GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
9th August, 2018
President gets 73 bikes for 73rd birthday
Government revises projected growth upwards to 3.7% for 2018
Economy grew by 4.5% See page 3
Troy, Goldfields gold declarations highest ever ‘We have to prove ourselves’ See page 8
President David Granger greeting some of the recipients of the bicycles during the State House ceremony (Ministry of the Presidency photo)
…AFC leader says going alone only fair to APNU See page 9
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Gov’t seeks stay, early hearing of appeal
…against court order to activate Judicial Review Act GOVERNMENThas filed a motion seeking an early start to its appeal against a High Court ruling ordering Attorney General Basil Williams to bring into operation the Judicial Review Act, which was assented to by the then President Bharrat Jagdeo back in November 2010, but never enforced. Williams from the onset has argued that the decision of the court raises serious issues of judicial interference with the powers of the executive, noting that the court has attempted to govern from the bench and to usurp the power which was explicitly vested in the Minister of Legal Affairs in breach of the doctrine of the separation of powers. The state had also asked for a stay of execution of the High Court’s decision, which was made by Chief Justice (ag), Roxane George-Wiltshire. A hearing and possible decision on this request comes up this morning. Williams has argued that the matter is of
urgent concern, as the state and the judiciary are likely to have serious issues as to how to treat with claims that have been brought under the Judicial Review Act prior to the appeal being heard. He alluded to a similar case in the matter of Mohabir Anil Nandlall —v- The Minister of Legal Affairs et al, where Justice Nareshwar Harnanan on the 19th April, 2017, made a decision, inter alia, after hearing application for judicial review on Fixed Date Application in which the Honourable Justice Brassington Reynolds granted an order nisi of mandamus compelling the Minister of Legal Affairs to appoint the members of the Deeds and Commercial Registries Authority. He said this matter also dealt with judicial interference with the executive powers and the Minister of Legal Affairs caused a Notice of Appeal to be filed and same has not been heard to date, though the authority was approved by
the Cabinet and appointed by the Minister of Legal Affairs. Meanwhile, in its motion seeking an early hearing of the appeal , the AG’s Chambers called on the Court of Appeal to fix an early date for the hearing and determination of the Notice of Appeal filed herein on the 13th day of June, 2018. Additionally, the AG wants the court to permit and authorise the Applicant/ Appellant to prepare and settle the Record of Appeal forthwith and that the court dispenses with all other formalities and procedural requirements and order an early date for the appellant's submissions and the respondent's submissions in order to facilitate an early hearing. The Notice of Motion was issued by Ms. Kim Kyte-Thomas, solicitor-general and Ms. Deborah Kumar, deputy solicitor-general and the affidavit in support was sworn to by Collene Liverpool – an attorney within the AG’s Chambers. Liverpool in her affidavit contended that the chief justice committed an illegality when by her ruling she purported to dictate to the Minister of Legal Affairs her own timelines to bring the Judicial Review Act into force in contravention of the doctrine of Separation of Powers and as such, exercised his discretion. Liverpool added that the chief justice also by her actions usurped the discretion vested in the Minister of Legal Affairs, by the legislature to bring into force a legislation, which had no time line and which was clearly within his purview to so do and that she committed a specific illegality when she failed to apply the overriding objective of the New Civil Procedure Rules to deal with cases in the interest of the parties justly. “…the chief justice committed a specific illegality when she ruled that applicant/appellant had breached a duty by not bringing the Judicial Review Act into force. That the Honourable Chief Justice erred and misdirected herself in law when she found that the Applicant/Appellant did not
Attorney- General Basil Williams
have discretion in the commencement date of Judicial Review, after the Civil Procedure Rules came into force. Additionally, Liverpool contended that the chief justice erred and misdirected herself in law when she found that the specific discretion granted to the Minister of Legal Affairs by the legislature had been converted into an obligatory duty to bring the Act into force after/ when the Civil Procedure Rules came into force. She said the findings by the chief justice are unsupported by any legal basis and that the learned justice erred and misdirected herself in law, when she issued a mandatory order to command the AG to act within a specified time, when the legislature did not fix a time limit and where there had not been a refusal by the Applicant/Appellant to carry out a statutory duty. The chief justice’s ruling had followed an application to the court last year by Former Attorney-General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Anil Nandlall, calling for Williams to be mandated to bring into force the Judicial Review Act. Nandlall had acknowledged the said Act was not brought into operation by him when he served
as Legal Affairs Minister. He said it was because there were no complementary procedural rules of the court to accompany the said Act, as the Rules of the High Court 1955 made no provisions for judicial review. Nandlall said that at that time, new Civil Procedure Rules were in draft form and these rules laid out the legal procedure in respect of how the court can be approached to access the remedies provided for in the Judicial Review Act. However, he said on February 5, 2017, a Practice Direction dated January 23, 2017 and published on February 4, 2017 in the Official Gazette by the Honourable Chancellor (ag.) Mr. Justice Carl Singh, directed that the Civil Procedure Rules 2016 shall take effect from February 6, 2017; the said Practice Direction also provided that the Civil Procedure Rules 2016 shall govern the practice and procedure of all civil proceedings filed in the High Court of the Supreme Court of Judicature after February 6, 2017.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Economy grew by 4.5% at mid-year …projected growth revised upwards to 3.7% for 2018
THE economy grew by 4.5% at mid-year the Ministry of Finance said on Wednesday and has revised its projected growth for this year to 3.7% In the mid-year report which was tabled in Parliament on Wednesday, the ministry also indicated that non-sugar growth rate is estimated to have climbed to 5.1 percent from a revised 2.8 percent. 'Preliminary data indicates that this growth, for the first half of 2018, was more broad-based than the previous year with robust performances in agriculture, fishing and forestry, of 3.4 percent; services, of 8.2 percent; and construction, of 13.4 percent. The significant increase in the construction sector was evidenced by higher building imports by 24.7 percent, supported by the increased pace of execution of the Public Sector Investment Programme (PSIP), which rose by 3.9 percentage points above the previous half year.'” The report stated. Additionally, the report pointed out that the exchange rate remains stable at $212.7 to the U.S. dollar; official exchange rate of 208.5 recorded by Bank of Guyana. Inflation remains subdued at 1.3%; Public debt levels unchanged and sustainable and the rising commodity prices, climate change and turbulent international trade relationships are threats to Guyana’s economy. Noting that the Guyana economy is estimated to have grown by 4.5 percent, comparing favourably with the revised growth rate of 2.5 percent for the first half of 2017, the report stated that private sector investments also improved, with, for example, real estate mortgages rising by 5.0 percent at the end of the review period, compared to 4.1 percent at the previous half-year. 3.2. In the first half of 2018, the agriculture, fishing and forestry sector grew by an estimated 3.4 percent, despite the sugar and rice industries contracting by 30.6 percent and 3.8 percent, respectively. The other crops, fishing, livestock and forestry industries all experienced growth over the same period, with the latter two growing by a commendable 29.1 percent and 18.1 percent, respectively. The report noted that the expansion in the industry was driven by the production of logs and roundwood, which
increased by 24.8 percent and 46.6 percent, respectively. “This favourable out-turn was largely due to increased demand from China, India and the U.S., which saw exports in the first quarter of 2018 increasing by 17.1 percent; by the end of the first half, the increase was 7.9 percent. Producers also expanded their output in response to local demand from both the private and public sectors. This was partly attributed to government?s successful effort in lobbying for a hike in the CARICOM common external tariff on imported pine lumber, which has allowed additional market share for local lumber yards.” The report noted that growth in the forestry industry was also buoyed by higher plywood production, which grew by a significant 73.4 percent, with the main producer signalling the intention to maintain production above 1,000 cubic metres per month. The forestry industry is expected to continue its expansion into the second half and remains on track to at least meet its growth expectation of 8.0 percent, for 2018. However, a cautionary note: the prolonged rainy season has resulted in a significant deterioration of hinterland roads and poses a risk to production. Recognising this, the government has intervened to implement emergency maintenance works. The efforts of the National Agricultural Research and Extension Institute (NAREI), to advance the diversification of crop production, continue to be a success, with the other-crops sector reporting growth of 0.8 percent, in the first half of 2018. The overall level of production (as reported by NAREI) increased by 5.2 percent over the same period. This expansion was largely driven by an increase in the production of fruits, vegetables, citrus, and spices and seasoning, all of which recorded notable growth over the review period. The production of fruits, which recorded the strongest growth, was buoyed by remarkable growth in watermelons, passion fruit, pineapples, cashews, and “other fruits”, which increased by 35.0 percent, 61.7 percent, 7.0 percent, 76.1 percent and 2.8 percent, respectively. Gov’t makes gains Finance Minister Winston Jordan highlighted in
Finance Minister Winston Jordan
the report that government has made gains on putting its macroeconomic and development agenda on a strong foundation. He said the initiatives taken during the first half – and which will be accelerated during the second half of 2018 – brought greater clarity to the government?s priorities, with emphasis on spending on growth-enhancing opportunities such as construction. He said notwithstanding the
constraints and risks that beset the country, overall performance of the economy improved significantly, compared to the same period last year. “Higher positive growth of 4.5 percent was achieved at the half-year, and the prospects for the fiscal year are positive and encouraging. The revised growth target for 2018 is 3.7 percent, 1.6 percentage points above that achieved in 2017. This is anticipated to be driven by
improvements in agriculture (except sugar), construction, wholesale and retail trade, and other service activities,” Jordan said. He noted that the non-financial public sector deficit is expected to improve due to higher revenue collections, notwithstanding the significant portion attributed to arrears collection and lower grant receipts. However, according to the minister, expenditure
pressures continue to be faced, especially as the restructuring of the sugar industry advances. He said diversification and institutional strengthening continue to be pursued, even as the government ramps up the capacity-building needs, especially in relation to oil and gas, and complemented by ongoing institutional engagements with the private sector within the manufacturing and services industries. “The key to Guyana’s development must not be seen, only, in its great natural resources wealth. Rather, it must lie in the ability to harness the strengths of its people, who employ technology and innovation to turn the rich natural resources into a bountiful harvest of growth and development. The good life for all Guyanese continues to be the enduring focus of this administration,” Jordan concluded.
