A 52-year-old woman was this morning killed after the motorcar in which she was travelling collided with a parked motor lorry along the Number 58 Village Public Road, Corentyne, Berbice.Dead is Soorojnie Surjrah of Lot 13 Grant 1805 Crabwood Creek, Berbice.More details in Tuesday, April 17 edition of the Guyana Times.
– expresses concern over prevailing political climateThe Private Sector Commission (PSC) has sought a sit-down with the three major political parties in Guyana in an attempt to mediate current political conflicts which it believes are having a negative effect on businesses.PSC Chairman Eddie BoyerThe invitation was extended to the People’s Progressive Party (PPP); the People’s National Congress (PNC) and the Alliance For Change (AFC). In its invitation, the Commission registered concern about the existing political climate between the parliamentary parties.According to the PSC, this climate could have a negative effect on Guyana’s international image, economic stability and future well-being. The PSC noted that this climate was manifested in headlines carried by the media.“The Commission, as a consequence, has reached out to and invited the People’s National Congress Reform, People’s Progressive Party/Civic and the Alliance For Change, in their individual capacities, to meet and discuss this unfortunate development with the Commission,” the PSC said on Monday.Specific invitations were sent to PPP General Secretary and Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo; PNCR General Secretary Amna Ally and AFC General Secretary Marlon Williams. There was no mention of anyone from the Working People’s Alliance and Justice for All, two of the parties alongside the PNC in the broader A Partnership for National Unity (APNU), being invited.Since last year, the coalition Government and the Opposition have been at loggerheads over a number of issues. These include the appointment of a Guyana Elections Commission Chairman, an appointment the PPP has challenged in the courts. The PPP has also accused the Government of several instances of corruption, some of which have been reported to the Public Procurement Commission (PPC).The Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) even brought charges against two former Government officials last month. Former Finance Minister Ashni Singh and former National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) chief Winston Brassington were charged with misconduct in public office.Both men appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan, who granted them $2 million bail on each of the three joint charges.But the spectacle of these former officials handcuffed featured prominently in sections of the media. Former Attorney General Anil Nandlall, who was part of the defence team, described the act of handcuffing Singh and Brassington as a dehumanising one that sought to humiliate these two former senior Government officials, who served the country with distinction.After the Government’s move to charge these former Government officials based on forensic audits it launched after assuming office, the PPP also filed private criminal charges against a number of current Ministers.Finance Minister Winston Jordan; Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson, and Public Service Minister, Dr Rupert Roopnaraine were charged for the alleged breach of the Procurement Act.This is in relation to the expenditure of $906 million in public funds to a private company, Homestretch Development Inc, for construction of the controversial D’Urban Park Project, which has, for some time now, been a contentious issue. But Director of Public Prosecutions, Shalimar Ali-Hack discontinued the charges.This is the second set of charges filed by the Opposition that the DPP has thrown out. Just days before, she also discontinued charges against Government Ministers Volda Lawrence and Dr George Norton.Those charges that were filed respectively over the sole-sourcing of more than $600 million in drugs and other pharmaceuticals for the Georgetown Public Hospital, and the rental of a house in Sussex Street, Albouystown, Georgetown to be used as a drug bond at a cost of $12 million monthly.
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.
