The local government minister also underscored the importance of NDCs connecting with the residents as he was addressing the councillors and chairmen of the Buxton-Foulis and Enmore-Hope NDCs recently in the ministry’s boardroom, the Government Information Agency (GINA) said in a press release.
He was joined by Minister within the Ministry, Norman Whittaker and Permanent Secretary Collin Croal.
The ministers’ meeting with the councillors and chairmen of the Buxton-Foulis and Enmore-Hope NDC signalled the commencement of an exercise to engage local and regional entities with regards to some of the challenges and concerns affecting their functioning and hindering greater relationship between them and the residents.
Meanwhile, the ministry is to meet and engage two NDCs at the ministry every Wednesday, the release stated.
Minister Persaud in addressing the councillors outlined some of the ministry’s visions and expectations for NDCs as it relates to Guyana’s continued development and told them that one of the main hindrances to councils effectively implementing their functions is their lack of connectivity with the residents they serve.
Persaud said that while some NDCS have been using various mechanisms to achieve this objective, others have lost contact with the people they were elected to serve and this is an unacceptable situation.
There is public sentiment that NDCs are not really interested in helping to develop their respective communities, the minister said. “The strength of such perceptions or statements will depend on the kind of interactions you have with the residents in your NDC area and the degree to which you provide services that assist in bringing greater joy, happiness and comfort into the lives of people that you were elected to serve,” he urged.
Meanwhile Minister Whittaker also stressed the need for the councils to engage the residents, and noted that their failure to meet with residents has been a salient concern raised at many of the community meetings at which he was present.