Ready or not: Govt eyes year-end deadline for regional flags

first_imgCentral Government has given regions until this year end to conclude consultations, raise whatever issues they may have and suggest alternatives, after which the flags for each region will be adopted.This was communicated by Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan on the sidelines of an event on Friday. Bulkan informed Guyana Times that Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) has indicated acceptance of the proposed renaming as Rupununi.“It is part and parcel of a menu of measures that will allow for personal identification with our regions and to foster pride. There is a great degree of push back on the part of a number of our Regional Democratic Councils, in relation to this initiative of the Central Government. As it relates to the renaming of our regions, it arises from recognition by the Administration that our regions continue to be referred to as a number and not their names.”“The reason for this, is it is considered that the names of our regions are too long and probably a shorter name will lend to it being more user friendly. Again, the rationale is it is difficult for humans to form an emotional attachment with a number. So we feel that for regional empowerment and pride, persons need to refer to their regions by a name and not a number.”Bulkan explained that it was a matter of regional pride. According to the Minister, citizens cannot form emotional connections… with numbers. Asked for an update on the consultations that were supposed to be carried out, he noted that other regions will need time, when it comes to both a name change and a flag.“They do have a little bit more time. We’re giving them up to the end of this year, because specimens of each of the regional flags have been given to the regions. In the absence of their proposing or suggesting an alternative, in all likelihood we will proceed in the near future with adopting those flags as the regional flags.”Back in 2016, a decision to give each region its own flag was announced by the Government. At the time, it was noted that the initiative was part of a wider effort to promote the decentralisation of the 10 regions.The proposal has met with stout resistance from some regional officials. There have also been delays in holding consultations on the proposal.In addition, the Opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) was not enamoured with the idea.The Party had declared that the Golden Arrowhead is the constitutional flag of Guyana, adding that any other flag imposed will be contrary to the country’s Constitution. In addition, the party had noted that most residents would prefer jobs, enhanced public security, money in their pockets, better roads, improved potable water supply and efficient garbage collection over flags.“Rather than seeking to change things that obtained under the PPP/C and to make things look different under the (A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change) APNU/AFC, the Granger coalition Administration should change their racial and political discriminatory and witch-hunting practices, as well as their wasteful spending and focus on improving the economic and social well-being of all Guyanese,” the party had stated.last_img

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