The reason for this letter is to make an appeal for a speedy solution to the problems of Lethem and St Ignatius Village, Region 9.
For the past week, if not more, two vital institutions have been plagued with difficulties: the Lethem Power Company and Guyana Water Incorporated (Lethem). The power company, however, has had difficulties since August and as a result has not been able to offer a steady supply of electricity to the aforementioned areas. The water company, perhaps as a result, has not been able to supply water to the areas.
This situation has left the people of these two settlements in a grave situation. Previous letters written on the issue have highlighted the ensuing problems faced by the business community, and those problems continue. However, what of the children of these areas, including those attending the primary and secondary schools?
Many days the students of St Ignatius Secondary School are thirsty from lack of an adequate water supply. The school’s sanitation is also affected, as toilets cannot be properly cleaned. (It should be noted that the high school lacks proper plumbing and has made appeals for assistance. Even when there is a water supply, students still need to carry water to flush the toilets. And when there is no water supply, worms can often be found in the toilets. And there is no janitor because the region has said it lacks the funds.)
The lack of electricity has left the Information Technology programme at the high school in a precarious situation. Whether these students will be able to successfully complete their SBAs is uncertain. None of these problems are being addressed or even apologized for by anyone. Perhaps they are not seen as really important.
Meanwhile, the residents of these areas have taken to the creeks for water. Unfortunately trucks going to these same creeks have contaminated them with fuel. Persons are now playing on the desperation of many by selling tanks of water.
Is it that the people of the region are not complaining enough? The people of Region 9 deserve the basic benefits afforded to all citizens of Guyana. Why must the situation become dire for there to be both a reaction and solution? To say that due to the tradition and practices of the people here, this situation does not call for a speedy solution is an insult. Human beings deserve certain amenities, these are not luxuries.
This is an appeal, therefore, for an improvement in the living standards for Region 9.
(Name and address provided)