The state-owned Government Information Services (GIS) has come under fire from the grouping of Civil Society Organisations (CSO) for claiming that the public forum on Camerhogne Park has been postponed.
GIS said in a news release issued that “the Government of Grenada wishes to advise of the postponement of its facilitated planned presentation and consultation between the developers of the Camerhogne Park/Riviera Hotel project, the Civil Society Organisation, and the government.”
CSO was forced to counteract, referring to the GIS news release as “rumours,” and that the public forum would go ahead as planned at the Grenada National Stadium.
At the start of the two-and-a-half hour public forum, former Cabinet Secretary, Gloria Payne-Banfield who is a member of CSO provided participants with the necessary background information for the forum.
According to Payne-Banfield, CSO is a member of the Social Partners that is chaired by Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell, and its Representatives are Judy Williams, James Nicholas and herself.
She spoke of a representative of the Camerhogne Park developers, Architect Nigel Renwick being invited to make a presentation of the proposal at one of the meetings when she was the only CSO’s representative present.
She said the grouping took a decision to have a separate presentation and in dialogue with Minister of State for Youth and Sports, Senator Winston Garraway he advised that a public forum with a set format can be held on April 21.
She stated that the format Sen. Garraway wanted was to just have the developers make a presentation and there was to be no responses from anyone.
Payne-Banfield said that about midday on the same day that the forum was fixed for 5.00 p.m. she received a telephone call from Health Minister, Nickolas Steele who said that the developers will not be attending the meeting as they are travelling.
“The consensus of the consultation (with other CSO Members) is that the meeting will not be postponed,” she said.
Presentations at the public forum were made by the Willie Redhead Foundation, Grenada Trades Union Council, Grenada Hotel and Tourism Association, a medical doctor, and a former Director of Tourism.
Chairperson of CSO, Judy Williams said that Grenadians must be clear that they need to stand up for some things.
Going forward must be clear, reminding the audience that Camerhogne Park is not for sale, but must be upgraded for recreation, leisure and the well being of the Grenadian people.
The “Save Camerhogne Park” message was part of Labour Day celebrations Sunday in St. Patrick as members of the committee participated in the street parade alongside the affiliates of the Grenada Trades Union Council (GTUC).