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GUYANA No. 103719

The Chronicle is at http://www.guyanachronicle.com

SATURDAY JANUARY 25, 2014 GUYANA’S MOST WIDELY CIRCULATED NEWSPAPER

Gov’t remains open for budget talks

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PRESIDENT DONALD RAMOTAR

President says Solomon’s statements are ‘not correct’ Page 3

Young mother and newborn baby die within hours of each other at GPHC DEAD: Jaiwanti Chanderpaul

- devastated relatives hoping PMEs provide answers Page 16

PPP sees call for shut down of Linden as an attempt to wreak havoc

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Local Gov’t elections will not be affected by Persaud’s resignation Page 2

10-yr-old charged with robbery 9 under arms Page

Teenagers busted with grenades, rifle and Page 12 ammunition remanded


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

Gov’t remains open for budget talks By Vanessa Narine

LEADER of the Opposition, David Granger, maintains that the invitation for consultations on the 2014 Budget is too late. However, President Donald Ramotar made it clear yesterday that there is still time for the combined Opposition - not only A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) - to make a contribution. At a press conference yesterday at Office of the President, he stated that the budget is still a work in progress. He said, “We are still working on the budget…we are still open…the invitation we said to them said that we are open. “We still have a lot of time for consultations and I regret the position that they have taken, when we have an open door for them to make suggestions.” Ramotar stressed that all requested documentation has been provided. He said, “The documents were sent; and not only were they sent to Mr. Greenidge, but to other members in the Opposition, both parties in the Opposition. After taking office, the Head of State committed to tripartite talks on the national budget and efforts to realise the same have been made since then. However, these were challenged by the inability of parties to reach a consensus. The last meeting, the 2013 budget consultations, between the three parties ended on a bad note and as a result, the Opposition parties gutted the budget by $31.4 billion, from $208.8 billion to $177.4B. “We are still ready to have consultations with them,” the president reiterated. NOT THE FIRST Meanwhile, Finance Minister Ashni Singh this week wrote the Shadow Finance Minister, Carl Greenidge, reiterating government’s invitation to meet on budget 2014. According to his most recent e-mail, Singh said the government team is willing to meet with either parliamentary party, in the event that one is disinclined to meet. Government said, alternatively, that their team is willing to have the Opposition share in writing any specific suggestions the parties may wish to make in relation to Budget 2014. The Finance Minister maintains that the e-mail, dated January 13, inviting the Opposition for talks, was not the first of its kind issued to the Opposition to discuss the 2014 Budget.

Singh, in a prior statement, said a government team had already initiated discussions with the Opposition in the latter part of 2013, and is looking forward to continued cooperation on the issue as preparations wind up for the March 2014 budget deadline.

PRESIDENT DONALD RAMOTAR

DAVID GRANGER

“Mr. Granger is claiming that government has not consulted with the Opposition with regard to

Budget 2014, two months before it is expected to be presented to Parliament,” he said, stressing that this was false. He noted that the January 13 e-mail was sent, addressed to Mr. Greenidge, asking for him to suggest a date and time for the government and Opposition teams to meet. The e-mail was also copied to Messrs. David Granger, Lance Carberry, Khemraj Ramjattan, Dr. Roger Luncheon, and Ms. Gail Teixeira. According to the Finance Minister, during budget preparations for 2013, Mr. Greenidge was invited to attend the meetings in the capacity of Shadow Finance Minister. However, instead of attending the meetings, he disappeared overseas for an extended period and made himself unavailable for consultations. Singh said, “What was worse last year is that no one in the Opposition appeared able to shed light on Mr. Greenidge’s whereabouts. “…if Mr. Greenidge is unavailable to participate in budget talks this year, as he was last year, he should do the decent thing and let the Leader of the Opposition appoint someone else to lead the Opposition team to the Budget 2014 talks.” The need for tripartite talks has been a point of much debate by the combined Opposition, with Leader of the APNU, David Granger, being the most recent to flay the government for not involving political stakeholders in the process. The national budget is to be presented in March to the National Assembly.

Local Gov’t elections will not be affected by Persaud’s resignation

By Vanessa Narine

PRESIDENT Donald Ramotar, yesterday, stated that the resignation of Ganga Persaud from the post of Minister of Local Government and Regional Development did not come as a surprise to him, as he and Persaud were in talks on the matter. “I was not totally surprised,” he said, “There have been talks from time to time, but I think he thought it was time to pursue his personal matters, so I accepted his resignation.” The president made it clear that Persaud’s resignation will

not affect the hosting of local government elections, which was expected to be held in the third quarter of 2014. Speaking at a press conference at Office of the President, Ramotar stated that Minister Norman Whittaker is on the job and the resignation will not affect the work of the ministry. “I don’t think we need to be in a hurry because we have a minister there,” he said. The Head of State acknowledged that any challenges to the hosting of local government elections depend on the body politic. “A lot depends on what happens in the body politic within the country,” Ramotar said. He maintained that his Administration is ready for the elections “like yesterday”, when asked about the level of pre-

paredness. Local Government elections were not held in Guyana since 1994. Prior to that, local government elections were last held in 1970. Subsequent to 1994, the elections could not be conducted because of the coincidence with the general and regional elections of 1997.

announcing the fact. In a press statement on Thursday, Persaud cited personal reasons as the motivation

DEBUNKED When questioned over speculations that Persaud was instructed to resign, Ramotar said, “I accepted his resignation.” The Head of State also debunked talks of differences of opinions at the levels of the party and Cabinet as the reason for Persaud’s resignation. He stressed that the former minister’s reasons for resigning were made clear in his statement

GANGA PERSAUD behind the move. “My resignation as Minister of Local Government and Regional Development is based on personal issues presently engaging my attention, as well as some additional responsibilities to which I am committed,” he said. According to him, he remains committed to supporting the president and the current Administration. “As a member of the leadership of our Party, I wish to restate my commitment to working with the PPP in enhancing our chances at the next general and regional elections so as to reclaim the majority in the Parliament,” he said, “This is so important for Guyana’s continued growth and development, since no other political party can assure our country’s development other than the PPP.” The president noted that no decision on a replacement has yet been made. Ramotar announced Persaud’s appointment as Minister of Local Government and Regional Development on December 5, 2011.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

President says Solomon’s statements are ‘not correct’

THE call for mass protest and a shut down of the mining community in Linden today by Regional Chairman, Sharma Solomon, was addressed by the Head of State Donald Ramotar, yesterday, at a press conference at the Office of the President. Acknowledging the negative economic impacts of such an action, he said, “I think the people of Linden have much better judgment than the Regional Chairman.” The president stressed too that many of the comments made by Solomon are incorrect. Ramotar maintained that cooperation is to be a two-way street and pointed out that the current Administration has cooperated with the officials at Linden. The Linden Chamber of Commerce (LCC) has since rejected calls by the Region 10 (Upper Demerara/Upper Berbice) chairman. Eighteen months ago, what was intended to be a peaceful demon-

stration in the mining town of Linden turned deadly as protesters, including the Region 10 Chairman, blocked the MacKenzie/Wismar Bridge, a key access point in the area. The protest, which left three persons dead and government and private buildings and other properties destroyed by arsonists, saw the town descending into more than a month-long shut down. Many persons could not work; mining in the hinterland ceased and banks and other businesses were closed. This had placed an even further dent in the community’s economy. But despite these, new calls have now emerged for a similar shut down of the community by the Region 10 Chairman. Solomon was quoted in sections of the media calling for a shut down of the Linden Community on Saturday, January 25. But his call was met with strong rejection from the LCC, which

said a repeat of the July 2012, shut down will further plunder the economy and even chase away investors. The LCC further stated that it was not consulted about any shut down and that they only learnt of the event through the media. The Chamber added that it is sad that Solomon would subscribe to such action since nothing substantial came out from the last occurrence. The LCC noted that a repeat of 2012 could leave the mining town in a worse state. Meanwhile, some residents of Linden are questioning the position taken by Solomon and urged that he should instead question the effectiveness of such actions and how this would benefit the people and the economic development of the region, drawing on the experiences of the last shut down.

President states support for independent investigation in Colwyn Harding case By Vanessa narine STAKEHOLDERS in civil society have called for an independent investigation into the alleged rape of 23-yearold Colwyn Harding at the Timehri Police Station. And President Donald Ramotar has made clear his support for this endeavour. At a press conference yesterday at Office of the President, he said, “I am ready for that.” According to him, the reporting to date on the matter by sections of the media has been “irresponsible” and indicative of an agenda. “This government is against any kind of torture,” he said, “But at the same time, I don’t think you hang people without a trial.” Ramotar questioned the motives behind the “irresponsible” coverage in the local media and contended that there seems to be an agenda to instigate negativity into Guyanese society. “I think the reporting of that has been so irresponsible, it is amazing,” he said.

DPP RECOMMENDATIONS Home Affairs Minister, Clement Rohee, earlier this week made similar comments. He stated that there should be no rush to judgment until the necessary investigations are completed and the reports are filed. Rohee said, “This is turning out to be a little more complicated than it appears on the surface…we need not rush to judgment, but let the investigation be concluded, the medical reports submitted. “….let all the facts be at our disposal so that a dispassionate analysis can be made…from what has been said so far, by the Minister of Health, the Police Force, the doctors and the victim himself, if we are to look at it dispassionately…when you look at all of it, it is turning out to me to be more complex. “It is not a black and white area, there are grey areas… we need to keep our eyes on those grey spots to understand the issue. It is an allegation… allegations are fast and furious some days. It is not unusual for someone to make an allegation.” He added that the case was

not reported to his ministry and the first time he became aware of the incident was when it was made public in the local media. According to him, the disciplinary actions levied against the Guyana Police Force ranks

Colwyn Harding

alleged to have raped the 23-year-old will depend on the recommendations of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP). Rohee pointed out that acts that are inimical to the Force

and bring it into disrepute have in the past attracted internal charges and present day cases will not be treated differently. “Not because an officer is transferred, he will not be charged if the action so merits,” the minister said, in reference to the transfer of eight ranks from the Timehri Police Station. The officer who is alleged to have committed the act, Constable 19175 Devin Mahendra Singh, remains under close arrest.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

Blasphemy case: Briton in Pakistan sentenced to death

The two toilets, with no partition

The mysterious case of the double toilet ( BBC News) IT STARTED off as a simple trip to the bathroom - but BBC correspondent Steve Rosenberg’s photo of two toilets side-by-side at Sochi’s Winter Olympics site, has become famous on Twitter in Russia and beyond. When I went to spend a penny last week in the Caucasus mountains, little did I know that I would learn so much about Russia from one trip to the toilet. The cubicle in question was inside the Laura Cross Country Skiing and Biathlon Centre - brand new, and built, of course, for next month’s Sochi winter games. I tracked down the Gents’ and went in. It was pretty much as you’d expect things to be, really, in a little WC. There was a sink, some paper towels, but oddly enough there were two toilets where you’d expect just one - full sized lavatories, they were, side by side - and no partition down the middle. Equally strange, there was only one toilet paper dispenser - within reach of just one of the toilets. I didn’t really know what to do. Which seat should I sit on? Was I allowed to sit on either of them? Or was this strictly a loo for two? Well, needs must - and I chose - and powdered my nose. And before I walked out, I took a picture of this intriguing bathroom on my mobile phone and posted it online. The reaction was unexpected and quite overwhelming. The photo triggered a wave of comments in social media, on Russian radio and even on television. This image of two toilets, with no dividing wall, in an Olympic rest room had somehow struck a chord with the Russian people. Some saw it as symbol of the country’s rampant corruption and bad management. “This is what $50bn gets you!” wrote a prominent anti-Kremlin activist - a reference to the alleged cost of the Sochi games. A different blogger used more colourful language: “There used to be a partition there,” he suggested, “but people are so fat from all the backhanders they’ve been taking, that their backsides can’t fit - so the partition had to be taken down.”

(BBC News) A COURT in the Pakistani city of Rawalpindi has sentenced a 70-year-old British man to death after convicting him of blasphemy. Muhammad Asghar was arrested in 2010 after writing letters to various people claiming to be a prophet, reports say. His lawyers argued for leniency, saying he has a history of mental illness, but this was rejected by a medical panel. Pakistan’s controversial blasphemy laws carry a potential death sentence for anyone deemed to have insulted Islam. Several recent cases have prompted international concern about the application of these laws. Mr Asghar, who is from Edinburgh, Scotland, was accused of writing letters to police officers claiming to be a prophet. He is thought to have lived in Pakistan for several years. “Asghar claimed to be a prophet even inside the court. He confessed it in front of the judge,” Javed Gul, a government prosecutor, told the Agence France-Presse news agency. But his lawyer told the BBC’s Saba Eitizaz that she was forcibly removed from the case by the judge and that proceedings were carried out behind closed doors. His lawyer says she will launch an appeal against the verdict, which was delivered late on Thursday. Higher courts in Pakistan have been known to overturn blasphemy verdicts handed down in lower courts

Several recent cases have prompted international concern about the application of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws because of insufficient evidence. own life in jail on one occasion. Mr Asghar, adding that he has Mr Asgharn has been dihas “a long and documented hisCorrespondents say Mr tory of psychological ill-health” agnosed as a paranoid schizoAsghar is unlikely to be exeand needs constant care. phrenic and had treatment at cuted as Pakistan has had a de the Royal Victoria Hospital in Critics argue that Pakifacto moratorium on the death Edinburgh, but the court did not penalty since 2008. He was also stan’s blasphemy laws are accept his medical reports from ordered to pay a substantial fine frequently misused to settle the UK, reports say. by the court. personal scores and that memHe has been in jail since his The legal charity Reprieve bers of minority groups are has urged the UK government to arrest in 2010 and his lawyer also unfairly targeted. take immediate steps to protect says he has also tried to take his

Callum Wilson murder: Mother Emma Wilson jailed for life (BBC News) A WOMAN has been jailed for life after beating and blinding her 11-month-old son who she then murdered.