The bodies of five persons have been discovered in Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne). The bodies were discovered over a five-day period.Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the discovery of three bodies in East Canje, Berbice. One of the five is believed to have committed suicide while the bodies of three were discovered in their homes and one in a canal.Those dead have been identified as Roxanne Newyear, 45, a school teacher of New Forest East Canje; Ivlaw Henry Snr, 53; and Shelldon Fortune 41, both of Adelphi; Mangalram Chetram, 47, of Reliance, East Canje; and Ramdai Samnarine, 73, called “Aunty Pato”, of Lot 695 Number One Road, Corentyne.On Wednesday evening, the body of Chetram was found lying motionless under his Canje, Berbice home with what appears to be a wound to his forehead.When Guyana Times visited the area, residents said the man’s son had to help him into the yard after he fell on the road. He was later found dead at 17:30h. Reports are Chetram was an epileptic and an alcoholic.Meanwhile, on Wednesday afternoon also, the body of Samnarine was discovered floating in the Albion Estate drainage canal at about 16:00h.The discovery was made by a passerby.According to information, the woman left home at about 16:00h on Tuesday to visit a doctor. It is unclear whether she made it to the doctor’s office. The mother of three went missing on Tuesday. She lived with her 77-year-old husband. The couple had been married for more than 50 years.In the other case, Henry’s body was discovered at his Lot 3 Adelphi home shortly before 08:00h on Tuesday by his son.According to the younger Henry, at about 05:30h he took his bird out and as he was passing his father’s house, he saw his father looking through the window. He said he told his “morning” and continued on his way. He added that his father, who is a pump operator, was preparing to go to work but a few hours later when he returned, he noticed his father’s bicycle still in the yard. He said this prompted him to go into the house and he found his father lying face down on the kitchen floor.Earlier this year, Henry was rushed to the New Amsterdam Hospital for blood pressure related issues. The father of seven lived alone.Meanwhile, on Monday, villagers found the body Shelldon Fortune at his Lot 14 Adelphi home. He too lived alone. Reports also revealed that the welder claimed to have had a headache and his eyes were hurting on Sunday evening.He did not respond to friends when they called him on Monday morning. At about 09:00h, neighbours climbed on top of his fence and peeped into his home and saw him lying on a mattress on the floor and thought he was asleep. Five hours later he was seen in the same position. The neighbours then went into the house and found the television and a light in the building on. He was in the same position under a mosquito net.His sister, Roxanne Prince, said she received information that the father of one had passed but by the time she reached to the house, the Police had already taken the body to the mortuary.She referred to her brother as one who frequently used alcohol but was considered a very nice person.Meanwhile, on Friday evening, the body of Roxanne Newyear, a teacher of Zorg Primary who was recently transferred to Rose Hall Primary, was found hanging from her verandah.The woman had reportedly told her husband that she was going to on the verandah get some fresh air. After some time passed the husband went to check on her and found her hanging. Newyear is said to have been experiencing extreme pain recently as a result of a problem with her kidneys.Police are said to be investigating all five deaths.
A father of two is now missing and presumed dead after he went missing at the Kingston Seawall late Sunday afternoon. The incident occurred sometime about 19:30h.Dead is 22-year-old Dharshan Mohabir, called “Ravi”, of Second Street, Mon Repos, East Coast Demerara (ECD).According to reports, Mohabir had gone with a group of friends to play cricket in the National Park on Sunday. However, after the game, they decided to go to theMissing: Dharshan “Ravi” MohabirSeawall for a swim.Mohabir’s friends claimed that while in the water, they saw him going down under the water and he appeared to be drowning. However, none of the four were unable to go to his rescue owing to rough waves.After he was not seen for some time, the Police were summoned, and his family informed.The four friends were taken into custody for questioning by the Police.The search continues for Mohabir’s body.He leaves to mourn his wife and two children, aged one and two, as well as other relatives and friends.
