President David Granger: Master of ceremonies, Mrs. [Dorothy] Fraser, Teni Housty, other officials of the Guyana Red Cross Society.
Actually, I have been praying for rain for the last month because the farmers in Rupununi were calling me; the rice farmers were calling me; I couldn’t even get up to Moraikobai to hand them a school boat because the water was too low. [Laughter.] So I prayed and prayed and when I looked out I said, “Thank God the rain is coming.”
First of all I would like to say thank you again to the Guyana Red Cross Society for appointing me as patron of the organisation. I am well aware that a patron is supposed to extend patronage and I think that I have started my tenure as patron by fulfilling that obligation; and I have assured Mrs. Fraser and Mr. Housty that during my tenure I will continue to ensure that the subvention to the Guyana Red Cross Society from the Government of Guyana continues to be maintained at a healthy level. So I would like to start by saying that my tenure as patron will ensure that there is an increase in patronage to the Guyana Red Cross Society. [Applause.] That’s why I’m here free. [Laughter.]
There is so much we have to thank the Guyana Red Cross Society for. Since its establishment in 1967 in Guyana as a separate element; a national element, which is no longer associated with the British Red Cross Society, and over the last 49 years we all learnt to embrace the work that the Red Cross Society has been doing. It is always there with us in the time of flood, in the time of fire, in the time of disease, particularly epidemic disease. It has always been a source of support, a source of relief to thousands and thousands of citizens in Guyana. I don’t know what we can do without the Red Cross Society and here we are this afternoon bringing beauty into our dull lives by having this tea party and fashion show.
I would like to congratulate the Red Cross Society. I would like to thank you for everything that you have done for Guyana, that I know you’ll continue to do and certainly during my tenure as President this will be your annual venue for staging this event, but next time look out for El Niño. If there is El Niño I will be praying for rain, but otherwise you are free to come here anytime GRCS… Once again welcome and thank you very much for the work that you have done for Guyana and for Guyanese over the years.
Thank you and may God bless you all.

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