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
President gets 73 bikes for 73rd birthday -Georgetown, Corentyne students benefit
N observance of his 73rd birth anniversary, which was celebrated on July 15, 2018, President David Granger on Wednesday received 73 bicycles for distribution under his ‘Boats, Buses, Bicycles plus Books and Breakfast’ or ‘Five Bs’ programme, which is aimed at ensuring that every child has access to education. The bicycles were collectively donated by Mr. Gregory Fraser, Mr. Terrence Esseboom, Mr. Johnny Taylor, Mr. Orin Phillips and Ms. Natasha Brant. In his brief remarks at a simple ceremony held at the Baridi Benab, State House, President Granger said that he is grateful for the gift. He noted that investments in education will play a leading role in the transformation of the administrative regions
and the country as a whole and he is elated to see persons coming on board with his vision of an ‘education nation.’ “Every Guyanese child can, must and should find a place in school. By the grace of God, we now have 27 buses, over a thousand bicycles and over a dozen boats to get children to school under the 5Bs programme. We are always committed to education; not elite education but education for all. Education is the gateway and if you give every young boy and girl the opportunity to stay in school long enough to do their CSEC [Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate] or CAPE [Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination] and move on to University education, then this country would be transformed. This is my intention; to open the door to education to you so
you can understand and enjoy the benefits of education,” the Head of State said. He noted that in an age when technology is rapidly replacing human skills, persons must make themselves relevant and it is only through education that this is possible. “We are living in a technologically advanced century, things are moving quickly and if we allow ourselves to be left behind, we will never be able to catch up. We must not be wondering what happened, we must be part of the generation making things happen. I want each one of you and your parents to commit to being in school every day. The donation of these bikes is an important step. I do not want gold, frankincense, or myrrh. I am concerned that gifts must make an impact on the children in this country. There is
he said. Mr. Fraser said that the group was inspired by the
is afforded access to education. He noted that they therefore thought it fitting
birth. As you, the President put smiles on the children’s faces, I know that there
The bicycles that were donated to the President’s Five B’s project
President David Granger addressing students at the handing over ceremony
no better gift than to assist a boy or girl to get to school,”
President’s drive to ensure that every Guyanese child
to make the donation. “We want to say to you, Mr. President, that we recognise your dream, we understand your initiative and we wanted to stay within the 5Bs, so we procured these cycles. We donated 73 bicycles to celebrate your 73 years of
are also smiles on the parents’ hearts,” he said. Forty-eight of the bicycles were distributed to students of Georgetown while 25 were distributed to students of, East Berbice, Corentyne (Region Six). (Ministry of the Presidency)
Wed-Aug 08-2018 2 6 10 11 13 22
5 13 15 24
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GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Venezuela cracks down on opposition in wake of ‘attack’
enezuelan opposition lawmaker Juan Requesens has been arrested after President Nicolás Maduro accused him of involvement in Saturday’s alleged drone attack against him. His arrest came as a powerful government official revealed plans to strip two lawmakers of their immunity. The government has blamed key opposition politicians for what they say was a bid to kill Mr Maduro. But some government critics denounced the alleged attack as a “farce”.
Juan Requesens is a member of the opposition-controlled National Assembly for the Primero Justicia (Justice First) party. The 29-yearold from the border state of Táchira is one of the most outspoken critics of President Maduro and has taken part in many anti-government demonstrations. On Monday he gave a fiery speech in the Assembly, saying that government critics would not give up. “We are going to continue doing everything we can to achieve what all of Venezuela wants, which is to get Nicolás Madu-
ro out of power,” he said. He also accused the government of trying to silence the opposition. “The only strategy the dictatorship has is quash everyone who is different, be it inside or outside their ranks,” he said. The party of Mr Requesens says he and his sister Rafaela, an opposition student activist, were taken away from their apartment in the capital, Caracas, by members of the secret police, Sebin. Primero Justicia tweeted a video which appears to show CCTV footage of the two siblings getting out of the lift in
an attempt to apparently leave the building. Moments later, they are apparently pushed back by armed masked men in uniform, one of whom turns the camera to the wall. Rafaela Requesens was later released but Juan Requesens has not been heard of since he was taken away. Their father Juan Guillermo described what had happened to the two as a “kidnapping”. “They were taken by force without any kind of warrant,” he said. Following Mr Requesens’s arrest, President Maduro took to the airwaves
to accuse him and another Primer Justicia lawmaker, Julio Borges, of having plotted Saturday’s alleged drone attack on him. He said that in their statements those already detained in connection with the incident had implicated the two opposition politicians. “All of the statements point at Julio Borges, who lives in a mansion in [the Colombian capital] Bogotá protected by the outgoing government of Colombia,” the president said without offering evidence of the statements. (BBC)
Peru poisoning: Ten die after eating contaminated food at wake
he number of people killed by suspected poisoned food after a wake in the Ayacucho region of southern Peru has risen to 10. The health minister said she suspected the food had come into contact with insecticide. Local hospitals said 21 people were in a serious condition. About 50 people attended the wake of a local man where a meat stew believed to be the source of the intoxication was served. Specialists who have travelled to the affected district of San José de Ushua said they would need to carry out further tests to be sure. Regional health director
John Tinco Bautista said many of those who attended the wake began falling ill within hours. Among the fatalities are the dead man’s two eldest sons. The mayor of San José de Ushua, Iván Villagomez Llamoca, is among those taken ill. His father and his 12-year-old nephew have died. “The whole village has been poisoned. I can’t grasp it yet - I have lost my family. It’s a huge tragedy, thank God I’m alive,” Mayor Villagomez said. The incident comes less than a month after hundreds of Peruvian schoolchildren fell ill after eating breakfasts provided at more than a dozen schools in Cañete province. The free
CDB, UK sign agreement to add GBP30 million to infrastructure fund
he Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), have signed an agreement which will add GBP30 million (mn) to the United Kingdom Caribbean Infrastructure Partnership Fund (UKCIF). The agreement was signed on the sidelines of CDB’s Board of Directors meeting on July 26, 2018. The majority of the funds will be used to establish a reconstruction window, to respond to emergencies and natural disasters, with resources earmarked for Dominica and Barbuda. A portion of the grant funding will also be used for monitoring and evaluation. UKCIF was established to drive inclusive economic growth and development across the Caribbean, through the provision of vital infrastructure. All projects must build resilience to climate change. ‘Recovery and reconstruction after a natural disaster can negatively impact a country’s budget. The 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season caused significant damage and destruction in some of the UKCIF-eligible countries, and these additional funds are to assist Dominica, and Antigua and Barbuda recover from the impacts of Hurricanes Irma and Maria,” said Monica La Bennett, Vice-President (Operations), CDB. UKCIF provides grant financing to eight Caribbean countries eligible for Official Development Assistance, and UK Overseas Territory, Montserrat, and is administered by CDB. The original amount of GBP300 mn has been fully committed to projects, which will be undertaken in these countries. Capital projects approved to date include the rehabilitation of the Sir George Walter Highway and the Friars Hill Road in Antigua and Barbuda, development of the port at Little Bay, Montserrat and the Essex Valley Agricultural Development Project, Jamaica. Feasibility studies and design preparation are ongoing in Belize, Dominica, Grenada and St. Vincent & the Grenadines while procurement activities to hire consultants to undertake similar services are underway for St. Lucia, Grenada and Guyana.
Peru’s military helped airlift some of those taken ill
meals are part of a government programme to ensure schoolchildren from poorer backgrounds receive adequate nutrition. In that case, the source of the contamination was suspected to have been a fruit juice that had gone off. The company which provided the breakfasts is facing legal action. (BBC)
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Saving the lives of our women
NOTHER murder as a result of domestic violence, and executed in a most completely brutal manner, by a paramour who has stuck to the now traditional, predictable route of the complete end-game of the cruel realities of inter-personal violence. And as usual, it has sent the usual “shock waves”, this time through the Kilcoy Village community of East Corentyne-Berbice, which is part of a region that has a high body count from a very grave social ill which has become a national scourge. But there is a very troubling concern about media reports of the woman, although accompanied by a police officer on the instructions of a magistrate, to return to her home for the removal of personal effects being left
on her own to accomplish this dangerous endeavour, because the officer had in effect, left her unprotected. If this is true -- and from all reports it is -- then it constitutes a most serious dereliction of duty on the part of the law woman, on a particular assignment that at all times should demand timely and swift action; since rescuing and saving a life often depends on the former’s initiative. It is incomprehensible that such a failure on the part of the rank to give protection to the woman could happen. And it is even more so, given the fact that it had been ordered by the court. That the latter action had been taken because the woman’s personal well-being had been under threat, a fact which the court must have known and therefore acted in accordance, which it is
empowered to do. Such serious irresponsibility on the part of the errant officer will certainly cause torrents of severe criticism from the public. One can appreciate such reactions, given the numerous complaints from the general public, victims, and relatives of murdered women, who have been known to publicly criticise the cavalier and callous approach of police personnel whenever receiving reports on inter-personal and gender-based violence. Such an irresponsible attitude that had been inherently derived from the traditional view that domestic violence was of a purely private issue between two parties, was the reason for the raft of measures over the years, designed to sensitise police officers--both male and female--to the cruel realities of a social behaviour
that has accounted for the lives of so many wives/companions/girlfriends, in many instances leaving orphans in its cruel wake, since the perpetrator, husbands, etcetera often commit suicide, as in this instance. The social fallout that often befalls the children survivors are all too well known. There have been so many seminars, lectures, and other related encounters, delivered by seasoned professionals, on the scourge that is domestic violence, its impact on the family and on society, and especially the role that lawmen are expected to play in the engagement of this social brutality, that there can hardly be any policeman/woman who can claim ignorance of its threat to society, and how to treat with specific cases. It is for this reason, which we hasten to add, that there have been steady
improvements over time, as to the response mechanism of police stations and their officers, to persons who are affected by this beastly act. There have been more convictions of perpetrators, as well as counselling being recommended for parties who have very serious differences. The latter, also underlined above. Be that as it may, police officers must be reminded of the monster that is domestic violence: it has assumed very deadly proportions, with the perpetrators opting for the extreme of death, as their solution to a situation that threatens the end of a relationship. It means that police officers have to be alerted at all times to every report of the incidence of this cruelty, and of this almost predictable possibility, and act in accordance with modern standard operating
procedures regarding approach and response. It means, too, that no report which centres on the person of a woman at threat of deadly violence, or even a man, should be taken lightly, or be dismissed as just another case. Too many of our women have already lost their lives because of such an unprofessional approach. It must be re-emphasised that the principal function of each police officer, is to serve and protect; and this must include answering calls for help in a prompt manner, which means saving the lives of women often threatened by a creeping death. We hope, that what is clearly a blatant failure on the part of the police sergeant in offering protection to the woman before she was butchered by her spouse, be investigated, and condign action taken.
Nigel Hinds got it wrong – breaking I am happy AFC going alone contract terms could be disastrous Dear Editor
H I L E m a n y G u y a nese have claimed in the news that the Exxon oil contract needs to be renegotiated for one reason or another, these arguments are often not based on the reality of our situation. A letter that was published Monday, arguing that Guyana needs to renegotiate its royalty rate, also falls into this category. Nigel Hinds’ general argument is that Guyana’s 2% royalty rate is unfair and should be increased, but this is not only incorrect, but also is a very short-sighted attitude.
