Proportional Representative (PR) candidate of the Sans Souci-Melville constituency in the Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) of Wakenaam, Sheikh Ahmad is confident that the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) will garner gains in the Essequibo island district at this year’s Local Government Elections (LGE).As the November 12 date draws closer, the PPP/C representative told Guyana Times on Sunday that various candidates and representatives would continue meeting with potential constituents to convince them that their Party was the most suitable for their local representation.He told this newspaper that he expected the Party would secure a return to victory as it had done since the 1994 LGE were held. After the LGE resurfaced in 2016, the PPP/C secured 15 out of 18 seats, having won eight of nine constituencies. The Party opted to withdraw from Constituency Two, Rush Brook/Maria Johanna this time around owing to discrepancies in the list of candidates for the area. Nevertheless, Ahmad, who took over the NDC chairmanship in January, believes that his Party has the platform that will draw residents to cast their votes in its favour.“Our plan is for no new taxes and we want to continue to work with the drainage and irrigation system to enhance farming in terms of coconut, rice, plantain, cattle and to continue to work with community centres and grounds to enhance sport and sporting facilities,” the incumbent Chairman observed.Ahmad, who is also a farmer and businessman, told this newspaper that he would continue working with fellow farmers on the island with a view of having more input from them as they would have first-hand knowledge of the issues that arise in the agricultural sector. To this end, the politician said that he would place special focus on the areas of marketing, production and quality.He highlighted that his island has good drainage networks owing to an excavator that the Council obtained in 2010. The incumbent Chair outlined that every year the NDC was guided by its Work Programme whereby 26,000 rods of trenches and drains were cleaned and maintained, while kokers were also kept in working condition. Ahmad, however, stressed that many of the roads on Wakenaam were in a deplorable state although he was hopeful that Central Government would provide the NDC with a grader to level the roads ahead of overall road works.“There are 10-12 miles of deplorable roads on the island,” he stressed.He committed to working with various levels of Government to ensure that he advocated for the rights of his constituency. This comes even though the ruling party at the central level is the A Partnership for National Unity and Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC). However, at the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) level in Region Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara), the PPP/C controls the majority, which has been advantageous to Wakenaam.“It wasn’t an easy task to work with Central Government as it was tough at first, but somehow found a working relationship with the Region and with our subventions, we have been able to achieve assistance for works,” he noted, referencing the recent breach of the sea defence and consequent flooding on the island which saw a multi-stakeholder approach being utilised to address the issue.Ahmad said that residents were very optimistic in supporting the Party’s candidates on his belief that they would garner the majority on the Wakenaam NDC.“We have been in the field working and we have shown the concern of caring and providing services for everyone despite your nationality, race or political affiliation. We have been a diverse Party, which has put our support to every person that has asked us for help. We reach out to them and that’s why we should be the persons returning to run the NDC,” the PR candidate stressed.