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PPPC demands govt pays rice farmers GUY$9,000 per bag of paddy

Irfaan Ali

The People’s Progressive Party Civic’s (PPPC) Shadow Finance Minister, Irfaan Alli on Monday demanded that government pay up a promised GUY$9,000 per bag of paddy to rice farmers or dole out GUY$23 billion from the Consolidated Fund.

“I call on this government to deliver immediately nine thousand dollars per bag,” he told the National Assembly in kicking off debate on the Budget tabled under the theme “A Fresh Start to a Good Life under a Green Economy.”

Declaring that the 2015 National Budget was “nothing fresh, nothing new” and a lot of “fluff,” he said the PPPC government “always told the truth to the rice farmers.”

Ali said the PPPC was putting the David Granger-led administration on “guard” that should negotiations for more rice markets  collapse, the Finance Minister Winston Jordan have to “take it out from the Consolidated Fund.”

The PPPC also wants government to establish a paddy support system and maintain production above 600,000 tons and find better and high paying markets for 500,000 tons.

Touching on the sugar sector, the Shadow Finance Minister called on government to deliver a GUY$20 billion subsidy to the financially crippled Guyana Sugar Corporation to enable it to produce about 400,000 tons annually.