Government did not provide $68M in the national budget for the IDPAD conference

Dear Editor,

It would be remiss of me not to address the Guyana Times article of March 9, 2018: ‘Govt yet to receive report on $68M IDPAD conference’, since it is either a malicious article or one in which the author is wallowing in ignorance. The former seems more likely, since the conference and the information pertaining to it was no secret, and Guyana Times, like all other media houses, was invited to, and covered at least the opening of, the conference.

The first bit of mischief or ignorance is that the government provided $68M in the national budget for the conference. Nothing of the sort.

The second bit of mischief or ignorance is that the organisers were provided with the sum of $68M for the hosting of the conference. That was not the case.

The summit was organized by an organisation bearing the title: IDPAD Summit.

The Parliament appropriated a subvention for 2018, the whole year, of $68M for the International Decade for Peoples of African Descent Assembly-Guyana (IDPADA-G), the Country Coordinating Mechanism for the UN declared Decade. Not one cent of that subvention was spent on the summit.

While the President (ag) Carl Greenidge did intimate his desire to be briefed on the outcome of the conference, as I am assured will be done, there is no nexus between any funds that the government provided and the requested submission of the report referenced. The insinuation of accountability issues is mischievous, just as the report of another like-minded media house was mischievous when its report on the summit referred to the re-emergence of the ghost, IDPADA-G, a tag that The PPP/C sought to attribute to the Country Coordinating Mechanism for the UN Decade for People of African Descent, during the 2018 Budget debate.

While we note the response of the PPP/C and allied media houses to the existence of IDPADA-G, we will not be deterred as we seek Justice, Recognition and Development, the United Nations declared theme for the Decade for Peoples of African Descent.

Yours faithfully,

Vincent Alexander

Chairperson, IDPADA-G

The Country Coordinating Mechanism

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