Home Letters Firefighting mode due to current dire financial situation
The New Administration appears to be in firefighting mode due to the current dire financial situation of the country, which is also reflected in the financial situation of a number of ministries.
Their current approach is very encouraging, and the young team is aggressively pursuing first to understand the problems, and then implement the required solutions. Congratulations to them on taking these steps forward!
The Ministry of Education (MoE) must also be applauded for its pursuit of a virtual learning agenda. Google Meets does offer the scope and capability for such a venture; however, access to computers would be the obstacle. A more fundamental approach of increased floor space and reduced class size to aid in student distancing may be both more doable and affordable in the immediate future.
However, a partnership with Google should be considered as we move forward in the medium term. In the near term, an aggressive approach to the improvement of the plumbing, sanitation and janitorial services in the schools would also be a strong step forward that goes beyond the current Pandemic.
The Security Sector offers an area of opportunity. The UK & Guyana’s Security Sector Reform Action Plan, known as the SSRAP Agreement, which seems to have slowed in its implementation, needs to be revitalised. Seeing the new Government embrace this initiative going forward would bode well in boosting confidence once again in the security of our borders during the pandemic, and aid in the boosting of the Police Force’s strength. This aligns well with His Excellency’s current agenda.
In addition, under this action plan, the inclusion of strengthening of the Export and Customs departments’ abilities to secure legal shipments in the export sector should be pursued. This would help prevent further decline in the agriculture and forestry sectors’ export potential due to security issues.
Staying focused on understanding the root causes and preventing the recurrence of the current financial problems should be a top priority of the New Parliament; and the appropriate processes, safeguards & measures to prevent its recurrence need to be put in place before the passing of a second budget.