PPP banking on cash grants, housing, new bridge to wrest Linden from PNC-APNU

Last Updated on Sunday, 4 June 2023, 7:09 by Denis Chabrol

President Irfaan Ali meeting supporters i Linden at a local government election campaign public meeting.

President Irfaan Ali on Saturday night indicated that his People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPPC) was depending on the now GY$40,000 cash-grant per child to take away control of the Linden Town Council from the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) for the first time at the June 12 Local Government Elections.

“If those parents whose children benefit from this policy of the government come out on June 12th, with their votes alone we will take Linden and all they must do must be honest to their conscience,” he told a public meeting in the PNCR’s heartland of Linden. He based that on the number of children in Region 10.

He told the meeting that the children’s parents now have a “moral ethical responsibility to support” those who have delivered. He promised that the cash grant would increase to GY$50,000. Under the 2015-2020 coalition administration, the then GY$10,000 cash grant had been scrapped.

The President used the opportunity of his PPPC Local Government Election campaign rally to announce that on Monday government would be signing an agreement with the Saudi Development Bank to construct a four-lane Mackenzie-Wismar bridge. “One more reason to ensure this government leads the way in the transformation of Region 10,” he said, even as he lashed back at the parliamentary opposition for saying that the PPPC administration would not be building that bridge.  He said government would also sign a US$150 million agreement to build 1,000 houses in the town, a project that would open up more job opportunities for Lindeners. “We want the builders to be from Linden, we want the carpenters to be from Linden, we want the masons to be from Linden. We want it be designed and built by Linden with the Central government, the People’s Progressive Party Civic by your side,” he said.

Also promised is the construction of concrete roads in Victory Valley and other Linden areas, with the involvement of the community. “We want to create the ownership here like we are creating everywhere else. This is the only way that we can build capacity, not when these honourable citizens are part of the development you seek to ridicule them and call them sell-out. What did they sell-out for you? What happened to you is that you can no longer buy them out because they are advancing their interest, their community interest and their families’ interest and they have found a government that will embrace them as they advance their interest,” he said.

The President said before June 12, the synthetic athletic track would be opened, the creation of a transportation and logistics hub to support increased vehicle movement to and from Brazil, rehabilitation of the Soesdyke-Linden Highway and the installation of lights along that thoroughfare.

Earlier, Public Works Minister Juan Edghill noted that the road network in the once thriving bauxite town has improved.

The President once again promised that he would do everything to “destroy racism” and remove that scourge  from every aspect of national life. “The stronger you come with it , the stronger is our resolve to destroy because it has no place in our society, it has no place in our country,” he said.  The mainly Indo-Guyanese PPPC has been on a months-long intense campaign to woo support from Afro-Guyanese who have historically backed the PNCR.

He also said government has increased old age pensions and returned the one-month bonus to the Disciplined Services.