How does the Finance Minister expect women to survive?

Dear Editor,

As I listened attentively to the Minister of Finance on Monday, November 28, and heard him announce that water and light will attract a 14% VAT if the charges exceed a certain threshold, I felt a lancing pain as if I had received a deadly blow to my solar plexus. Editor, immediately my autonomic nervous system went into disarray when I realised that the 2017 Budget with its 14% VAT imposition on water and light will definitely affect my pocket.

The evidence is clear that in Guyana women are the predominant breadwinners, caring for fatherless children. This budget does absolutely nothing to alleviate the feminization of poverty given the many single parent households which are headed by women. In fact, what it has done is to ensure that women remain in the cycle of poverty. Is this the promised good life?

How does the Finance Minister expect women to survive and care for these children with this 14% VAT imposition on water and light which will increase the cost of living?

Editor, it is women in Guyana who are mostly poor and work for poor wages, despite all their educational success. How can the Minister of Finance sit there and tell me that he cares when every time I look around the women suffer ‒ and they do suffer in every way.

 Yours faithfully,

Nicole Cole

Commissioner

Women & Gender Equality

Commission

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