“Give us better governance, not new flags!” – PPP/C tells Govt

By Devina Samaroo

The move by Government to assign separate flags for each administrative region has been met with strong objections from the parliamentary Opposition, the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C), which believes more time, energy and resources ought to be spent on better governance. Golden Arrowhead
In a statement released on Wednesday, the Party declared that the Golden Arrowhead is the constitutional flag of Guyana, adding that any other flag imposed will be contrary to the country’s Constitution.
The decision to give each region its own flag was announced last year by Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan, who noted that the initiative was all part and parcel of a wider effort to promote the decentralisation of each of the 10 administrative regions and encourage each district to embrace its uniqueness.
Recently, the Minister disclosed that consultations are still ongoing with the various regional representatives before rolling out this project.
However, the PPP/C believes that there will be an overwhelming rejection from the regions, mostly by residents who would prefer jobs, enhanced public security, money in their pockets, better roads, improved potable water supply and efficient garbage collection over flags.
“Rather than seeking to change things that obtai

Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan
Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan

ned under the PPP/C and to make things look different under the [A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change] APNU/AFC, the Granger coalition Administration should change their racial and political discriminatory and witchhunting practices, as well as their wasteful spending and focus on improving the economic and social well-being of all Guyanese,” the Party stated.
During a previous interview with Guyana Times, several regional heads expressed concerns over the regional flag initiative.
Region One Regional Chairman Brentnol Ashley had indicated that his region will not be supporting the idea.
Region Two Regional Chairman Devanand Ramdatt also objected to this move. “I don’t know if a flag can bring any degree of independence for a region. I think what needs to be done to bring independence would require a lot of strategic thinking so this can be streamlined properly… we are speaking about certain ministries which may need to be decentralised and certain key operations need to be decentralised. It is much more complex and it would require great consultations,” Ramdatt asserted, noting that flags will not help the Government achieve its goal.
Region Five Regional Chairman Vickchand Ramphal and Region Nine Regional Chairman Brian Allicock also shared the same view.
The only Regional Chairman contacted who was in support of this venture was Region Seven Regional Chairman Gordon Bradford. But even so, he indicated that some persons in the district have not welcomed the idea.
Former President and Leader of the Opposition Bharrat Jagdeo already pointed out that this move could be dangerous for Guyana as it could put the country’s sovereignty at risk and reinforce Venezuela’s attempts to win over the Essequibo, through encouraging secessionist tendencies.

Nonetheless, Government already has drafts proposed for the design of each of the regional flags.
Region One’s (Barima-Waini) emblem is a turtle against a green and gold background. The turtle represents the leatherback turtle found on Shell Beach and the colours represent the two main economic activities in the region: forestry and mining.
Region Two’s (Pomeroon-Supenaam) emblem is a rice stalk against a white and green background. The rice stalk represents the main economic produce of the region while the colours represent the many waterways and the farming activities respectively.
Region Three’s (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara) emblem is a ferry against a white, black and green background. The ferry represents the Ferry MV Sabanto and the colours represent the water resources, endurance of the people and the rich agricultural activities.
Region Four’s (Demerara-Mahaica) emblem is the Stabroek Market against a red and black background. The Stabroek Market is a representation of the region’s economic activity and the colours represent the zeal, strength and endurance of the people.
Region Five’s (Mahaica-Berbice) emblem is a rice farmer planting rice. The colours are black and green which represents strength and agriculture.
Region Six’s (East Berbice-Corentyne) emblem is a rice stalk. The colours are red and green and it represents the zeal of the people and the rich agricultural heritage.
Region Seven’s (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) emblem is a porkknocker and the colours are yellow, white and green. They represent the mineral wealth, the water resources and the vast forest.
Region Eight’s (Potaro-Siparuni) emblem is the Majestic Kaieteur Fall. The background colours are green, black and gold and they represent the abundant forest, the resilience of the people and the mineral resources.
Region Nine’s (Upper Takatu-Upper Essequibo) emblem is the harpy eagle and the background colours are red, green and white. They represent the zeal of the people, the forests and the waters.
Region 10’s (Upper Demerara-Berbice) emblem is bauxite against a gold and black background. This represents the regions mining activities. The gold represents mining while the black represents strength and the ability to overcome challenges.