PRESS RELEASE PNCR LEADER VISITS WEST COAST BERBICE People’s National Congress Reform Congress Place, Sophia, Georgetown, Guyana. Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Leader of the People’s National Congress Reform, Mr. Robert Corbin, M.P. accompanied by Parliamentary Representative of Region # 5, Ms. Amna Ally, M.P. and PNCR Regional Candidate, Ms. Wanda Cummings visited Nos. 8, 9 and Zeelust Villages, West Coast Berbice on Tuesday, April 2, 2004.

On arrival at No. 8, Mr. Corbin was welcomed by several villagers who were anxious to discuss their problems. Members of the community aired several grievances and outlined the devastating effects that discrimination and bad governance have had on their existence as citizens of Guyana.

Many residents pointed to the deplorable state of the streets, one of which is a main route for children going to school, and draw comparisons with other nearby villages which traditionally supported the PPP, to Mr. Corbin. Potable water supply was a major problem for the residents who expressed their disgust at the lack of a positive response by the authorities to provide water for those who live away from the main public road.

Residents also alluded to the frightening cost for electricity connections. One resident displayed an invoice from GPL which demanded the payment of $259,000 before electricity could be supplied to six (6) homes in the area. This figure was in addition to the standard deposits charged for new connections. Questions were raised as to whether the residents of a new housing scheme not far away from their village were being saddled with the same high cost for electricity connection. Many young people complained of the lack of recreational facilities in the area and of the delay in the President Youth Choice Initiative project becoming operational.

Residents were extremely critical of the poor performance of the Bel Air Woodlands NDC, the Chairperson of which is the wife of the Regional Chairman. The family no longer resides in that community and residents claimed that decisions for the area are made unilaterally by the Chairperson, often not in the interest of the residents. Statutory meetings are not properly conducted; the local authority office is continually closed while villagers are asked to go to other venues to pay rates and taxes.

Many other issues, including the absence of proper street lighting were of concern to the residents.

Because of the magnitude of problems in this area, the Party Leader was unable to complete his planned walk-about in the Zeelust Community. However he held a brief meeting with the residents and undertook to return to Zeelust on Tuesday May 4, 2004 to continue his West Coast Berbice outreach programme.

People’s National Congress Reform
Congress Place, Sophia,
Georgetown, Guyana.
Wednesday, April 28, 2004