When residents of Georgetown’s Con-stituency 10 (Albouystown-Charlestown) vote on Monday, they will have three choices for their direct council representative in the persons of Heston Bostwick, of APNU, Brittany Eversley of the AFC and Ron Amos of the PPP/C.
Bostwick, who was selected by APNU as the proportional representation candidate at the 2016 polls, is now contesting under the First Past the Post system as the current representative, Malcom Ferreira, is not seeking re-election.
In an interview with Stabroek News, Bostwick stated that he has been campaigning again in the constituency and he is ready for the election.
He spoke of the successes that he and Ferreira had over their two years as council representatives. Bostwick said that they were able to rehabilitate the Albouystown Health Centre. He also said they managed to take over 500 children on educational tours and camps. “We were able to have the Barr Street bridge [converted] to a new concrete bridge and the Hill Street bridge also was constructed. We were able to have the St Stephen’s Ground cleaned… [and] the children had their last school sports there,” he said. He added that they were also able to have the Sussex Street koker rehabilitated and a new pump was also installed.
When asked about his plans for the youth who reside in the constituency, Bostwick said that he would like to get them involved in whatever needs to be done in their communities. He further indicated that he wanted the YMCA building reconstructed so the youths can have a safe space to take part in various activities. “The reality is, most of the youths that you will find idling are youths who are willing to work and in whatever way we can create jobs we will focus on that,” he said. “The whole issue about dealing with youth in depressed communities is to provide opportunities and not just provide opportunities but motivate them towards achieving. If you create that desire for any youth to learn, I believe the youths will always participate,” he added.
Bostwick said he hopes to have the constituency’s YMCA building reconstructed and to have corporate Guyana and central government on board to aid in the reconstruction. “Having a community centre, you will be able to do so many things for the youth. Yes, we have the Albouystown Masjid social centre but that carries barriers because of religious beliefs. So, [with] an open community centre you will be able to merge the two communities and build a relationship.”
Bostwick stated that his priority would be to have the communities clean and healthy for the residents. He, however, noted that he would like to bring relief to the residents of Charlestown, where drains in the community are silted and culverts are blocked.
‘An equal say’
In direct contrast to Bostwick, who has been a community activist for many years, is the AFC’s candidate, Eversley, who is 19-years-old.
Eversley told Stabroek News that she is contesting because she feels that it is time for the youths to have a voice and an equal say in what goes on within their communities. “We leave lots of decisions up to the older folks when we could make decisions as well. Maybe I have some just as good ideas or even better ideas for how projects should be done in the community or how we can maximise the use of funds,” she said.
Eversley’s main focus for her constituency would be to tackle the issue of unemployment by finding ways to use those persons to complete the needed works within their communities. “We can find a way to get equipment and persons who are unemployed and hang out on the streets all day can use their time. If everything is provided for them, then they could actually be employed because, I mean, grass always grows, somebody has to cut it and that’s just a way that they can have something to do and earn money for themselves,” she noted.
Eversley also spoke of her plans to have the out-of-school youths, who are usually loitering on the road, involved in sports and other activities to keep them out of trouble. She would like to make open spaces and provide the necessary equipment for the youths. “If we provide the balls, like footballs and basketballs, and have them out there, they can find things to occupy their time so they don’t fall into drug use and stealing stuff,” she noted.
She would also like to see another ICT hub created within the communities so that the youths can be able to make use of the facilities to get their homework and assignments done. “I would like for them to add another hub, so persons wouldn’t only be able to use the internet but also get their homework and assignments done, like we could have maybe paper to print stuff for them at a really cheap cost and stuff that would motivate them to stay in school because if it’s difficult for a person to find basic necessities to get their homework and assignments done then it’s easy to understand why they would want to drop out of school,” she said.
According to Eversley, this would be her first priority if she is to be elected as the constituency representative.
Stabroek News was unable to contact the PPP/C candidate.