He states that the 2% royalty is “a sword of injustice against a small nation state that must be changed.” However, context shows that this argument is inaccurate. When Guyana signed its contract with Exxon, oil prices were low, and Guyana was an unproven frontier in the oil industry, meaning that our resource potential was completely unknown at the time. Guyana does not have to invest anything into exploration costs. The only tool that we had at the time to attract investment from an oil company was enticing economic terms and even then, many companies passed up the opportunity because of the inherent risk of operating in a frontier
territory. While we know now that our nation is blessed with large oil resources, nothing was certain when Exxon signed a contract with us. They could have spent hundreds of millions of dollars, found nothing, and Guyana would not have owed them anything. This is exactly what happened in the Falkland Islands and is a prime example of why exploring frontier areas is a risky endeavour. We also must consider the fact that there is an unstable and hostile country to our west. Remember when Venezuela seized a seismic exploration vessel off our coast in 2013? This made Guyana an even riskier operation than most. Not only did Guyana pose all the
usual risks that come with exploring a frontier area, but also companies now had to worry about coming into conflict with Maduro’s regime. Ultimately, Exxon proved to be the only company willing to bet on us at the time. The conditions of our contract were based on the enormous amount of risk that Exxon was taking by exploring here, and they certainly would not have done so if Guyana did not offer them attractive fiscal terms. Furthermore, when all these risks are considered, the conditions of our contract have been deemed fair by experts from around the world such as Wood Turn to page 7
WRITE to publicly commend the Alliance For Change for making this bold move to contest the upcoming Local Government Elections (LGEs) independently. In 2016, the coalition government held LGEs after more than 20 years, giving citizens a chance to elect their own community leaders. Understandably, there was a lot of education needed and much still needed (hint, hint GECOM) but I am happy that the process has started. I was also happy to hear that the decision to go alone does not affect the coalition at the national level. The President has said publicly that he respects the decision of the AFC. This speaks to a very high level of respect and maturity in both of these parties. This synergistic relationship between the APNU and AFC bodes well for the citizens of Guyana. Recently, President Granger committed to dutifully holding Local Government Elections at the prescribed time. This is highly commendable and is very good for democracy. We must not let our leaders -- national or local -- become complacent. I note the negative comments by the opposition leader regarding the AFC’s decision to contest independently, but I will not take seriously the words of anyone who was in government for more 12 years or whose party was in government for more than 20 years and made ZERO attempts to hold Local Government Elections. This is not a person that has any authority-- moral or otherwise-- to speak on these issues. I look forward to clean and vibrant LGE campaigns. Regards Earl Hamilton
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Corruption in the private security sector Dear Editor
LACKNESS and corruption have penetrated all levels of Guyana’s private security services sector, and this situation was cruelly exposed by the media last week when news broke that a security guard who was involved in a public altercation with government minister Simona Broomes last month, is a jailbird who has served time in the U.S. for gun-related offences and drug crimes. People all across Guyana are scratching their heads and trying to wrap their minds around news reports that this guard is a deportee and ex-convict named Robert Goodluck, a.k.a. Robert Wren, who not only beat the system to get hired as a guard, but was also able to get himself appointed as a supernumerary constable and pass the police background check for a precept to bear firearms. Anyone who is shocked that a deportee who was jailed in the U.S. for manslaughter and crimes involving drugs ended up as a security officer with a precept, squabbling with a government minister will be blown away to find out that a bail-jumper and fugitive from American jus-
tice heads a local security firm and in 2016 became secretary/treasurer of a major security association of which I was a co-founder, chairman, secretary and president. Because of these kinds of shenanigans, I prefer to keep my distance from that association. Something stinks to high heavens in the local private security services system. It took the incident with Minister Broomes to get the police to do a proper background check of Goodluck and belatedly discover the security officer’s criminal background. How was Goodluck able to get around a police background check by simply applying for a precept under his other name? Isn’t this one of the oldest tricks in the book? Since the police were able to find Goodluck’s criminal record quite easily after the Broomes incident, how come they couldn’t find it before? Didn’t they do the same check when his name was first submitted for a precept? This is slackness or corruption, pure and simple. How many others have slipped through the cracks in our gun-licensing system because of negligence or skulduggery? The same slackness and corruption that infest the is-
Nigel Hinds got ... Mackenzie, Rystad Energy, the International Monetary Fund, and the Brookings Institute. Guyana will receive about 59 percent of total oil revenues, including the 2% royalty that Hinds attacks and 50 per cent of profits after costs, and taxes. According to Rystad’s calculations, Guyana’s terms lie perfectly in the middle of other “frontier” areas such as Israel, the Falkland Islands, and
Mozambique. Besides the fact that Exxon’s oil contract with Guyana is in reality a fair one, claiming that we should renegotiate it now is an incredibly short-sighted stance. Now is the time when we need to attract foreign investment to Guyana, and this will not happen just because we have large amounts of oil. Investors will not want to invest in Guyana if they do not have
suing of firearm licences exist in other areas of the private security services sector. The fault does not necessarily lie with the office of the commissioner of police. I believe the system is failing because an evil bureaucracy is stifling the local security industry, and this monster is made up of officials who are clueless or corrupt or both. If you look at the recent known cases of a fugitive heading a security company and holding high office in a security association and an ex-felon getting a precept to bear firearms, it is hard to believe that an official Guyana Security Service Act is in place. But the local security sector is in such disarray right now that this Act is now nothing more than a paper tiger that nobody bothers with anymore. The cold, hard fact is: we have a Security Services Act in place and it gives the office of the commissioner of police wide powers to enforce it and monitor all operatives in the industry. So, how in the world did a fugitive from American justice for bail-jumping and narcotics-related crimes get permission to set up a private security company and get elected to high office in a security association? The answer is simple. The
Cont’d from page 6 fiscal and policy certainty. We need not look far for examples of why this is so important. Brazil and Argentina both have considerable oil and gas resources, but nationalist policies created hostile and risky investment environments, scaring away many investors and depriving both countries of much-needed foreign investment, resulting in the development of their re-
system has completely broken down, because some persons in authority have been compromised by favours and bribes. I can state this openly without fear of contradiction. Google it and you will see that this fugitive fled American justice since 2009 to live here with impunity. Both the previous administration and the current government know this and have done nothing. Certain individuals across administrations have given this fugitive big business plus protection. Despite the owner being wanted for serious crimes in the U.S., this person’s company gets huge security contracts and his pockets are bulging with taxpayers’ dollars. But he knows how to manipulate persons in high office and has made some of them shareholders and directors in his company. The National Insurance Scheme (NIS) was forced to publish his company’s name in the newspapers because he was not paying up contributions to the scheme. Furthermore, the wanted person’s workers staged a massive public protest claiming that they are not being paid and their Pay As You Earn (PAYE) taxes were not being remitted. But that is not all. This individual was hauled before the Guyana
courts for trafficking cocaine in fish. The same U.S. fugitive was charged and appeared in our courts, but the police were embarrassed because the case jacket disappeared. Yet, despite a background steeped in suspicious behaviour, this fugitive got a personal firearm licence and is licensed to operate a private security service with armed personnel. No wonder people are saying all over the place that Guyana’s system of awarding gun licences is so lax that known criminals, fugitives from American justice, severely depressed persons and even psychopaths can beat the system and get firearm licences. In recent times, highly suspicious persons who are well-connected to ‘big’ ones’ in society have been able to acquire large arsenals of weapons through pseudo-legitimate channels. I recall a bizarre case not long ago when a well-known businessman went on a shooting spree in New Market Street and several persons, including the gunman, ended up dead. In the ensuing news reports, persons at the scene claimed that everyone knew the man was deranged and wanted to know how he got so many guns, apparently with the approval of a par-
sources being significantly delayed. There is a fine line between maximising governments’ profits and keeping as much revenue as possible within the country and stifling critical foreign investment and reducing governments’ overall income from oil and gas development. If Guyana demands that Exxon renegotiate its contract, this could very well happen to us too. We must look at the mistakes of other countries, so that they are not repeated here in Guyana. While Guy-
ana now has much more bargaining power in any future oil contracts, this means nothing if Guyana is deemed too much of an investment risk. Additionally, all Guyanese must consider that if the contract is renegotiated, all our development operations will immediately stop until it is resolved. Do we really want to delay all of this at such a critical juncture? The fact is that the people of Guyana need investment in health, education, infrastructure,
ticular former commissioner of police. Something is seriously wrong when people who are known fugitives from the law and persons of suspicious character can set up private security services and get gun licences willy-nilly. It is even worse when such characters can get protection from persons in power. With such powerful protection, they can become emboldened to do serious criminal acts. Private security services are a sensitive law-enforcement arm of the country. Their value relies upon effective scrutiny of their owners and personnel, as well as proper and timely monitoring of their operations. It is highly dangerous when totally unsuitable and undesirable persons can infiltrate this sector and get away with it. God knows how many trigger-happy criminals, ‘loose cannons’ and outright lunatics have gotten gun-permits, because slackness and corruption have penetrated the system, and are out there with both the means and opportunity to create terror, murder and mayhem in other people’s lives. Regards Roshan Khan Snr.
and industries, now. If Guyana insists on a new contract with Exxon, it could be 10 years or more until the people of Guyana see the benefits we so badly need -- Brazilians and Argentinians are still waiting. If we break our contract with Exxon and in the process chase away foreign investment, nothing is guaranteed, and we could end up squandering the biggest opportunity we have ever been given. Regards Selwyn Paul
Tax concessions for Mid-Atlantic Inc approved By Lisa Hamilton
ID-Atlantic Oil and Gas Inc will receive tax concessions for its oil and gas explorations in the Canje and Kaieteur blocks. The motion for such, tabled by Finance Minister Winston Jordon, was approved on Wednesday during the 96th sitting of the National Assembly. Jordon said Section 51 of the Petroleum Exploration and Production Act No. 3 allows for the Minister of Finance to approve certain concessions. He noted that it was under the very section of the act US oil giant ExxonMobil benefitted. “The Mid-Atlantic Oil and Gas Inc may not be Exxon or any of the other majors that we are so accustomed to, but it is important from Guyana’s
stand point. It is small, it is unknown but it is in the oil and gas sector. “Importantly for Guyana is that it is a local company comprising many enterprising and well-known Guyanese,” Jordon put forward. Mid-Atlantic Oil and Gas Inc was granted operations licence under the former Government on March 4, 2014, with a Production Share Agreement signed on the same date. During the debate on the motion, People’s Progressive Party (PPP) Member of Parliament (MP) Irfaan Ali proposed that the finance minister defers the motion until the Government reviews ExxonMobil’s Production Agreement and design a framework to guide the new negotiations. Jordon in response acknowledged that much of what MP Ali highlighted was import-
ant but noted that Mid Atlantic must not suffer “deferences and delays”. “I thank Honorable member for his intervention and his statements. I want to say that everything he has said is important and pertinent to the evolving and ongoing discussion on oil and gas. “There are a number of statements that have been made by the Government; there are a number of policy positions that have been put out by the Government, there are a number of statements that have been made by a number of international agencies and so on for which the Government is examining. “But at the end of the day we have an order before us that speaks to a specific question… all Section 51 is seeking to do is to give credence to what has been signed by no less a President of this country,” he said.
He added: “A small Guyanese company must not be made to suffer by deference and delays so that matters extraneous to the acclamation of this order can be dealt with.” He further argued that the affirmation of the Section 51 order would give confidence to stakeholders and investors to conduct business in Guyana. “[Affirmation of the order] demonstrates an effective and sustainable investment climate that will ensure Guyana realises the greatest possible benefit from its resources. It also gives confidence to investors, both local and foreign, that we honour the sanctity of contracts,” Jordan said. The motion was taken to a vote and was approved by a majority vote from the Government’s side of the House. The Opposition abstained from the voting.
Ketwaroo died from blunt trauma to head -- autopsy
N autopsy which was performed on the body of Kevin Ketwaroo, whose partially decomposed remains were fished out of a trench at Craig Sideline Dam, East Bank Demerara (EBD) on Monday, has given the cause of death as blunt trauma to the head and compression of the neck. Ketwaroo, called “Wild buck,” of Friendship, EBD,
was identified by siblings on Tuesday. Relatives believe the young man was killed at a party in a ball field in Third Street, Grove, EBD. The autopsy was performed by government pathologist Dr Nehal Singh at the Georgetown Public Hospital mortuary on Wednesday. According to the police, the man’s sister claimed that she last saw him alive on August 1 during the morning hours, when he visited her
home. The man’s wife said that about a month ago, while the two were living together, he had assaulted her and a report was made to the police at Grove. When the police went to arrest him, he ran away and she later moved out of their home and relocated to Sophia. Police said that information suggests that Ketwaroo may have been involved in a fight with persons who inflicted the injuries on him.
Trotman suspects mercury is being smuggled to Suriname
HERE are suspicions that Guyanese may be smuggling mercury to Suriname, a country which has banned the use of the chemical. Although the information is anecdotal, the situation will be carefully monitored, said Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman in an invited comment on Thursday. “When I look at the figures, I am amazed at the volume of mercury that has been imported into Guyana recently and given the amount of gold we are getting, this mercury cannot all be used in Guyana,” said the minister, adding that he has a suspicion that it might be going elsewhere. Trotman believes that all the mercury that is imported cannot be used and he is unaware if it is being stockpiled for some other reason. Gold has been short of its target so far, which indicates that the miners, especially the larger ones, might have under pro-
duced. And two of the largest gold mining companies, Troy Resources and Aurora Gold Mining Inc. do not use mercury in their operations, the minister said, adding that mercury is mostly used by medium and small scale miners in their operations.
ister of Natural Resources of Suriname is expected to be in Guyana for a bilateral discussion with Government on August 20, 2018. Among the issues to be discussed is the recent suspicion of the smuggling of mercury. The smuggling of gold has and continues to be an
Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman
While it is yet unclear who the smugglers are, if any, the ministry has started to work closer with Suriname to investigate it. The Min-
issue that is being addressed by the ministry and if the assumption is true, the smuggling of mercury would also be closely monitored.
