Opening the ceremony for the New Amsterdam Town Week 2019 were members of the Joint Services executing a march pass along the main road of New Amsterdam while President David Granger took the salute.
As the President made his way to the stage dancing to “Here comes trouble, here comes the danger” as it blasted on the speakers and repeated by the DJ, loud screams from his crowd of supporters who travelled from Region Three, and Region Five reverberated through the township.
As he addressed the gathering cocooned by security barriers and policemen, women, and soldiers from Georgetown and Berbice, he highlighted that New Amsterdam has seen a huge developmental process since 2015.
He added that the transformation over the past four years could expand “in the next five years”.
To that extent, Granger reminded the gathering that “before 2015 New Amsterdam was a victim of inertia and financial anaemia.”
“That is what the previous administration had it under but we refuse to be anaemic. We restored local democracy by holding of local government elections”.
He added, “It will happen again when the constitution says we must have it. The government is a constitutional government and I am a constitutional president.”
New Amsterdam has the potential to become a dynamo of economic dev in this region, President Granger said.
“You have thriving businesses but New Amsterdam has a bustling business sector. People must move to take control of the regional administration. New Amsterdam is not only about the past, but it is also experiencing a rebirth.”
Granger detailed that New Amsterdam has seen measurable progress, from the establishment of a new passport office, improved public education and upgraded facilities.
He added, “The largest squatter settlement is being regularised. Over 200 land titles have been issued (Angoys Avenue). Public Services have been expanded. Those of you on the East Bank Berbice will know what a change has taken place there.
“Young people are being encouraged to start their own businesses. The government will provide capital to small businesses, even big entrepreneurs”.
According to the President, Region Six could lead the way in agro-industries and manufacturing but while he told hundreds at Union Village last week that they can make breadfruit chips and sell it at the Berbice Bridge”, at the Town Week opening yesterday he said “don’t worry with selling plantain chips by the bridge, factories can be established to produce agricultural produce for the entire Caribbean.
“You have the potential, the land, the expertise and the resources”.
During his speech, he also spoke about education and its importance. He said that Berbicians can now access “first-class” education in the region rather than having to only access it in Georgetown. Science is the main focus.
Also speaking at the event was Minister of Communities, Ronald Bulkan, and the organiser for the Town Week, Jevaughn Stephens.
The week of activities was organised by the Caribbean Nations Group in collaboration with the New Amsterdam Town Council under the theme “Diversification is the focus, Inclusion is the goal, Celebration through Transformation in 2019”.
The week of activities continues with a Mayor’s Ball followed by Birding Competition, Inter-School Debating Competition, Senior Citizens’ Breakfast, High School Basketball Competition, All White Cocktail Party, Male Empowerment Pageant, Domino Competitions, Soft Ball Cricket Competitions, Poetry Competition, Big People Party One Man Band, Medical Outreaches, Renaming of Streets in Stanleytown, a Street Fair and Exhibition and concludes on Sunday 3, November with Duck Curry Competition and Cooler Fete.
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