Oil-funded projects should withstand change in Gov’t- Dr. Bynoe
With general and regional elections expected shortly, Director of the Energy Department, Dr Mark Bynoe, has said what should be pursued are policies and projects which can withstand a change in Government.
“Guyana’s development cannot be pursued based on political cycles. Governments will come and Governments will go but we have to be committed to a programme,” Dr Bynoe told a group of young people at 61 Queen Street, Kitty, Georgetown on Tuesday.
The Director was attending a youth symposium where concerns were raised about plans by the political opposition to squash the Government’s Green State Development Strategy (GSDS) if it is elected to office.
“Sadly, developing countries on a whole, when Governments change, they like to tear up programmes and start over again.
“If we are to go that route, sadly speaking, the possibility exists that we will be stepping backwards instead of going forward,” Dr Bynoe added.
He pointed to investments in healthcare and other critical sectors, noting that no government will scrap such programmes which have far-reaching benefits.
At the symposium titled “Guyana’s Youth for Tomorrow,” held by a Non-Governmental Organisation, Dr Bynoe said developmental projects should not be about any Government but about a development pattern that Guyanese wants to pursue.
“We need to be pursuing no regrets measures…let us seek common grounds…Seek those things we agree on.
“It can’t be about a Government, it has to be about a development paradigm that we want to pursue,” he said.
Dr. Bynoe noted that instead of scrapping projects following an election, amendments can be made which can ensure long term benefits.
Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo at a press conference in May said his party will scrap the GSDS if re-elected to office since it does not include any economic benefits.
Dr. Mark Bynoe urged the young people to pursue jobs not only in the petroleum industry but also in other sectors, noting that Guyana does not at this stage aspire to be a solely oil and gas economy.
The young people also raised concerns about the availability of finance to pursue business ventures and higher learning.