Trotman had recently refused the importation of 30,000 kg of mercury into Guyana from Mexico as the Government continued to make strides towards the reduction of the toxic metal’s use in gold mining. “I can add as well that I stopped, restricted, or refused the importation of 30,000 kg of mercury into Guyana.” “The Government of Mexico contacted me about the ship, which they were being asked to approve, and I have refused to accept it because it is a lot of mercury and I am concerned about the use of mercury in our rivers and poisoning the people of Guyana, and of course we had it come home in a real and dangerous way to the employees of GGMC,” Trotman explained. Despite his decision, GGMC subsequently went ahead and approved the importation of thousands of kilograms of mercury. The minister has since written to the GGMC requesting an explanation.
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Troy, Goldfields gold declarations highest ever
…but bad roads, high fuel prices dampen results of small, medium-scale miners
ESPITE gold declarations falling for the first half of the year, the two major mining companies here, Troy Resources and Guyana Goldfields declared a total of 128,175 ounces, or 44.5 per cent of overall declarations, their highest combined level since operations began. This is according to the midyear report which was tabled in the National Assembly on Wednesday. The report stated that for the first half of 2018, gold production fell to 288,114 troy ounces, 19.4 per cent below the original projection and 9.1 per cent below the level achieved at the end of June, 2017. However, it said that the increase by the large companies was driven primarily by Troy Resources Limited, which experienced stable mining and processing conditions, resulting in the accumulation of an ore stockpile that can be processed during the two-month wet season. On the other hand, the declaration of small and medium scale miners fell to its lowest first-half level, since 2010. “This was largely attributed to higher operational costs stemming from higher fuel prices, and the deterioration of hinterland roads. Together, these factors served to dampen the expected positive response of small and medium scale miners,” the report highlighted. It stated that concerns also remain about the smuggling of gold, produced in Guyana, to neighbouring jurisdictions, where more favourable fiscal terms prevail. “The Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) conducted fewer visits to mining sites to verify the production numbers of small and medium scale miners; this was due to strike action by GGMC workers during the second quarter of the year,” the report mentioned. The revised outlook for the gold industry for 2018, anticipates a contraction of 14.1 per cent compared to the 3.3 per cent growth originally projected. Meanwhile, the report stated that the momentum achieved in the bauxite industry at the end of 2017, continued into 2018, with half year production reaching its highest level since 2013, and surpassing the previous year by 21.1 per cent. Both firms in the industry were able to maintain high levels of production in response to favourable market conditions. However, in April 2018, production by the Bauxite Company of Guyana Incorporated (BCGI) was 40.1 per cent below the level projected for that month. This drop was due to a temporary suspension of the operations of Oldendorff Carriers, the company used by BCGI to transship bauxite from Guyana, in response to the announcement of planned sanctions by the US on Rusal, the majority owner of BCGI. The report stated that notwithstanding, the two producers are expected to continue to maintain high levels of production for the remainder of the year, with favourable market conditions forecasted to persist. The forecast growth for the industry for 2018 has been revised upward from 23.3 per cent to 29.9 per cent. “The remarkable first half growth in other mining of 31.2 per cent was driven by the production of diamonds as well as stones, which increased by 13.3 per cent and 45.5 per cent, respectively, when compared with declarations over the same period of 2017. The growth in diamond declaration appears to be somewhat consistent with commodity price movements, while the growth in stone production is invariably tied to the expansion in construction.” The report said that available evidence indicates that the production of sand fell by 51.7 per cent during the first half of 2018, compared to 2017; however, GGMC is yet to survey quarries and sand pits. These estimates are likely to be revised once the surveys are completed. In the interim, the growth forecast for other mining has been conditionally revised up to 17.5 per cent for 2018, from 3.8 per cent.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
‘We have to prove ourselves’
…AFC leader says going alone only fair to APNU
Leader of the AFC and Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman
the party is in full campaign mode and will make further announcements as our victory campaign plan is rolled out,” Trotman stated. The party stressed that the move to contest the elections alone is geared at refreshing the coalition “Going independently will refresh the coalition, so the people of Guyana will get the best of both parties,” Trotman said, noting that being in government can cause some level of compla-
ary 2018 to engage APNU. A deadline was set and both APNU and AFC kept revising it with the hope that common ground would be found on which to campaign together. “Both sides thought we should seek an accommodation together,” he added, while noting that the AFC drafted a proposal and the APNU from time to time sent their views on the said proposal. Trotman does not agree that the party was forced to
AFC’s Campaign Manager and Minister of Public Infrastructure, David Patterson
By Ariana Gordon THE Alliance For Change (AFC) decision to contest the upcoming Local Government Elections (LGEs) alone will clearly demonstrate the party’s value within the APNU+AFC coalition government and is also a chance for it to prove itself. Party Leader and Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman, made the point Wednesday during a press conference held by the hierarchy of the party. “The AFC needs to prove itself to itself. I believe that it should prove itself to its partner; it’s only fair. We shouldn’t demand to the APNU in 2020 that we have a right to be there. We should be able to say this is what we bring,” he stated. Stressing that the party needs to also prove itself to the citizenry, he said the exercise is good for the party “to demonstrate that we do have the strength.” “This is an exercise that is necessary in preparation for 2020. We should not say to APNU we have no choice. We should demonstrate to the people of Guyana we have earned the right to manage the people of Guyana,” he added, noting emphatically that the AFC was not rejected by the APNU led by President David Granger. Trotman, who was once a member of the People’s National Congress (PNC), one of the largest political parties in the country, made it clear that by going to the November 12 elections alone, both the APNU and the AFC will demonstrate clearly to the people what each party has to offer separately and col-
Senior members of the AFC at a press conference hosted at Parliament Buildings Wednesday. From left are Ministers of Business, Public Security, Natural Resources, Public Infrastructure and Public Telecommunications, Dominic Gaskin, Khemraj Ramjattan, Raphael Trotman, David Patterson and Cathy Hughes, respectively.
lectively. “We expect to be in competition against each other, but we expect at the same time in battle against the PPP,” he stated. Trotman assured that the coalition which comprises APNU and AFC is strong at the level of national government. “The AFC is committed to not only maintaining its cohesiveness, but also to strengthening it.” The AFC leader said too that his party is confident it will “demonstrate electoral growth and expansion at the upcoming LGEs as it remains the most progressive political entity in Guyana with widespread support across the country. “There is also room to work with independent candidates of like mind, community leaders and civil society groups generally and to mobilise stakeholders to fully participate in this important feature of our democracy...
cency and in recognition of that, the “coalition needed to be refreshed.” The AFC leader reminded that this process represents the start of a campaign for the 2020 national elections. “We expect to be in competition with each other,” he noted. STUDIOUS PROCESS Meanwhile, stressing that local government and by extension elections for local government is an important tool which the AFC sees as an important point of contact, consultation and service to the people, Trotman who was flanked by senior officials of his party made it clear that the decision to contest alone is “part of a studious process,” which commenced with the National Executive Committee (NEC) after taking a decision in Febru-
contest LGEs alone, as it had already decided that it would contest the polls as a party. “I believe that we were unable to come to agreement on what would be the representation. At the national level it was easier to say 60/ 40. At the local government level, it is a different elections and so it is not as easy as coming with an across the board split,” he explained. When asked whether the request for the 60/40 per cent formula to be used as part of negotiations contributed to the outcome of the entire process, Trotman, who is also the country’s Minister of Natural Resources said, “No I don’t think so.” “We have that nationally and naturally if going into any other elections we would want that and what has worked for us,” he explained, while
casting aside the suggestion that the party had bargained for more than it deserved. In that regard, he pointed to his fellow cabinet ministers who hold senior government posts. The prime minister, Public Security, Public Infrastructure, Natural Resources, Agriculture, Business and Public Telecommunications ministries are controlled by the AFC. The party also has several non-parliamentary seats. “We have made our contribution to this coalition… We do not think our 40 per cent at national level is unearned or that we have not earned our right to be in government. The easiest thing to do is to go to what has worked or what is working. That is 40 per cent,” Trotman told reporters. Noting that the 60/40 formula was not the sole
basis on which the party negotiated with the APNU, Campaign Manager David Patterson, who also serves as Minister of Public Infrastructure, told reporters that issues of principle and policy were part of the AFC’s discourse with the APNU. He said issues such as the Georgetown parking meters and the contract between the Mayor and City Council and Smart City Solutions which the had AFC made clear it did not support, was one area of concern. “Both sides had points that were accepted,” Patterson said. He reminded that the Cummingsburg Accord, which is still in effect, does not address LGEs. “There was no rejection of any formula. We just didn’t reach an agreement. The NEC gave us a deadline and said we should go alone,” Patterson stated, noting that the AFC has an awesome elections machinery. Party Chairman Khemraj Ramjattan stressed that getting the institution of the AFC more robust requires its members “to go into the trenches.” “A lot of you have been saying the AFC is dead. This is but a great opportunity to prove otherwise. We know that we must be in a position to let the people out there know what it is, relevance and all of that as a party. Whatever the per cent, it will prove to the country that indeed in a general election the AFC matters,” Ramjattan stated.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Schlumberger employs TOTALTEC Academy graduates …their world-class careers begin with the leading provider of technology for reservoir characterisation, drilling, production and processing for the oil-and-gas industry. LEADING oilfield services provider and contractor Schlumberger has employed just over half of the first batch of graduates from TOTALTEC’s Oilfield Operator Safety programme, with more expected to be hired upon graduation from the second and third batches. This was confirmed to the Guyana Chronicle by President and CEO of Totaltec Oilfield Services Guyana, Mr Lars Mangal. “This is a true breakthrough for Guyana, our Guyanese graduates, and our TOTALTEC Academy. Our management team and international instructors delivered a world class training programme to the highest international standards. These graduates will be foundational to Schlumberger establishing operations and a state-of-the-art support facility in Guyana.” commented Mangal.
The first batch of TOTALTEC graduates, some of whom have been snapped up by oilfield services giant, Schlumberger
He continued, “As a Guyanese citizen, this is a proud moment for me personally. I remember joining Schlumberger in 1990 as a trainee, and the incredible culture of safety
it gave me, and we have now given that opportunity to our graduates. My first assignment was in the freezing winter of the Netherlands, followed by the Sahara Desert of Lib-
ya; from one extreme to another. An oilfield career is full of surprises. You start at the bottom and work your way up, as will our new graduates.” The TOTALTEC gradu-
ates successfully completed the 9-week intensive safety and operator training programme, which equipped them with all the basic safety and operational skills and knowledge to begin a career
in Guyana’s emerging oil and gas industry. According to Mangal, TOTALTEC will commence the third safety and operational training programme with 26 Guyanese recruits on the 20 August, including the first female recruits. Ten female candidates are ready for the following courses. TOTALTEC Oilfield Services is said to be focussed on the success of the emerging Guyana oil and gas industry for the benefit of the country and its people. This is being done through three main areas: developing and placing talent, forming mutually beneficial relationships between local and international service companies, and developing and operating a safe, highly efficient supply base to support offshore operations.
