Apr 25, 2016 News
– two day outreach to Region Six successful
Government’s ‘meet the public’ engagement is not a political propaganda exercise or one aimed at securing political mileage; rather the exercise targets the people with the goal of bettering their lives.
This was emphasised on Saturday, by Acting President and Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo when he addressed a number of residents of Upper Corentyne at the Azad Lattiff Land, 78 Village, Corriverton.
“This is an occasion for us to do our civic government duty. This is not a propaganda exercise, it is a people’s exercise where we are here to listen to your concerns and see how best we can address them. We are your servants and that’s why we are here,” the Prime Minister said.
In his brief remarks prior to the one-on-one interaction, the Prime Minister further stated that, “it will take some time for us to address all your problems because we are a new government that’s under one year (old). Next month will be one year, and we are now discovering a lot of problems in all the ministries and government agencies, so it will take some time to have these issues fixed.”
He encouraged the residents to make full use of the opportunity to engage the ministers present, and the staff of the critical state agencies to have their issues addressed.
The Prime Minister congratulated Minster of State Joseph Harmon for successfully piloting the initiative. He described the process as building partnership with the people.
Residents from Lancaster to Moleson Creek turned out in large numbers to have their issues highlighted, and many of them were high in praise for the coalition government, for taking ‘government to the people’. Bibi Alli told the Government Information Agency (GINA) that, “I’m very happy. It’s wonderful; they are doing a good job visiting people, looking after their problems, whatever issues. The government is doing a great job so far.”
Another resident, Ashmanie Khan noted that, “Right now everybody got some problem so this activity is really good for them. I hope some problems can be solved today. The government made a lot of improvement. So far their performance is good.”
Evadnie Wilson was overjoyed over the good news that passport and birth certificate services will be decentralised. “For all the years, we were in this mess. If we want a passport, we spend about $6000 to get it. You got to wake up early to travel and when you reach is a hassle. Now I feel comfortable that we could get our passport and birth certificate.”
Meanwhile, in his remarks, Minister Harmon said that the coalition government believes in engaging people in the developmental process. “Government is trying to bring the services it offers to the people of the country so that their lives can be better,” he said.
The Minister of State is of the view that there has not been this kind of ministerial engagement with the people of Guyana before, adding that it shows the commitment of the coalition government to citizens.
He encouraged the residents to come forward and state their concerns as he pointed out, “this is not a talking shop; we will try to make decisions on the ground immediately to address your problems and those that we cannot address at the moment we will take them back to the relevant departments to have them addressed.”
Chairing the short proceedings, prior to the official commencement of the activity, Minister of Citizenship, Winston Felix advised the residents that very soon they will be able to make applications for their passports and birth certificates right in the region and, they will, as well be able to uplift them right within the region, as plans are in place to decentralise these services.
This will eliminate the hassle of travelling to the Central Immigration and Passport Office in Georgetown to make an application and then return to uplift the passport. “The President wants this to happen and it will happen,” Minister Felix asserted.
Saturday’s activity culminated a two-day meet the public engagement in Region Six. Yesterday, over 350 residents from Whim to Mara, East Bank Berbice, including Canje and New Amsterdam met and interacted with the government officials at State House, New Amsterdam.
Officials and representatives from the Ministry of Communities – Housing department, the Guyana Lands and Surveys Commission, the Guyana Water Incorporated, the Guyana Power and Light Company Inc. the National Insurance Scheme, and the Ministry of Citizenship’s Immigration Department were present and took complaints from persons.
Government’s meet the public engagement commenced in Georgetown, Region Four and has also been held in Regions Two and Nine. (GINA)
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