…13 arrested The parameters of the Stabroek Market were thoroughly searched on Saturday by ranks of the Guyana Police Force, during an impromptu raid for drugs and illegal items. As a result, 13 persons were arrested.Sniffer dogs were also dispatched to the area and dozens of ranks equipped with high-profile equipment were stationed mainly at the entrances of the market.Based on Police information, the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) headquarters, Canine Department, Construction Department, Tactical Services Unit, Firearms Unit and Narcotics branches of the Force cordoned off the area. A search operation was conducted at the market and around the routes 31 (Patentia), 32 (Parika), 40 (Kitty/Campbellville), 41(South) and 44 (Mahaica) bus parks.The illegal items which were foundSniffer dogs assisted in locating some of the drugs and vendors at the market were questioned as the area was subsequently combed for illegal items. During the search, 128 grams of marijuana seeds and 561 grams of cannabis along with several knifes and other sharp objects were seized.Thirteen persons were detained – three for possession of narcotics and the others for questioning in relation to several offences.Guyana Times understands that a meeting was convened with Georgetown Major Ubraj Narine; Police Commissioner Leslie James; Divisional Commanders and senior officials of the Force on Friday to deal with the situation at the Stabroek Market area.According to the Police, the Mayor raised issues of effective policing around Georgetown, along with other challenging factors which were pertinent to eradicating crime.Concerns by the Mayor sparked decisions to have a joint collaboration between the City Constabulary and A Division (Georgetown-East Bank Demerara).Just prior to the raid, bus operators were arrested for various offences such as having offensive weapons such as knives and ice picks, tint, breach of road services licence (amplifier set and equaliser in minibuses), breach of road services licence (offensive words and designs on minibuses) and defective tyres.As part of the exercise, traffic ranks stationed at the Brickdam Police Station, which also houses the Divisional Headquarters, took the opportunity to educate the delinquent drivers and conductors about the seriousness of these offences prior to releasing them.They were advised on issues such as the seating capacity of a minibus; working attire; obstruction of traffic around the Stabroek Market area; playing of loud or offensive music; speed limit; cleanliness of the interior of the minibuses; paying of traffic tickets; insurance of motor vehicle, and adhering to all traffic laws and regulations.Following the teaching session, the drivers were all grateful to the Police for their leniency and thanked them for the advice given.
Children at Leonora receiving their kitesMore than 700 children will have a bright and happy Easter, as the Region Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara) Private Sector Association (PSA) on Sunday distributed kites to children throughout the region.The non-profit organisation which is made up of businesses within the region distributed kites in several areas including Wales, West Bank Demerara (WBD); Leonora, West Coast Demerara (WCD); and Parika, East Bank Essequibo (EBE).Fifty children and relatives of Police Officers within the region also received kites from the organisation.President of PSA, Rajesh Amishwar explained that the aim of the organisation is to spread joy to the less fortunate.Amishwar noted that it is the social responsibility of businesses in the region to lend a helping hand to those who live under harsh conditions in the region.As such, the organisation reached out to several schools, churches and leaders in various communities to make the distribution possible.“We know Easter is a very exciting time for people and we are here to spread that joy for the less fortunate…We are not putting a cost to it because that is not what our ultimate objective is, we just want to help the unfortunate children, put a smile on their faces for the holidays and that is what it is, so the cost doesn’t really matter,” the organisation’s head explained.He has called on other businesses to come on board, noting that businesses in Region Three should strive to assist with its development.“What we are doing is setting an example for the other business people in Region Three to follow , we have a responsibility to fulfil and we are appealing to the business people to assist in any way that they can, not only for the people for anything that could be done to help Region Three. To be a much more successful community, that will be most welcome,” Amishwar appealed.In December last, toys were distributed to 1000 children in the region, while 90 elderly persons received hampers.A computer laboratory was also commissioned in Parika by the organisation with four computers, printers and other items being handed over.Children at Wales receiving their kites