Hotelier gets bail for killing man
…faces charge of manslaughter FOLLOWING advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), the owner of the Tourist Villa Hotel and Bar located at Fifth Avenue, Subryanville, Kitty was on Wednesday charged with manslaughter after he shot and killed a man in alleged self-defence. Erwin Bacchus, 45, made his appearance before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court and was not required to plead to the charge, which alleged that on August 4 at Subryanville, he unlawfully killed 30-year-old father of three, Jason De Florimonte. The courtroom was filled with relatives of De Florimonte, who looked somewhat shocked that a manslaughter charge was being read out in court when they were expecting that his alleged killer would be charged with murder. His attorneys, Nigel Hughes and Glen Hanoman, made an application for bail on the ground that their client acted in self defence. Hughes, who addressed the court, said that De Flori-
monte lived across the street at the parking lot from where the hotel is located. However on the day in question, a handyman attached to the hotel observed that De Florimonte was in the parking lot assaulting his girlfriend and he intervened. The attorney further disclosed that De Florimonte armed himself with a knife and advanced to the handyman, causing the man to flee into the hotel for safety. De Florimonte, Hughes said, then ran into the hotel behind the handyman and Bacchus pulled out his firearm and discharged two rounds in an attempt to get the man from attacking his employee. However the table turned when De Florimonte turned his attention to Bacchus and allegedly attempted to stab him. The businessman shot De Florimonte to his chest. The attorney noted that De Florimonte then attempted to walk out of the hotel and collapsed. Police Prosecutor Vivian Adolph told the court a similar version of the facts
which were told by defence attorney. According to Adolph, Bacchus was observing the fight between his handyman and De Florimonte and he pulled out his firearm and told the man to halt. However, De Florimonte, who was armed with a knife attempted to stab the handyman, resulting in Bacchus discharging several rounds resulting in him being shot in the chest. De Florimonte was picked up and rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital where he was pronounce dead upon arrival. Prosecutor Adolph made no objection to bail, but requested that Bacchus lodge his passport along with other reporting conditions. The chief magistrate released Bacchus on $1.5M bail and warned him not to make any contact with the dead man’s relatives. He was also ordered to report to the Kitty Police Station weekly, along with lodging his passport at the court. The matter will be recalled on August 29.
DEAD Jason De Florimonte
Bacchus flanked by his attorneys Nigel Hughes and Glen Hanoman
After court, the cries of De Florimonte’s relatives could be heard echoing throughout the court.
Speaking to the media was aunt of the deceased, Wendy De Florimonte, who called for justice to be sev-
Wendy De Florimonte
ered to her family and $1.5M bail was just a slap on the wrist for the killer. In an earlier interview with the Guyana Chronicle, the De Florimonte family had called for justice to be served, as they were concerned about the businessman and his family’s rumoured connections.. “We don’t want revenge,” one relative said. “We just want justice to be served. We don’t want it to only be seen as being served, but we want it to actually be served in this matter,” a family member said.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Trotman orders halt to mining in Demerara River
Minister of Natural Resources Raphael Trotman said he has put a halt to mining in the Demerara River even as his ministry investigates concerns raised by residents of Linden about pollution. Minister Trotman said he has requested a report on the matter from Acting Commissioner of the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), Newell Dennison. He was speaking at the opening of a multi-stakeholder Committee at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC), Liliendaal, following reports carried by this newspaper regarding residents’ concerns. “I’ve asked that we not have any mining at all up the river or elsewhere until of course the EPA [Environmental Protection Agency] can certify that this mining is safe,” Minister Trotman said. Minister Trotman noted that his ministry is treating the matter with all urgency. Last year, the Ministry of Natural Resources prevented mining in the Parish Peak, Upper Berbice, following concerns over contamination of the environment. A Biodiversity Assessment Team (BAT) survey in 2014 had determined that the area is important for biodiversity, as the Upper Berbice River region comprises pristine lowland forests containing diverse and abundant wildlife. On Wednesday, this newspaper reported several Lindeners venting their dis-
approval of the presence of two “water draggers” on the upper Demerara River. They also used the occasion to vent their disappointment at the inaction of those in authority to do something about having the vessels removed despite multiple calls by the regional officials on the issue. Regional Chairman Renis Morian said residents initially held him responsible for the “draggers” being on the river, but now that they’ve realised that the matter is out of his hands, they’ve turned to the media for help. It is now 17 days since the two “draggers” were intercepted, while on their way to the Great Falls area to do gold and diamond mining, by regional officials and the police. The “draggers”, a pontoon of sorts used to help flush out the minerals, were docked aback Watooka; some Brazilian miners were taken into custody in relation to that matter but were later released. Investigations have revealed that the two vessels belong to Pure Diamond Mining Company, and were issued licences to mine by the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC). Region 10(Upper Demerara - Upper Berbice) officials are, however, adamant that no mining is to be done in the Demerara River because such an activity poses a significant environmental threat to the 18,000 residents of Linden, since it is their main source of water. They also contend-
The two “water draggers” still docked aback Watooka
ed, and rightly so, that the Demerara River is equally important to the residents of the up-river communities, as they depend on the water for drinking and other domestic purposes without passing it through a filtration system. On Tuesday, residents of Linden described the granting of a water mining licence to “Pure Diamond” without the necessary environmental impact assessment being done, as a slap in their faces. Gomer Wilson, a Linden resident, said he fears that the “draggers” will contam-
inate the water they use for drinking purposes, and that it is imperative that the powers that be do something to stop it. “We as the people in Linden, we do not want such an activity in our community,” Wilson said, adding: “I would like the President of this country to look into this; also the Prime Minister because this is a slap in the face of the people of Linden.” President of the Linden Chamber of Industry, Commerce and Development, Victor Fernandes, speaking
on behalf of the private sector, reiterated that the Chamber is not against investment and business, since it will create jobs and contribute to development, but this must not be done at the expense of the community. “We don’t want development at the expense of our community; what we going to gain will be peanuts in comparison with what we will lose,” he posited. As such, he’s calling for the environmental impact assessment to be submitted for review.
When the “draggers” were intercepted on July 24, the Brazilian miners did not have work permits and their passports have expired since July 25. Morian had called for the GGMC to get its act together, and for the inclusion of or consultation with the local agencies in matters such as this. He questioned the power of the local organs, since the elected representatives cannot make decisions or enforcements to protect the well-being of the electorate.
CCJ dismisses post-judgment Bandit nabbed after application in Essequibo land dispute case THE Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) on Wednesday dismissed a post-judgment application, brought by Mr. Deonarine Natram, to reopen the court’s recent decision in Narine v Natram. In the previous judgment, dated 10th May 2018, the CCJ had settled a dispute over land in Guyana between two brothers, Mr. Kowsal Narine and Mr. Natram. The CCJ declared that Mr. Narine had been in possession of the disputed property since 1991 and that any right Mr. Natram had to the land had been ended.
In a release, the CCJ said in June 2018, Mr. Natram asked that the judgment be reviewed, or the appeal reheard on the basis that the court’s judgment was in error. The application stated that, based on section 22 of the Title of Land (Prescription and Land) Act, his brother, Mr Narine, could not have been in possession for the statutorily required period of 12 years. He stated that the counter-claim he had filed in 2003 would have stopped time from running in his brother’s favour. He added that the court could hear his application as
the order had not been issued, due to an outstanding issue on costs. The court decided to hear the unusual application, since the final order had not been issued, relying on its recent decision in The Queen v Gilbert Henry, where it stated that when an order has not been finalised, a court may review its decision in exceptional circumstances. Both parties were then asked to make written submissions. Upon review of the submissions, the court found that the issues raised in Mr. Natram’s complaint did not merit reopening the appeal. The CCJ accepted that while
there was a counter-claim for damages there was, as pointed out at the hearing by Mr Narine’s attorneys and accepted by Mr Natram’s attorneys, no specific claim for possession of the land. The CCJ said if there had been, then section 22 would be applicable. “There was therefore no basis to sustain an allegation that there were exceptional circumstances here to warrant the reopening of the appeal. The application was dismissed and costs were awarded to Mr. Narine, the appellant in the substantive case.”
attacking gas station
A LONE bandit who was naked and armed with a piece of wood attacked two employees of the Sukpaul Gas Station located in Corriverton, East Berbice-Corentyne, on Wednesday. The incident occurred at approximately 04:30hrs. According to information, the bandit pounced on the employees and while being armed with the wood hit them about the body. The employee was sub-
sequently relieved of an undisclosed sum of cash and a quantity of phone cards. The man made good his escape. CCTV footage along with diligent work by the police at the Springlands Police Station led to the arrest of a suspect who later confessed to the crime. He remains in police custody as the investigation continues.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Russian guards in trouble over uniform …police confirm two arrested for torturing Guyanese miners
THE two Russian guards at the centre of allegations that they tortured two Guyanese miners have been arrested and police said they were breach of their uniform since as supernumerary onstables they ought to have been attired in the prescribed manner approved by the force’s administration for that company, and not as seen outfitted in the video. In a statement issued on Wednesday, the police said a thorough investigation has been launched into the incident. As such, a police investigative team from headquarters, received much-needed assistance from a miner who ferried the ranks to Quart Stone, Cuyuni, where the
incident allegedly occurred. Police said the two foreign nationals in question, one of whom allegedly assaulted a ranger employed in a private capacity, are in custody and are assisting with the investigation. The two Russians who are employed by West Bank Demerara Gold Inc., which is licensed to operate in Guyana, are sworn supernumerary constables and are authorised to carry firearms. Reports are that the miners were executing their normal duties on their employer’s claim in Quart Stone, near the Quart Stone River in Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), when they were intercepted by two expatriate Russian operatives of West Bank De-
merara Gold Inc. Reports are that the Russians attempted to prohibit the Guyanese miners from entering farther on the said land when the incident occurred. Meanwhile, officials of the Russian Embassy in Georgetown on Tuesday offered no comment until a decision is made to do otherwise as the authorities continue to investigate the brutal assault on the miners. On Monday, the Ministry of Natural Resources ordered an immediate investigation into the assault on miners by Russian security guards working in the Cuyuni-Mazaruni area at a claim operated by Hopkinson Mining Logistics, a company which is owned by Guya-
One of the miners handcuffed to the roof of a mining camp
nese large-scale miner Shawn Hopkinson. On Tuesday, the Guyana Chronicle contacted the embassy for a comment on the issue. An embassy official from Pere Street, Kitty, told this newspaper by email that while it appreciates the collaboration with the local press, the foreign entity could not comment on the issue at this time until a decision is made to do so. Calls to the landline numbers provided for the company at the centre of the inci-
dent, West Bank Demerara Gold Inc, went unanswered all day on Tuesday. In a statement issued on Monday, the Ministry of Natural Resources said it has noted with deep concern and strong consternation a video circulating on social media, which appears to show a confrontation at a mining location between an alleged foreigner and Guyanese miner. “The video clearly shows that the alleged foreigner is armed with a firearm and behaving in an aggressive, hostile and
condescending manner towards the man who appears to be a Guyanese national,” the statement read. The incident occurred in April this year. The Hopkinson security guard recorded the incident with his cellular phone. The video recording shows a Russian operative who is known in the concession area as ‘Batali,’ demanding documentation and challenging Edwards and Charles’ right to be on their employer’s claim. He subsequently attempted to block their access. ‘Batali’ then punched Edwards in his face. When Edwards attempted to defend himself, ‘Batali’ punched him a second time, then pulled a gun on the men. West Bank Demerara Gold Inc. Is a company which acquired and now operates a mining concession known as Chunnylall Babullal & Ricky Ramnarine (CB&R) concession. Hopkinson Mining Logistics ostensibly has mining claims within the CB&R concession that predates its acquisition by West Bank Demerara Gold Inc. The Caribbean Guyana Institute for Democracy (CGID) in a statement condemning the incident called on the Guyana government to investigate what it described as alleged torture, harassment of Guyanese miners and workers by the Russians.
