Enthusiastic about railway project

Dear Editor,  

I am enthused that President Jagdeo is thinking about a railway from Brazil to Georgetown. Maybe my ‘Indigenous dream’ may be finally realized. My first attempt to be heard on the railway concept was at a National Toshaos Council meeting at the Liliendal Conference Centre in 2009. It was shot down with, ‘It’s too expensive,’ but I was determined to be heard.

On May 24, 2010 being given an opportunity to speak at the launching of the Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) Third Draft at the Umana Yana I again championed the railway for Guyana dream. The railway from Brazil to Georgetown answers seven of eight Millennium Development Goals and will impact significantly on the living standards of Indigenous peoples and change forever the economic and social potential of Guyana. Although the President on May 24, 2010 did not seem to be impressed by such a concept, I am overwhelmed to see movement towards a railway system for the hinterland. I am sure that in the coming years if this railway is realized, lines will eventually reach to indigenous communities. I may not see that come to fruition, but time will tell.

I have another dream that of establishing a radio/TV transmitter station at Kato, Region 8 targeting Patamona, Akawaio, Macushi, Arekuna and Brazilian and Venezuelan First Peoples. This will greatly boost the delivery of education, economic activities and health, and enhance social and cultural awareness. It will also integrate traditional and non-traditional knowledge in relation to environmental, socio-economic and other sectors, and will make possible a diversified programming content for First Peoples from Guyana, Venezuela and Brazil.

I do wish our thrust into railways success; our hydro project will power the railway system, I hope. Congrats on this move.

Yours faithfully,
Ashton Simon

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