United States Ambassador to Guyana, Sarah-Ann Lynch has pointed to the need for a deep-water port in Guyana, something she described as an infrastructural gap.The Ambassador made the call during an event which was hosted last week at the Guyana Marriott Hotel.US Ambassador to Guyana, Sarah-Ann LynchAccording to the Ambassador, such a port will aid in reducing the time it takes to transport goods and moreover the costs attached to doing so.A deep-water harbour is a fixed or floating structure that is built at strategic points in a country to serve as a hub for the transport of goods. It is known to be a major source of aiding in economic growth as it links the country to several others. The port is useful in not only shipping items to that country cheaper, but serves as a gateway for other countries’ goods to pass through as well.With approximately 80 per cent of the world’s merchandise trade carried by ships, maritime transport remains by far the most common mode of international freight and transport.Last June, a credible source at the Public Infrastructure Ministry told Guyana Times that Kurupukari village along the Essequibo River, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) was one of four possible locations to develop the port.Other potential locations for the establishment of the port include the Berbice and Demerara Rivers.Guyana Times was told that a team of engineers visited Kurupukari back in April 2018, to conduct a study on the possibility of a bridge being erected across the mighty Essequibo River at the settlement, the site of crossings via ferries.According to the source, the bridge would mark the first phase of the development of the long-awaited deep-water port.The source at that time had reliably informed that the bridge was necessary to accommodate “proper linkages” of the regions.The source also noted that the Ministry’s team visited the Takutu Bridge, which links Lethem with Brazil, since the new bridge is likely to have a similar design.Since feasibility studies were being conducted, the source was unable to say how much such a project would cost.The subject Minister, David Patterson was unable to give an update on the major project when contacted on Monday.In June 2018, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) said that as early as the first quarter of 2019, the Government of Guyana will have a clear idea of where to site the deep-water port and an even better understanding of what is required to make the Guyana-Brazil land transport link a reality.It went on to state that the Government has been partnering with the IDB via a Technical Cooperation Agreement to advance the Guyana-Brazil land transport link and deep-water port.“At present, three companies have been engaged and are working simultaneously to help move various aspects of the project into fruition. The results of the three studies to help the Government of Guyana make a determination will be completed by early 2019,” the IDB release stated.Further, the deep-water port location optimisation studies are being conducted by the Maritime and Transport Business Solutions (MTBS).The MTBS will, therefore, have the responsibility of preparing business case scenarios for four of the potential sites identified for the project, as well as undertaking financial and economic option analyses and subsequently developing a proposal and preliminary design for development of the selected option.“Land grabbing”Only recently, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo had revealed that there seemed to be a rush by the Guyana Lands and Surveys Commission (GL&SC) which falls under the Ministry of the Presidency to give out prime lands at strategic locations where there lies a possibility to develop shore base facilities.The Opposition Leader also revealed that areas where some of the lands were given out were earmarked for prime development, adding that the land grab” was taking place in strategic locations – locations for possible shore base facilities, deep-water harbours, and other major infrastructural developments”.Lands have been given out at Bohemia, Region Six (East Berbice- Corentyne) and parts of the Demerara River.
The Mahaica Mahaicony Abary-Agricultural Development Authority (MMA-ADA) and the Guyana Public Service Union (GPSU) on Tuesday signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) guarantying the entities mutual grounds for the recognition, avoidance and settlement of disputes.GPSU First Vice President, Dawn Gardener and General Manager of the MMA-ADA, Aubrey Charles display the MoAThe MoA signing also ensures that the GPSU regains its position as the sole bargaining agent for the Authority. This was according to GPSU First Vice President, Dawn Gardener during the signing exercise at the Ministry of Social Protection, Department of Labour.Gardener, in recognising the accomplishment of the agencies, noted that the MoA stands as the first step towards the development of MMA-ADA, given that the Union is now solely responsible for ensuring the rights of these public servants.“The Guyana Public Service Union is proud today in signing this [recognition] agreement with the MMA and history will have it, it’s not the first agreement because the Union was once the bargaining for the workers at MMA….but the Union has now regained its position as it relates to the bargaining unit for the workers at MMA and this is because the workers recognise the strength and the ability of the Union”, she stated.Additionally, Gardener pointed out that the Collective Labour Agreements (CLA) which usually regulates the terms and conditions of employees at work, is yet to be signed. This, she added, will be done before the end of the year. The CLA includes the management of wages, benefits, and duties of the employees.“After this, we’ll have with management, the collective agreement signed, we’ll work and done and have the signing of that. That should be finished before the end of the year because collectively, we’ll work on that.” Gardener noted.Meanwhile, General Manager of the MMA-ADA, Aubrey Charles expressed satisfaction with the Union’s interest of the workers’ representation noting that it [the Union] is the means by which workers become more aware of their rights.“Today we have closed another chapter in the journey as it relates to workers’ rights and what the Union stands for…. however, we appreciate that because it helps in development of workers and it has made workers more aware of their rights,” Charles said.The signing of the MoA was conducted in the presence of Chief Labour Officer, Charles Ogle along with representatives of the two agreeing parties.