Georgetown, Guyana — (June 29, 2018) Minister of Citizenship, Mr. Winston Felix, this evening, endorsed a strong relationship between the public and private sectors as he public expressed gratitude to members of the private sector and other agencies, who generously donated to Guyana’s Hurricane Relief efforts in 2017 for the Caribbean countries left devastated by Hurricanes Irma, Jose and Maria. The Minister was, at the time, delivering the feature address at the Hurricane Relief Ceremony and Cocktail Reception hosted by the Civil Defence Commission (CDC) in appreciation of the Public Sector Commission’s (PSC) efforts in raising more than GYD$25 million in relief support for those affected by the hurricanes.
“[The] partnerships… formed between the Government and the Private sector commission needs to be encouraged. It needs to be tended to as how you would care [for a] garden… This partnership must never suffer from any outside interference. It is necessary that the Government and the Private Sector forge ahead with this partnership… The Government… cannot do it [alone]… We need to make good on this sound start. We need to sit down and look at ways in which the Private Sector and Government can develop into a strong fighting machine whenever it comes to defending the safety [and] integrity of our people,” Minister Felix said.
The Minister of Citizenship thanked the members of the PSC not only on behalf of the Government but the numerous Guyanese who were flown home as well from the ravaged islands. “We have shown the world that we are willing to go anywhere at any time and bring home our people… They too are grateful to you, Private Sector. They too would want to join in all congratulatory efforts aimed at recognising the work you have done and are capable of doing and will do in the future,” he said.
Acting Director General of the Civil Defence Commission, Lieutenant Colonel Kester Craig highlighted the importance of collaboration between the Private Sector and the Government.
“The mobilization of resources is key to successful disaster preparedness, response, and recovery. To achieve and mobilize resources, all stakeholders including the private sector must collaboratively make and honour contributions. The private sector agencies in Guyana fully understand that you should not only support the national response efforts but must also exercise prudence in bringing relief to our regional brothers and sisters. Many local private sector organisations stepped up to the challenge post Hurricanes Irma, Jose and Maria; many of you contributed to the Regional Response and Recovery efforts by offering food supplies, financial contributions, chartered flights, held fundraising events and local flash appeals. The CDC and the Government of Guyana recognize that in an effort to enhance national systems for response and to better manage disasters, it is imperative to meaningfully strengthen the government-private partnership… The private sector will be engaged meaningfully throughout all phases of the disaster risk management,” he said.
Chairman of the PSC, Mr. Desmond Sears reaffirmed the Commissions commitment to a healthy private-public relationship. “The Private Sector Commission will continue lending support in whatever way we can to ensure the livelihood of Guyanese and citizens of our sister nations in time of distress are assisted. Our members are aware of their corporate social responsibilities and are always willing and ready to lend a helping hand. We look forward to working with our Government and stakeholders, not only in unfortunate times, [but] to ensure national unity and prosperity,” he said.
After the ceremony, members of the PSC were given certificates of the appreciation and treated to live music during a cocktail reception.