With the return of the Mashramani Float Parade to Vlissengen Road, the Georgetown Mayor and City Council,(M&CC) has approved the allocation and rental of spots for vending along the traditional route.
Deputy Director of the Solid Department at the M&CC, Floyd Rollins, explained that the preparations for the celebrations are underway with a cleaning exercise scheduled for this Saturday.
The Georgetown M&CC has allocated the vending spots that will be leased at a starting price of $10,000. According to officials attached to the M&CC, spots will be open for vending along Thomas Street, Bar Street, Irving Street, and Square of the Revolution. There will also be caravans available at the cost of $60,000.
Last year, with a move of the revellers and floats to Brickdam for the Mash Day celebrations, commuters and vendors alike complained of not having enough space to conduct business along the route.
But after a series of complaints, Minister of Social Cohesion, who has responsibility for culture, Dr. George Norton, announced a decision to have the annual Mashramani Float Parade return to Vlissengen Road.
“Persons have been clamouring that they wanted to reclaim the Vlissengen Road pathway and we’ve managed to have that. There’s no way we’re ever going to get back Church Street and I think persons need to accept that,” Dr Norton said.
Instead of Brickdam, this year Mash route will commence at the National Park to Thomas Road and Albert Street then along Vlissengen Road to Hadfield Street and Vlissingen Road and to the destination point, Durban Park.
Meanwhile, Banks DIH, at a press conference yesterday in the Ministry of Education’s boardroom, announced its sponsorship for the National Children’s Mashramani Costume Competition and float parade, to be held on Saturday.
The sponsorship for this year exceeds $2 million. Marcel Huston, Chief Education Officer, at the Ministry of Education said with this sponsorship, the children participating in this year’s Mash activities will be given the opportunity to increase their talents in dance, costume and other areas of their crafts.
He also outlined some other ways in which the Children’s Mash will help with the peaceful coexistence of Guyanese people and their overall development.
“Guyana is a diverse country in terms of us having six races; this activity, every year, is a chance for unity,” he said. “Mashramani is not just another activity that is relevant and important to our culture but it gives our people an opportunity to come together regardless of which racial group they belong to,” he added.
The Children’s costume competition and float parade is an opportunity to cultivate a spirit of unity. He said the Education Ministry values Banks DIH and the work it has been doing so far.
Also at the press conference was Administrator of the Unit of Allied Arts of the Ministry of Education, Lorraine Barker-King, who assured Banks DIH that they will see value for their money when the children take to the streets on Saturday to display their costumes. She appealed for everyone to come out to witness and support the children as they celebrate Guyana’s 48 Republic Anniversary.
Public Relations Officer of Banks DIH, Troy Peters, said that the organisation has increased sponsorship for the event this year and announced that in the future, further increases will be made.
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