Gov’t spending more to employ, support citizens amid rising cost of living – Jagdeo


As the Irfaan Ali- led administration commemorates three years in office, Vice President Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo on Thursday defended the  government’s initiatives, put in place to help people cope with a rising cost of living.

Jagdeo knocked criticisms that the government has not been focusing on the ameliorating cost of living woes linked to global challenges linked to the Ukraine/ Russia war.

According to him, the government is spending more on people’s wages and salaries annually with about $105 billion allocated in the 2023 National Budget. Comparatively, he said about $68 billion was allocated for people’s wages and salaries in the 2019 budget.

Beyond those recurring expenditures, the Vice President noted that the government is now employing about 14,000 people under its new part-time jobs initiative.

Through that initiative and both the distribution of cash grants to schoolchildren and increases to people’s old age pension, Jagdeo said another $33 billion is being disbursed to people directly.

Beyond these projects, he told reporters that substantial sums are also being spent on large infrastructure projects that are expected to improve people’s quality of life. A $5 billion sum has been specifically designated for interventions to cushion the cost of living woes, though that sum has not been tapped yet.

Altogether, he believes that the government has been actively trying to support people.

“Government works to improve people’s lives and hope that they get reelected,” the Vice President said, defending the initiatives implemented.

Jagdeo spoke at a press conference held at the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) Georgetown Headquarters.

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