Emma Wilson inflicted an “unsurvivable brain injury” on her son, the court heard Callum Wilson, from Windsor, suffered a detached retina, an “unsurvivable brain injury”, broken bones and bruising, and died in hospital in March 2011.

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Emma Wilson, 25, of Paddock Close, had blamed the injuries on Callum’s “boisterous” older brother. She was sentenced to life with a minimum of 14 years, at the Old Bailey in London. Wilson was convicted of murder in December after she was unanimously found guilty by a jury following a five-week trial at the same court. Wilson became pregnant in 2009 after a relationship with Lee Workman, who was unaware he was the father, prosecutor Paul Dunkels QC said during the trial. ‘BROTHER BLAMED’ As with her first child, Wilson showed no physical signs of pregnancy and was able to keep Callum’s birth a secret. The court heard her then-partner, Neil Mitchinson,

had insisted Callum be put up for adoption, something Wilson “deeply regretted”. Callum was born on 23

Callum Wilson died aged 11 months in March 2011 April 2010 and spent the first few months of his life with foster parents. In November 2010 he was returned to his mother, but on 18 March 2011 he was taken by ambulance to Wexham Park Hospital in Slough suffering serious injuries.

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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

Ecuadorean airline Tame suspends flights to Venezuela (BBC News) Ecuadorean airline Tame has suspended flights to Venezuela, demanding $43m (£26m) in overdue payments for tickets. Some 80 passengers were left stranded on Thursday at the airport in the Ecuadorean

capital, Quito. Tame says the Venezuelan Central Bank has not transferred any money to its account in Ecuador since April 2013. Tough foreign currency controls make it difficult for foreign airlines to repatriate money

obtained from ticket sales in Venezuela. The government of President Nicolas Maduro is believed to owe more than $3bn (£1.8bn) to several airlines, according to Venezuela’s Airline Association. The $43m (£26m) owed by

The left-wing presidents of Ecuador and Venezuela, Rafael Correa (left) and Nicolas Maduro (right), are close allies

Venezuela to Tame amounts to one third of the company’s yearly revenue, according to Quito’s El Comercio newspaper. The daily 2 1/2-hour flight service between Quito and the Venezuelan capital, Caracas, was inaugurated in 2012 and was usually 90% full, said a company director. Local reports say negotiations to have the debt settled failed. Venezuelan officials had offered to pay part of the debt in government bonds and aviation fuel. On Wednesday, the Venezuelan government announced measures to address its foreign currency crisis. Venezuelans travelling abroard will no longer be allowed to obtain foreign exchange and pay for their tickets at the official rate of 6.3 bolivars per US dollar. They will have to pay a higher, market rate. The official exchange rate will be restricted to essential goods, such as medications, food and industrial supplies.

Calls for Tribunal to probe Jack (Newsday) THE INTEGRITY Commission yesterday revealed it has invoked provisions of the Integrity in Public Life Act asking President Anthony Carmona to appoint a tribunal to probe Chaguanas West MP Jack Warner’s declarations of assets and income, in light of findings of a Concacaf report last year.

JACK WARNER In a statement issued to the media, the Commission said, “In pursuance thereof the Commission has written to the President of the Republic, His Excellency Anthony Thomas Aquinas Carmona, SC, ORTT,

Police to wear recording devices in move to ensure transparency Cameras will protect cops — Bunting

(Jamaica observer) PETER Bunting yesterday said that select police units will start wearing body cameras soon, even as concerns are being expressed over the allegations of extrajudicial killings and professional misconduct by members of the constabulary. Making the disclosure at the weekly post-Cabinet press briefing at Jamaica House in St Andrew, the national security minister said the project to deploy body-worn cameras for select Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) units is scheduled to commence roll-out in the second half of this year. “The purpose of this project is to improve the collection of evidence of criminal activity in an effort to prosecute and reduce such activity, improve the transparency of JCF activities when interacting with the public, to encourage JCF officers to act in accordance with the force’s professional standards to include the appropriate use of

force, and to create a record to protect JCF officers from unfair allegations of violations of JCF professional standards,” Bunting told journalists. “The Government of Jamaica is committed to reducing the level of crime and violence that has taken a terrible toll

on this nation. As part of this commitment we will be taking all necessary steps to ensure that the JCF becomes one of the most trusted and respected institutions in Jamaica,” he said. Minister Bunting made the disclosure following comments he made on probes being

One brand of police body cameras is shown by a cop in the USA.

conducted by the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) into allegations of police killings in the Clarendon police division. “One of the group norms we must change is the level of police fatal shootings,” Bunting said. He said he was briefed this Wednesday by INDECOM Commissioner Terrence Williams on that agency’s investigations into a number of alleged murders over a period of years in the Clarendon police division.

“I have issued directives to the commissioner of police to take immediate steps to address compliance with the Jamaica Constabulary [Force] Use of Force Policy and the INDECOM Act as well as to institute new measures to improve accountability,” he told the media. The national security minister, however, refrained from divulging further information, noting that “the investigations of these alleged extrajudicial killings are at a sensitive stage”.

in accordance with Section 15 of the Act requesting the appointment of a Tribunal to enquire further into Declarations submitted by Mr Warner.” Section 15 of the IPLA states: “Where upon the examination referred to in section 13, the Commission is of the opinion that it should enquire further into any declaration so as to ascertain whether there has been a full disclosure, it may advise the President to appoint a Tribunal of two or more of its members to conduct an enquiry to verify the contents of the declaration or the statement filed with the Commission.” Some lawyers said the phrasing of the section suggests the tribunal will be an internal one, comprising members of the Commission itself. The Commission said it, “took note in April 2013 of a report from the Integrity Committee of the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (Concacaf) alleging that Mr Jack Warner, a former Government Minister, committed fraud against Concacaf and FIFA in connection with the Centre of Excellence and in respect of financial statements of Concacaf.” The Commission said it decided to place Warner under greater scrutiny under its powers to initiate its own probe. “In the interest of the public the Commission decided to enquire further into these allegations of fraud,” it said. It cited Section 33 (a) of the Integrity in Public Life Act which states that the Commission: (a) “May on its own initiative….. consider and enquire into any alleged breaches of the Act or any allegations of corrupt or dishonest conduct.” Warner did not respond to calls yesterday.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

GUYANA

Whether Mr. Solomon is successful or not in shutting Linden down EDITORIAL MACHINATIONS OF THE MACHIAVELLIAN BRIGADE - Carnage in Guyana: will it ever end?

TOMORROW (Sunday 26th January, 2014) will mark six years since gunmen, armed with shotguns and AK-47s., stormed like a tsunami of death and destruction into the tiny, peaceful village of Lusignan to wreak such mayhem of blood and gore that never again will that community, and the entire nation, recover from the horror. Many of the victims were babies lying innocently asleep in their beds, who had their lives mercilessly snuffed out by monsters in the shape of humans; albeit the most monstrous of the murderers are the architects and drivers of the criminals who commit such acts, merely for political ambition and self-aggrandisement. In the wake of the murderous rampage of that fateful night, 11 persons were left strewn askew in their own blood, never again to awake. The invasion devastated the lives of five Lusignan families, members of which witnessed the cold-blooded blasting to death of their loved ones: Clarence Thomas, 48; Vanessa Thomas, 12; Ron Thomas, 11; Mohandan Goordat, 32; Seegopaul Harilall, 10; Seegobin Harilall, 4; Dhanwajie Ramsingh, 52; Seecharran Rooplall, 56; Raywattie Ramsingh, 11;Shazam Mohammed, 22; and Shaleem Baksh, 52. Several of the children who were murdered were found dead in their beds. Several weeks after, another carnage of senseless slaughter of the innocents was perpetrated in Bartica and subsequently at Lindo Creek. As tribute to the victims the East Coast pandits, led by Pandits Haresh Tewari and Ravi Persaud have been holding Pitri Paksh satsanghs every year and the Indian Arrival Committee (IAC) has been hosting commemorative observances to keep alive the memories of the victims of the horrific carnage that visited Tract ‘A’ Lusignan on the peaceful night of 26th January 2008, in collaboration with the relatives of the murdered victims, residents of Lusignan and the religious community. At these events tributes are paid by relatives, officials, religious leaders and other dignitaries. Today, most of those who executed these heinous crimes, as well as the intellectual authors, are walking free to perpetrate more crimes on the hapless and helpless Guyanese citizenry. Also, cognisance should be taken of the fact that one of the persons who admitted to – even boasting about committing these brutal acts, the mere savagery of which left victims so mangled that post mortems could not have been performed on them - was freed in court through representation by prominent attorney Nigel Hughes, who is also Chairman of the Alliance For Change (AFC); and it is a matter of public record that Hughes had a long,enduring relationship with the foreman of the jury, a fact that neither ever disclosed, which should surely call for a re-trial; but justice is certainly blind in Guyana and, like many victims of successive carnages stage managed by the intellectual authors of much of the crime in Guyana, the victims will never achieve justice through Guyana’s judicial system, but will they escape divine retribution? The law of Karma? In any just society any lawyer – perceived or actually col-

The road on which Granger, Roopnaraine, Solomon and Norton are taking Linden/Region 10 leads to a dead-end MR. EDITOR, allow me the opportunity to again assure the citizens of Linden/Region 10 and, indeed, everyone else in Guyana, that the PPP/C Administration has been working for the economic and social uplift of Linden/Region 10 in no way less than, and in no way different from, the way that we work for other towns and regions. I feel obliged to seek this opportunity, having followed the sentiments, recently expressed by various political figures, as reported in articles appearing in the Stabroek News’ editions of Wednesday, January 22, 2014, entitled “Linden’s stalled development politically-engineered – Granger” and “Head of Linden economic committee steps down – Solomon chides President over lack of progress”, Wednesday, January 15, 2014, entitled “Lack of movement on Linden committees disappointing – Roopnaraine,” and (yesterday), Thursday, January 23, 2014, entitled “Linden to shut down on Saturday over barren agreements – Solomon.” Mr. Editor, Linden has been growing. The prosperity, or lack thereof, the challenges, the successes and problems, the improvements visible in new buildings and vehicle ownership, are much the same in Linden as in other parts of Guyana. Linden is not stalled! The major constraint on Linden, which is in the hands of Mr. David Granger, Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine and Mr. Solomon, is the politically inspired, continual preaching to citizens of Linden that the PPP/C Government does not like the people of Linden/Region 10. As in other regions of Guyana, there are less prosperous areas and more prosperous areas, for example, the Amelia’s Ward extension, developed over the last 20 years is comparable to prosperous new developments like Diamond on the East Bank of Demerara. Firstly, talking to the big things, the PPP/C Government inherited from the outgoing PNC Government a foreign-managed bauxite company that, if not made profitable, was to be shut down. When the international manager reported in 1994 that he could not see how to make LINMINE profitable, this Government did not comply but, changed from the shutting-down agreement of the earlier PNC Government, kept the bauxite company opened and kept on supporting the operations, both in Linden and Kwakwani, from the treasury. Also, when the foreign owner of the operations at Aroaima offered to have the PPP/C Government take over or shut down Aroaima, we took it over. We provide where it matters, when it matters. We are not in the “shutting down” business! We were aware that these bauxite operations needed to be transformed into entities that would pay their way and sustain themselves over the long term. We knew how traumatic abrupt closure would be for the population in Linden/Region 10. We provided more time as we worked to find foreign partners, with whom we would work, with whom these operations would make a good fit. We are gratified that we were able to attract BOSAI into Linden, and RUSAL into Berbice. Be assured that the PPP/C would insist on the largest possible sustainable benefits from these foreign direct investors. At the same time, we must recall that when we owned and ran those operations, our costs were exceeding available market prices by up to 30%. We should recognise that there is no bonanza now in bauxite, only opportunity for work, hard work and work with great discipline. We have to put our all, and a little more, into our bauxite operations to keep them viable and able to carry a decent wage. Allow me to recall that our past President, Mr. Bharat Jagdeo, then an officer in the Ministry of Finance, led a socio-economic study of Linden in about 1994, with a number of young economists, some of whom were sons and daughters of Linden. This provided a basis for this PPP/C Government to seek another European Union intervention, to take Linden beyond bauxite, beyond being a bauxluding with any member of the jury - should have been subject to disbarment, but the travesty for what passes for justice in Guyana still endures; and the crafters and perpetrators of most criminal activities in Guyana continue merrily along their paths, scattering destruction, mayhem and murder in their wake; witness recent incidents at Buxton, Linden and Agricola, and the planned actions billed to be executed at Linden. Will it ever end? Certainly not while the collusion prevails and the masquerade endures, because the machinations of the Machiavellian brigade continue to take this nation on a downward path for their own political ambitions and their self-aggrandisement agendas.

