Opposition-led town council at Corriverton stymieing progress – govt ministers hears
─ residents complain of no co-operation among councillors
DPI, Guyana, Friday, August 16, 2019
Government ministers who recently visited the town of Corriverton heard of complaints of progress being stymied in the town. Businessman Faaiz Mursaline and APNU Councillor, Anil Sugrim shared similar views of how the opposition councillors blatantly opting not to facilitate development in the town.
Corriverton, located on the upper Corentyne Coast, is one of three towns in the East Berbice-Corentyne Region and is also one of the two towns in the region predominantly led by PPP/C Councilors.
This grievance of stymied development was brought by supporters of the Coalition government while supporters of the opposition staged a small protest nearby.
Sugrim highlighted that the town council refused a government intervention of approximately 200 streetlights which were to go towards the community. “Our concern here is that we would like to see central government use some other method to ensure there is development in these areas.”
Added to this, Mursaline outlined the potential which exists in the town in many sectors. However, he noted, the leaders of the township must be mature and take full responsibility for the people’s needs as well as the town. The developments which the council withholds are critical to the lives of residents. “The development in Corriverton is stagnant, not because of the government, but because of the inefficiency of the council that is in place and the council is run by the opposition who is . …. stagnating local development. It is not things, but it’s the little things like the cleaning of drains, maintaining streets, all these little things mean a lot to people,” he said.
Minister with responsibility for Housing, Hon. Annette Ferguson and Minister within the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, Hon. Valerie Garrido-Lowe, who attended a community meeting in the town, stressed the importance of local democracy and the role central government plays in ensuring the development of the country.
Minister Garrido-Lowe said: “If you are in charge of a town or a community or a village, you are in charge of 12,000 or even 500 people, it is your duty to ensure that things are ok without your people.”
Meanwhile, Minister Ferguson added: “Many times, when we go into communities, you know what the common cries are? Ministers, when will the road be fixed? Ministers, we need street lamps, ministers we need this, we need that and the majority of the complaints are at the local level that is why you have to hold your local representatives accountable.”
Minister Ferguson emphasised further that His Excellency, President Granger places a high priority on Local Government Elections (LGE) as a means of ensuring local democracy. Residents were urged when voting to do so based on the understanding that they are giving someone the power to ensure their issues are heard and addressed in a timely manner.