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What would be some key aspects of your manifesto or work programme that you would promote if selected as PNCR's Presidential Candidate?

- her answers to your questions

Some key aspects I would like to contribute to the Guyana’s manifesto or Work programme (to be developed through strategic interactive developmental consultations with the Guyanese public at home and abroad) are bound up in issues of Poverty, Resource development, Crime and Security; improving on governance, creating sound and inclusive institutions, combating corruption, building social cohesion at the local, regional, and national levels to allow fuller participation in the development of the country, while we promote a vibrant civil society and a dynamic private sector; equity and development programmes for the welfare of Women and Children; Education; Amerindian Rights; Land and Wealth Distribution and other programmes.

For example there would be:

  1. A strategy and plan to source and distribute electricity supply to all areas of our country, affordable to those who want it and available to the developers who will responsibly develop the resources of our country.
  2. Outlined public policies, projects, and public management that will build trust in government and trust among Guyanese diverse races/ethnic groups.
  3. A formulated Investment programme for the development of our City, far flung interior, Riverain and rural communities aimed at reducing the existing poverty. The investment focus will be placed on equal and relative access to productive inputs such as land, improved education and health services, done together with an emphasis on agricultural development, our poor and undernourished persons would be able to share more fully in the gains of growth and development that will take place.
  4. Programmes addressing opportunities for both young and adult workers, skilled and unskilled to ensure growth is inclusive and within a leveled playing field, so to speak. A number of Colleges will be constructed in every region to offer Associate degrees in subject areas such as Information Technology, Medical Laboratory Technology, Psychotherapy And Other Therapies; Food Production, Security And Marketing; Business Marketing and more. This will help children and young people who have been disproportionately affected by impoverishment, the collapse of social services, and reduced opportunities, all of which have threatened their ability to be productive and successful adults in our country.
  5. Created forward thinking and innovative support services for people with disabilities and developmental challenges as well as a number of training programmes for individuals and employers in the Education, Health and Social Care sector. This provision will have a strong focus on employability in three key areas; Retail occupations, Business Administration, Education and Health and Social Care. A number of counseling clinics will be opened around the country annexed to health centers to counsel especially teenagers to help them cope with identity issues, self esteem and worry, women and men in need of anger management and stress management mechanisms, etc.
  6. The coupling of athletics/sports with the school system so as to create emphasis on athletics within our education system including the University of Guyana. Athletics develops discipline, work ethic, responsibility, competitiveness, dedication and many leadership qualities which we must be promoting for our children. To encourage and facilitate this we would require improved sport facilities, employing professional expertise, regular competition and professional sport circuits around the entire country.
  7. Established a combination of more and better job availability especially for young people, trained and untrained, in jobs that are productive so as to lead to the reduction of poverty, no inflation (stable consumer prices) and targeted subsidies for the poor.  Training in community centres and on radio and television programmes in skills, both cognitive (critical thinking or communication ability) and non-cognitive (attitude development toward newness or a sense of responsibility). This would be linked to the Colleges in the Regions and the University of Guyana so as to supply the industries and the investments planned with required hands on skills, appropriate attitudes to work and a culture of responsibility.
  8. Addressing a more efficient allocation of resources in the economy and a broad agenda of reforms that would make our economy more competitive.
  9. Applying the Human Opportunity Index which makes it possible to measure how important personal circumstances—like gender, or birthplace,—are in a person’s probability of accessing services such as employment, education, clean water, or the Internet that are necessary to be successful in life. This measure would help also to evaluate existing social programs, and design new ones, with equality of opportunity as the objective.
  10. Addressing gender discrimination in a manner that our focus will be on the prioritization of maternal health and family planning services, especially among teenage mothers. Emphasis will be given to women’s effective participation in the labor market, through skill formation and heavy support to entrepreneurship. We have found that women who are out of jobs or are not in productive employment and no longer able to contribute to their household’s cash earnings are experiencing an erosion of their authority in the family and a diminishing of their sense of status and voice in society. In addition, a rise in the number of divorces and of male absence and desertions has left some women to bear the sole responsibility for their families. For many men, the impact of the poor Guyanese economy on gender roles and identities has been devastating. Given our general beliefs of gender expectation that men should be breadwinners and decision-makers, male unemployment, combined with greater female activism, has diminished the authority of unemployed men both inside and outside the household. Male unemployment has been correlated with increased levels of depression and suicide. Alcohol consumption, already heavy in much of our country has increased and is implicated in a vicious cycle of unemployment and indebtedness and in the decrease in male life expectancy.

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