‘IMCs are made up of a lot of bandits’ – APNU
…criticises gov’t over disbandment of NDCs
The government has been handpicking its cronies to form Inter Management Councils (IMCs) as part of a dubious plot to replace Neighbourhood Democratic Councils (NDCs), opposition coalition APNU has suggested.
But the coalition is happy that citizens in some areas are resisting these efforts, as can be seen at Kwakwani in Region Ten and Lethem in Region Nine and Corriverton where more than 600 residents have signed a petition calling for the removal of the IMC and the reinstatement of the elected Town Council.
As far as the APNU is concerned, the IMCs are being financed to “look good” so that when Local Government elections comes around, the ruling PPP can then parade these very persons as its candidates to win over control of the NDCs.
Further, APNU has charged that while the Minister of Local Government has the power to form IMCs to replace NDCs for various reasons, the process has not been entirely above board.
APNU Parliamentarian, Desmond Trotman, said that the process has been stage-managed by the PPP to get its select group to form the IMCs. He said that the process first has to begin with a petition from residents clamouring for the removal of the NDC and then for a properly advertised public hearing to be held with the accusers present.
In the recent cases where IMCs have been installed, Trotman said that the petition has been orchestrated, the public hearings are not advertised properly and that the venue for the hearing does not allow the widest possible participation.
The government has dissolved the NDCs of Bartica, Canefield-Enterprise, Ordnance-Fort Lands 38, Enfield-New Doe Park, Kilcoy-Chesney, Maida-Tarlogie, Black Bush Polder, Bush Lot-Adventure, Whim-Bloomfield and the Corriverton Town Council.
Ronald Bulkan, another APNU Parliamentarian, said that the “ultimate brazenness” was to learn this week that the government is now looking to disband the Anna Regina Town Council and the NDCs at La Jalousie-Nouvelle Flanders, Little Diamond-Herstelling and Plaisance-Industry.
“Instead of making visible moves to facilitate the holding of Local Government Elections, they have callously continued their campaign to dismantle duly elected councils and replace them with IMCs, largely comprising hand-picked loyalists and ignoring in the process even the most basic principle of proportionality,” Bulkan stated.
APNU believes that the residents have to stand up and resist these efforts.
APNU Parliamentarian, Sydney Allicock, from Region Nine, said that the people of the interior are beginning to find their strength and to make informed-decisions. He has personally been handing out documents, such as aspects of the constitution and Budget Debate speeches to the people.
Allicock said that before the people of the interior were only being told what the government wants to tell them. “But things are a little different now.”
According to Bulkan, at the last meeting of the Tripartite Talks, President Donald Ramotar committed the government to re-introducing the four Local Government Reform Bills which were tabled in the Ninth Parliament for immediate submission to a Special Select Committee. That committee would be responsible for finalising the text of the Bills.
However, up to yesterday, the government had failed to re-submit the Bills to the National Assembly.
It is heartening to note, however, that citizens are standing up to the onslaught on their democratic rights and are beginning to speak out against the violence being practised by the government.
Almost 600 residents of Corriverton signed a Petition calling on the government to remove the IMC which was arbitrarily imposed on the community and to reinstall the previously existing Council.