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|President Ramotar warns Rio of regressive forces to sustainable development|
|Sunday, 24 June 2012 20:49|
PRESIDENT Donald Ramotar told participants of the recently concluded Rio+20 Conference in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil to be on the alert for regressive forces in every country that are opposed to sustainable development.
Speaking at a side event on day one of the Rio summit titled “Towards Sustainable Development: Guyana’s Story”, the Guyanese Head of State sought to illustrate that sustainable development is not universally accepted.
“There are regressive forces in every country in the world, who either don’t believe in acting to prevent climate change and other environmental problems, or they have their own vested interests which make them try to stop action on these problems,” President Ramotar said.
The Guyana side event at the Rio+20 conference.
The recent move by the opposition political parties with one seat majority in Guyana’s National Assembly to cut $21B from the 2012 National Budget, part of which included allocations to the country’s revolutionary Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) is a prime example.
President Ramotar withheld dragging Guyana’s internal politics into the international arena but painted a general picture of the scenario.
It was also deemed a drastic move when the $18.3B allocation to Guyana’s revolutionary (LCDS) was cut and the indigenous peoples were saddened by the development, cognizant that the land titling in hinterland communities would be shattered.
Some described it is a gross violation of international law, particularly the United Nations Declaration of Indigenous Peoples, and a discriminatory and prejudicial act by the combined opposition.
Funding for the Amaila falls hydropower project was also slashed along with the hopes of significantly reducing the cost of electricity on the consumer and the fuel consumption bill which the Government must inevitably foot.
The private sector was most disappointed, as it was counting on the hydro project to put Guyana on the map industrially.
Chairman of the Private Sector Commission (PSC) Ramesh Dookhoo recently expressed the hope that “good sense prevails and this situation can be turned around in a very short time,”
President Ramotar told the Rio side event gathering that such actions are tantamount to an assault that can destroy political will. He pointed to other examples in the sphere of politics where such circumstances prevail.
“When you look, for example, at the United States, where the Republican Party stymies President Obama’s efforts on climate change, you need to recognise that other countries also have such political forces that can destroy progress if given a chance to assault it,” President Ramotar said.
The international community has already acknowledged that the need for countries to face up to funding is the fair thing to do and President Ramotar called for actions in this regard to be more forthcoming.
He said if the developed world lived up to its commitments under the Cancun Agreements – for US$30 billion in Fast Start Funding, leading to US$100 billion per annum by 2020, a sensible percentage of that, (about 20%), would be more than enough to fund the kinds of reductions in deforestation and forest degradation that other forest countries are willing and able to deliver.
“The world needs more Norways, and I’m confident if we get them, the world will have more Guyanas. And if that is the case, the forest countries of the world can deliver – before 2020 – the biggest contribution to combating climate change the world has ever seen,” President Ramotar said.
|Last Updated on Sunday, 24 June 2012 20:52|
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