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Mixed emotions as Old Age Pension increases by $1000

first_imgWhile some residents are excited to receive what was deemed a massive increase by Finance Minister Winston Jordan during the budget presentation on Monday, quite a few pensioners have expressed dissatisfaction over the amount, saying that the cost of living is way too high.Yvonne Simpson, a pensioner crying for more to be added to the monthly allocationDuring an afternoon walkabout in the capital city of Georgetown, several residents, especially pensioners took the opportunity to express their views on the amount to be added to the present $19,500 monthly allocation.One woman said, “A $1000 is not enough. I would like to have more, I want $5000 more, would have been good because if you go in the market, they put on more things (prices). As soon as they have a budget, they put on $20 on this, $100 on that, $40 more on transportation, so $5000 would’ve nice.”Another pensioner, Yvonne Simpson argued, “A $1000 can’t do with this time that going here. We want a $5000 more. That would do the work, $1000 because cost of living expensive. Everything dear in the market and tax raise, you got to pay more for everything.”Sita (only name given), another pensioner, said the increase was not enough. According to her, “That is not enough, because light bill raise, water bill raise and everything.”A pensioner, who is also a market vendor, told this newspaper that she was quite satisfied with the amount being given by the Government, while another said that the Government would only give what it had and as such, she welcomed the increase.Speaking at a press conference after the Budget presentation on Monday evening, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo said that the $300.7 billion Budget presented by the Finance Minister was one that was filled with repetition and disappointment, adding that the Party could not support such a budget in its current form.According to the Opposition Leader, the Budget fell far short of fulfilling objectives that are important to enhancing the welfare, well-being and future of the Guyanese people.In addition, he pointed out that nothing in relation to water rates was outlined in the Budget, although they affected the population massively.Jagdeo said, “You know your water rate has gone up. You have to pay more for transportation now, because the Government didn’t reduce the taxes on fuel (and) everything has gone up. You are hoping for some relief at home, (but) what sort of relief did this budget bring to you? You are a pensioner and you are a public assistance person and you are expecting, they are telling people about the massive increases that they will give and you get a $1000 more per month.”last_img read more

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