ite town. We sought to have a number of infrastructural projects included – greatly upgraded roads to Ituni and Kwakwani and, also, Linden to Kimbia on the Berbice River. We had to settle for a people-changing project with monies included only for surveys and demonstrations of the infrastructural projects that we desired. Allow me also to point again to this Government’s investments in Linden/Region 10 into schools, housing, roads, water and the hospitals. Already, in February 1967, the day on which Dr. Cheddi Jagan suffered a heart attack, I and then Minister of Education, the late Dr. Dale Bisnauth, had just returned to Georgetown from a fullday visit to Linden, where we toured 14 sites, mainly schools and one community building, all of which were being rehabilitated in a major way, or being built anew. We started early in Linden. Linden, today, is much larger than, and greatly improved from, where it was in 1992. Just travel around, all around, look, and see. There is a lot that has been accomplished, perhaps not in an overly flashy way, but in our PPP/C way that some may think of as a bit plodding – little by little, stage by stage, as evidenced in the history of the development of Amelia’s Ward. We in the PPP/C have more right than anyone else, particularly Solomon and APNU, to be disappointed over the lack of mutual agreement and movement on the Linden committees. Our disappointment starts from the rejection, as well as the manner of rejection, of the agreement between us in budget talks of 2012, to begin a staged normalization of electricity provision in Linden, looking at merging the Linden area into the national grid over, say, a five-year period. We could understand the people of Linden not welcoming the proposals, but a responsible APNU could have come back with a proposal to, say, delay the start from mid-2012 to the beginning of 2013. We understand that leaders cannot be too far ahead of their constituencies, but leaders must PRIME MINISTER lead or their constituencies would SAMUEL HINDS be left in the past. Concerning the agreements which settled the unrest in Linden, they froze electricity tariffs to where they were. The agreements stated that there would be no consideration of any increases until after the various Committee reports would have been received, studied and discussed. This position could not be more comfortable for the Regional Chairman and for APNU. The Government, this year in the 2014 Budget, is having to provide G$ 2,900 million for the Linden area, and another G$ 300 million for the Kwakwani Utilities Inc. The agreement has certainly not been barren. Concerning the Television station, there is a huge difference between being given the equipment that it is claimed Green Construction gifted to the community in 1985, and being given a running TV station. Throughout our 20 years, Linden/Region 10 has shared equitably in what our country has. A major job over the years has been working to develop trade with northern Brazil and to establish Guyana as the favoured place for Brazil to develop a northern port for north Brazil. We have been advocating and advancing the paving of the Linden-Lethem road – the greatest problem is the history of the incidence of Linden and the existing road being shut down. The people of Linden must guard against being wound up to spite the PPP/C, but only in the end damaging their own better interests. Mr. Editor, we of the PPP/C believe that the problems of Linden/Region 10 are politically engineered, not by the PPP/C, but by Granger, Solomon and others who preach continually about Linden and Region 10 being discriminated against because the people in Region 10 are different from, and do not vote for, the PPP/C. Interestingly, some tell people in other areas, like Region 6, that we of the PPP/C take them for granted and that we are going all out for Region 10 so as to win it over. We go all out for everyone! We do all we can in an equitable way for everyone. (PLEASE SEE PAGE 7)


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

Say no to suicide, yes to life

IT’S a new year; we all made promises and plans to make our new year prosperous, but it was very saddening to know that some persons did not have a well-started year. Their joys and happiness were cut short by the despicable acts of their loved ones or friends who committed suicide, or those who tried to take their own lives. Persons who did such acts either died the same time or many days after, and it is very saddening to know that these perpetrators were mainly teenagers and young adults. And the rate of suicide is relatively high, mostly in Region 6. We all know that suicide is not the solution for any problem, no matter what it may be. Whether it is family problems, relationship problems, financial problems, peer pressure, one must not think that suicide is the way out! I’m writing just to tell you, the teenagers and young adults out there, don’t take matters into your own hands, but talk to someone; let your feelings out and don’t resort to committing suicide and ending your life, putting your loved ones in distress and hurt. Look at all the good and wonderful times you had in your life; look back at all the times you were happy, and had the courage to move on and live every day towards your goal in life. We all need to be strong and supportive of each other, so call up a friend, talk to your parents or even your schoolteacher, and let them advise you and guide you so you could be whom you want to be and grow a bright future for yourselves! I’m appealing to you the public: Let us join together in raising awareness against suicide! Let us help those in need, especially teenagers and young adults. Educate them! Let them know the consequences and help them to build their confidence! Help them to boost their thinking of how life works! We all can do this; all we need is co-operation and teamwork. I’m also appealing to teenagers and young adults out there: Don’t let suicide be an option; moreso, it should never be an option in your life. Be positive! Think positive and be who you want to be. Don’t let the devil get inside of you and lead you astray! I am 17 years old, and I worry about my fellow young people and this alarming suicide rate in Guyana, which is why I am writing this letter to help raise awareness, and let people out there know how I feel about this ongoing situation. I am pleading to you youngsters: stay in school! Be who you want to be and SAY NO TO SUICIDE, AND YES TO LIFE! S. SOMWAR

Subjective analyses could lead to protean conclusions not amendable to apodeictic proof FORMER Minister Dr Henry Jeffrey, joining the queue of commentators on the Colwyn Harding episode, (see SN of 22/1/14) has located his discourse in a double-barrelled context, outwit the more prevalent pronouncements generally characterised by, or infected with, the affinities of ethic dissonance. As he puts it, the remedies, if granted, “Outside of the proper political context, their effect will be minimal if not useless”. Amplifying his thesis, he emphasises that “Neither the PPP/C nor the police hierarchy directly encouraged the police to brutalise Mr Harding…”, and without a hint of sequential construct, he ventures to suggest that “these kinds of outcomes are a dysfunction of the politics of domination”. More pertinent to his real, intended postulate are his following two conclusions, viz, “Once set in motion, the politics of domination follows a logic in which brutalities, intimidation, propaganda and confusion are

Whether Mr. Solomon is ... (FROM PAGE 6)

Mr. Editor, readers, there could be nothing more deadening and self-fulfilling than the constant preaching that the Government is against the people of Linden/Region 10, thereby politically engineering the stalling of development. It takes away all sense of responsibility from the people of Linden, killing their initiative, ingenuity, and their innovative and entrepreneurial spirit inborn in the people of Linden and Region 10, the same as in people everywhere. To be successful these days, people say one has to add computer skills and IT to traditional skills. Remember some eight years ago, when bauxite workers in Linden were put on two months’ furlough. This Government provided every worker with base pay, but only on attending introductory or improving courses in computers. And to be successful these days, one has to accept that he/she has to be competitive, and that he/ she can be competitive. This is true for citizens of Linden/ Region 10 and, indeed, for all Guyana. I recall, during a debate in Parliament in about 1994, on the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME). Dr. Clive Thomas pointed out that our hourly labour rates were (then) the lowest in CARICOM. However, because of our low productivity and low quality, causing high reject work-rates

and poor satisfaction and timeliness, the costs of our labour in units of our goods and services were among the highest in CARICOM. We were not likely to be competitive in the CSME. Lowest hourly rates but highest labour costs! This is where our attention should be focused. This should be our common and shared battleground, focusing on learning, training and practising, so that the productivity, quality, timeliness and cost of whatever we do, become much more competitive, providing us much more satisfaction and earnings. I hoped then, and ever do, that there could be widespread focus on improving our productivity. This is the battle that I hoped Dr. Thomas would have dedicated himself to, noting his standing with labour and many persons who might have been sceptical of such a message from the PPP/C. Granger, Roopnaraine and Solomon have been teaching the people of Linden that their primary problem is the PPP/C Central Government. This is the political engineering that has been hobbling development in Linden/Region 10. This is the political engineering that the PPP/C has had to overcome. The PPP/C does not despair! We will always be in Linden. We will stay on the scene, welcoming fellow Guyanese citizens, whether one by one, or two by two. There is no future in dwelling in the past. In these

days, we have to be open and nimble, to change, to open to the world; cheerful and quick to make friends. These are not the qualities that Granger, Roopnaraine, Solomon and Norton are advocating and nurturing in Linden/Region 10. The road on which they are taking Linden/Region 10 leads to a dead-end. We would not leave our fellow citizens of Linden/Region 10 to such a fate. Whether on

Saturday, Solomon and APNU are successful or not in shutting Linden/Region 10 down as they threaten, we of the PPP/C will always be around working to put things together for the good of the people of Linden/Region 10, and for all Guyana. PRIME MINISTER SAMUEL HINDS Office of the Prime Minister

common place”… “And those who seek to make and implement policy to safeguard our collective and individual safety must, at the very least, take congnisance of this broader political context and agenda”. Not bad for a savant of his political and philosophical genealogy and Cabinet experience. Cast from a different professional mould, this writer prefers to focus on the interplay of the major participants and, more importantly, the facts, in the confrontational engagement under scrutiny. Without the latter, subjective analyses could lead to protean conclusions not amendable to apodeictic proof; failing to observe this minimum imperative would divest the process of its objectivity and transparency and, intimately, may lead to the recrudescence of the past, thereby generating the very “propaganda and confusion” which Dr Jeffery determines flow from “the politics of domination”. Prudence dictates that the journey to justice, though somewhat perambulatory, protects the innocent in much the same way as it penalises the guilty. Career politicians preach

the sermon of prevention and cure in much the same way that businessmen seek to promote their merchandise as customer-friendly in the hope and expectation that they would have exclusive access to the marketplace. However, that access if solely dependent on their salesmen’s integrity, loyalty and commitment, or lack thereof, may present challenges to their success. Vigilance and supervision, are necessary components of any carefully composed plan and we, in Guyana, by and large, may have forfeited that claim to the consummate managerial skills requisite for complex administration. Perhaps, some of us have been promoted to positions beyond our levels of competence. Herein lies the problem, but we need not despair and can take comfort from the aphorism “a pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; not so an optimist, who sees the opportunity in any difficulty.” JUSTICE CHARLES R. RAMSON, S.C., O.R. Former Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

TechVoc education in its best position ever --in the history of technical education in Guyana

A LETTER entitled, “What is the status of the technical/vocational curriculum in our schools” (KN 2014/01/20), sought answers to the state of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) in Guyana. Permit me to first thank the writer for the interest shown in the education system, and particularly in TVET. It appears, however, that a fundamental mistake was made by the writer in confusing the process of quality assurance and certification, alluded to in the Hon. Minister’s comments, with the state of technical/ vocational education and training in the country. The Caribbean Association of National Training Agencies (CANTA) has certification guidelines and processes with their concomitant external verification and quality assurance mechanisms, which must be met prior to receiving recognition to award CVQ. It was this “readiness” that the Minister of Education spoke of in relation to Guyana’s having met those administrative and other system-related requirements. The Hon. Minister gave the assurance that Guyana is in the process of being recognised to award the CVQ, something we could not unilaterally declare; we are subject to the regulations of the regional governing bodies, including CARICOM. In 2004, as a requirement of CANTA, in preparation for the CVQ, the Ministry of Education established the Council for TVET through an Act of Parliament. The Council is charged with spearheading the transformation of the TVET Institutions, from the traditional mode of training to Competency-`Based Education and Training (CBET), which is the mode of training that leads to the award of the CVQ.

The expectations of CVQ and the CBET programme entail a complete change in the way TVET is delivered. There is strong emphasis on quality assurance and facilities, staff, qualifications and experience, training and assessment practices must all meet regional guidelines and standards. More importantly, throughout this process, there is a strong participation and involvement of industry practitioners. When this right is conferred on Guyana, the Council for TVET will begin to award the CVQ to persons trained by Technical Institutes and other private training institutions, while the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) will award the CVQ to persons trained in the Secondary Schools across the country. In relation to the state of TVET in the education system, however, the Ministry of Education is eager to engage all interested parties in a discussion of where we are, and how we can move the system forward. It must be unequivocally stated that, as a matter of fact, TVET is in its best position in the history of technical education in Guyana. The Ministry of Education, with the addition of two new centres in Mahaicony and Leonora, currently operates ten (10) TVET Institutions in Regions 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 10. There are plans as well to establish a centre in Region 9. The institutions have a combined students’ population of over 3000, and graduate more than 1500 students annually. Further, the Ministry of Education, along with the TVET Council, continues to re-tool and upgrade facilities; train and re-train the staff of these institutions; and expand the programmes offered to ensure that we continue producing world-class graduates consistent with the ever-changing industrial

Tarnishing an act of generosity SOMETHING is seriously off balance when the gift of a bridge for public use in burial of the deceased is reportedly criticized. Why? Both SN and KN reported that Mr. Elton McRae, a Triumph Guyanese, reportedly found the bridge “offensive”. The media reported that the area of the BV/Triumph community burial ground for Hindus and Muslims, without an official entrance, received an $840 hundred thousand adorned gateway and bridge. It was donated by former Deputy Chief Education Officer, Mrs Bibi Shariman Ali, her husband and two sons. Chairman Mr. Bruce Adams received the bridge on behalf of the NDC. The Roman Catholic section of the cemetery has its own bridge and their section is well maintained. But Mr McRae is complaining that “The bridge was given to the Muslim community between Success to Mon Repos. It was a facilitating endeavour for the members of that religious community so that they can have easier access to their burial ground.” Mr. McRae did not volunteer what impediments actually prevented anyone’s use of the bridge. Under siege and deprived when alive, Indians face the same in death and burial. Could normal maintenance without any tolls be any more abnormal? Neither race nor religion are prerequisite “power sharing”, bridging death and burial.Could it however provide jump start motivation to at least restoring gracious goodness which avoids death and burial as issues of disagreements? Can it? If not so there must be something to the examples of PNC veteran deputy leader, Dr.Ptole-

my Reid choosing to be buried in his native Essequibo and Presidents Dr Cheddi and Janet Jagan’s cremation in Berbice. With the latters’ ashes scattered elsewhere over Guyana all three leaders are far removed from the usual hubbub of our living. Even in death we find so much contentiousness among Guyanese that a donated bridge makes us more unabridged. Indeed, what can be more downright petty than such insensitive disrespect for the dignity of the defenceless dead, even if Indian? See Mr. Elton McRae’s complete letter in the KN of 161-14 titled: “Everything linked to this report is offensive” and in the SN of 16-1-14 titled “BV/ Triumph bridge should be maintained by Muslim community, not NDC”. Then the urgency of decentralized Federalism becomes more validated by his criticisms. Now contrast this to Georgetown’s Le Repentir cemetery, where bodies locomote themselves, not by bridge nor by boat, but by floodwater! Right after the church funeral service for popular communicator Mr.Terry Holder the funeral cortege was unable to conclude interment at Le Repentir cemetery. In a history-making first, the body returned to the funeral parlour, reportedly by respectful escort of Prime Minister Sam Hinds. Did all the dead come alive in unionized TUC conspiracy to deny Mr Holder his “green card” residency? Nowhere in memory has any Guyanese so ignominiously been actually forced to go back from where he came, when he was dead! In Guyana the Lord Jesus Christ’s directive of “let the dead bury the dead” is not possible any-

