Presidential Candidate of the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) Irfaan Ali said his Government will not hide from the people and will be open to constructive criticisms.
During a community outreach at Moraikobai Village in Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice), Ali spoke about the need for a Government to stay connected with the people.
“The Government must not hide from you. The Government must be to be open and transparent and come to you and be able to answer your questions and be able to talk to you and use the same river and creek you use…the Government must not be in a sophisticated model only to land with choppers and only come in big fanfare,” he expressed, accusing the current coalition Administration of becoming “fancy”.
“I remember long ago, the boys in my village were afraid to go into the bank for a loan. You know why? They say when they turned up to the bank, they saw all these fancy people with ties and they get afraid. The Government has become like that,” Ali posited.
In fact, President David Granger had previously received strong criticisms from local and international organisations for avoiding the press.
According to Ali, his Government will be more open to the people and will even accept constructive criticisms.
“We welcome constructive criticism because it is there to make us better…It helps us to become stronger,” he posited.
Ali further explained that his Government will be results-driven and that citizens will have the opportunity to monitor his Administration’s progress.
“At the end of every year, Ministers will have to come out publicly and say to the population whether they’ve achieved their targets or not, so you can see who’s performing and not performing, and we’ll see which Ministers need some fire behind them,” Ali contended.
The PPP Presidential Candidate has already posited that he will strongly discipline his Ministers, and even have them fired, if they are found guilty of disrespecting the people.
At the same community outreach, Ali reflected on the incident where Minister with responsibility for Labour, Keith Scott, insinuated that the Indigenous peoples are greedy.
To this end, he promised that “as your President, if one of my Ministers make a statement like that they will have to hand in their resignation because no Minister, no Government has the right to disrespect people, disrespect their communities and disrespect their wishes”.
Moreover, he called on the people to hold his Government accountable and ensure they deliver on the promises they are currently making.
“You can hold my feet and your next Government feet to the fire. And, if we do not deliver, based on this contract we are establishing with you, then you will get to make a choice five years from March 2020 and you will let us know how you feel,” he explained, noting that “you are trusting us by voting for us to deliver on those promises and if we don’t deliver on those promises we will be breaching that trust you give to us.”