Speaking to more than 300 Ex-members of the Guyana Defence Force and other well-wishers of the APNU+AFC Coalition, Brigadier David Granger said that under an APNU+AFC administration there will be a National Veterans Department. The APNU+AFC Presidential Candidate said that under his leadership a Veterans Act would be passed paving the way for the establishment of the National Veterans Department. Granger said, “Veterans deserve better and an APNU+AFC administration will put in place measures to protect our veterans….I give you that commitment.”
Granger’s announcement was greeted with loud applause by the hundreds of veterans who had packed the Ex-GDF Association Hall on Rockaway Blvd in Queens, New York, yesterday (Sunday March 22nd ) to listen to the APNU+AFC Presidential Candidate. The retired Commander of the Guyana Defence Force, noted that the GDF would celebrate its 50th anniversary in November 2015, and very little was being done to ensure that Veterans welfare was being addressed in a holistic manner. Granger said, “A Veterans Act will put Veterans affairs on a sound footing for the first time in the history of the GDF.” Granger told the packed hall that APNU+AFC was committed to the following:
Veterans’ Commission: APNU+AFC will pass a ‘Veterans Act’ in Parliament and establish a permanent, full-time Commission to administer veterans’ affairs.
Veterans’ benefits: APNU+AFC will arrange for discounts on the cost of food and medicine at commercial enterprises and will provide books, snacks, transport and uniforms for veteran’s children to go to school.
Veterans’ pensions: APNU+AFC will increase the pensions of all veterans and lower the cost-of-living by reducing the value-added-tax on essential goods.
Veterans’ Trust: APNU+AFC will provide finance for a Trust which will assist veterans to gain access to land for housing and farming; continuing education and skills training; Employment; small enterprise development and welfare.
Age of retirement: APNU+AFC will review the age of retirement of all military personnel to allow for longer, satisfying and successful careers.
Granger thanked the Veterans for their service to Guyana and assured them that an APNU+AFC administration would be forward looking and urged the veterans to think seriously about investing in Guyana. Recalling his early days as an Officer in the GDF, Granger said that his military foundation had prepared him for service at the highest level.