Police negligence…and E’bo man goes free
A TUSCHEN, East Bank Essequibo businessman was on Wednesday freed of the charge of exporting gold without a licence, due to the investigators’ negligence. Christopher Baldeo was charged for not declaring 29 ounces of gold valued at US$29,266 at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport on March 12, 2015. Police said that on his return to Guyana via Trinidad on March 21, 2015, he was questioned by investigators at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport and admitted to exporting gold without a
licence. It is alleged that Baldeo had US$9,596 dollars in his possession which they regarded as the balance from the gold sale. The cash had been seized and a forfeiture order requested based on his admission. The matter was before Principal Magistrate Judy Latchman with evidence being read by Prosecutor Vishnu Hunt. The magistrate noted that Baldeo was not cautioned by the police and was told he was being charged for money-laundering and not
the charge which was before the court. The magistrate’s ruling was based on the fact that the main piece of evidence in the prosecution’s case was based upon the evidence from the investigator who had a confrontation with Baldeo during which he failed to issue a caution statement to the accused. The Magistrate ruled that the prosecution failed to prove its case and dismissed the charge against Baldeo.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Gov’t seeking PAHO assistance to assess new gold board lab
Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman
THE Ministry of Natural Resources has requested the help of the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) to assess the labo-
ratory of the Guyana Gold Board (GGB) which was recently shifted to Queenstown. In April, the GGB was
forced to close its Brickdam, Georgetown laboratory due to high levels of mercury emissions in the compound. The laboratory was used to burn amalgam to rid the gold of mercury. Mercury is mixed with gold, forming a mercury-gold amalgam which is then heated, vapourising the mercury to obtain the gold. This process can be very dangerous and can lead to significant mercury exposure and health risks. Since being shifted to Queenstown, the gold board has established a new process of testing which was recently assessed by the Environmental Protection Agency. The process will
Man breaks down after viewing daughter’s body in pic TEARS flowed from the eyes of Alfred Branche when he testified on Wednesday during the preliminary inquiry (PI) into the death of his daughter Kescia Branche which continued before Principal Magistrate Judy Latchman at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court. A 47-year-old taxi driver, Matthew Munroe, who it is alleged committed the crime, is charged with her murder. Branche broke down in tears when he saw the photos of his daughter in court. Also testifying was Hazel Richardson, a field auditor attached to the Demerara Harbour Bridge. The matter continues on August 10, 2018. Branche, a mother of one, who resided at Cummings Lodge, Greater Georgetown, was last seen on November 4, 2017, when she left for a night-out with friends. However, she was found in an unconscious state in the vicinity of Princes Street and Louisa Row the following day. Her left leg was broken and there was evidence that she had sustained multiple head injuries. The Richard Ishmael Secondary School teacher died at the Georgetown Public Hospital two days after being found battered. A post-mor-
Matthew Munroe and Kescia Branche
tem indicated that she died as a result of brain haemorrhage. During the investigation, three suspects who were being questioned regarding the death of Branche were released. The father of Branche’s three-year-old son was released on November 14 and placed on station bail, along with two police constables. The two ranks were later charged departmentally for neglect of duty, consuming intoxicating liquor while on duty, improperly entering licensed premises and acting in a manner likely to bring discredit to the reputation of the force. At the time of the trio’s release, the police were seeking to contact a taxi driver
whose cellphone number had appeared repeatedly on Branche’s mobile device. The taxi driver’s car was impounded at the Brickdam Police Station, subsequent to his reported departure from the country, after Branche was found in an unconscious state. Investigators are of the opinion that the driver may have been the last person to see the teacher alive. When arrested, the taxi driver claimed that his car was involved in an accident after he drove into a pothole, but according to a police report, the damage to the car was consistent with the injuries Branche received.
also be tested by PAHO, said Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman, in an invited comment on Wednesday. “I have written to PAHO head asking if an engineer can come from the U.S. to examine the new system to give advice to ensure that the lab is not only good, but the best in the world,” he said, adding that the person is expected to be here before September. Prior to the gold board being moved, the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) workers were agitated by the operations of the board. In light of this, the minister
said they decided to shift it to maintain peace, stability and production. Representatives of PAHO have since tested the compound of the GGMC and found that the area was safe. Mining with the use of mercury has been a clear and present danger, said the minister, adding that the ministry will start encouraging miners to look at alternatives. General Manager of the GGB, Eondrene Thompson, had said in past reports that there will be a zero-tolerance policy with regard to the use of protective clothing during the gold-burning operations. This, she said, goes not only
for the staff of the Guyana Gold Board, but also the clients whose gold is being burnt. “We will move a step further in having one recommendation by the PAHO/ WHO persons who were here,” Thompson said. “They recommended that we have the partition of the room made out of glass, so that the client will be able to observe the burning from afar. “If we cannot move in time to do that, it is also recommended that they be at one location in the building, where they can view the burning via monitors,” she added.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
PSC commissioners sworn in
PRESENT David Granger said the work of the Public Service Commission (PSC) must not be “interrupted for political reasons” or be politically influenced as members of the commission were sworn in on Wednesday. “Intelligence, integrity and impartiality” were some of the key attributes he said the commission must have as it takes on the task of the delivery of public services. On Wednesday at State House, the President swore in the six-member commission. The members are Vincent Bowman, Mavis Benn, Geeta Chandan-Edmond, Mortimer Livan, Michael Somersall and Maurice Gajadhar. Following a meeting among the members, Somersall was elected as chair of the commission while Benn will serve as deputy chair. Speaking directly to the commissioners, President Granger said Guyana’s development demands an efficient, professional and impartial public service. However, he said such reliable public services must inspire public trust which is not derived from political intrusion or any form of favouritism. “Such a service must be committed to implementing the policies and programmes of the executives and to ensuring that the [provision] of services to all Guyanese continues regardless of the political party in office,” the President said. He added: “They should
be allowed to work without fear or favour, partiality or prejudice. They should look forward to careers based on the principles of merit. Their employment should not be sheltered or interrupted for political reasons or for the change of Government. The Public Service Commission’s task is to ensure the establishment and existence of an impartial public service by insulating public service from political influences and interference.” According to the head of state, the commission’s appointment demonstrates the Government’s commitment to serving its people.
President David Granger and Minister of State Joseph Harmon share a toast with members of the Public Service Commission
Government’s determination to establish and maintain a professional public service. This ceremony reaffirms our respect to the independence and to the commitments to support the work of the Public Service Commission,” Granger said. He then reminded the new body that the PSC’s work is enhanced when supported by a system which guarantees respect for the principle of meritocracy and structural bureaucracy. Added to this, they hold the power to make appointments to public offices, remove and exercise disciplinary actions to persons
President David Granger with members of the newly sworn in members of the Public Service Commission (Samuel Maughn photo)
“The days of fear have passed. The swearing-in of
the Public Service Appellate
Public Service Commission
Tribunal last year and of the
this year is evidence of my
holding or acting in such offices.
The Commission is now responsible for advising and assisting ministers of the Government in implementing programmes and strategies, delivering public services and executing public policies for the benefit all. Speaking with the media on the sidelines, Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) prosecutor and chairman of the Commission Michael Somersall said he does not believe his work as prosecutor will pose a conflict of interest. Instead, he said he would have to assess the workload to determine what takes priority. “I may have to scale down… when I get [to the PSC] I will have to see what I have to do. Sometimes the work there will be more than what I have to do in the courts,” he said. Somersall relayed that he was “elated with the appointment” and the first plan of action is to meet with the other members to decide what concerns or matters will be dealt with initially. “The first course of business, I would say, is for us to meet with the members and decide what we’re going to do and how we’re going to strategise to deal with members of the public service,” he said. Together, the members of the PSC will serve the public for the next three years beginning August 8, 2018.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Parliament flags fake Instagram account
Parliament PRO Yannick December
THE Parliament Office of Guyana has raised an alert pertaining to a fake Instagram account soliciting money and offering scholarships to Guyanese under the guise of an Instagram account of the Parliament of Guyana. Parliament’s Public Relations Officer (PRO) Yannick December, told the Guyana Chronicle that the fake account was discovered about one month ago after persons complained about it
to members of the Parliament Office. “There is no way that the Parliament Office would ask you for money or say anything about giving scholarships, that is not our job,” he said. The handle of the fake account is also different from the official Parliament of Guyana Instagram account. The official account is “guyanaparliament,” while the fake account has an underscore at the end of the name “guyanaparliament_”. Information for public consumption from the National Assembly has to be sanctioned by the Public Relations Department, December explained, while maintaining that the account is in no way associated with that department. While the profile has been reported, only when Instagram determines that the account is in violation of its community guidelines, the account will be removed. Currently, the fake ac-
The real Parliament account
count is still online and Yannick noted that only recently, a staffer informed him that someone through the account made contact with the Parliament Office. “What we did was put out an official disclaimer, so that persons could be aware that there may be a malicious person or group of persons behind the account,” the PRO related. He is pleading with members of the public, specifically Instagram users, to report the profile as spam. If enough persons report the profile, there is a possibility that Instagram will remove it on the basis of these complaints. The official Parliament of Guyana account was created only last year for the third annual Youth Parliament. It falls under the overarching efforts of the Parliament Office to engage citizens and educate them about the role and work of the National Assembly.
