Former GCCI President lashes back at Minister Gaskin

first_img– for telling Private Sector to stay out of politicsBusiness Minister Dominic Gaskin’s advice that the Private Sector should stay out of politics until elections time has been rebuffed, with a former Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) President reminding him that politics is very much the Private Sector’s business.Addressing the second day of the Business Development Forum, former GCCI President Vishnu Doerga pointed out that the business community is, by virtue of paying its taxes, already involved in politics. At the same time, he noted the importance of the Private Sector ensuring it is in compliance with the laws.“We (the business community) understand that we’re all in politics,” he related. “Who funds all of this? It’s your taxpayers’ money that funds all of this, so that actually means that we’re all involved in politics…,” he contended.“Make sure that you comply; pay everything that you need to pay, so that you can actually open your mouth. If you don’t, that’s why the Minister said to stay quiet. Because if you’re not paying the levels, you shouldn’t be talking. But if you are, and you meet all your obligations, it is your responsibility to (have a) say,” Doerga charged.Business Minister Dominic GaskinHe cited an example wherein businesses would have to interact with regulatory agencies such as the Government Analyst Food and Drug Department (GA-FDD) due to the importance of ensuring they are selling and consuming products safely.“And is that politics? If it is where the money is coming from, and how we’re being taxed, and how it’s being used, then I’ll say yes, do get involved!” Doerga related.Stay outAt the opening of the forum on Friday, Business Minister Dominic Gaskin had advised the Private Sector to stay clear of politics until the time comes to fund the elections, and to place their focus on business.He was addressing the inaugural Business Development Forum hosted by the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) at the Pegasus Hotel.The Minister managed to raise eyebrows at the launching with his pronouncement that he believes the business sector ought to stay out of politics until the election period, and should rather concentrate on what it does best.“I believe that the Private Sector should concentrate on business, and stay out of politics, at least until the election season comes around, when you can decide which parties you want to support or which candidates you want to fund, because funding is of course a very key component of the election campaigning process. But certainly, in the off season, you need to concentrate on business, and Government is supportive of that… let the Private Sector do what it does best: compete, comply and get compensated,” he said.He went on to say that, for far too long, Guyanese have been blaming bad politics in Guyana for bad business practices, as he compared Guyana to other countries.last_img

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