Residents of Coomacka Mines and other areas in Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice), more so parents of school-age children are seeking the intervention of the relevant authorities to have the David ‘G’ school bus which was gifted to the community under the President’s 5Bs initiative up and running.According to concerned residents of the remote Mines areas, the bus has not been in operation since the beginning of the school term last month, and residents have not been informed about its whereabouts or of anything which might be associatedThe inoperable Coomacka school buswith it.As a result, they noted that it was difficult to send their children to school, given the fact that many students attended schools miles away at Linden and other areas and the cost for transportation was high.Region 10 Chairman Renis Morian, during the hosting of the most recent statutory meeting, noted that he was informed about the issue via complaints from residents.A resident of the community told Guyana Times that parents were frustrated by the situation. “… the parents of some schoolchildren are asking the whereabouts of the David ‘G’ school bus that is supposed to be traversing the Mines area to take children to and from school. Children are being kept at home due to their parents not being able to provide financially for them to be able to go to school.”“Education officials in the Region are not shedding any light about the issue with the bus and why it is not working. Residents need to be informed,” a resident stressed.Meanwhile, the Regional Chairman has asked Councillors and other officials to get involved to rectify the situation, as he pointed out that the Region’s Department of Education was not previously informed of the issue.“I got complaints coming from Coomacka … the Department of Education wasn’t notified that the bus is not working,” he noted.
A bandit, who was previously jailed, was on Monday jailed yet again, this time for 50 months for robbing a man of his silver chain and other items.Kennard Persaud, 29, admitted to stealing the chain, a cellphone and $500 from Ryan Dari on July 6, 2018 at Brickdam, Georgetown.According to the prosecution’s case, the Virtual Complainant (VC) was in a Route 42 minibus, seated in the front seat, when Persaud, along with others, approached him and demanded that he hand over his valuables.Dari complied, giving the men the items following which they escaped. The VC subsequently reported the matter and Persaud was later apprehended and found with the chain in his possession.Before jailing him, Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan advised the thief, “Thou shall not steal.”
At a time where smuggling of contraband has peaked to its highest in recent days, Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan has given his word to increase the salaries of prison officers, in an effort to stamp out corruption in the prisons.The Minister gave this applauded assurance at a recent ceremony at the heels of comments emanating from the Director of Prisons, Gladwin Samuels. According to Samuels, prison officers are being disrespected.“For too long the prison officers have not been given the respect they deserve, while the present remuneration package which can do with some improvement, honourable Minister, I thank Almighty God daily for all the good purpose-driven officers in our midst who continue to work against all odds,” he said.When Minister Ramjattan took to the podium, he said he will make sure the issue of a proper remuneration for prison officers is raised with his fellow lawmakers in Parliament.“There is a lobby, yes we can do with a little bit more salaries, that’s a big lobby and I will behave like a politician here and say ‘yes I promise that will be done’. I must say that it’s (the prison service) probably the most difficult of jobs, especially in the context of salaries that you get. It is difficult…and rest assured, I will, I as Minister am going to make the lobby at the relevant places, Office of the Presidency and especially Minister of Finance, that we have a better day,” he said.His statements come at a time where only recently, the PSC raised concerns about the low wages being received by not only prison officers, but Police Officers in Guyana.According to that body, the low income being received by these Government workers, contributes to them participating in illicit acts to earn an extra dollar.It was recently reported that some 28 prison officers were dismissed after being involved in the smuggling of contraband at the various prisons. A number of illegal weapons and substances have been discovered in recent days.