The fake Parliament Instagram account
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Exxon necessary to ward off Venezuela
…Prof Thomas says WITHOUT United States oil giant ExxonMobil, Guyana stood no chance of holding off Venezuela from taking charge of the country’s new found natural resource. This view was put forward by renowned Guyanese economist Professor Clive Thomas on Sunday during a panel discussion centred on “The Coming Oil and Gas Economy: Prospects for Empowering the Poor and Revitalising the Village Economy.” The forum was held at the Friendship Primary School and Professor Thomas was one of three panellists. The other two were attorney Nigel Hughes and Project Officer, Ministry of Natural Resources, Mariscia Charles. “In the national debate, it is significant that the participants seem to ignore the situation that we find ourselves in. I wish if Guyanese could develop the oil industry themselves, but they can’t, because we don’t have the skills or know it all. “The fact that the United
States and China control the industry is to my mind an absolute god-send, because if this were not the case Venezuela would have already invaded this country and taken over the oil industry,” Professor Thomas stated. “In a real sense, we have to be realistic – we need EXXON more than Exxon needs us – if they are not here we would not have had the oil. The simple fact is that Venezuela is so desperate that if we do not recognise the strategic need to keep them [ExxonMobil] as partners we would be putting our heads in the sand like an ostrich,” he added. Professor Thomas said he has observed the naysayers who have been repeatedly peddling negative forecasts of Guyana’s new found wealth and made it clear that while there are risks, there was a great need for Guyana to go the route it did. He pointed to the opinion that Guyana is not getting a fair share out of the contract it has with ExxonMobil. “That reality therefore
governs everything. People say in the contract, we are not going to get enough money out of the oil and I am sure the contract can be a better contract, every contract can be. I have written about incomplete contracts…no contract is ever perfect. It is something that has been going on since the 1990s, so we know that the contracts are not going to be complete now, but what we have to recognise now based on the contract that we have is that every professional estimate, estimates that Guyana will get more than half of the net cash flow from the
sales of this oil. To get 50 per cent of the take --- everybody would like to have a 100 per cent, but we can’t get that and also have Exxon and as I told you Exxon is here to prevent us from losing out to Venezuela,” said the economist. Guyana and Venezuela have an age-old border controversy and earlier this year, United Nations Secretary-General
Attorney Nigel Hughes (Samuel Maughn photo)
Project Officer, Ministry of Natural Resources, Mariscia Charles (Samuel Maughn photo)
Economist, Professor Clive Thomas (Samuel Maughn photo)
those strategic realities,” he said, quickly pointing out that several problems have to be navigated. Professor Thomas ex-
Antonio Gutteres referred the Guyana/Venezuela controversy to the ICJ. He determined that the Good Offices Process had failed to achieve a peaceful settlement of the controversy. Venezuela is claiming that the 1899 Arbitral Tribunal Award, which had given more than 90 per cent of an area to then British Guiana (now Guyana), is null and void. Approximately 118 years after that award was issued, Guyana remains resolute in its position that a juridical course of action is the only means through which this matter can be permanently resolved. In its application, Guyana requests the court “to confirm the legal validity and binding effect of the award regarding the Boundary between the Colony of British Guiana and the United States of Venezuela, of 3 October 1899 (hereinafter the ‘1899 Award’)”. Meanwhile, Professor Thomas said in such an industry and with such aggression displayed by Venezuela, and the estimate of earning US$10B annually, “You have to take the risk”. He said too that in such circumstances, consideration must be given to the investor. “We need them now; we are not in a position where we are capable of keeping the industry alive without inducements in the face of significant threats from Venezuela,” said Professor Thomas, who has written extensively on the oil and gas industry. He reminded that Venezuela’s resources clearly outnumber Guyana’s. “It is in that context that I want us to recognise that whatever problems we have, we have to navigate them – based on
pressed disappointment with the level of negativity which is being peddled via the media. He told participants at the forum organised by the Buxton First of August Movement that there is no “empirical evidence” which exists to show Guyana will fail. “People are speculating that this can happen. Theoretically, all the negatives can happen because it is all a possibility,” noting that a positive outlook is always better than a negative one. GAP ANALYSIS Meanwhile, Attorney Nigel Hughes in his presentation said there is need for a gap analysis for the public and private sectors. According to Hughes, an analysis and identification of opportunities for local companies to participate in value chains related to the new oil-andgas discoveries, including downstream opportunities and indirect economic opportunities. “We need a short, medium and long-term plan on what we are going to do with the industry and this essentially is what the gap analysis should do,” said Hughes. He recommended that stakeholders be identified from both the public and private sectors to lead initiatives in this regard and this must include academia and technical institutions. Access requirements for participation of the local businesses in the provision of goods and services to the industry and the identification of shortterm items to be implemented with the highest impact must all be considered. Hughes made it clear that the real development will take place from the revenue from oil and gas, but was quick to note that empowerment of the poor is unlikely under the current constitutional construct. “We need to have a national vision that is articulated, so that every Guyanese knows about it; we may disagree, but at least
you know about it, what the plan is and where we are going. In that national priority plan, we have to decide what we are going to do first, what infrastructural projects, educational projects, health, where are we going to spend our money first? And what is the plan over the next 10 years?” The attorney told attendees that there is no relationship between the poor and the existing decision- making apparatus, except in the form of national elections. On the issue of revitalising village economies, Hughes said, “People will revitalise those villages which they think are voter-rich and that is not a sustainable process. We need a national process and therefore the local government representatives at the village level need to have a greater say in what happens at the national economy.” As such, he stressed the need for the creation of a framework for the equitable and sustained development of the country. EMPOWERING CITIZENS Meanwhile, Charles told the attendees that when it comes to empowering the poor, the government has a bottom-up approach. She said it is government’s aim to empower poor people, so that they are able to transform their own lives. As such, she pointed to revitalising the village economy. “We want to see a resurgence of the village movement. The village movement is built on agriculture, which forms its backbone and contributed largely to its economic development. The village propelled the infrastructural development of rural areas by the construction of homes, churches, cemeteries, schools, bridges and roads,” said the Ministry of Natural Resources’ Project Officer. She noted that the resurgence of the village movement is a partnership between the government and citizens, while adding that the government will support and sustain micro-enterprise development as much as it must to maintain macro-economic stability. “The villages must work together towards self – sustenance through the establishment of micro and medium-scale enterprises to generate industries and businesses, which will provide employment by growing food again, producing goods again and providing services again.” Charles said too that the village economy can combat the Resource Curse or Dutch Disease by focusing on the development of other sectors such as agriculture.
GUYANA CHRONICLE, Thursday August 9, 2018
Gov’t welcomes debate on cash transfers …Jordan prefers channelling funds to education, health programmes
Finance Minister Winston Jordan
FINANCE Minister Winston Jordan on Wednesday embraced the public debate on direct cash transfers to citizens after Guyana begins oil production in March 2020. Jordan said if such an approach were to be adopted, then extreme caution must be employed, a view shared by Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman. He told reporters in the corridors of Parliament, that conditional cash transfers are not new to Guyana. He said over the years, there have been such transfers which targeted education. He pointed to the national school-feeding programmes and the uniform vouchers that students in the public school system receive. “I must admit to you, I would have a difficulty if Cabinet were to agree to it and in the implementation it wasn’t properly structured,” said the finance minister, who noted that rather than giving citizens US$5000 as hypothetically suggested by economist, Professor Clive Thomas last Sunday in Buxton, issues within critical sectors should be examined. “Why not look at issues such as education, health, youth programmes, small businesses …teaching a man to fish and then he could do it for a lifetime, rather than giving him a fish when he could only feed himself for a short while,” Jordan suggested, while noting that the matter has not yet reached the level of Cabinet. He acknowledged that such a system exists farther afield, but requires a robust monitoring system which would call for the establish-
ment of a unit to deal specifically with it. “I would rather hear more debate talking about using our resources to create opportunities for people, so that they themselves can have lasting incomes. Because money that you are giving out will soon end and you would have pitched your lifestyle to the level of the money you receiving and when you can no longer give those monies then what is going to happen?” Jordan reminded that issues such as classroom sizes and comfort, as well as proper salaries for teachers need to be addressed; and those he believes could be addressed through conditional cash transfers of some sort. “Those are the transfer things which directly would affect the people you would want it to affect. You are not sure when you just give somebody US$5000 what they are going to do with the money.” Moreover, he noted that the term ‘household’ as used by Professor Thomas is “ill-defined.” “Is every house a household? And what about household sizes?” he asked rhetorically, while noting that he is happy to contribute to the discourse on the subject. Meanwhile, the finance minister also expressed concern about the rise in expectations among the citizenry, something that his administration has started to manage. “You start a debate like this that started with giving people money rather than looking at Guyana as a country, its problems and how this money can be used to solve those problems,” he said, noting that expectations
must be tempered. He said too that focus is needed to diversify the economy with greater emphasis on the country’s agriculture sector and adding value to it, as well as connecting the coast to the hinterland. “I am really glad the debate has started,” he added. DON’T REJECT IT For his part , Trotman said the proposition by Professor Thomas is a legitimate one that should not be ruled out. “It is possible and I don’t think we should reject it outright. It is possible if it is structured. You want to ensure that people who receive transfers serve their country and so we may look at it by added value in the pensions, we want to ensure our young people have educational grants, we want to ensure that the people who receive transfers are registered in our tax system and have paid taxes and are not just turning up and saying I am here to collect,” he said, while rejecting the statements attributed to People’s Progressive Party (PPP) member Anil Nandlall, which suggest that poor people will become “parasites” should they receive the transfers. “I’d like to say I was aghast to see the description Nandlall attributed to poor people in Guyana-- that is a low for Mr Nandlall,” Trotman added. He reminded that in many countries the world over, direct cash transfers have been used as a tool for economic empowerment. Like Jordan, Trotman said Guyana too has benefited from same. “Cash transfers
are a known and proven way of alleviating poverty and I was quite taken by Professor Thomas’ introduction of it for discussion. No one is saying it shall be or shall not be… But to say the poor would be parasites is most disappointing.” The Minister of Natural Resources said too that the public discourse on the subject is timely, as Guyana has within its reserves more than 4B barrels of oil equivalent. “For 50 years Guyanese have been told about their potential and what they are entitled to, we have seen that potential around us. This and future governments have a duty to spread oil wealth in a responsible way to as many Guyanese as possible. The AFC supports any initiative that spreads the
Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman
wealth transparently and equally not just for some, but to ensure that every citizen in all 10 regions get an equal say in how this
money is spent and they get a share of it,” Trotman said, noting that he would make such a representation to cabinet.
Oil funds to be invested overseas
…Central Bank proposed as operational manager for Sovereign Wealth Fund …broad-based investment committee to be set up By Ariana Gordon
N order to become sustainable and achieve all of its objectives, the National Resources Fund (NRF) must also invest in overseas financial instruments. This is according to government’s ‘green’ paper managing future petroleum revenues and the establishment of a fiscal rule and a sovereign wealth fund. The green paper was on Wednesday laid in the National Assembly by Finance Minister Winston Jordan. It says that the Economically and Fiscally Stable Account (EFSA) would determine how much is transferred to the national budget and the balance would be invested in overseas markets in order to minimize the risk of creating economic instability locally. “It is the investment in overseas assets that would serve to ensure that the country has a long-term stable source of income which would allow for the Fund to meet its stabilization and inter-generational savings objectives. Very safe investments would be mandatory so that the first US$500M and at least three times the expected annual withdrawal would be invested in very
safe investments. “This would ensure that the Fund meets short term stabilization and cash management,” the paper noted. “Investments by the Fund would be made following a passive investment management strategy to maximize returns over the long run,” the green paper noted. REVOLUTIONARY Meanwhile, Jordan, in describing the paper as “revolutionary” noted that it captures key issues and mechanisms that will ensure the sustainable use of the country’s petroleum revenues to achieve a diversified and green economy. The paper seeks to ensure that the mismanagement of the country’s natural patrimony is avoided and ensure that all Guyanese, especially the youth, are able to benefit from the revenues to be derived, thereby enabling them to live in security and comfort. The paper speaks to the presource curse, resource curse and the Dutch Disease and why a sovereign wealth fund is necessary. The establishment of a sovereign wealth fund can help to protect Guyana against the Dutch Disease by “sterilizing boom revenues and ensuring that export earnings
from petroleum only enter the economy at a rate which the economy can absorb these additional resources.” As such, the National Resource Fund Act (NRFA) will mandate the formation of a macro-economic committee, comprising leading experts from the public and private sectors, as well as academia who will have responsibility for assessing the economy’s ability to absorb additional expenditures from petroleum revenues. Concerns of overheating in the economy were also addressed in the ‘green’ paper. Overheating in the economy occurs when unsustainable growth driven by excess aggregate demand, in the short run, is unable to be met by the economy’s productive capacity and which inevitably leads to increased inflation. “One way of preventing overheating is to scale the investment expansion, for example, developing infrastructure in a constant pace, to increase the economy’s productive capacity and sustainability. But if the government expenditure resulted in the construction of high quality assets, then there is a possibility Guyana could still suffer from the Dutch Disease in the short term.
