The price of lumber is too high

Dear Editor,

The decision by the Government of Norway to give Guyana the US$40M on the LCDS initiative is timely and a good decision; this country needs the money to continue its development.  President Jagdeo has began a process which will be beneficial to all of us, and the low carbon initiatives, if carefully husbanded and realistically applied, can make all of our lives better. But while these developments are welcome for our country, what about the local shortages of good lumber and at decent prices? About $175 per BM! We still need lumber to build homes for our citizens; building homes with wood, especially for the low and middle-income citizens, makes sense, because concrete and steel homes are more expensive and require more time and effort. When one goes to an oil-producing country, gasoline is relatively cheap for the citizens, so how come we, the citizens of Guyana, who need lumber for all kinds of structures and when there are so many forests in our country, have to pay so much for wood products? When one looks out of the window of an airplane coming in to land at our international airport at 20,000 feet in the air, one cannot help being amazed at the jungles spreading out as far as the horizon, and yet, wood for our people is priced at ridiculously high levels. The government needs to address this problem, just as it is earnest about the low carbon initiatives with Norway’s commendable help. They both go hand in hand and this government cannot expect praise for its low carbon policies when the people of Guyana cannot even afford the high price of lumber.

This government is following a path which all communist survivors of the lost battle against modern capitalism are taking, and that is to hold on to power through strictures on democracy at the political level and strictures on the real growth of private enterprise at the economic level with more government bureaucracy.

At the same time it is tightening its grip through Stalinist measures within the PPP, like the selection of a presidential candidate – all with great big smiles for the public; using their propaganda machinery to divide the opposition and create a feeling that they’re following the principles of  President Cheddi when, in fact, that is not the case – all with great big smiles for the public; rejecting the concept of some sort of shared governance because it does not suit their Stalinist inclinations (Stalin is the one who buried the concept of ethnic diversity in the bigger goal of communist party domination of all government  institutions in communist Russia) – all with great big smiles for the public.

Editor, nevertheless, certain accomplishments by this government like the LCDS deal with Norway, have to be praised, and will hopefully bring real benefits to the Guyanese population. Maybe, the government could use some of the LCDS money to subsidize the price of lumber for us.

Yours faithfully,
Cheddi (Joey) Jagan (Jr)

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