more. Who can say if Le Repentir’s residents were walking on water in protest? Who can say if they warned their new comrade not to enter but to go back and plead their case? Let’s assume Mr. McRae’s criticism unburdens the BV-Triumph NDC of its responsibilities. Such would give matching justifiable glorification to the PPP/C’s astuteness for Mayor Hamilton Green to remain unhinged from theirs. Righteousness would expect Mr. McRae to then bravely go tell it on the garbage mountain – not like Big Foot - but like biblical Moses. Hopes that the Mayor, so preoccupied in the press, would ever awake to his caretaker responsibilities to restore Le Repentir must not be without effort. What an inspiring secret Dick Morris poll campaign that must have been! Maybe long tortured minds and souls in the cemetery are now in silent screams of remorse, neglected even in death. How did their misplaced, trusting votes prescribe them such karmic Le Repentir hell in Georgetown under the PNC? Mr. McRae should explain his callousness surrounding Mr. Holder’s and all others with equal rights, dying to get in the cemetery but not welcome by kith and kin like him. All the brimstone and fire raining on Town Clerk Ms Carol Sooba may also explain why some remain quite so comfortable among decay and nastiness to celebrate another Triumph. Everyone knows dignity and respect for the dead is without religion. What else could it be to look a gift Arabian horse in the mouth? For him what is very bothersome is that NDC taxpayers’ funds would caretaker

the free bridge in future for everyone’s wellbeing. He was indeed a surprising protester, with no money no love for those families undertaking sanctuary’s final rest of their beloved. With costs a big issue for him, any reconciliation of taxpayers’ subsidized electricity for Linden alone and its payout to rioters as compensation is unknown. It would take more than only one Hercules to clean up the capital’s stinking Augean stables. But heads are not likely to roll until tradeoffs are acknowledged and compromises made. The PNC cannot be so dead, unable to first fix Georgetown as a symbol of their ideals and aspirations. Everyone knows where they would not be welcome if dead. Can they do it? Only God knows. SULTAN MOHAMED

expectations and standards. The Ministry of Education has also revitalised the Secondary Competency Certificate Programme (SCCP), which is currently being offered in fifty (50) Secondary Schools and seven (7) strategically-placed Practical Instruction Centres (PICs) serving our secondary school population nationwide; with more than 1000 students successfully completing this programme last year. This programme offers a competency-based modularized curriculum in TVET, and gives secondary school students the opportunity to acquire entry-level technical skills in various trade areas. The graduates of this programme continue their careers in the TVET institutions, seek employment, or transition to the CXC programme in schools. The Ministry of Education has not only continued to expand TVET across the length and breadth of Guyana, but has also developed a strategic plan for TVET in Guyana that outlines how this component of the system will be implemented from Nursery through to University and Post-Graduate levels. It envisioned combining CBET and labour market intelligence and other strategies to address the existing and emergent skills in Guyana. We would encourage any interested parties to contact the TVET Unit of the Ministry of Education for more information on TVET in Guyana: Tel: 231-8815 or 223-7900 ext 252/253 or E-mail us at aceo_tech@yahoo.com. PATRICK CHINEDU Assistant Chief Education Officer (Technical)

What about the rest of Guyanese, Mr. Granger? SO, Mr. Granger has expressed his disappointment at what he deems the government’s lackadaisical methods of improving the quality of life for persons living in Region 10. His party is calling for a renewed regional and economic development initiative to improve the quality of life of residents. What about the other regions? This should be good for all the administrative regions. It would be interesting to see just how much money was spent in Region 10, as opposed to other regions. He did not mention the cost of the Linden buildings burnt down; or the

WHY DID ‘ TRACOR’ END?

SOME years ago, I did pen a couple of articles with regard to The Guyana Police Force campaign, which was named “Operation Tracor” and I also congratulated the Force when the campaign took effect, but eventually the campaign ceased, for whatever reason/s. I would also like to make it crystal clear that I am not against any vehicle playing music because it’s a great thing, but the volume that some person’s take the music to is killing. Having perused the KN dated January 21,2014 and captioned “Govt. alarmed: some rogue minibuses reportedly owned by police,” made me pull back and a thought came to mind immediately…Perhaps that was the reason “Operation Tracor”, ceased. Again, I am not certain how accurate that KN report is. T. PEMBERTON

jobs and benefits lost in opposing and not improving on aspects of the projects that may have provided some of the jobs he is calling for. What has Mr. Granger done for people in those regions before and after he was elected to parliament? Did he attempt to improve or expand on the projects or programmes proposed or put in place by government? Did he propose or submit any legislation that would improve his supporters’ lot, much less the nation? The only time he attempted to negotiate a deal with government on Linden electric rates, he was sabotaged by the other opposition party. He has fallen back on the AFC mantra: “Anything proposed by government must be corrupt and defeated”. Meanwhile, APNU is left to follow this strategy until they can win the government. Until then, all new projects or programmes will be defeated, while their supporters wait for the promises the Opposition makes to become a reality. The Opposition prefers to oppose rather than propose or negotiate better outcomes, or attempt to make the most of their opportunities to better improve legislation. Throwing out any benefits that their supporters may have gotten is less important than attempting to throw out the government and its policies. Guess government is not the only one being lackadaisical in addressing the nation’s problems. N. AUGUSTUS


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

Old Kai: Chronicles of Guyana

King Solomon was a great and wise man but this Solomon fell very far from the tree - APNU contradict contentions by their own Regional Chairman

OLD Kai is not amused at the latest stance taken by the APNU Region 10 Chairman, Sharma Solomon to revive their ‘shut Linden down’ campaign. This is the same individual who never hesitates to preach about the need for attracting investments in Region 10 and particularly Linden, to provide more jobs and other opportunities for residents. How he expects to achieve this by signalling to potential investors that because of a narrow political agenda, he and his crew can bring all business to a halt whenever they fell like, is a mystery. Now we are told that the ‘shut down Linden’ campaign is based on reports, that President Donald Ramotar will be visiting the township to attend the opening of a new office for the People’s Progressive Party. Mr. Solomon is clearly more interested in political grandstanding than being genuinely concerned about the welfare of Lindeners, as he is willing to hurt the business community in order to achieve his political objective. Solomon, based on reports in the media, has indicated that ‘all of Linden’s important sectors, including the business sector, have signalled their commitment to the undertaking’. Do they have a choice? None of these businesses would want to be targeted and destroyed as was the case during the last ‘shut down Linden campaign’ organised by Solomon and his APNU/AFC colleagues which went horribly wrong. Old Kai has some of his roots in Linden and a few longtime ‘sparring partners’ have whispered that there is a climate of fear, no one wants to speak out against the dictatorial attitude of the APNU officials in the region because they do not want to be targeted. Thus, participating in the ‘shut down’ campaign is being seen as one way of them publicly showing their loyalty to

the APNU and its Linden strongman or as they are calling him, ‘little Kabaka’. In so doing, they hope that they will be spared by the APNU thugs. Even the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry hinted to this much in a recent statement as it called for a probe into the Linden Committees set up after the accord to look into allegations made by Sharma. According to the release, “during that period (the previous violence prone shut down campaign by APNU), the GCCI and other private sector organisations received numerous complaints from business persons, stating that they cannot operate as usual.” If we are to believe Sharma Solomon, then these very businesses which complained about being affected are now willingly trying to harm their financial interests. That apart, there is a great disconnect somewhere between APNU and Sharma Solomon as one of the two is lying to members of the public. Region 10 Chairman The genesis of this revival Sharma Solomon of the ‘shut down’ campaign is reportedly the non-implementation by central government of aspects of the Accord.

However, APNU in a press statement on January 17, 2014 on the issue had this to say, “The Partnership laments, also, that the PPP/C administration has still not implemented the essential elements of the 21st August 2012 agreement between the Central Government and the Regional Administration 17 months after signing it.” But the Stabroek News in an article on January 23, 2014 contradicts APNU’s position as it quoted the APNU Regional Chairman as saying, “The letter, Solomon explained, will reiterate the region’s ‘dissatisfaction’ and ‘disgust’ at the fact that none of the commitments made by government 17 months ago have been honoured.” Now the APNU statement clearly indicates that elements of the Accord have already been implemented by Government but it contends that the essential elements are still outstanding. On the other hand, Sharma is claiming that none of the commitments have been implemented. Someone is misleading the public. This is nothing new as we can recall that several of the APNU leaders, including Solomon were caught misleading the Linden Commission of Inquiry. In reality, no matter how much the PPP/C government reaches out to work with the Opposition, for example with this Linden accord, it will never be enough or as was exposed above, will be twisted to suit the agenda of the opposition. One thing for sure is that this Solomon will still be lamenting that investors are not coming to Linden 10 years from now. Old Kai encourages that before he begins to open his mouth to accuse others of being liable for stifling the region’s potential, he first looks in a mirror to see the real culprit responsible.

Shipping Association of Guyana happy that GRA now has mobile container scanner - anticipates quicker processing of imports/exports

By Clifford Stanley THE Shipping Association of Guyana (SAG) is happy that the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) has recently acquired a mobile container scanner, which, reportedly, would undoubtedly increase efficiency in the processing of imports and exports. President of the SAG, Mr. Desmond Sears, recently opined that shippers would greatly benefit from the operations of this stateof-the-art container scanner. He said: “SAG welcomes this development. Containers, particularly those containing exports, will be processed much more quickly. The ships will load faster, and leave on time with less delays, all to the benefit of the suppliers.” He stressed that delays can be very costly for suppliers, saying: “For example, I am aware that, at the moment, numbers of containers are building up on the wharves in Guyana, Trinidad and Suriname, because the ship which is supposed to pick them up is at the moment

delayed in St. Lucia. Such situations are exasperating for suppliers, who will not get paid until their goods are delivered.” Sears said that although this situation was not local, it illustrated what can happen if there is not a great degree of efficiency in scanning containers of goods, particularly for export. “There is a domino effect, and we are happy that the new scanner will help to ensure that shippers in our port are not affected in this way,” he said. Finance Minister Dr. Ashni Singh commissioned the cutting edge technological equipment during a ceremony held earlier this month. Saying that implementation of the scanner brings Guyana into compliance with international standards, Dr Singh pointed out that some of the country’s major trading partners, including the United States, now require universal scanning of containers coming into their ports. The equipment was obtained from the People’s Republic of

High capacity drainage pumps being installed to handle coastal drainage

- Agriculture Ministry gets $49M to construct pump station at Patentia By Clifford Stanley AGRICULTURE Minister Dr. Leslie Ramsammy, answering questions posed on Thursday by A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) Parliamentarian Jaipaul Sharma, said that pump stations are being constructed at strategic locations along the coast to accommodate the high-capacity Surendra drainage pumps brought in from India recently. Dr Ramsammy said that two of the eight fixed-side pumps have already been installed at pump stations in Region 6(East Berbice/ Corentyne). One has been installed at Rose Hall Town and the other at Canje. Pump stations are being constructed to accommodate the remaining six others. Four would be placed in Region 3 (West Demerara/Essequibo Islands); namely, one at Canal No. 1, one at

Patentia, one at Lima and the last at Two Friends; and two would be placed in Region 4 (Demerara/Mahaica), one at Lusignan and the other at Pine Ground in Mahaicony. The Government bought fourteen pumps from the India-based company Surendra Engineering in 2011. Six of those are mobile pumps, and eight are fixed-side pumps requiring pump station buildings. The devices have been described as high-capacity pumps capable of discharging up to 200 cubic metres of water per second. The previous pump capacity was 150 cubic metres per second. During Thursday’s sitting of Parliament, Minister Ramsammy obtained $49M as supplementary funding for constructing the pump station at Patentia, WBD.

China at a cost of US$4.3M. “We would not be able to participate smoothly in international trade if we did not have this capability,” Dr Singh disclosed. He added: “In addition to bringing Guyana into compliance with international standards, and placing it at the cutting edge of technology, the scanner represents an important part of our artillery in completeness and accuracy of declarations with respect to exports and imports.”

10-yr-old charged with robbery under arms A TEN-YEAR-OLD boy, along with an adult, yesterday pleaded not guilty to a robbery under arms charge before Magistrate Sherdel Marcus- Issacs at the New Amsterdamn Court. The minor, a Grade Five student, along with Hubert Elgin, known as ‘Squeeks’, a construction worker of 19 Vryman’s Erven , in New Amsterdam , is alleged to have been armed with a broken glass bottle when they allegedly robbed Coretta Lewis . The virtual complainant was walking along Main Street, in the New Amsterdam Township, when the duo, allegedly snatched her handbag containing a black berry cellular phone, a silver chain, and $98,000 cash on October 25, 2013. The minor was initially remanded to the Juvenile Centre, after the virtual complainant reported that she was recieving threats. But he was subsequently released in the custody of his mother, who was ordered to post $20,000 bail for him. Elgin was granted $100,000 bail. They are expected to return to Court on February 10, for statements and fixture.


10

GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

PPP sees call for shut down of Linden as an attempt to wreak havoc The People’s Progressive Party takes note of efforts by the Opposition to instigate a “shut down” of Linden today, through a protest. on Saturday January 25, 2014. The PPP believes such a call by the Opposition, through its henchman Sharma Solomon, is nothing short of an attempt to wreak havoc, sow seeds of discord and promote an economic sabotage of the people of Linden, and should be condemned by Lindeners, and more so all Guyanese, forthwith. A PPP statement last evening said, “While we have always been an advocate for rights of Guyanese to protest, we are cognizant that this recent call by Solomon to re-open the wounds of Linden is only to fulfil the narrow political agenda of his “bosses” in the Opposition. “One must not lose sight of what took place in Linden in July

of 2012, when the lives of three of our citizens were lost, public and private property arsoned, citizens beaten and robbed, a tragedy the community is still trying to overcome. “We view what is being instigated by the Opposition as purely confrontational politics, since the so-called shut down is planned for the very day our party’s Region 10 headquarters is being commissioned “The irresponsible call by Solomon, who should be a leader in his community and work towards its development, will have dire economic and social impact on the lives of our brothers and sisters in Linden and should not be supported by right thinking Lindeners. “Again, we urge our brothers and sisters of Linden not to be used by these irresponsible politicians, whose only aim is to fulfil their narrow political agenda of reversing Guyana’s developmental gains.”

