By Isaiah Braithwaite
GEORGETOWN, Guyana, (DPI) – Residents of Region Two have been assured that government will continue to implement measures to buffer the effects of the rising cost of living. This reassurance was given by minister of public works, Bishop Juan Edghill, M.P, as he joined citizens in Phagwah celebrations on Friday.
“I want to give you this assurance that this government that you have asked to serve you, we understand what is happening and we are not going to leave you alone to suffer. We are determined to take the burdens off your shoulders. So be assured that your government is working on interventions to put measures in place to ensure that your lives are better,” said minister Edghill.
Over the past few weeks, food prices have been steadily rising due to the rapid increase in oil prices on the world market, the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine, as well as the COVID-19 pandemic.
The minister said, since taking office in 2020, the administration immediately removed burdens imposed on Guyanese. He alluded to the removal of over 200 taxes which includes the removal of Value Added Tax on electricity and water.
He pointed to the increase in old-age pension and public assistance, the distribution of the COVID-19 cash grant to every household and the reintroduction of the Because We Care cash grant.
Reflecting on the 2020 flooding, the minister alluded to the assistance provided to all affected, particularly the cash grants for affected farmers.
“Your leaders who are serving will do everything with the wisdom of almighty God and everything that is humanly possible to make your lives better. We are working on your interest. The PPP/C administration and president Ali, every day we are working on your interest. Things might not always seem to be perfect, but our hearts are in the right place, our intention is good.”
Additionally, president, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali has made it clear that there will be no rise in electricity cost and water rates despite the rise in fuel prices.
“We said to both entities [GPL and GWI]; you are not going to increase by a cent. The government will take up the additional expenditure and fill the gap. That is how a responsible government operates,” the president stated at the recent commissioning of the Lusignan well.
The head of state also announced, earlier this month, that government has commenced consultations to determine what measures would be employed to expend the $5 billion that was set aside in the 2022 budget to mitigate the effects of the global rising cost of living.