Minister of Local Government and Regional Development, Hon. Nigel Dharamlall inspected ongoing works on a $12 million primary school in Kokerite, Barima-Waini (Region One) during a recent four-day outreach to the Region.
The works include the construction of a $4 million teacher’s quarters, which would bring the total expenditure to $16 million. The renovations are set to be completed before month end.
Minister Dharamlall told residents that the works are another demonstration of the Government’s efforts to ensure that youth receive their education in an environment that is conducive to learning.
“I hope that it is being done to the quality that the village requires, and we also hope that most of the materials being supplied come from the community of Kokerite.
The reason I am saying so is that when we make these investments, we would like villages to benefit from it so that people can get employed and get money and businesses can be done,” he said.
Currently, two villagers have been working on the school. However, the Minister said more persons will have to be employed, and local materials will also have to be procured for the construction.
This approach, he said, would create jobs, boosting the community’s economy and the country’s as a whole.
Minister Dharamlall also pledged to look into the establishment of a sanitary block for the school.
Toshao, Mr. Sherman Adams, thanked the Minister for fulfilling the community’s request for a new school, noting that the Government has aided development in the village.
“It has been hard for this community…I must say that no member of Government has ever visited this village since 2015 and so I am happy that you are here to not only listen to our needs but answer them,” he said.
Mr. Adams requested the Government’s assistance to provide a solar water pump, concrete walkway and the establishment of a guest house to boost tourism in the community.
Minister Dharamlall said the requests are not unreasonable for a community that seeks further enhancement and as such, the matter will be raised with the relevant officials.
Established in 1953, Kokerite is a riverine community located some 60 miles up the Barama River, and is considered an ecotourism paradise.