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The Opposition is expressing displeasure with the entertainment policy of the governing People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C). At its press conference on Tuesday, the A Partnership for National Unity and Alliance for Change (APNU+AFC) shared the view that these entertainment activities hosted by the government are not for the empowerment of the youth population but to serve the government’s own political objectives.
To this end it was made known the Preamble of the Constitution of Guyana states: “The aspirations of our young people who, in their own words, have declared that the future of Guyana belongs to its young people, who aspire to live in a safe society which respects their dignity, protects their rights, recognises their potential, listens to their voices, provides opportunities, ensures a healthy environment and encourages people of all races to live in harmony and peace and affirm that their declaration will be binding to our institutions and be a part of the context of our basic law.”
The PPP seems to have been rattled by the attendance of over 250 youth at the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) Youth and Student Movement (YSM) Symposium held last Saturday 8th October 2022, said Leader of the Opposition Aubrey Norton, and was forced to engineer a response from Mr. Kwame McCoy rather than from its incompetent Minister of Youth, Sport and Culture. Norton is also leader of the PNCR.
“We have noted the reported response from the Minister of Public Affairs Kwame McCoy to our criticism of the PPP’s policy that entertainment for young people cannot disregard their sense of decency and take any shape or form. That Kwame McCoy, one who is accused of immoral behaviour by many, is the PPP’s chosen spokesperson on this issue speaks volumes and confirms that the PPP has totally lost its way and shirks its responsibility to the development of young people in keeping with our Constitution.”
Norton pointed out the Opposition wants to make it clear: “We believe that young people must have fun and be happy. We believe that a government is obligated to provide facilities and opportunities for young people to find entertainment, recreation, leisure, and enjoyment. However, we reject the PPP’s approach of “anything goes” once it could be labeled as entertainment and it allows their cronies to get rich. We reject the PPP’s approach that the only way to engage and entertain young people is through what Kwame McCoy and President Irfaan Ali define as entertainment.”
Making known they are not opposed to music concerts and shows, the APNU+AFC also calls for attention to be given to the wide range of interests and desires of young people. Among these is the need to “also work with our youths to develop them into citizens who can realise their full potential and be their best selves. Let us give our youths the respect they deserve and not abuse their genuine desire for good entertainment for perverse political ends.”
Expressing concerns about decay in governance the opposition says “if the youth is not guided by a moral compass, then the PPP government could continue to resist calls for a credible international investigation into the allegations of bribery and corruption against [Vice President Bharrat] Jagdeo in particular and the corrupt leadership of the PPP in general.”