Head of State, David Granger has called on citizens to exercise their democratic right and turn out in their numbers to vote at the March 18 Local Government Elections (LGE) for those representatives who will manage their communities.
The President was last evening (Thursday March 10) speaking to residents of Rose Hall Town, East Berbice, Corentyne, Region six during a public meeting.
He recalled that while in opposition, his administration fought for the holding of the long overdue elections.
The Ministry of the Presidency quoted the President Granger;”next week Friday is a big day. It is the day of empowerment. It is stepping out of 23 years of the denial of democracy, of Interim Management Committees (IMC). Don’t stay home. Don’t take it for granted. Go out in your numbers. Don’t become complacent… if you don’t turn out, you lose. You will have IMCs; people you don’t know and who don’t know you will end up in the council. We struggled in the National Assembly to bring [back] local democracy. Everything you want you can be… you have the power in your hands.”
The Guyanese Leader believes that it is imperative that citizens are given the option to manage the affairs of their communities, noting that “[You should] be given the right to sit and decide how Rose Hall Town is governed…There must be no way that one man can sit down in Fort Street, Kingston and know what is going on in your community. The Minister doesn’t know. You have to know. You live in your house and you know where it is leaking and that is why there is so much emphasis on communities. Everything is about the community.”
“This town must become an economic powerhouse. People must flood to Rose Hall Town because they are getting work. I want to see factories and supermarkets when I walk through here,” he said.
The Head of State advised that gathering that if an elected council fails to advance the community’s livelihood, then they must use their power to effect change.
“If you are not satisfied, you move them. As long as we are here, we are going to make sure that you exercise your democratic right every three years,” President Granger assured.
The President also charged the councillors to do their best, once elected, to ensure that every child in the community attends school, every voice in the community is heard and the welfare of all is looked after.
“Do not feel you are going on a vacation when you get to office. Go to the constituency and speak to the people. If you don’t speak to them, they won’t speak to you… Every councillor must ensure that every child goes to school…The Mayor must ensure that every child can go to school. The [other] thing is you must ensure your people get jobs. Don’t look to Central Government. Employment is right here,” he said.
Similar sentiments were expressed by several ministers who accompanied the President. Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes, Minister of Public Security, Khemraj Ramjattan,Minister of Social Cohesion, Amna Ally and Minister of Public Health, Dr. George Norton attended the meeting.