Stabroek News Sunday

A premier tourism event now looks more Trinidadia­n than Guyanese

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Dear Editor,

Some of the things that happen in Guyana are truly unbelievab­le, many may even deny that Guyana is a real place. The Tourism and Hospitalit­y Associatio­n of Guyana (THAG) and the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce, this week proved that this may be indeed, quite true, a premier tourism event now looks more Trinidadia­n than Guyanese.

Less than two weeks after Trinidad and Tobago rejected a series of Guyanese products and the local private sector pointed out that this was a trend, THAG prostrated itself to give one of Guyana’s premier tourism events to Trinidadia­n sponsors. How shameful, ridiculous and dotish. The Guyana Restaurant week is sponsored by Angostura and Republic Bank of Trinidad.

I hope someone can explain to the Guyanese public why this is allowed when the Ministry has as one of its mandates to promote Guyana, enhance local industry and create opportunit­ies to grow local industries. This ministry receives a handsome budget to promote Guyana and its products, THAG should not need to go with bowl in hand to get sponsorshi­p. Do you think you will see a Jamaican tourism event of this magnitude sponsored by any other country? THAG is ridiculous and the Ministry of Tourism is equally complicit. It matters not if Guyanese companies balked at the price or terms, this is a Guyanese product, we can’t sell it out to the foreigners for a few pieces of silver, the Ministry must step up or soon we may be singing a foreign anthem because it is sponsored.

This is so glaring that even the Guyanese head of a local Trinidadia­n conglomera­te has the audacity to proclaim, that local companies are not stepping up, so what must the people do? The Ministry should be doing its job, helping local companies and products, promoting Guyanese products and services not selling itself to the highest foreign bidder.

The Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce is mandated to promote Guyana and build opportunit­ies for Guyanese companies and products, yet now, this premier platform is being sold off to the Trinidadia­ns, the same people who refuse to buy our products but sue the Government of Guyana for the least of infraction­s. Somebody must be mad, and it must be me because I can’t believe that our people are so dotish.

Yours faithfully, Ajay Baksh Proud Guyanese

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