Syria foes ‘to meet face-to-face’ at Geneva II talks (BBC News) SYRIA’S opposition and government will meet “in the same room” in Geneva on Saturday after the first day of a peace conference ended with no direct talks. UN envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, who held talks with both sides on Friday, said they all understood that the conference was trying to “save Syria”. The two sides have blamed each other for a lack of progress. Diplomats say they are now aiming at small concessions such as local truces rather than an overall peace deal. Mr Brahimi has spent three days attempting to get the two sides to meet each other. On Friday, the government’s

delegation reportedly threatened to quit the talks unless “serious” discussions were scheduled for Saturday. Syria’s civil conflict has claimed well over 100,000 lives since it began in 2011. The violence has also driven 9.5 million people from their homes, creating a major humanitarian crisis within Syria and for its neighbours. Preliminary talks began on Wednesday in Montreux, and Mr Brahimi spent Thursday and Friday attempting to persuade both sides to agree to meet face-to-face. Friday was supposed to be the first day of official talks, but neither side would meet

the other. Instead, Mr Brahimi met government delegates in the morning, and the opposition in the afternoon. At a news conference in the afternoon, he said both sides had agreed to meet in the same room. “The discussions I’ve had with the two parties were encouraging, and we are looking forward to our meetings,” he said. “The huge ambition of this project is to save Syria. I hope that all three parties - the opposition, the government and the United Nations - will be up to this task.” The opposition and govern-

Some of Syria’s towns are burnt-out shells after three years of conflict

ment are fundamentally divided over the aims of the conference. The government delegation has said the main issue of the talks is finding a solution to foreign-backed “terrorism”, by which it means the whole of the armed opposition. The opposition, however, had insisted that the regime commit in writing to the 2012 Geneva I communique, which called for a transition process. The communique urged Syria to form transitional governing authority that “could include members of the present government and the opposition and other groups”.

President Francois Hollande and Pope Francis

Hollande meets with Pope Francis amid affair rumor VATICAN CITY (AP) — French President Francois Hollande met Friday with Pope Francis amid tensions in his private life over a gossip magazine’s report about an alleged affair with an actress. Hollande didn’t mention the scandal or the first lady, Valerie Trierweiler, in brief remarks to reporters afterward. He didn’t take questions, nixing a planned press conference in favor of a statement about the issues discussed with Francis: Africa, Syria, refugees and the environment. Vatican Television covered Hollande’s visit live, showing the stately arrival of his motorcade in the Apostolic Palace courtyard, Hollande’s slow walk in the frescoed palace halls accompanied by Swiss Guards and finally his greeting with a solemn-faced Francis in the pope’s private study. Hours before the arrival, a small homemade bomb exploded in front of a French foundation that manages French architectural treasures in Rome, including five churches, and is headed by the French ambassador to the Holy See. The Carabinieri military police said no one was injured, but that a few windows of the palazzo were shattered and that three cars parked on the street outside were damaged. Police said it wasn’t clear if the bomb, which contained metal bits as well as explosive powder, was related to Hollande’s visit or the foundation, which is located in the heart of Rome’s historic center. Hollande said he and the pope had discussed the security situation in the Central African Republic, where French forces are helping to stabilize the poor country and end sectarian violence between Christians and Muslims — as well as the war in Syria. “I expressed the wish that the Vatican might welcome the democratic Syrian coalition, to make it clear that peace must be found through a political solution that allows for pluralism,” said Hollande, noting that the Holy See was party to talks in Geneva over the Syria crisis. “We must do all we can to stop the fighting and deploy humanitarian aid.” He also said the pope had mentioned he was working on a document about the environment, without providing further details. The president presented the pope with a book about St. Francis of Assisi, and the pope in turn gave him a medal. The Holy See for its part said the talks focused on issues about the family, bioethics and respect for religious freedom. The Vatican and the Catholic Church in France vigorously opposed France’s gay marriage and gay adoption law, which was a cornerstone of the Socialist Hollande’s election manifesto. Hollande has acknowledged “painful moments” in his relationship with his partner, Trierweiler. He said he would clarify his domestic situation before a Feb. 11 state visit to Washington, when Trierweiler would normally accompany him. Trierweiler, 48, who was not married to Hollande, was hospitalized Jan. 10, a day after Closer magazine reported that Hollande was seeing actress Julie Gayet. The magazine published photos showing a man it said was the president, wearing a helmet and seated on the back of a scooter, allegedly being taken to a rendezvous with Gayet.


11

GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

No progress with probe into Forensic Laboratory theft By Michel Outridge

PERSONS were questioned soon after the November 9, 2013 theft of IT equipment from a storage area at the Citizen Security Programme (CSP) office, Ogle, East Coast Demerara, but Crime Chief Seelall Persaud reported, yesterday, that police made no progress with the probe. The missing items included computers and related software, some of which were earmarked for the Forensic Laboratory. In September 2010, the sod was turned for that facility which is located within the precincts of the University of Guyana on Dennis Street, Sophia. That followed an agreement signed between the Government of Guyana and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), as part of the institutional strengthening component of the CSP. Over the years, the Guyana Police Force (GPF) has been at a disadvantage in carrying out effective investigations as it relates to criminal matters, resulting in unsolved cases. However, the completion of this laboratory will, significantly, improve local forensic capabilities, thereby enhancing the security sector. Government is cognisant of the need for more advanced technology to enhance the crime fighting capacity of the GPF and, CRIME CHIEF consequently, several groundSEELALL PERSAUD breaking initiatives have been taken to ensure that the security sector is geared to its capacity to deal with emerging challenges.

- Crime Chief NEARING COMPLETION

So far, the Ministry of Home Affairs has pumped $60M into the construction and equipping of the laboratory which is nearing completion. The Ministry stated, that using the National Competitive Bidding (NCB) Process, the supplier, International Pharmaceutical Agency (Guy) Limited, of Lot 22 ‘B’ Camp Street, Georgetown, was awarded the contract to supply and deliver items to the Forensic Laboratory as follows:

* Lot 1 – Small Apparatus and Glassware (150 items) in the sum of $39,616,509. These items include beakers, test tubes, pipettes and storage containers. * Lot 2 – Consumable and Chemicals (248 items) in the sum of $10,174,812. Those include chemicals, reagents, acids and solutions. Those supplies are needed to perform daily analysis, testing and sampling. Additionally, the supplier, Pressy Enterprise, of Cowan and Parade Streets, Kingston, Georgetown, was awarded the contract, in the sum of $15,024,000 for the procurement of photographic and forensic equipment for the GPF.


12

Teenagers busted with grenades, rifle and ammunition remanded

THE two teenagers found with grenades, a rifle and ammunition earlier this week, were, yesterday, remanded to prison by Chief Magistrate Priya Sewnarine-Beharry. Kevin George, 18, of Lot 21 Costello Housing Scheme and Samuel Johnson, 17, of Lot 158 Curtis Street, Albouystown, also in Georgetown, both pleaded not guilty to three charges. One charge said, on Wednesday, January 22, at South Ruimveldt, without lawful authority or reasonable cause, they had one special concussion and one fragmentation grenade in their possession. Two other charges said they also had one M16 rifle and sixty-one .223 ammunition in their possession when they were not holders of firearm licences. Police Inspector Michael Grant, prosecuting, said at 11:15 hrs that day, ranks were on patrol duty on Aubrey Barker Road when they observed the defendants acting in a suspicious manner and approached them. He said George was seen to hand a haversack to Johnson and the latter handed it back to the former, who threw it to the ground and a subsequent search revealed the weapon and ammunition mentioned in the particulars. The prosecutor said, at the scene, ranks enquired of the duo if they were licensed firearm holders and they responded in the negative, resulting in them being prosecuted. The prosecutor, successfully, objected to bail, citing the gravity and prevalence of the crime and pointed out that, for the defendants to secure the grant, special circumstances must be adduced. The objection was upheld and the case was adjourned to February 11. *******************************************************

Robbery defendant on $125,000 bail must report regularly

CHRISTAPH Braithwaite, a vendor of Lot 19 ‘A’ Bent Street, Werk-En-Rust, charged with robbery before Chief Magistrate Priya Sewnarine-Beharry was, yesterday, granted $125,000 bail. He pleaded not guilty to having on, Thursday, January 23, at Stabroek, also in Georgetown, robbed Shavanya Wallace of one gold chain valued $25,000 and, at the time of, before or after made use of personal violence to the virtual complainant. Police Inspector Michael Grant, prosecuting, said around 10:00 hrs, the woman was shopping at Stabroek when the defendant pushed her down, causing her to suffer injuries and relieved her of the jewels mentioned in the charge. Braithwaite said he works hard for a living and never saw Wallace before. But, the woman, who was in Court said she was informed by persons around Stabroek, of the robber’s name and address and, subsequently, took the Police to his home. The Prosecutor did not object to bail but requested that it be substantial, with conditions attached. Consequently, Braithwaite was ordered to lodge his passport and report to Officer Shane Frank, at Brickdam, every Friday at 15:00 hrs until March 3.

GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

Parliament unanimously defers several major bills By Vanessa Narine THE National Assembly, Thursday evening, saw unanimous support by Members of Parliament (MPs) in securing the deferral of several major bills, some for multiple times. The Broadcasting (Amendment) Bill 2013, in the name of A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) MP Joseph Harmon, was listed for its first reading but he moved that the measure, intended to amend the Broadcasting Act, be deferred. The Local Authorities (Elections) (Amendment) Bill 2014, on the list for a second reading was also treated similarly, following a motion by Minister within the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development Norman Whittaker. That Bill provides for the postponement of elections of councillors of local democratic organs and it was read a first time on December 12, 2013. Minster of Environment and National Resources, Robert Persaud moved the motion to defer the Wildlife Import and Export Bill 2013, which was slated for its second reading. OBLIGATIONS That Bill is to regulate international trade in Guyana’s wildlife and enable this country to fulfil its obligations under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, Washington, 1973. The Recording of Court Proceedings Bill 2014, which was read in the National Assembly for the first time last week had been up for its second reading, but was deferred, too, on a motion by Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Anil Nandlall. That Bill seeks to provide for the recording of court proceedings and related matters. Clause 3, of 6, establishes the power to record proceedings by electronic or other means. Clause 4 provides that the Registrar of the Supreme Court or the Clerk of the Magistrate’s Court, as the case may be, shall prepare a transcript of the recorded proceedings. The two final clauses address the verification of the record of proceedings via certificates by those responsible for its accuracy and provides for access to the transcript and recordings upon payment of a fee, which is to be determined. The Guyana Cricket Administration Bill 2012, the last bill that was subjected to deferral, followed a move by Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr. Frank Anthony. Last week, the same Bill was deferred because of the portfolio Minister’s absence from the House. It makes provisions for the incorporation of autonomous national cricket administration organisations in Guyana and to provide for other related matters. The bill was tabled by Government in December 2012, intending to end the impasse over the national game. It provides constitutions for the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB), the Demerara, Berbice and Essequibo Cricket Boards and is divided into five parts, with one schedule addressing the autonomy of the respective boards. The House is expected to meet, again, on Monday, February 10.


GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

13

Octogenarian murder...

Police to seek DNA help from Brazil By Michel Outridge

CRIME Chief Seelall Persaud disclosed, yesterday, that following the April 12, 2013 murder of 89-year-old Millicent Cummings, at Cove and John, East Coast Demerara, a DNA sample will be sent to Brazil for analysis, next month, to aid in the investigation.

A few days after the octogenarian woman was killed, nine male suspects were held and later released but DNA samples were taken from three of them, all from the Cove and John community, some of whom are drug addicts (junkies). The bloodied and semi-nude body of Cummings was found on April 12, 2013, under a house

at Cove and John, having been bludgeoned to death. A post-mortem performed on her corpse by pathologist Dr. Nehaul Singh gave the cause of death as severe blunt trauma to the face and the report indicated that the woman was also sexually assaulted. Meanwhile, in relation to the homicide of 70-year-

Motions, bills deferred in Parliament By Clifford Stanley MOTIONS relating to the reduction of tolls and freight charges on the Berbice River Bridge and the reintroduction of the Berbice River Ferry from Kwakwani to New Amsterdam were among the items, on the Thursday Order Paper of the National Assembly, deferred for consideration at a later date. Also put off was a motion related to the restoration of the annual subvention to the Critchlow Labour College (CLC).The two bills deferred were the Broadcasting Amendment Bill 2013- Bill No. 19 of 2013 and the Telecommunications Bill 2012- Bill No. 16/2012. The motions on the reintroduction of the New Amsterdam/Kwakwani Ferry and the restoration of the subvention to the CLC were listed in the name of Alliance For Change (AFC) Member of Parliament (MP) Trevor Williams. With respect to the ferry, Williams had asked that the House call on Government to restore the service to the Berbice River communities. His second motion had also called for the Government to restore the full subvention to the CLC thereby allowing its reopening to its full capacity. When the two motions were brought up for consideration, Williams moved that both be delayed to another time. A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) MP Lieutenant Colonel (ret’d) Joseph Harmon then requested the deferral of motions for a reduction of the toll and freight charges for the Berbice River Bridge and a Broadcasting (Amendment) Bill, both in his name. AFC Leader, MP Khemraj Ramjattan followed suit in requesting that the Telecommunications Bill 2012 in his name be similarly treated. The next sitting of Parliament is scheduled for February 10.

old Frederick Thomas, at Gaumont Hotel, in Georgetown, the Deputy Commissioner of Police (Law Enforcement) said there has been no new development but the probe continues. Two suspects were detained for questioning but were, subsequently, let go and a third suspect was being sought. Thomas was discovered on the stairway of the High Street, Georgetown Hotel, with a stab wound to his chest, at about 14:30 hrs on April 15 last. He was pronounced dead on arrival at the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPH) but no motive for that crime has been established by the police. DOMINO FANATIC There has yet been no arrest either in the cold-blooded late night murder of domino fanatic Orin Joseph at his home/business place, Lot 1222 Gaulding Place, South Ruimveldt Park, on April 14. Crime Chief Persaud said there is nothing further on that investigation, too. Initially a suspect, who had been in custody, was released and police were looking for

ORIN JOSEPH

MILLICENT CUMMINGS

another person to question. Joseph, 52, was gunned down by a volley of bullets about 23:40 hrs just after a domino competition had ended in front of his home during an electricity outage. One of the shots hit him in his abdomen and there were no eyewitnesses to the crime. However, the jewels he was wearing at the time were taken by two men on a motorcycle from Joseph, who was the President of Blue Bird Domino Club. He had briefly exited his yard and was about to take his

car and park it under his house when he was attacked by the men, who escaped in the dark. Persaud said the victim’s wife, Faye Joseph had heard explosions and, when she went to enquire the cause, she saw her mortally wounded husband lying on the road. She revealed that Joseph had been relieved of a gold chain and a gold band but no motive for the murder/robbery has yet been determined. The well-known businessman was taken to the GPHC, where he succumbed while receiving medical treatment.


