Sep 08, 2020 Editorial
He came into office amidst many expectations from the many jaded and resigned residents of the capital city of Georgetown, who had given up hope. But the man has delivered, and he must keep on doing so with every sinew and nerve in his body. Today, we salute Mayor Subraj Narine, for a job well done; that is most encouraging.
We think that Mayor Narine has surpassed expectations, despite encountering many hurdles in the dismal corners of City Hall. As was to be expected, he ran into severe turbulence in his early days. For men and women had territory to protect and interests to serve. Among too many so-called official servants, those interests were not about the health and wellbeing of the largely forgotten and forsaken populace of the once Garden City. It was heavily and richly of the self-serving, where what was not sold was bought and bartered for in one financial treachery after another that would have made one Judas Iscariot proud and chortling all the way to the bank or ‘box hand’ or the basket of the beauties that dot that disturbed place.
His Lordship Narine has made a difference in a small place that has the largest of reaches. The prevailing mentality was this is how this place is run, so do not get any ideas. After all, this is the way that things have operated since time immemorial. Garbage is collected in most places and most of the time. A little more rates and taxes is collected and accounted for mostly honestly, since the opposite was part of the culture of the community that was employed to serve the interests of long suffering citizens forced to live with blight and bleakness.
We at this paper are grateful to Mayor Narine for his spirited and untiring efforts to clean things up in a determined and relentless manner. If he gets five officers of the municipality to share his visions for this city, then the capital could get to its feet and on the move. In fact, some of the evidence is present when one looks around some of the streets and marketplaces. More potholed roads are filled. More drains are cleared. More neighbourhoods have a different feel about them.
Let us be clear: the works have been a long time in coming, for things in government are known to move at a snail’s pace. It can be excruciating and pressuring on the patience of the people, who live in this city. It can be jaw dropping and eye opening, if not nostril flaring and stomach churning, so bad had matters deteriorated. Change come slowly, but Mayor Narine did introduce some measure of change. And for that he ought to be commended.
There is a little more of spirit in the air, a fresh surge of energy. It is interesting what a new face could bring to the table, an honest one for a change. Everybody screams for change, but nobody wants to change the ways in which they conducted themselves and did business. They desired to keep on doing business as was the usual, such as not paying rates and taxes, not cleaning up after themselves, and not about doing things, about dealing with things, in an official and above the board basis.
After all the sweetness was too sweet to give up willingly and responsibly. It cut both ways with most collecting their bargains on the sly and in the dark. Like it is said in Guyana: one hand can’t clap. But one hand can give to the other hand that is demanding and expecting, and outstretched and greedy. In this way, the coffers of City Hall got next to nothing, but everything was demanded of it.
Who could exist like that? Which business can manage to get by on such shaky footing? It may not be such a stretch to surmise that if all the monies were cleanly collected by municipal authorities that we would have no need for that oil money. It is staggering to the contemplation, degrading to the imagination. And this is what Mayor Narine attempts to fix. We credit him for getting some way, for trying. Well done, sir!
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