‘Nothing wrong with giving cash grants’- Dharamlall says gov’t aware of people’s challenges
The rising cost of living has not gone unnoticed by the government and Minister of Local Government and Regional Development Nigel Dharamlall has emphasised that the PPP/C administration is keen on cushioning this burden through numerous channels including cash grants.
Dharamlall made this assertion during his presentation on Thursday at the ongoing 2023 National Budget Debate.
According to him, Guyanese experienced many hardships while the APNU+AFC coalition was in government from 2015 to 2020. He said to date many people are still recovering.
Now, however, he acknowledged that global challenges contributed to a rising cost of living. And that has resulted in hardships and challenges for people. Still, he believes that the government is trying to meet people’s needs.
“We know that people still face challenges [and] that is why so much money is going to address these concerns.
“There is nothing wrong with us giving cash grants to anyone,” Dharamlall said.
Though Dharamlall assured lawmakers that the government side of the House was keen on cushioning the burden of price increases, Opposition Parliamentarians contended that the government was not doing enough.
And the cash grants given by the government to key, vulnerable groups drew much criticism.
Opposition Parliamentarian Sherod Duncan said the 2023 Budget was one that augurs benefits for “friends, family and favourites” of the government and not people in need.
Dharamlall disagreed with this point, noting that the PPP/C party has always been a “pro-poor” party since its initiation in the 1940s. He also posited that significant investments in community development and people’s welfare signal how the government is catering to the needs of people.