Prime Minister Phillips ‘grounds’ with Region Five residents
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Prime Minister, Brigadier (ret’d) Mark Phillips, speaks at one of the community meetings in Region Five (Office of the Prime Minister photo)
Prime Minister, Brigadier (ret’d) Mark Phillips, speaks at one of the community meetings in Region Five (Office of the Prime Minister photo)

— to visit the other regions to hear of their concerns and provide solutions

PRIME MINISTER, Brigadier (ret’d) Mark Phillips, had a successful visit to Mahaica-Berbice (Region Five) on Saturday, where he held several community meetings, interacted with residents and businesses and reaffirmed his Government’s commitment to developing the region.
The Prime Minister said that the outreach was a part of his Government’s responsibility to help solve the challenges of ordinary Guyanese and he intended to do such in multiple communities throughout Guyana. “This is a visit that I intend to do to every region, so that as your Prime Minister I can interact with you, listen to you and have a fair idea as to what are the big things that are affecting you in your community and what are the big ideas that you would like me to take back to the Cabinet and to the President, as we seek to conduct the affairs of State to the benefit of all Guyanese,” he said.
During the outreach and business visits, the Prime Minister moved across several communities.  He started with a walkabout at the Mahaicony Branch Market, where he met with vendors and shoppers.

The Prime Minister, who is the Head of the Covid-19 Task Force, also appealed to the residents of Dundee to take their vaccines to protect themselves against the deadly COVID-19 virus.
He informed the residents, during all the meetings, including at Dundee, that the Government is committed to fulfilling promises made in the manifesto of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C). High on the agenda, he said will be agricultural development projects within the region.
At the Bush Lot outreach, the Prime Minister explained that work had already started.
“We have cleared 800 miles of canal from August 2nd to now and we have also reduced the land rates from $15,000 to $3,500; this is a Government that didn’t only put promises in a manifesto, but also hit the ground running from August 2nd.”
A community meeting was also held at Rosignol while the Prime Minister also toured A. Cayume Hakh and Sons Rice Mill at Golden Grove and R&R Business Enterprise (a hardware store) at Bath.

Location manager of the rice mill, Reymona Ramlall, said she was pleased to have the commitment of the Prime Minister for the development of the region and its private sector.
She said the mill purchases paddy from hundreds of rice farmers across Region Five and Region Six and that she appreciated the commitment of the Prime Minister to assist with overcoming challenges that would hamper the sector’s growth.
“It’s nice to have the Prime Minister visiting us; what’s comforting is to know that he is willing to be there with us to help the farmers. We have farmers coming here from both Regions Five and Six and they look forward to doing business with us.”
Prior to those stops, the Prime Minister had toured the Guyana Power and Light’s Onverwagt Power Station to assess its operations.
He was accompanied throughout the outreach by Member of Parliament, Faizal Jaffarally; Regional Chairman, Vickchand Ramphal and other regional executives.

Among some of the concerns raised by the residents throughout the visit were land disputes, drainage and irrigation challenges and the upgrading of farm-to-market and community roads.
The Prime Minister requested that the Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) and the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) investigate the concerns and move to resolve them, where possible, while he said that Central Government will also assist where it can.
Regional Chairman Ramphal said that he was pleased by the Government’s engagement with the people and its collaboration with the regional administration.
“Our people made full use of this opportunity of the Prime Minister visiting the region and that is the approach that we have to take to better the living standard of our people… Region Five is the largest rice-producing region in our country and so there is much need for improved infrastructure.”
During the outreach, the Prime Minister also stopped briefly in Number 41 Village to pay his final respects and offer his condolences to the relatives and friends of Abiola Blackman, a supporter of the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C), who died on April 16, 2021. (DPI)

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