– call for Central Government to intervene as debt continues to climbCevons Waste Management and Purans Brothers Disposal have united behind calls for Central Government to ‘take the wheel’, as the companies contended that City Hall is out of its depth and cannot resolve the municipality’s mounting debts to the companies.This was communicated in a statement on Friday, where the two companies laid out what they are owed by City Hall and even provided a payment plan. They explained that they withdrew their service over an outstanding debt of $160 million. Shockingly, the companies noted that this debt accumulated from June of this year.“Our decision was made only after futile attempts to engage the municipality on the issue of settling these outstanding amounts. In the process, we found City Hall to be decidedly lacking in a sense of urgency.”“It is as if the administration of City Hall has concluded that it is entirely reasonable to expect us to continue to provide service in the face of its astounding delinquency,” the company stated.According to the companies, they want their June and July arrears payment by November month end; August and September payments by December 31 and the resumption of regular payments as stipulated in their contract in February. They called on Government to intervene in support of this process, to ensure efficient garbage disposal.“We wish both the Government of Guyana and the citizens to be assured that a great deal of human and physical resources are invested in discharging our responsibility to the capital,” the company said. “In that context we submit that it is both morally and legally wrong to expect that we can continue, over a protracted period of time, to discharge these services without compensation.”The two companies also responded to reports that City Hall would contract smaller companies to replace them. They warned of the risk to the entire city should City Hall engage persons with less capacity to collect garbage than them.“In the past, City Hall’s resort to less than professional replacement service providers have led to unwholesome consequences, not least, movement through the streets of the capital of vehicles unsuited to the task making deposits of garbage and putrid liquid on streets in the capital to say nothing large numbers of disgruntled citizens,” the companies noted.Financial shortfallIn a statement earlier this week, City Hall had explained that “…because of a serious financial shortfall, the Council is unable to honour its obligation to both contractors in a timely manner, a situation which the Council regrets.”Five smaller garbage contractors had since expressed willingness to work with the Council from Monday, November 26, to carry out the collection services. As such, the Council was scheduled to meet with these small contractors to concretise the details of the agreement.According to the governing body in the Capital City, it expends approximately $30 million monthly for the removal of waste from the Georgetown environs. This solid waste management bill, it added, accounts for 38 per cent of the Council’s monthly income, which is some $89 million.To this end, the M&CC said moving forward next year it will have to reassess how it manages waste collection in the City. Last month, both Purans Brothers and Cevons Waste Management had said they were owed some $150 million by City Hall. This debt was said to have been outstanding since the second quarter of 2018.Puran Brothers Disposal Service is owed $73 million, while Cevons Waste Disposal is owed $75 million. At that time, the two entities had been contemplating pulling their services, since there was “no positive outcome” to their meetings with City Hall.For one of the collectors, the monthly operational expenditure is somewhere in the vicinity of $15 million. City Hall’s financial crisis dates back to times when, with no other option, both solid waste collectors had been forced to withdraw their services until pending payments had been made. Staffers were also dismissed and later rehired in light of this process. Managing City Hall’s finances will be a stern test for the recently elected new body of councillors.
The number of Indian students coming to British higher education institutions has dwindled since 2010, but the number of academics categorised as “British Indian” has crossed the 5,000 mark for the first time, reflecting their expertise across disciplines.The category includes Indian citizens and British citizens of Indian-origin. During 2016-17, the 5,245 academics in this group included 2,185 Indian citizens, according to new figures provided by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).Indians have long taught various subjects in British universities, including economist Amartya Sen, educationist Sugata Mitra and engineer Kumar Bhattacharyya, but this is the first time their figure has crossed 5,000 across the United Kingdom.Read it at Hindustan Times Related Items