Under the banner of a “Quality Representation for Better Quality of Life”, Ras Leon Saul hopes to become
Ras Leon Saul
the elected representative of Lamaha Gardens, Bel Air Park, Campbellville, Section K Campbellville and Newtown – Constituency 4 of the Georgetown Municipality. The Healing The Nation Theocracy Party (HTNTP) candidate told Guyana Times that he intended to forge “community renewal” through consultation.
“I live there so I know the problems that they face in the constituency; I think I could make a difference to the area by making better representation so that residents could live a better quality of life,” Saul declared.
Among his many objectives, the candidate wants to push for an overhaul of Georgetown’s property tax system.
“The property taxes now are archaic and they have got to be brought into compliance with present day property values,” Saul opined. He further opined that this overhaul would assist with “the expansion of the City Council’s revenue base”.
Saul stressed that in Constituency 4, residents desired improved security given a recent surge in thefts.
“Residents claim that people, especially young men, are coming in from the neighbouring communities and are invading the premises and stealing, even in broad daylight so security and safety are major challenges. Many people are retired and they want to enjoy their lives,” stressed the HTNTP candidate.
To this end, Saul hopes to install several street lights around strategic points in the community. He also intends to “champion” a more efficient transport system and promises to look into “the holistic provision of public sanitation facilities” in the city.
He is of the view that City Hall’s current management should change. He also stated that the Councillors should have been doing more for residents in the capital despite the many challenges.
“The current management of City Hall is waking up after a long sleep. Yes, we can understand that they were deprived of subvention from Central Government, but you’ve got to take in mind that if you are leaders, you’ve got to use initiative. We see with the change of Government, they had a new lease of life, but for over 22 years they weren’t doing anything and you can’t blame Central Government,” Saul noted.
He said it was his intention to push for “equal rights and justice” for all.
“There should be no discrimination against Rastafarians, the gay and lesbian community – there should be no discrimination across the board and that should a policy,” the candidate pointed out.
As a former Young Socialist Movement (YSM) member, he stated the importance of youth involvement.
“We’ve got to nurture and grow our young people; we’ve got to lend our life skills and experience.”
He opined that a significant percentage of Guyana’s population was below the age of 45 and since we were “a young country”, we should prepare youth to accept leadership roles.
The candidate posited that his background has qualified him as the right person to represent citizens in his community.
“I am a man on the ground: I am a roots man, and I can empathise with people’s concerns and I come under the guidance of the Most High; so I’ve come to guide them with spiritual energies and creative initiatives to think outside of the box,” Saul explained.
Other initiatives Saul hopes to undertake include developing grounds in Lamaha Gardens and Lama Avenue, “green initiatives” for recycling and environmental protection and the promotion of social cohesion through culture.
Saul is a New Amsterdam native who has worked and studied in Toronto, Canada. According to the candidate, he was the first “Rasta Man” to run as a candidate for Councillor on the Toronto City Council. Guyana’s Local Government Elections will be held on Friday, March 18.