The state of Leonora Park decimates Dr Randy Persaud’s claims

Dear Editor,

Dr Randy Persaud in his letter, `Contrary to what the newspapers report Guyana is on the move,’ (SN 10-06-09), wrote, “Guyana is on the move. If anyone wants the evidence, they should come and see for themselves.” Dr Persaud is absolutely correct. I have visited Guyana thrice this year and in March I failed to locate the once stately Leonora Park, the home of cricket on the West Demerara, and I do believe Leonora is the home village of the good doctor. I also tried to find the park in May and July but I was unsuccessful.

I subsequently learnt that Leonora Park which is situated in the heart of a PPP/Indian stronghold, was made a pilot project as part of The Great Leader’s LCDS initiative. The objective is to demonstrate to Copenhagen how Guyana can stop harmful emissions into the atmosphere. With that in mind a decision was made to return Leonora Park to nature, and so it was carefully abandoned. The staff were directed to cease cutting the grass and just allow it to grow wild. This in turn led to rapid growth of weeds, vines, and bush. Soon the entire Park became lush jungle. Bush has replaced a premier cricket ground.

Leonora Park was so successful that the authorities soon embarked on a land reclamation project at the former Leonora Junior Staff Compound which is adjacent to the Park. Great care was also taken to meticulously permit the entire compound, including all the houses, to gracefully fall into a state of disrepair to such an extent that tall para grass sprung up all over the place. Not wanting the grass to be lonely bush was introduced and soon the land had been reclaimed by nature. The place has been officially named a wildlife sanctuary.

As a West Dem boy myself I am disappointed that Dr Persaud would write, “Developments are popping up all over the country,” but did not see it fit to write about the latest ones in his home village. Leonora is sure to grab international attention in December. But I am sure he will eventually get around to “informing the diaspora” of the progress in Region 3. What about a video tour of another PPP/Indian stronghold, the Canals Polder on the West Bank Demerara? I did hear that sections of the roads had long sunk. After the PNC built the roads in 1974 a few faults had developed but the PNC did not repair the faults. The sinkholes are still there but the PPP has only been in power 17 years and it is very unreasonable to expect them to fix them so soon. Maybe in another three years or so the roads would be repaired for the very first time since they were constructed. What a great headline that would make!

I also heard that the clay brick factory and the dairy farm, which “failed because of PNC’s mismanagement” in the 1970’s, were rehabilitated by the PPP and thus jobs were created for the residents of Canals Polder. Another failed PNC project, the Versailles soap factory, has also been resuscitated by the PPP. Maybe Dr Persaud did not recognise such developments on the West Demerara after all he has been away for 37 years and he probably cannot tell the difference between rice and cane. Not to worry for I will be on the West Dem again in November and I shall be happy to show him around.

Yours faithfully,
Malcolm Harripaul

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