President David Granger on Saturday attended the Heritage Celebrations at St. Cuthbert’s Mission, Demerara-Mahaica where he outlined plans his Government has in place to reduce the disparity between Indigenous communities and that of others.
“We don’t want a situation in which the Indigenous people are held back. We want them to aspire to the highest positions in the land. Let them be whatever they want to be… People don’t want to be poor. People want to move their families, villages and communities further,” the President said in his feature address at the event.
The President outlined plans relating to the improvement of the education system.
“…Without education, employment will be hard to find,” he noted.
The Head of State pointed to the plan of action for Hinterland Development which he laid out in his address to the Conference of the National Toshaos’ Council four years ago on August 28, 2015.
He said the plan of action which aims enhance access to public services is still valid and relevant.
The plan of action seeks to empower hinterland residents through education, employment, economic enterprises, energy, infrastructure, land rights, public services, cultural development and the protection of the environment, according to the Ministry’s statement.
The President again pointed to his plans to use oil revenues to make education free from nursery to university. This he said will be done during the Decade of Development from 2020-2029.
“It is in the Constitution; I didn’t invent it. It is an entitlement of every Guyanese child. I urge and insisted that when we get more money particularly through petroleum revenues although part will be put aside in the Sovereign Wealth Fund, part of it will be dedicated to education. You cannot achieve anything in life without being educated,” he said.
Meanwhile, Toshao of St. Cuthbert’s Mission, Ms. Beverly Clenkian noted that the village’s education system has improved in recent years.
“Our education system is better. We have done very well this year at CSEC. Our Primary school also did well. We are the closest community to the city and we must be happy for that,” the Toshao said.
In addition to the educational improvements, Toshao Clenkian said the health sector has been boosted with a health centre which has two doctors stationed there along with a pharmacy. Further, she disclosed that St. Cuthbert’s Mission has been designated as the village for next year’s Republic Anniversary.
“A lot of things are going on in St. Cuthbert’s…I know the Government is trying its utmost to help Amerindian communities in Guyana. As Amerindians, we want to unite and cooperate,” she said.
Also in attendance at the event was former Toshao, St. Cuthbert’s Mission, Mr. Lenox Shuman who has since launched the Liberty and Justice Party (LJP) and plans to contest against Granger as his party’s Presidential Candidate at the next General and Regional Elections.
Additionally, Regional Chairman, Demerara-Mahaica (Region Four), Ms. Genevieve Allen, Mr. Earle Lambert, of the Region Four Democratic Council and Mr. Ernest Elliot, Assistant Director, Community Development, Ministry of Communities attended the celebrations. (Extracted and modified from Ministry of the Presidency)