Social Cohesion initiatives will benefit from an injection of $480M that has been set aside in the 2019 National Budget.

This is what Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan said about a half of an hour during his 2019 National Budget reading. According to Jordan, the current administration has recognized the less than satisfactory state of affairs in respect to cultural and ethnic tensions in Guyana. He said that the government has supported a national drive for improved social cohesion and relations among citizens.

“It is incumbent on us to lead the way to realize a society that is more cohesive, inclusive, emphatic and respectful. We need to stop bombarding our people with constant negativity,” Minister Jordan emphasized.

As a result, he said, the more than $480M budgeted for 2019 to the Department of Social Cohesion will go towards the conduct of outreaches and events, including Social Cohesion Week, Harmony Week, and inter-village activities. Training will also be undertaken in mediation, conflict management, and peace building, he said. These activities, he added, will exclude those being implemented by the Ethnic Relations Commission (ERC).

“We must recognize that no government can advance a nation’s social cultural state on its own. It requires the will and support of the people. Our political and community leaders, and private sector and civil society must take deliberate steps to ensure that ethnic and cultural tensions do not rend our nation asunder,” Minister Jordan said.

The 2019 National Budget is being presented under the theme, “Transforming the economy, empowering people, building sustainable communities for the good life.”


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