5 was allocated. The Bina Hill Institute in the North Rupununi, Region Nine received $56Million, an increase of $5 Million, and the Kanuku Mountains Regional Group (KMRG), $4.5 Million.

During the National Budget Estimates this evening, Minister within the Ministry of Indigenous peoples’ Affairs, Valerie Garrido-Lowe told the National Assembly that the increased sum is to facilitate the work of the NTC Secretariat in 2019.

When asked by Opposition MP, Pauline Sukai, why there was a significant amount of monies allocated to the Bina Hill Institute as against the NTC, Minister Garrido-Lowe explained that while the NTC is mandated to support the 215 villages, it can raise its own funds; however, she said that the Bine Hill Institute is in need of the government’s support to continue operating at a minimum standard.

As it relates to the support for the construction of the NTC Secretariat, Minister of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, Sydney Allicock noted that the design is still being advanced. Once completed, support for the project will be discussed.

Asked by the Opposition why is the designing requires this length time, Minister Allicock explained that “We have been spoken about FPIC [Free, Prior and Informed Consent] and this is part of that process. We cannot dictate for the NTC, who are also working; we will continue to have a dialogue with them.”  He made it clear that a title for the land earmarked for the NTC was handed over to the body.

The NTC, comprising leaders from 212 indigenous villages across Guyana, had received as $12Million subvention in 2015, which was subsequently increased to $16Million in 2017 and 2018 respectively.

A total of $1.9 Billion was approved for the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, $1,115,286 under current expenditure and $815,348 for capital expenditure.

Synieka Thorne .

Image: Keno George.

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