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Post Mon Jan 14, 2019 9:31 pm
…to host roundtable discussion to develop five-year strategic planWith the ultimate goal of attaining national unity, the government, through the Ministry of Social Cohesion, is pushing for a five-year strategic plan to address all forms of inequality, disparity and ethnic barriers existing today.From left: International facilitator of the Social Cohesion Roundtable Chris Spies, British High Commissioner Greg Quinn, Minister of Social Cohesion, Amna Ally, and Local facilitator of the Roundtable, Lawrence LatchmansinghThe Ministry will be hosting a national discussion with at least 50 national stakeholders, focusing on social togetherness, programme planning and development of initiatives that can help to promote national unity and nation building.During a conference at the Media Centre at the Ministry of the Presidency on Monday, Minister of Social Cohesion, Amna Ally, explained that the event is expected to create an opportunity for Guyanese to contribute to the framework for planning the social cohesion agenda and equality programming over the next five years.According to the Minister, the event will be the roadmap for implementation and a final report with key ideas and recommendations that inform social cohesion and equality programming will be presented at the end of the activity.The Ministry’s aim, she said,Wholesale NFL Jerseys, is to bridge the gaps between all forms of inequality, disparity and ethnic barriers. “We believe that in Guyana there is need for national unity and togetherness so that we can work together to build our country, our nation.”Ally said that the role of the new Ministry is challenging, but she expressed the belief that it can be achieved with the support of international bodies, stakeholders and locals. The Minister divulged that they have rolled out sensitization programmes across Guyana.Ally said that the roundtable is fully financed by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the British High Commission.As stakeholders converge at the Arthur Chung Convention Centre, Liliendaal, Greater Georgetown tomorrow, they will be listening to feature presentations from international experts, representatives of UNDP, the British High Commissioner James Gregory Quinn, Deputy Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Dr. Josephine Ojiambo, President David Granger and Sir Shridath Ramphal.Ally said that following the presentations, working groups will be established to examine a number of areas suggested by stakeholders. There is to be an examination of the areas affecting the people of Guyana.According to the Minister, the main programme will be held tomorrow. On Friday, the facilitators, rapporteurs and experts will together produce reports that will offer guidance as to the direction of the Social Cohesion Ministry.The Minister remarked that it will be implementing the results as soon as the discussions conclude. “We mustn’t expect that tomorrow we are going to achieve social cohesion in Guyana…but the important thing is that we must begin working towards that.”The Minister said, “We must resolve to take our country to another level, there is too much at stake.” Ally assured media operatives that if the need arises for legislative changes, the government will not hesitate to propose such.British High Commissioner Greg Quinn said that the United Kingdom and the British Government view Social Cohesion as very important. Quinn, who originates from Northern Ireland, said that his country has its own issues dealing with social cohesion and issues surrounding that.“This is not just for the Minister or the Ministry or us or anybody to control. This is for everybody within Guyana to take responsibility for and to be part of. Everybody in this country has a role and a responsibility in promoting, encouraging and ensuring there is social cohesion.“What we need to do is to make sure that those people have got the space to say what they want and feel able and willing and able to say what they want and get involved in a constructive debate,” Quinn remarked.The High Commissioner expressed that Thursday’s roundtable, which will be guided by the theme “Social Cohesion for Lasting Unity and Peace,” is an opportunity to push that process.The goal of the roundtable is to engage and garner contributions from citizens to enhance social cohesion in our communities and the country as a whole, with the objective of developing a strategic framework for implementing Guyana’s social cohesion five-year plan.It is also designed to understand region-specific and national factors that should be examined in formulation of strategic plan and work programme; to identify practical options, strategies and capacities for building social cohesion and addressing inequalities and how to effectively monitor change; to create national awareness and sensitisation among stakeholders on issues of social cohesion in planning for effective programme implementation.The roundtable will provide perspectives on gender, ableness, and environmental and geographic dimensions of the four thematic. These are ethnic relations and politics, social and economic equality, community and safety and well-being, and political participation and governance.More than 50 local organisations, including inter religious bodies, human rights organisations, cultural groups, the Private Sector, representatives from all 10 regions, and civil society are expected to take part in the Roundtable.

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