14

Hotel murder...

Identification of Jamaican victim delays autopsy

GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014 THE post mortem to be performed on the Jamaican woman who was found lifeless in a hotel room last January 22 has been delayed. Crime Chief Seelall Persaud explained, yesterday, that police are in the process of contacting the victim’s relatives

in Jamaica, to have them make an identification of the corpse before the autopsy can be done locally. He pointed out that no one in Guyana knows the deceased and, without an identification of the body, the examination cannot be done.

WANTED: Anthony Lloyd Neville Morrison Following the murder of Beverley Anesta Gardner, Guyana Police, on Thursday, issued a wanted bulletin for Anthony Lloyd Neville Morrison, another Jamaican they want to question. The dead Gardner was discovered in New York Car Wash & Hotel, Camp and Princes Streets, Georgetown, on January 22. The 31-year-old woman had been a guest there when staffers made the discovery and close circuit television (CCTV) aided the Police in acquiring vital footage of the suspect’s identity. (Michel Outridge)

Security guard shot, injured with other’s gun A SECURITY guard who was shot and injured has been hospitalized, after he and another were relieved of their firearms by a group of men on Thursday night, in North Sophia, Georgetown. Police said the shooting occurred about 21:00 hrs on January 23, when security guards Mortimer Maynard, 45, and Trevor Fraser, 42, attached to a private service, were together and the latter was armed with a .38 revolver belonging to his employer. The two were attacked by three men who took away the gun from Fraser and discharged three rounds, one of which struck Maynard on his left thigh before the perpetrators escaped with it. Maynard has been admitted to the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPH) for medical treatment while investigations are in progress. (Michel Outridge)


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Saturday January 25, 2014

US Justice Dept requests arrest warrants (Newsday) ARRESTS in the $640 million cocaine bust could be coming in a matter of

days, after the United States Justice Department yesterday issued a Diplomatic Note to

Below rates for January 24, 2014 Currency

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G$/US$ G$/GBP$ G$/CAD$ G$/EURO$ G$/BDOS$ G$/EC$ G$/TT$

205.98375 341.97422 185.58360 281.78577 101.62031 75.27431 31.77124

208.43594 346.25378 187.72527 285.34880 102.63906 76.02894 32.08975

For Saturday January 25, 2014 -11:30hrs For Sunday January 26, 2014 -13:00hrs

this country’s Foreign Affairs Ministry. The Diplomatic Note calls for a provisional warrant of arrest for three businessmen who are central to investigations into the smuggling of 332 kilos of cocaine from the Port in Portof-Spain to the Norfolk Port in Virginia, USA. Sources confirmed that the Note was received by the Foreign Affairs Ministry Thursday, but it was not known if the Note was forwarded to the Central Authority in the Ministry of the Attorney General, which is charged with processing all requests for extradition of wanted persons. “Once this Diplomatic Note is issued and forwarded to the Central Authority it means almost certain arrest since there is no delay or should be no delay in dealing with such urgent requests,” a source from the Central Authority told Newsday. The issuance of the Diplomatic Note from the US Justice Department came after sources said that two Customs and Excise officers as well as a Central Trinidad businessman and a car dealer from South Trinidad have been placed under surveillance by officers close to the investigations. US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) officers have been working closely with local Strategic Services Agency (SSA), National Operations Centre (NOC), police and Customs officers. Investigators believe the Customs officers as well as the two businessmen could shed some light as to how 332 kilos of cocaine ended up inside 700 sealed tins bearing false labels of the popular Trinidad Citrus Fruit Juices brand. Newsday also understands that officers of the Homeland Security in the United States, who have taken over investigations in that country, believe they may be able to make a major breakthrough any day soon. Based on intelligence gathering thus far, investigators are hoping that persons already fingered will decide to turn state’s witness against the “big fishes” behind this drug operation to ensure arrests and convictions. Investigators met yesterday to discuss the status of the investigations.

Aries March 21 - April 19

Sacrificing some of your privacy will be a joy today, because the alternative will be so exciting! You might be slow to come to this conclusion, but as the day progresses you will soon see how much more you have to gain by joining in on the game rather than watching from the sidelines. Your presence will be in high demand, so supply it as often as you can. Even if you are feeling more introverted than usual, this exciting social scene will be worth making the effort it takes to get social.

Taurus April 20 - May 20

You might have to put one of your relationships on the back burner for now so that you can focus on you work, but don’t worry about hurting anyone’s feelings. The people who care about you really do care about you -- and by now, they understand that sometimes you’ve got to deal with other things in your life. They are very sensitive people, but not so sensitive that they will take it personally if you have to cancel a dinner or say no to a party invitation.

Gemini May 21 - June 21

Someone who’s being very nice to you right now might have a hidden agenda -- so hold off on placing a significant amount of trust in them. Through continued observation today, you will come to the conclusion that they aren’t quite the person you thought they were. First of all, they are nowhere near as smart as you thought -- it’s pretty dumb to try to put something over on you! You’re acting more cautiously than you usually do, but this is a healthy trend.

Cancer June 22 - July 22

You are savvy enough to be as careful as you need to be in business deals, but that doesn’t mean you can never go for broke. Dive headfirst into a new opportunity today. You do not have to research every little detail to death. If people you know and trust are enthusiastic about a new enterprise, and if you feel deep in your gut that it is something you want to get involved with, then go for it! It’s probably going to be a very interesting experience.

Leo July 23 - August 22

Someone who recently had a huge success is getting a bit too big for their britches. Initially, you were happy for their success, but lately it has felt like they are always boasting or being generally insensitive about your situation. It is best for you to get your distance from them today. If you don’t get some space from them, any joy you felt for them will start to dissolve into resentment. This person needs to feed their ego, but you don’t have to stand around and help them do it.

Virgo August 23 - September 22

Some of your plans might have to be postponed or cancelled outright today -- someone with more power is on the scene. And whether you like it or not, they are going to be calling the shots. This lack of control on your part could make you feel restless, but before you go on strike or strike out and give them a piece of your mind, listen to the cooler heads. Let them talk you out of your anger and into a clearer frame of mind. Sometimes you have to sit in the back seat and enjoy the ride.

Libra September 23 - October 22

If you feel like you’re been sacrificing too much in your life, then stop doing it. You may be selfish every now and then -- in fact, it’s healthy! So let the pendulum swing back to ‘selfish,’ where your happiness is the highest priority. Reclaim some of your free time. Use it however you see fit -- take a nap, read a book, go for a walk, or even just watch TV. All that matters is that you are doing what you want to do, when you want to do it!

Scorpio October 23 - November 21

The wonderful thing about having confidence is that it can be your secret weapon for getting through tough challenges. But right now you need to keep that confidence in check. Make sure it doesn’t veer over into cockiness. Be honest with yourself and admit when you can’t do something. You do have limitations, as shocking as that might be! It’s much better to acknowledge them to others than to have others point them out to you. Be self-aware and you’ll be more attractive to others.

Sagittarius November 22 - December 21

Your creativity has been on quite a roll lately, but are you giving your imagination enough breathing room? Let things in your life be messy for a while, instead of sticking to a certain schedule or plan. Doing so will encourage improvisation and keep you on your toes! Being confused wouldn’t even be a bad thing today, because in the process of trying to make sense of things you will discover a whole new way of putting them all back together again!

Capricorn December 22 - January 19

Your prestige is growing right now, and a powerful person is suddenly seeing you in a brand new light. Try not to let this new level of attention make you feel uncomfortable, though. Now is the time to step boldly into the spotlight and make the most of this time in your life. And if you have to fake the confidence for a while, so what? Show people that you are worthy of the trust and respect they are giving you, and they will give you more of it.

Aquarius January 20 - February 18

If you have deep feelings for someone who has wronged you, making a fresh start can be challenging. Moving completely past grudges and anger is often impossible to do. So if you are feeling like you want to stop trying to put the past behind you, then take a break from being the bigger person. Get your distance from the people who don’t make you feel good about yourself. Let time show you whether you should keep someone in your life, or let them know that it is time to move on.

Pisces February 19 - March 20

There is going to be a lot of erratic energy buzzing around the lives of people you love today, but you can’t let it get in the way of your plans! Friends and family members know that you care about them, but they also know that you have a life -- so if you change your plans just to come to their aid, you’re only going to make them feel guilty. Just because they are going through some emotional upheaval right now doesn’t mean that they expect you to drop everything and come running.


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Xavier lands hockey scholarship to the ...

From Back Page

national selection less than two years later. Since 2007, Xavier has been a fixture in the women’s national hockey team as their first-choice goalkeeper and was one of the key players responsible for Guyana’s rise in world ranking over the past few years, including a record 20-place jump in 2013. “She is known in the Caribbean as one of the top hockey goalkeepers, winning more individual awards for goalkeeping than any other active goalkeeper in the English-speaking Caribbean,” Fernandes remarked, adding “her goalkeeping exploits were soon noticed by

North American coache -, which landed her a coveted hockey scholarship to the Miami University of Ohio in the USA in 2013.” Xavier continues to represent Guyana with distinction in international competition as evidenced by her selection to the 2013 PAHF elite team. “The Guyana Hockey Board (GHB) hopes that other young men and women can follow Alysa’s example of maximising their potential through hard work and dedication to the sport or any other pursuit that they love. The GHB also wishes to thank the Ministry of Sport and the Guyana Olympic Association for their support - especially throughout the past few years - which has enabled the

Caribbean Pro league must be sanctioned, ... From Back Page years of MLF. Last year, CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb announced that a task force is to be established to look at the development of a professional league in the Caribbean. “A professional league in the region is something that CONCACAF and the CFU entities have said is worth pursuing and exploring,” Hughes added. “So any entity that is desirous of partnering with CFU or CONCACAF in a developmental initiative, the best approach would then be

to present such a case to the respective bodies.”

Guyana women’s team and Alysa to showcase their talents

English Lingfield 08:15 hrs Tautira 08:50 hrs Chevise 09:25 hrs Random Success 10:00 hrs Secret Pursuit 10:35 hrs The Tichbone 11:10 hrs After The Storm 11:45 hrs Robin Hoods Bay 12:20 hrs Night’s Watch Doncaster 08:25 hrs Centasia 08:55 hrs Rock On Ruby 09:30 hrs Bellenos 10:05 hrs Annie Power 10:40 hrs Sausalito Sunrise 11:15 hrs Night In Milan 11:50 hrs Star Of Salford Cheltenham 08:40 hrs Ballyglasheen 09:15 hrs Ohio Gold 09:50 hrs Double Ross 10:25 hrs Houblon Des Obeaux 11:00 hrs Abusson 11:35 hrs Big Buck 12:10 hrs Amore Alato South Africa Racing Tips

on the international stage.” Fernandes said.

Turffontein 08:40 hrs Tora Tora 09:15 hrs Ohio Gold 09:50 hrs Quad Bay 10:25 hrs Krystle Carrington 11:00 hrs Carlisie Irish Racing Tips Leopardstown 09:05 hrs Ballychorus 09:40 hrs Champagne James 10:15 hrs Road To Riches 10:50 hrs King Vuvuzela 11:25 hrs Gilgimboa 11:55 hrs The Mighty Milan 12:25 hrs Aminabad American Racing Tips Aqueduct Race 1 Frazil Race 2 Skinny Margarita Race 3 Jump Two Race 4 Perfect Disco Race 5 Just Do It Please Race 6 Keep Right Race 7 Uman Candy Race 8 Teen Pauline Race 9 Tycoon Cat

Wally Edwards


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Nadal brings Federer crashing back to earth By Ian Ransom

MELBOURNE, Australia (Reuters) - Hard reality crushed a fairytale revival at Melbourne Park as a ruthless Rafael Nadal inflicted more grand slam agony on Roger Federer with a straight-sets rout yesterday that booked his third Australian Open tennis final. New coach, new racquet and a new broom for Federer

… to meet Wawrinka in third final at Melbourne Park

amounted to little against the irrepressible Spaniard, who simply dominated to win 7-6(4), 6-3, 6-3 on a breezy night at Rod Laver Arena. Not since the 2007 Wimbledon final has Nadal rolled over to his great rival Federer, and his sixth straight win in grand slams over the Swiss

was among his most devastating. Brushing off a crater-like blister on his racquet hand, Nadal roared through in just two hours and 24 minutes and conceded only two break points as he set up the title-decider against Federer’s compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka.

Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates defeating Roger Federer of Switzerland in their men’s singles semi-final match at the Australian Open 2014 tennis tournament in Melbourne, yesterday. (Credit: Reuters/Petar Kujundzic) “I played well tonight. I with a dizzying array of winpoints at 3-2 in the second set played probably my best match ners. and he smacked an inside-out of the tournament,” Nadal told In the face of all evidence, forehand to leave Federer in reporters after reaching his 19th Federer denied the Spaniard had deep trouble. grand slam final, equal second the ability to get into his head. Surviving a small wobble all-time with Ivan Lendl behind “Not necessarily. I enjoy on serve to close out the set, Federer. playing against him because Nadal captured the decisive “So very, very, very hapit’s always going to be on centre break in the third at 3-3 and py for this great news that I court, it’s always going to be a broke the Swiss again to close played my best match in that big story going into the match,” out the match when shellsemi-final against Roger. the 17-time grand slam champishocked Federer shanked a “I hit a few passing shots toon told reporters. forehand long. day that if ... you are not quick “So that’s kind of what you Nadal punched his left and playing with confidence, train hard for. That’s where you fist into the night sky and you cannot hit those shots.” want to be. roared in triumph while a Injury and illness have “I mean, it’s not as cool demoralised Federer gave a blighted Nadal’s recent camwhen you lose in straight sets. cursory wave before trudging paigns Down Under, but the “Wish I could have won to the exit. rollicking victory put the here tonight and then given an Aptly, 28-year-old WawSpaniard in the box seat for all-Swiss final ... That’s somerinka, who has long lived in a long-awaited second title thing I’ll regret, you know, for Federer’s shadow, will have a after his 2009 triumph at Mela long time.” chance to avenge his compabourne Park. triot’s loss. His impressive run For 32-year-old Federer, RUNAWAY VICTORY to his first major final has also it was deja vu, and a stinging A runaway victory seemed ensured he will surpass Federer reality check after an encouran absurdity early, though, as in the world rankings for the aging run. the pair parried and probed in first time. Slumping to 23-10 in his the opening games. Earlier yesterday, top head-to-head record with Although gradually chipseeds Sara Errani and RoNadal, the loss was his first ping away at Federer’s serve, berta Vinci of Italy produced in straight sets in the majors Nadal’s was impenetrable and a great escape as they beat against the Spaniard since he challenged the Swiss to take Russia’s Ekaterina Makarova the 2008 French Open, and him down in a tiebreak. and Elena Vesnina 6-4, 3-6, continued his winless streak Throwing his opponent 7-5 to retain their women’s against him on grand slam from side to side, the Spandoubles title. hard courts, the most demoiard raised his game to play it The Russian third seeds led cratic of surfaces. on his terms, roaring to a 5-1 5-2 in the decider before Errani The chip-and-charge game lead and closing it out when and Vinci roared back to clinch honed under mentor Stefan Federer sent an increasingly their fourth grand slam title and Edberg had helped him humble shaky backhand sailing past retain their world number one Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and fourth the baseline. ranking. seed Andy Murray, but it came Rattled, Federer complained Attention now turns to the crashing head-long into Nadal’s to the chair umpire about the women’s singles final today, left-hand forehand, invariably Spaniard’s grunting during ralas Chinese fourth seed Li Na coming off second best. lies, as if stifling his opponent’s bids to win her first title at There was no succour volume might quell his fireMelbourne Park in her third from the baseline either, as power. final, against the giant-killing Nadal marshalled his brilliant An outrageous cross-court Slovakian, Dominika Cibulkodefences and counter-punched passing shot gave Nadal break va.


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All-round Stokes ends England’s long losing streak (REUTERS) - A fine all-round display by Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler’s late assault with the bat ended England’s long losing streak against Australia as the visitors won the fourth one-day international by 57 runs in Perth yesterday. Wicketkeeper batsman Buttler smashed a 43-ball 71 after Stokes hit a fluent 70 and England posted a total of 316 for eight wickets on the way to their first win over Australia on the tour. Opener Aaron Finch notched up his second century of the series to lead the hosts’ reply but his 108 off 111 balls was not enough for the hosts. Stokes returned with the ball to pick up four wickets as Australia, without the rested Michael Clarke, David Warner and Brad Haddin, were shot out for 259 runs in 47.4 overs. England lost the last oneday international against Australia at home and had suffered eight consecutive losses to their arch-rivals including the 5-0 Ashes whitewash. “It’s been a while since we’ve had this feeling,” England captain Alastair Cook said at the presentation ceremony. “It’s been a frustrating tour and we’ve played a long way below our potential. The good thing is we know it’s there, when you see the way people have performed today you know we’re not a bad side.” BLISTERING START Put in to bat first by Australia’s stand-in captain George Bailey, England made a blistering start through openers Cook

(44) and Ian Bell (55). The pair added 87 for the first wicket before Cook was bowled by Glenn Maxwell. Stokes came in at number three and shared half-century stands with Bell and Gary Ballance (18) for the second and third wickets to lay the founda-

tion for Buttler’s pyrotechnics. England lost Stokes, who made his maiden ODI fifty, and Ravi Bopara (three) in quick succession during the batting powerplay but Buttler and Eoin Morgan (33) added a quick-fire 71 for the sixth wicket to take their team close

Ben Stokes claims a four-for, after scoring 70, to help England to their first victory of the Australia tour.

to the 300-run mark. Buttler hit six fours and four massive sixes before he fell to James Faulkner, who picked up four wickets for Australia. Finch and Shaun Marsh (15) gave Australia a rapid start to their chase before the latter was caught brilliantly by Bell off Tim Bresnan at second slip. Finch added 64 for the second wicket with Matthew Wade (23) to keep his team in the hunt but the hosts, who had already won the five-match series with victories in the first three games, kept losing wickets at regular intervals. Stokes returned to the attack to seal England’s much-needed victory and the last match of the series will be played in Adelaide tomorrow.

ENGLAND innings A. Cook b Maxwell 44 I. Bell c Faulkner b Christian 55 B. Stokes c Wade b Faulkner 70 G. Ballance c Smith b Pattinson 18 E. Morgan c Christian b Faulkner 33 R. Bopara c sub. b Coulter-Nile 3 J. Buttler c Johnson b Faulkner 71 T. Bresnan c Johnson b Faulkner 2 S. Broad not out 4 C. Jordan not out 0 Extras: (w-16) 16 Total: (eight wickets; 50 overs) 316 Fall of wickets: 1-87, 2-138, 3-190, 4-206, 5-216, 6-287, 7-312, 8-312. Bowling: Johnson 10-0-72-0 (w-1), Pattinson 8-0-63-1 (w-5), Faulkner 10-0-67-4 (w-3), Coulter-Nile 10-062-1 (w-3), Maxwell 9-0-37-1 (w-2),

Christian 3-0-15-1 (w-3) AUSTRALIA innings S. Marsh c Bell b Bresnan 15 A. Finch c Broad b Bresnan 108 M. Wade c Cook b Bopara 23 G. Bailey c Buttler b Stokes 11 S. Smith c Buttler b Broad 19 G. Maxwell c Buttler b Stokes 26 D. Christian c Ballance b Broad 23 J. Faulkner c Buttler b Stokes 2 M. Johnson b Stokes 6 N. Coulter-Nile not out 9 J. Pattinson c Buttler b Bresnan 4 Extras (lb-4, w-9) 13 Total (all out; 47.4 overs) 259 Fall of wickets: 1-46, 2-110, 3-132, 4-174, 5-189, 6-222, 7-230, 8-239, 9-247. Bowling: Jordan 9-0-57-0 (w-2), Broad 10-0-56-2, Bresnan 8.4-0-453 (w-3), Tredwell 5-0-26-0, Bopara 6-1-32-1, Stokes 9-1-39-4 (w-4).


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FIFA pays for ignoring the danger signs ZURICH - (Reuters) - FIFA has struggled to hide its exasperation over Brazil’s stuttering preparations for this year’s World Cup, yet soccer’s governing body can hardly say it has not been warned. The danger signs were all there back in 2007 when Rio de Janeiro struggled to host the Pan American Games, a relatively minor event in global sporting terms. Cost over-runs, a promised metro expansion that never materialised and constant delays and problems in the building of venues, many of which were completed at the last possible moment, should have set the alarm bells ringing in Zurich. Yet, just three months later, Brazil, the only candidates under FIFA’s short-lived system of rotating the tournament around the continents, were awarded the 2014 World Cup with barely a dissenting voice. Questions about Brazil’s dilapidated infrastructure,

social problems, crime and violence were brushed aside with talk of Brazil’s proud record on the field. In the six-and-a-half years since then, the World Cup has gone largely the same way as the Pan-American games. FIFA has watched almost helplessly from the sidelines as Brazilian organisers have missed deadlines, shattered their original budget and shelved infrastructure projects which would have provided the tournament with a legacy. In one recent example, FIFA warned last May that all 12 World Cup stadiums must be ready by the end of last year and delays would not be tolerated. Five stadiums missed that deadline, yet FIFA did nothing. PUBLIC FUNDS Time has been particularly cruel to the inspection report on which FIFA based the decision to award Brazil the tournament.

FIFA president Sepp Blatter “The Brazilian model for the World Cup is to give priority to private finance in the construction and remodelling of the stadiums through long-term concessions and eventually public private partnerships (PPPs),” said FIFA’s inspection team. “The objective is to build modern stadiums that will meet FIFA’s requirements while public funds will be

SLC wants ICC to postpone discussion on draft proposal SRI Lanka Cricket will ask the ICC to postpone the discussion on the draft proposals put forward by a working group of the Finance & Commercial Affairs committee, an official SLC release has said. SLC has avoided offering a definitive stance on the proposals, but has suggested it is resistant to their implementation, as it would result in a significant loss of the board’s influence on the global governance of the game. The position paper is set to be discussed at the ICC meeting on January 28 and 29. “The executive committee agreed to write to the president of the International Cricket Council and inform them the unanimous view of the executive committee of Sri Lanka Cricket is that the said position paper needs to be deferred and

SLC secretary Nishantha Ranatunga reconsidered on a future date,” the statement said. “The executive committee further decided to discuss with the general membership of SLC too, at a future date.” In addition to the release, SLC secretary Nishantha Ranatunga said the executive committee had largely been wary of the proposals and their

CRICKETQUIZ CORNER

(Saturday January 25, 2014) Compliments of THE TROPHY STALL-Bourda Market & The City Mall (Tel: 225-9230) & CUMMINGS ELECTRICAL CO. LTD-83 Garnette Street, Campbellville (Tel: 225-6158; 223-6055) Answers to yesterday’s quiz: 5 36-Herchelle Gibbs off Daan van Bunge (SA vs Netherlands, St. Kitts, 2007) Today’s Quiz: Which two made their Test debut at Bourda? Elquemedo Willet; Clyde Butts; Deryck Parry; Tony Howard; Irving Shillingford Umpire Steve Bucknor stood in 181 ODI games. How many were overseas engagements? Answers in tomorrow’s issue

implications. “We feel that Sri Lanka has earned certain things at an administrative level through Sri Lanka’s performance over a long time. We will explain to the ICC about the things that affect Sri Lankan cricket, which we are not supportive of.” Ranatunga also said SLC had not been in close contact with any other boards, and that Sri Lanka was unlikely to enter into a union but will, instead, present its “honest and independent” view to the ICC. CSA have so far come out in strong opposition to the proposals, with the other possibly affected boards yet to take concrete stands. SLC’s treacherous financial position leaves the board particularly vulnerable to any outcome that will hamper revenues in the short term, but the board’s response thus far indicates they are also concerned about the long-term implications of adopting the F&CA committee’s working group proposals. The scheduled home series against India in 2017 is the centrepiece of the board’s broadcast deal with Ten Sports, and any threat to that tour will have substantial impact on the board’s finances. The proposal does contain some incentive for SLC. The proposed Test match fund, set aside to support nations where Tests are less financially viable, is a potential boon. In 2013 alone, seven Tests were either moved or postponed from Sri Lanka’s itinerary, though several of these removals had more to do with the fiscal position of foreign boards with whom a bilateral series had been scheduled. (ESPN Cricinfo)

allocated towards basic infrastructure, particularly security, airports, roads and hospitals.” Instead, public funds have been used to build the stadiums, while much of the promised infrastructure has failed to materialise. The report said that “a significant development is the construction of the Rio-Sao Paulo high speed train that will connect both cities and reduce the journey time to less than two hours.” That project has not even started. Air travel has been a particularly big headache, yet FIFA’s report said there was nothing to worry about. “The inspection team concluded that Brazil has the necessary air transport infrastructure to handle the anticipated number of international visitors as well as the number of spectators and working groups that may wish to travel from venue to venue to attend matches,” it said. HANDS-ON APPROACH When South Africa staged the World Cup four years ago, FIFA adopted a hands-on process, cajoling the hosts whenever they dragged their feet.

Brazil, however, have been allowed to run their own show in the way that few can have imagined, especially considering that FIFA survives largely on the income from its four-yearly flagship event and usually demands that it is run with Swiss precision. FIFA had wanted only eight to 10 venues to reduce logistical problems, yet agreed to allow Brazil to use 12. Local organisers then decided that teams would travel around the vast nation rather than play their group games in a single venue, adding to the logistical nightmare. FIFA has periodically threatened and chastised the hosts, then backed down in the face of predictably indignant reactions from Brazil, which prides itself as home of Pele’s beautiful game and “the country of football”. Sensitive to allegations that it is trampling on Brazilian sovereignty, soccer’s governing body has been treading gingerly. “FIFA does not have as much control as it would like over Brazil 2014,” said Christopher Gaffney, researcher and visiting professor at the Universidad Federal Fluminense in Niteroi, near Rio de Janeiro. “They always have to walk a fine line between imposing their demands and time schedule and letting the hosts do it their way. “There may have been a lack of understanding about the Brazilian “jeitinho” (the local way of doing things based on improvisation),” he added. “The general opinion (in Brazil) is that FIFA has got everything it wanted in terms of fiscal and political benefits and it should leave it up to the Brazilians to take care of delivery. “FIFA might not have been

explicit enough about what needed to get done and when, but they have also not been very aggressive in trying to manipulate the composition of the local organising committee.” LESS DEMOCRACY FIFA’s frustration with Brazil’s three-tier system of municipal, state and federal government was unwittingly exposed by secretary general Jerome Valcke last April. “Less democracy is sometimes better for organising a World Cup,” he said. “When you have a very strong head of state who can decide, as maybe Vladmir Putin can do in 2018 ... that is easier for us organisers.” Gaffney said that FIFA had seemed disorientated. “The mind-boggling complexity of the Brazilian governmental structure put together for the event has made it such that even FIFA has no idea where to turn for answers. “The selection of 12 host cities was a Brazilian choice and FIFA is caught there, again, between its “no political interference” stance and the need to carry off a regionalised World Cup in Brazil. “They say that they went through 50 odd schedules, but they ended up with the one that has every game in every group being held in a different city.” Faced with such a scenario, all FIFA can do is cross its fingers and talk of confidence and mutual trust. “There is no problem,” FIFA president Sepp Blatter, who frequently declares himself an optimist, said on Thursday after yet another clear-the-air meeting, this time with President Dilma Rousseff. “At the end of the day, everything will be in order, everywhere in Brazil.”

