Support Village Voice News With a Donation of Your Choice.
Recently, the Guyanese government has garnered attention for its ventures in a range of projects, spanning hydroponics, shade houses, black belly sheep farming, shrimp farming, soybean farming, coding, and oil and gas. While innovation is certainly vital, there is growing unease regarding the government’s approach towards these initiatives. By utilizing taxpayer funds and accruing debt to finance these projects, the government is crowding out local private sector and civil society players who would ideally lead these projects. These players possess valuable expertise and insights and are better suited to implement innovative projects as they are not hindered by governmental bureaucracy.
The Guyanese government should focus on effectively providing basic services such as building and improving roads, improving schools, controlling crime, improving healthcare, sewage management, providing potable water and reliable electricity and internet access to its citizens. However, the government seems to be more focused on muscling into every area they deem to be attractive, without taking into account their limited expertise in these fields. The general approach is to hire a couple of people, call a friend here or there, announce this or that project, create headlines and then under deliver.
The government’s tendency to also copy ideas and steal proposals shows a lack of understanding of the importance of innovators in a society, and their lack of respect for collaboration and intellectual property laws. This behavior hinders progress and wastes valuable time and resources. Moreover, the government’s lack of expertise and experience in these fields raises doubts about the success of these projects.
We are suggesting that the government of Guyana invest more both in money and focus, on infrastructure and innovation funds through large grants to the nation’s creatives, similar to how the US National Science Foundation works. The current approach of ripping off people’s ideas is both embarrassing and counterproductive and will only result in a massive waste of taxpayer dollars and valuable time.
We are therefore pleading with the government of Guyana to prioritize the delivery of basic services and infrastructure while supporting innovation through collaborative efforts and intellectual property protection. Failure to do so will not only result in a waste of taxpayer dollars but also limit opportunities for local players to contribute to the nation’s growth and progress. The government’s responsibility is to create an environment that fosters innovation and creativity, while also ensuring that the basic needs of its citizens are met.