President David Granger recently took the Local Government Elections (LGE) sensitisation campaign to the mining town of Linden, where he encouraged local leaders to pay attention to addressing issues at the local level.President David Granger addressing the audienceAddressing members of the A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and community members at the Egbert Benjamin Centre, the President pointed to the importance of LGEs in shaping local democracy. Members of the coalition were in full campaign mode, endorsing the APNU, with President Granger declaring it the most exciting rally hosted so far.In his presentation, the Head of State said Government was trying to use LGEs to transform Guyana.“This is what we’re trying to do throughout Guyana: use the Local Government Elections to transformGuyana. Not to remain stagnant, but to change things, provide better services for the children and residents of these villages …We didn’t go into Local Government Elections to lose, we went in to win. But what we said is that win, lose or draw, we’re going to have Local Government Elections, because it is the people’s entitlement. It is their constitutional obligation,” he noted.The President stressed too that local representatives must serve constituencies and pay attention to local issues to ensure that the needs of all residents of various constituencies were satisfied. He also pointed to what he termed “civil resistance” or “civil war” by some Regional Chairmen whom he said did not cooperate with Central Government, noting that this was prohibiting progress.“And that is what’s holding back this country. That is what is holding back development…It is you, the representatives of the residents of those communities who must inform, instruct and direct your representatives about how to provide services for the respective communities…All politics is local, and Local Government Elections is meant to solve local problems. This is the importance…that is why you’re empowered,” Granger stated.Some of the members pay keen attention to their leaderThe Leader of the APNU also noted that candidates must prove themselves as leaders to serve their constituencies and that central, regional and municipal levels of governance must work together.He said it was hard to explain the importance of LGE, since they had been absent for so long that people did not seem to understand what they were all about, as he emphasised that training for leadership starts at LGEs.“We are in the stage, my brothers and sisters, by which we are in the brink of a new form of democracy, not only one that will promote the development of Linden, but one that will empower the residents to make them more conscious of the needs of their various communities … So, most important is that this is an exercise for real democracy in that you can identify your candidates … It’s good to be involved in decision making … because you are accountable, you are responsible,” he posited.Further endorsing the coalition, the President said the APNU ‘train’ was not going to stop, noting that it has built a relationship of trust between candidates and members of the constituencies.“APNU is a party which brings the depth of PNC experiences … We serve the working people and we’ve served this community for decades, but even so we must still mobilise…,” he said.The President also noted that he saw Linden as playing a critical role in leading the towns across Guyana as he pledged that the party would increase the number of street lights, provide more solar energy and improve solid waste management among other things.