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Mr. Ally made this pronouncement last Saturday at the opening of ‘Youth Expo 2003’ at the Sophia Exhibition Site, Georgetown.
The Permanent Secretary noted that activities such as the youth exhibition will go a far way in helping young people to develop rounded personalities, while boosting their self-esteem, leadership skills and sporting abilities. He also threw out a challenge to all students urging them not to conclude their education at the level of the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC), but to keep pressing on to higher academic achievements.
Ally dispelled the mindset that a student must attend a top school to get an education.
“Put your priorities in order. We are living in extremely difficult times in Guyana, and distractions such as television, your peers and the get-rich- quick syndrome must not trap you and destroy your future,” he advised.
President of the University of Guyana Students Society (UGSS), Mr. Robert Bourne, who also made some brief remarks at the opening of the exhibition, lauded the organisers for the appropriateness and timeliness of the programme and the theme.
The theme is, “Overcoming Our Obstacles and Reaching Our Full Potential Through Awareness and the Adoption of Healthy Lifestyles”.
Bourne, a teacher by profession, also joined other speakers in urging the students to take advantage of the opportunities for education available to them today.
He challenged parents to provide emotionally stable environments for children, and appealed to all Guyanese to deepen their love for this country.
Bourne acknowledged the many races represented and urged them to forget the present trend in society and put aside their differences so that all can work together.
British High Commissioner Mr. Stephen Hiscock, who delivered some remarks to the gathering, supported the preceding speakers in their calls for healthy lifestyle practices and the attainment of higher academic standards.
“Take in your education. It is important for the future of the country,” the British High Commissioner stated.
He noted that healthy lifestyles, sporting activities, academic achievement and respect for parents and teachers are all important, but hastened to add that respect does not mean “you cannot question what is going on in your society”.
“If you see something that is wrong, question it. But do so in a polite way. Do not allow people to put you in a corner,” the British envoy advised the youths.
Member of the People’s National Congress/Reform (PNC/R) Mr. Raphael Trotman, in delivering the charge to the youths, said: “You represent the future and all that is good and beautiful of Guyana.”
The event included cultural presentations from various schools.
The objective of the programme is to expose youths to different types of careers available in Guyana. (Shirwin Campbell)