by Zena Henry
The government is setting to go across country to restore state symbols which they say have been neglected and left in a state of disrepair.
Minister of Governance Raphael Trotman told media operatives during Cabinet’s press briefing Wednesday July 15, that the new government after taking up office, was taken aback by the condition of State properties such as State Houses, monuments, leaning and rusting flag poles among others.
Over two months after taking up office, President David Granger and Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo have not occupied their official residences, citing the deplorable state of the properties. Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo has complained bitterly saying that the PM’s Official Residence was absolutely uninhabitable.
With much work ongoing at the President’s residence, Minister of State Joseph Harmon said that President Granger is likely to move into State House on Main Street before month end.
Trotman noted that he is setting to commence a special project that will see the restoration of symbols of that state. “Flag poles that are rusty and leaning, flags not being flown at government houses,” are among the properties to be targeted. He said, “The last government seemed to have seen it fit to dispose of most of our good state houses, so that when you have visiting guest and functions you can host and accommodate Heads of state other than a hotel.”
“In each region we are going to try to restore state houses so that members of government, or if the President wishes to spend the night in Rupununi or he wishes to go to Kwakwani or Skeldon, there should be a place that he and his delegation or members of his family or a minister could stay; that is befitting of the high office of President.”
And it brings a sense of pride to the nation, he opined. “As a symbol of the state it is one of the areas we are looking at.”
In relation to the burnt-down Umana Yana, the Governance Minister said that the national desire seems to be for the reconstruction of the symbol of the nation’s First people. However that matter is still under active consideration, Trotman revealed.
Days after assuming office, the Granger-led administration, in collaboration with BK International, rehabilitated the Independence Arch on Brickdam in time for Guyana’s observance of Independence on May 26, 2015.
Prior, the arch and its immediate environs had been run down. Vagrants, garbage and poor drainage dominated the area around that national edifice.