Incumbent Private Sector Commission (PSC) Chairman Ron Webster is justifiably proud of the gains the organisation has made since he took the helm, while President of the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) Clinton Urling is all for change. Local businessmen must decide today which one they have more confidence in.
Urling said that whether he wins or loses against Webster, the PSC would have been made better because of the sharpened performance by both men in the run-up to the election.
Urling recently unveiled a six-point plan for the improvement of the PSC and said that he is about change and making the organisation better situated to address the needs of the nation’s private sector. Efforts by the Stabroek News to contact PSC Chairman Ron Webster proved futile. However, in an earlier interview with this newspaper, Webster had said that some of the successes of the organisation had to do with the fact that the PSC under him was able to establish good relations with the political parties.
He had said too that the PSC was able to make proposals to the Minister of Finance for input into the budget and these had gained government’s endorsement. He had stated that his vision for the private sector was one that would see the development of the business sector, wealth creation and job creation.
However, Urling said that his is a platform of change and this he will continue to advocate whether he wins or not.
“With regard to the process, everything is on-stream. But we have already achieved something in [advocating change] in the PSC and win or lose I would be pursuing this. It comes down a referendum on the performance of Webster over the past year,” Urling said.
“If they want change they will vote for me… I don’t know how the voting will go. I have put forward my plan and I haven’t seen anything put forward by Webster,” said Urling.
“I have seen a more proactive PSC after I announced my candidacy for the post of chairman, so it is a win-win,” he said.
Urling said he is still prepared to serve the PSC in his present capacity as vice-chairman by virtue of being President of the GCCI.
According to a statement from the GCCI, Urling introduced a number of changes and initiatives that have resulted in enormous value for its private sector members and the wider society.
The statement said that Urling intends to extend the same level of leadership to the PSC by working with its membership and other stakeholders to ensure a stable social and economic environment for businesses to succeed.
Urling said he wants to strengthen the PSC’s Secretariat so that it can effectively support and sustain growth. To achieve this, he intends to hire additional staff to ensure that decisions, programmes and projects of the commission are implemented on a timely basis. He wants also to reduce the need for the commission’s functionality to be solely dependent upon the council and to include the secretariat more extensively.
The young business leader said he wants to see enhanced research capacity in the organisation and to raise substantial and sufficient funds to ensure the PSC’s fiscal viability and organisational health.