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–says referendum should decide on how resources are spent
The African Cultural & Development Association (ACDA) has condemned the haste, in which the Irfaan Ali-led Government is moving to Parliament to remove the safeguards from the Natural Resource Fund Bill 2019 and calls for this move to be halted.
In a statement ACDA said: “These safeguards have been put in place to ensure that the revenues from Guyana’s oil resources are managed transparently and with input from Civil Society. The proposed changes are a most egregious act against all the people of Guyana and their generations to come,” ACDA stated.
According to ACDA, the oil wealth of Guyana belongs to all the people of Guyana and any change to the existing Natural Resource Bill must be fully ventilated in the public domain with public consultations across Guyana seeking the input of all Guyanese thereafter a referendum should be held. “The wealth to be generated by our oil resource is too important to be decided by a few persons with no consultations from the Guyanese people. The future of our country and the wealth of our future generations are at stake.”
ACDA further proposes that a reconciliatory approach to resolving this serious national issue be instituted. ACDA warns that failure to do so would lead to worsening the political/racial divide in the country at a historical juncture that demands national consensus as a prerequisite to realising the transformative benefits of the oil sector to the nation. It is our conviction that a responsible government will step back and seek a compromise in the interest of the nation and all Guyanese.