‘No form of discrimination will ever be condoned’
Prime Minister Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips
Prime Minister Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips

–equality, justice critical components of govt’s policies, programmes, Prime Minister Phillips says

PRIME Minister Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips, on the occasion of International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, reiterated that the Government of Guyana is committed to implementing policies and programmes that promote equality and justice.

“Your government is committed to implementing policies and programmes that promote equality and justice, including increasing access to education, healthcare, and employment opportunities, ensuring that all Guyanese are a part of the national development agenda,” he said.

Prime Minister Phillips related that on this day, Guyanese gather to reflect on their progress in the fight against racial discrimination, and to recommit themselves to their ongoing dedication to achieving equality, tolerance, and unity.

He said that Guyana has a rich history that comprises people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds, and has contributed significantly to the country’s diversity and multicultural society.

In accordance with the richness of the country’s heritage and history, the government remains committed to ensuring that all people, regardless of race, can access and benefit from every aspect of development in Guyana.

“We will not condone any form of discrimination, be it in the workplace, in the access to education, health, security and all other areas. However, like many other nations, our history depicts instances of racial conflict that have left deep scars on our people,” Prime Minister Phillips said.

He reasoned that while confronting this reality and acknowledging the painful episodes of the past, Guyanese must continue to forge forward to create a future free of inequality.

“As leaders, we are responsible for creating a peaceful, productive and prosperous environment where every citizen is valued, respected, and feels a sense of belonging, regardless of ethnicity, race, or religion. Therefore, it is critical that we lead by example, not just in words but through our actions in guiding our people, which show what we stand for,” the Prime Minister related.

He added: “At the same time, we must also recognise the importance of dialogue and engagement among different ethnic groups. We must work to build bridges of understanding and promote cultural exchange, fostering a sense of community and shared identity.”

He called for the Guyanese to renew their commitment to equality, justice, and non-discrimination and for them to stand together as One Guyana, to work towards a future where every person is valued and respected.

“I want us all to be reminded that the struggle against racial discrimination is ongoing and requires every citizen’s collective effort. With determination and commitment, let us continue to work together towards a brighter future for all Guyanese built on unity and mutual respect,” he said.

This occasion is being commemorated as Guyanese continue to condemn the recent incendiary and racist remarks by Working People’s Alliance (WPA) Executive Member, Tacuma Ogunseye

Ogunseye, during a gathering at Buxton on the East Coast of Demerara (ECD), said: “I don’t understand how people complain that they are oppressed, and they are holding guns in their hands. They are the majority in the army, in the police, and they say they are oppressed. And they still say our problem is our own making.

Anytime we turn those guns in the right direction it is over.”

He also made incendiary remarks about Guyana’s Indo-Guyanese. Since the utterance of those statements, numerous persons have called out and condemned the remarks as racist and inciting.

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