Moments after President Irfaan Ali announced that Indigenous Leaders will begin receiving payments from the sale of Carbon Credits to Hess Corporation, Opposition Leader Aubrey Norton expressed his dissatisfaction with the amount that will be given to the villages.
Of the US$750 Million that will he paid to the Government over a 10-year period, US$112 million will go towards the Indigenous communities.
Mr. Norton said that is simply not enough, especially when one takes into account the needs of the Indigenous communities across Guyana.
“The President was celebrating giving 9% of the money of earned from Carbon sales to Indigenous communities, again that is ridiculous. The people who occupy the areas where there are large forest covers are the indigenous people and there is need for them to be involved in the decision making and to get more,” the Opposition Leader said.
The Opposition Leader said there is need for massive human and infrastructural development in the Hinterland and to give Indigenous communities only a small portion of the earnings from carbon sales is a great disservice to the people of those communities.
“Why would a President celebrate giving 9% of the indigenous people when they are probably the most impoverished section of our society and should be given more so I found that to be just idle talk rather than seeking to deal with the issues at hand,” Mr. Norton noted.
Additionally, Mr. Norton has dismissed the President’s opening remarks at the energy conference about plans for the oil and gas sector as “idle talk”.
“I found that the fundamental thing that was missing from this oil and gas conference is that how is it that oil and gas will serve the people of Guyana and help them to come out of poverty,” the Opposition Leader said.
He said the conference must not only be a place for boasting but must also come up with solutions on how it will address the question of poverty reduction and alleviation.