All set for KMTC race meet tomorrow ALL systems are in place for the staging of the Kennard Memorial Turf Club’s horse race meet tomorrow at the Bush Lot Farm race track, Corentyne, Berbice. With fine weather prevailing in the Berbice region, race horse fans/turfites can expect an exciting day of horse racing. The long-awaited meet which was originally set for December 26 (Boxing Day) has attracted over 65 entries for the seven-race card and already tongues are wagging about the feature event which carries an overall prize money of $1 875 000 for the top four finishers. The winner of this onemile event for horses classified `A’ and Lower will receive $1M, while the second-, thirdand fourth-place finishers will

earn $500 000, $250 000 and $125 000 respectively. There will also be an eight-furlong race for horses classified `F1’ and Lower and this event carries as the first prize $400 000. The second-, third- and fourth-place finishers will receive $200 000, $100 000 and $50 000 respectively. A seven-furlong race is also on the card for horses classified `H’ and Lower with the winner racing away with $250 000. The second-place finisher will collect $125 000, while the third- and fourth-place finishers will receive $63 000 and $32 000 respectively. The day’s activity also has four six-furlong races, the first of which is for horses classified `J3’ and Lower with a first prize worth $150 000.

The second is for threey e a r- o l d h o r s e s ( G u y ana-bred) and the winner of this event will earn $250 000. The third six-furlong race is for horses classified `G3’ and Lower and the winner will earn $300 000, while the winner of the final six-furlong event for horses classified `J1’ and Lower will receive $200 000. The sponsors on board are: Demerara Distillers Limited, Ansa McAl Trading, Republic Bank, Neal and Massy (Guy Ltd), Mohamed’s Enterprise, Winston and George Baijnauth, Digicel, Pomeroon Oil Mills, Nand Persaud and Co., Berbice Bridge Company, Gobin Agri Spares Centre, Goodwood and Horse Shoe Racing Services, N. Mattai & Co., Ariel Enterprise, P&P Insurance Brokers, Kanhai Guyana Electrical Agency, Torginol Paints, Giftland OfficeMax and the Kharag Family of New York.


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Scotiabank renews sponsorship with RHTY&SC and BCB By Calvin Roberts

LAST Tuesday, in the studios of the National Communications Network, Scotiabank renewed its ties with the Rose Hall Town Youth and Sports Club (RHTY&SC) and the Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) by co-sponsoring their Annual Magazine, Awards ceremony, Tribute to Teachers programme along with an Essay and Spelling Bee competition. Marketing Manager of Scotiabank Jennifer Cipriani handed over a cheque for $250 000 to CEO\Secretary of the RHTYSC Hilbert Foster and Secretary of the BCB Angela Haniff, to facilitate the aforementioned. The RHTY&SC has set itself a total of 200 programmes\ activities for the year and if achieved, would represent a record for the club which is widely considered Guyana’s leading youth and sports organisation as the most they have completed in a calendar year is 185. Special emphasis would be placed on programmes under the sub-heading of sports, culture, charity, pro-education, anti-drugs, youth development, awards/honour system and community enhancement. Speaking at the ceremony,

Marketing Manager of Scotiabank Jennifer Cipriani (left) beams as she proudly hands over the cheque to secretary of the BCB, Angela Haniff. (Photo by Cullen Bess-Nelson) who also singled out Cipriani Foster explained that the main “For the last six years, the for special mention. reason for the club’s achievebank has assisted us in a masSpeaking on behalf of the ment over the years is dedisive way by sponsoring several BCB, the burly Foster said this cation and hard work by its activities and has also supported year would be a historic one members as well as the massive us with $100 000 in toys at last for the Board, since they will support they received from year’s Christmas season. be celebrating their 75th annidonors and sponsors, such as “We are very grateful for versary, after being founded in Scotiabank. this assistance as we seek to 1939 to administer the game of He thanked the Bank for its fulfil our God-given mandate to cricket in the Ancient County. support and hailed the entity as make positive differences in the “The BCB intends to make one of the main pillars for their lives of youths, the elderly and the Diamond Jubilee event a rise to the top. less fortunate,” added Foster, grand success by organising

cricket tournaments on the field at all levels and also to host numerous off-the-field activities with emphasis on coaching, awards, charity, personal development and education,” said Foster. He added, “Today we are pleased to join hands with the Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank), who during our Diamond Jubilee year, would be sponsoring the seventh edition of the BCB/Scotia Bank Cricket Academy, which has been very successful to Berbice’s cricket and has produced numerous players.” They would also be sponsoring an essay competition for secondary school students on the topic ‘Berbice Cricket at 75 Years’, with the top three winners receiving prizes and trophies, compliments of the sponsor and the BCB.” He cited as examples, Gudakesh Motie-Kanhai and Shimron Hetmyer, two players who have gone on to represent Guyana at the Under-15 and 19 levels and now are members of the West Indies Under-19 World Cup team. Some other players who have represented Berbice and are products of the camp are Shemaine Campbelle, Shawn

Pereira, Kevin Ramdeen, Romario Shepherd-DeJonge, Dominique Rikhi, Sharaz Ramcharran and Phaffiana Millington, among others. This year’s edition of the Academy would be hosted at the Area ‘H’ ground in late July and will last for a period of one week, where 70 students would be taken through their paces by Michael Hyles and Winston Smith, with special emphasis being placed on batting, bowling, fielding, physical fitness and wicket-keeping. “They would also be involved in several lectures on topics of interest, such as the ‘Importance of Discipline and Education’, The History of Cricket, Public Speaking and the History of Berbice Cricket amongst others,” Foster stated. The BCB, like so many years gone by, is confident that at the end of the Academy, all the young cricketers who would have attended same would be in a better position to not only be role models to others, but also be successful on the cricket field in their respective discipline. He thanked the sponsor, especially Cipriani, for its support on behalf of the BCB. Cipriani in a brief remark said that the bank is committed to supporting communities and they are pleased to be part of events organised by both the BCB and the RHTY&SC.

Strike squad threatens to return to court over longstanding pay dispute PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad, (CMC) - Members of Trinidad and Tobago’s 2006 World Cup squad are threatening to return to court after the country’s football association fell behind on a payment schedule designed to honour a longstanding pay dispute. “The players are now getting together to instruct (local attorney) Dave De Peiza to bring the matter back to court to enforce the debt,” the player’s London-based attorney, Michael Townley revealed. Thirteen players were owed nearly TT$12M after the UK-based Sports Dispute Resolution Panel (SPDR) and later the Trinidad and Tobago High Court ruled in their favour in a legal impasse with

the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (TTFF). An out-of-court settlement to pay in several tranches was reached last May. However, players are now complaining that the TTFA is five months late in the second of five payments. “We are owed over half of the sum due since the 1st of September although we have been promised that several times since then from several different sources,” Townley told Wired868. “According to the schedule, the players were due their second tranche on the 1st September but less than half of that was paid and, even then, it was late. Despite many promises there is nothing concrete to show for it.” The SDRP had awarded the players 50 per cent of pro-

ceeds associated with the 2006 World Cup campaign. However, the matter had to be contested in the High Court here after the TTFF failed to settle on the grounds that the players had breached the Panel’s gag order. “Every player with the exception of one is prepared to go back to court,” declared Kelvin Jack, Trinidad and Tobago’s first-choice goalkeeper for much of the qualifying campaign. “It has been very disappointing. We have been through this thing since 2006 and now we are in 2014 and are still in this situation …”. The threat of a return to the High Court comes a week after the local football body announced an out-of-court agreement with another ex-

Members of the 2006 World Cup squad World Cup player Russell Latapy. Reports suggest that Latapy accepted the promise of payment over two tranches from the TTFA as well as an acknowledgment of its debt to him from his

Latapy appointed assistant manager of top Scottish Football Club VERNESS, Scotland (CMC) - Former Trinidad and Tobago International footballer Russell Latapy has signed a deal to become the assistant manager of Inverness Caledonian Thistle Football Club which competes in the Scottish Premiership. Latapy, who represented Trinidad and Tobago 79 times, has signed a two and a half year contract with Thistle to assist the club’s manager John Hughes.

“John and I have had a great relationship over the years and I’ve taken the decision to leave Portugal to link up with him again,” said Latapy. “Caley Thistle is a community club and I look forward to working with John and everyone there to make an effective contribution.” Latapy’s return to Scotland was delayed by weeks of wrangling over

the terms of departure from his past club Boavista in Portugal. He was scheduled to fly into Inverness Thursday night to join Thistle which secured fourth spot in the Scottish premiership last season, its best ever placing. “Russell, I’m delighted to say, is flying up to Inverness at tea-time tonight, so he will be on the training ground with us tomorrow. What does Russell bring? He will be a perfect

part of the team here and fit right in to the dynamics of the club,” said Hughes. “He is very clever on tactical work and his philosophy on how the game should be played. I’ve spoken to him about where we are as a club, and where we want to be. He totally understands that.” The 45-year-old former Porto, Hibs and Rangers midfielder was also embroiled in a $5M court action against the Trinidad and Tobago Football

tenure as national coach. “Unfortunately some of the money that was promised (to us) hasn’t materialised so we are in the process of sourcing the remaining amount,” said TTFA general secretary Sheldon

Phillip. “There are some extenuating circumstances that got in the way of our getting hold of those funds; but we got assurances that those funds will be paid very shortly.”

Association (TTFA). An out-of-court settlement was reached resolving the pay dispute over his role as coach of the national squad. “He’s just a fantastic character and a very approachable, humble guy,” said Hughes. “He is the sort who would give you the last penny in his pocket. He was a world-class footballer and, trust me, I don’t say that lightly”. Caledonian Thistle F.C. was formed in August 1994 following the merger of Caledonian

and Inverness Thistle. The Thistle manager says players will reap the benefits of Latapy’s experience. “He can work with the socalled technical players at the club and pass on wee bits and pieces, individually and collectively. If any kid here doesn’t take the chance to grasp it and learn from Russell then he’s a fool,” he said. “I can remember the young lads at Falkirk really taking to him and he has this great trick on him which Scott Arfield picked up and made part of his own game.”


Sport CHRONICLE

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WIPA against proposed ICC revamp

THE West Indies Players Association (WIPA) has expressed “serious concerns over the looming spectre of a hostile takeover of international cricket by the sport’s three most powerful cricket boards”. “From our perspective, this

proposal from the three largest member Boards to “take control” of international cricket can only be detrimental to the other full member boards, and by extension the players who represent them,” WIPA president Wavell Hinds said. “WIPA calls on the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) to oppose this hostile takeover in the strongest possible terms.” (ESPN Cricinfo).

Xavier lands hockey scholarship to the University of Miami … pays courtesy call on Minister of Sport Dr Anthony

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UYANA national women’s hockey goalkeeper Alysa Xavier has landed a coveted hockey scholarship to the Miami University of Ohio in the United States of America. This was disclosed by president of the Guyana Hockey Board, Philip Ferrnandes, on Thursday. Fernandes said Xavier, the top women’s goalkeeper in the English-speaking Caribbean, has received the unique distinction of being named to the Pan American elite team for 2013. On Thursday, Xavier paid a courtesy to Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport Dr Frank Anthony who lauded Xavier on her achievement and also had a few words of encouragement to offer. He is hopeful that her elevation to the Elite squad will serve to inspire more female players to get involved in not just hockey but other disciplines as well. Xavier said she was enjoying the scholarship thus far and although managing studies and

playing hockey is “hard’, it is not beyond her ambit. According to Fernandes, every two years, the Pan American Hockey Federation (PAHF) selects an elite team of its top players based on their international performance for the year and for the period of 2012/2013 the women’s selection included five players from the world champions Argentina, three each from the USA and Canada, two from Chile and one each from Mexico, Uruguay and Guyana. “Alysa finds herself in esteemed company and is the only player from the English-speaking Caribbean to be selected. This is a significant achievement and is the first time a player from Guyana has ever been selected for this accolade.” Fernandes stated. Xavier began playing hockey at thirteen years old. She excelled both at goalkeeping and field play but chose to pursue the former as she was also a keen football player. Being one of those gift-

Alysa Xavier (second left) accepts the Pan American Hockey Federation certificate from Minister of Sport Dr Frank Anthony, while the others in picture, from left, GOA representative Deion Nurse, GHB president Philip Fernandes and GHB vice-president Ivor Thompson look on. ed athletes to whom all ball sports seem to come easily, Xavier excelled at hockey goalkeeping, rising rapidly in the ranks to earn her first

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Guyana and the English-speaking Caribbean top female hockey goalkeeper Alysa Xavier saves a penalty in a match against Uruguay.

Caribbean Pro league must be sanctioned, says CFU KINGSTON, Jamaica (CMC) - The Caribbean Football Union (CFU) has warned that any attempts to stage a professional football league in the region must be sanctioned by relevant governing bodies. CFU general secretary Damien Hughes, issued the note of caution after two companies, earlier this week, announced plans to start a professional league in September next year. “For franchises to be set up in countries they have to go through national associations who have to get sanctioning from CFU, CONCACAF and FIFA,” said Hughes. “And we have not engaged any company anywhere in the world to commence or even explore the commencement of a professional league.” The Caribbean Football Trust Limited, with offices in Florida and Canada, and Concorde Sports Agency, headquartered in Beverly Hills, say the proposed

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CFU general secretary Damien Hughes league, dubbed Major League Futbol (MLF), is expected to attract 20 teams from across the region vying for over US$3 million in prize money. “Anything that is attempted independently is not going to be sustainable and I don’t think it is going to be possible,” the CFU general secretary stated.

 “The constitution of all the member organisations speaks to the processes and the steps and where permission and sanctioning and so on need to come from.” The organisers say prize monies are expected to grow to US$5M after the first three

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SATURDAY, JANUARY 25, 2014


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