Prime Minister, Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips and Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Pauline Sukhai have distributed a whopping $161.1M to communities in North Pakaraima.
The funds will be used for capital projects in the mountainous communities and to begin the groundwork to ensure that they are prepared to benefit from fully equipped ICT hubs.
The two senior government officials and their team journeyed to several communities over Wednesday and Thursday to personally hand over the funds and to outline government’s impending development programmes.
Of the total, $152M went towards the Investment Fund (COVID-19 Relief Grant) and $9.1M to Capital Grants and Assets.
The team visited Monkey Mountain before stops at Paramakatoi and Kato on Wednesday. On Thursday, they stopped at Kopinang and Kurukubaru. The areas were used as central locations to deliver the funds to over a dozen communities.
Approximately $1M to $2M of the Investment Fund, will be allotted to either construct a new building for the ICT hub or towards the renovation of an existing structure in each community. The reminding monies will be used to fund a project of the community’s choice or to assist with critical transportation needs.
The projects will be governed by consensus and will be transparent with the guidance of the Amerindian Affairs Ministry.
During the distribution exercise, Prime Minister Phillips assured that there were several projects earmarked for Guyana’s Amerindian communities as Government aims to bridge the developmental gap between the coast and the Hinterland.
He said that there is also a development plan in place that would benefit all Guyanese.
“It is a development plan that says to the people of Guyana that notwithstanding COVID-19 and its negative effects on our population, we still have to develop as a country, we still have to support our people in their community wherever they live and ensure that they also benefit from development in Guyana.”
The Prime Minister noted that the Hinterland would not be left out of the equation and that several projects are forthcoming.
Of the Investment Fund, $10M was given to Monkey Mountain, $7M to Tuseneng Village and $5M to Taruka Village.
On the second stop, the Prime Minister and Amerindian Affairs Minister distributed $15M to Paramakatoi, $10M to Mountain Foot/Bashvale and $10M to Bamboo Creek Village. On Wednesday afternoon, $10M was handed over to Kato, $3M to Red Creek and $5M to Chuing Mouth Village.
On Thursday morning, Kopinang Village received $10M and Maiwak CDC $3M. During the final stop at Kurukubaru, $10M was given to the village, while $3M was given to Arsawa. Kaibarupai collected $10M, Itabac Village $5M, Waipa Village $10M, Sand Hill $5M, Katch-Cow $3M, Kanapang $10M, Pennak $3M and Kamana $5M.
In terms of capital projects, two ATVs valued at $2M each were distributed to Pennak and Kurukubaru.
Additionally, Sand Hill received $1.4M for the construction of a village benab (2020 Presidential Grant); Itabac collected $1.5M for the construction of a pavilion (Capital Project), Kanapang Village received $1M for the construction of an ICT hub (Benefitted from previous grant) and Pennak was given a cheque valued at $1.2M for the construction of a village office. (Department of Public information)