Please permit me some space to highlight an area of concern as it relates to the administration of Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni). As a son of the region, I find it difficult to sit back while my family, friends and colleagues are being abused by the powers that be in the region.
Region Eight, as we are all aware, is probably the worst administered district and is usually the dumping ground for the unwanted. For Example, as a disciplinary measure, Police Officers are sent to places like Orinduik or Kato. Only recently, there was a video on social media with a high ranking officer of the Education Ministry threatening to send a junior staff to Region Eight.
Recently I have been receiving several complaints from staff of the region, who have been released to further their studies on the coast. These persons are studying at the University of Guyana, the nursing school, the Cyril Potter Collage of Education and other places. The issue at hand is that the regional administration has made a decision to pay these staff by cheque rather than by bank transfers like they were doing for the longest while.
This, Mr Editor, is a backward step in an age where we are promoting ICT. Additionally it directly impacts the studies as students now have to make time to go meet the accounting staff to collect their pay as well as go to the bank and wait their time to cash their cheques. Just imagine a nursing student has to travel from Linden to Georgetown to collect their cheque, cash it and then having to go back to Linden. It’s just a waste of precious time that could be otherwise used for studying.
Mr Editor, Region Eight has always struggled to keep up with the progress in the country many times because of the lack of vision and the will by those in authority to lead the region forward. While other regions are moving forward it seem like the authorities in the region are bent on moving backward. It must be noted that others are being paid through their banks while only a select few are being meted this vindictive act.
It is my hope that by highlighting this issue, those in Government with responsibility for oversight of regional officials will take note and intervene to ensure that the students studying in Georgetown are granted the opportunity to receive their salaries through the bank like they always did. Additionally, it is my hope that an audit of the region’s finances be done as many times there are delays in the implementation of projects.
As someone from the region, I am quite aware of the difficulties one faces while studying on the coast. It is not easy and for officials of the region to add to the already stress levels is unwarranted. It must be noted that these students are upgrading themselves to return to the region as stipulated under the conditions of their release.
Michael Mc Garrell