SEPARATE FUNDS Additionally, the ‘green’ paper assesses whether separate funds are required to meet the multiple objectives of intergenerational savings, stabilisation and investing in development priorities. Government is of the opinion that a single fund, that is, the NRFA will be the most effective, efficient and transparent mechanism for achieving the aforementioned objectives. “A single fund can achieve multiple objectives with a robust fiscal rule,” the government said, noting that if any given year, government deposits all oil revenues into a single fund, which exceeds $100 million annually and then withdraws a portion of the balance of the fund, based on a fiscal rule, amounting to $100 million annually, towards the domestic investment objective. “Simultaneously, the remainder is invested in financial assets that generate returns. In the very long-term (once oil production had ceased) the long-term rate of return on the Fund’s investments would exceed $100 million per annum, as the saved and invested balance increases, thereby achieving the savings objective. The fund would be achieving a stabilisation objective as the withdrawal
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
of $100 million a year would be maintained in spite of short-term changes in oil revenues.” As such, the establishment of the sovereign wealth fund is “relatively complex” and according to the ‘green’ paper, there can be substantial administrative costs. “If two completely separate funds are established, then this implies that there are two governance structures, two investment policies/investment mandates, two sets of accounts and two external audits. There would also need to be detailed rules for transferring money between the two funds and the National Budget.” Moreover, it is felt that it would not be prudent to spread the limited expertise and experience in fund management in Guyana across two separate funds. The costs of managing two funds would be much higher than those of managing a single fund, the ‘green’ paper notes. “Overall, the Government considers that it is most efficient to have a single fund (the Natural Resource Fund). Both economic theory and case studies of Botswana, Norway and Timor-Leste demonstrate that a single fund can effectively achieve multiple objectives.” The NRFA was established to effectively and efficiently and wisely manage natural resource wealth for the benefit of current and future generations by contributing to economic stabilisation, ensuring that volatility in natural resource revenues does not lead to volatile public spending and ensuring that natural resource revenues do not lead to a loss of economic competitiveness. The withdrawals from the NRF will be deposited into the Consolidated Fund to form part of the financing streams for the annual budget, along with loans and tax and non-tax revenues. Government will then determine its development priorities, based on the costed Green State Development Strategy (GSDS), and the available income envelope which, from 2020, will consist of petroleum revenues, loans, grants, tax and non-tax revenues. Priority will be placed on catalytic investments to transform communities, regions and the country as a whole, within the context of the measureable targets, identified within the GSDS. It should be noted that notwithstanding the aforementioned, withdrawals from the Natural Resource Fund cannot exceed the amount approved by Parliament. In addition to withdrawals from the NRF being deposited into the Consolidated Fund to finance development priorities, the only further drawdowns that can be made would be for Petroleum Tax Refunds, when necessary.
DEPOSITS Revenues deposited into the NRF will include royalties due and payable by the holder of a Petroleum Licence; the Government’s share of profit oil; the Government’s share of profit gas; any petroleum income tax, additional profits tax or any other future tax levied on the profits of companies or individuals undertaking Petroleum Activities; any signature bonus, discovery bonus, production bonus or other bonus related to Petroleum Activities or the award of a Petroleum Licence; any other current or future fiscal instrument levied solely or mainly on companies or individuals involved in Petroleum Activities; and any revenue or profits from a National Oil Company. Petroleum Revenues would exclude the value added tax collected on inputs or outputs from Petroleum Activities; customs duties collected on inputs into Petroleum Activities; fees collected by the Petroleum Commission;
withholding tax on payments made to contractors by companies or individuals undertaking Petroleum Activities and the total return from investments of the NRF which would be retained by the Fund. Management of the Natural Resource Fund falls directly under the Ministry of Finance. According to the ‘green’ paper, Parliament will pass the NRFA, thereby approving the budget which would include the annual withdrawal from the Annual Report. “The Ministry of Finance would be responsible for overall management of the NRF, including requested withdrawal in the Annual Budget Proposal; calculating the Fiscally Sustainable Amount; drafting the Investment Mandate; entering into the Operational Agreement with the Bank of Guyana and drafting the Annual Report and reporting on the NRF through the Annual Budget.” COMMITTEE Additionally, a Sovereign Investment Committee would be responsible for advising the Minister of Finance on the Investment Mandate and would consist of the following seven members appointed by the minister: A representative of the Minister of Finance; an ex-officio representative nominated by the Minister of Natural Resources; an ex-officio representative nominated by the Governor of the Bank of Guyana; a representative nominated by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Guyana; a representative nominated by the Guyana Association of Bankers; a representative nominated by the Leader of the Opposition; and the Senior Investment Adviser and Analyst. Members of the Committee would be persons with substantial experience, training and expertise in financial investments and financial portfolio management; and a minimum of a post graduate degree from a reputable university in the discipline of finance or economics, or an equivalent professional qualification, the ‘green’ paper states. The Senior Investment Adviser and Analyst would be recruited via international open tender and would be responsible for assisting the minister to draft the Investment Mandate; assisting the Minister report and monitor the financial performance of the Natural Resource Fund; supporting the Sovereign Investment Committee undertake its functions; and undertaking financial modeling showing the expected total return and risk of different allocations of the Natural Resource Fund across different Eligible Asset Classes. The Bank of Guyana (BOG) would serve as the operational manager of the fund and is expected to manage it in accordance with the operational agreement and investment mandate. As such, the BOG is required to draft quarterly reports and annual accounts, procure private managers, and draft management agreements and investment instructions. Those private managers are expected to manage the overall investment portfolio in accordance with the management agreement and investment instructions. The Ministry of Finance will be required to lay an annual report in the Parliament each fiscal year and provide further reporting through the annual budget process which will include additional documentation. This process seeks to ensure that all petroleum revenues are accounted for. It is expected that the NRF would be operated in a transparent manner and fully conform to the Santiago Principles.
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Guyana Amazon Warriors begin CPL title hunt against St Kitts and Nevis Patriots By Rajiv Bisnauth
YEAR’S wait is over and Guyana’s first leg of the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL), the Biggest Party in Sport, will bowl off this evening at the Guyana National Stadium. At 18:00hrs, a star-studded Guyana Amazon Warriors will meet St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in what is expected to be a thrilling affair, as the Warriors will be looking to protect home territory. While, excitement is reaching fever pitch across the country, Guyana Amazon Warriors will be fighting it out to win their first CPL title. The Warriors, three-time finalists in the CPL will look to complete the journey this season with their new-look team, led by Pakistani Shoaib Malik. However, the task ahead will be no easy one. At a pre-match press conference yesterday at the Guyana Marriott Hotel, Georgetown, both Malik and head coach Johan Botha expressed satisfaction re the preparation ahead of the tournament. Malik, a veteran of 103 T20 internationals and 264 ODIs, pointed out that there is no pressure in the Warriors camp because of the wide variety of options at their disposal. He further mentioned that a lot will depend on the senior players as well as the local superstars. Malik had previously represented the Barbados Tridents in the last five editions of the tournament, has high expectations of Shimron Hetmyer and Sherfane Rutherford. Meanwhile, Patriots have only played in three of the five years of the Hero CPL and on two of those occasions they finished in cellar spot.
They remodelled their squad in 2017, most notably signing marquee player Chris Gayle, who captained them to the final where they lost to Trinbago Knight Riders. Both head coach Donavon Miller and West Indies T20 captain Carlos Brathwaite believed that the Warriors cannot be taken lightly. The three-time beaten finalists have made just one alteration to their squad. Chris Green has replaced Cameron Delport for the first four matches of the tournament. Green has played 27 Twenty20 matches and has scored 149 runs and taken 22 wickets. He has played for Sydney Thunder at the Big Bash in Australia and the Lahore Qalanders at the Pakistan Super League. Delport will be unavailable until August 17. On the other hand, last year’s beaten finalists have also made three changes: Anton Devcich has come in for Tabraiz Shamsi, Hayden Walsh Jr replaces Graeme Cremer, while most recently, Rassie van der Dussan will cover for Sandeep Lamichhane from August 26. New Zealander Devcich will be replacing Tabraiz Shamsi who will now be with South Africa on their tour of Sri Lanka and then will be representing South Africa-A until the end of August. Devcich, a 32-year-old spin bowling all-rounder, has previous experience with the CPL having played for the Trinbago Knight Riders in 2016. Van der Dussen is an explosive batsman who has three T20 hundreds in 65 matches for the Johannesburg franchise. The full squads read: Guyana Amazon Warriors: Shoaib Malik, Sohail Tanvir, Chadwick Walton, Chris Green, Rayad Emrit, Imran Tahir, Jason Mohmmed, Luke Ronchi, Veerasammy Permaul, Roshan Primus, Shimron Hetmyer, Devendra Bishoo, Sherfane Rutherford, Romario Shepherd, Keemo Paul, Saurabh Netravalkar and Akshaya Persaud. St Kitts and Nevis Patriots: Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Ben Cutting, Carlos Brathwaite, Mahmudullah, Anton Devcich, Tom Cooper, Sheldon Cottrell, Brandon King, Devon Thomas, Hayden Walsh Jr, Fabian Allen, Sandeep Lamichhane, Shamarh Brooks, Jeremiah Louis, Alzarri Joseph, Ibrahim Khaleel and Glen Javelle.
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Berbice are OMSCC Over-40 Inter-county winners … Five-time defending champions Essequibo dethroned
By Frederick Halley
ORONTO, Canada – It’s been a golden past few weeks for Berbice cricket teams in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). They have been unstoppable in the Damodar Daesrath-organised white ball Inter-county tournament and came out top in the round-arm version, played under the auspices of the Ontario Roundarm Softball Cricket Association (ORSCA) last Sunday. In another superb performance Berbice also emerged winners of the Ontario Masters Softball Cricket Clubs (OMSCC) Inter-county Over-40 tournament, played Sunday at Ashtonbee Reservoir, thereby ending the five-year consecutive unprecedented winning streak of defending champions Essequibo. Berbice’s seven-wicket victory over the Ontario Masters All Stars was engineered by another top-notch batting performance by ‘Mr Consistent’ Hemnarine Chattergoon who continues to have a dream season in the various leagues. The former Guyana and West Indies Under-19 batsman showed his class at the top of the order with a top score of 43, setting the stage for Troy Gobin and Munniram Karran to consolidate the middle-order. Chattergoon struck three sixes and two fours in his fine knock but Berbice were still shakily placed at 79 for three in the ninth over, needing exactly 79 to overhaul All Stars 157 for nine in their allotted 20 overs. However, any thoughts the All Stars combination had of lifting the winning trophy were
thwarted by Gobin, also a former Guyana Under-19 player, and Karran. The experienced pair ensured there were no further alarms as victory was achieved in 18.5 overs with Gobin unbeaten on 41 and Karran 30. Gobin’s innings included three sixes and a four while Karran slammed four fours. The wickets were shared by Anil Mahadeo (one for 17), Ryan Beepat (one for 23) and skipper Uuniss Yusuf (one for 27). Earlier, All Stars were well-placed at 95 for two in the first 10 overs but faltered badly in the final 10, adding a mere 53 runs while losing seven wickets in the process. Former national player Shivnauth (47) played some classical off-side drives while counting seven fours and two sixes in a masterful display but once he was dismissed, the rest of the batting folded. Karran crowned a fine match with figures of two for 25 while Shazam Baksh took two for 27. In semi-final action, Berbice easily defeated Demerara while All Stars made light work of the much-vaunted Essequibo side who were aiming for their sixth consecutive title. Openers Aftab Shansudeen (72 with six fours and a six) and Chattergoon (66 with five fours and four sixes) led Berbice to a formidable 210 for four in their allotted 20 overs. Demerara could muster only 115 in reply, going down by 95 runs. Led by a top score of 52 (four fours and four sixes) from Mahendranauth ‘Bobby’ Parasnauth, 31 from Seeram, 28 from Lloyd Ruplall and 21 from Yusuf, All Stars reached a challenging 175 all out
The triumphant Berbice team following their victory over the Ontario Masters All Stars
in 19.3 overs. Amernauth Sukhoo claimed four for 16, Robert Lall two for 23 and Abdool Azeez two for 24. Essequibo were rolled over for 123 in 19.3 overs with Imam Gafoor (31) and skipper Ravendra Mandolall (17) being the principal scorers. Suren Persaud took three for 19 and Yusuf two for six. Essequibo had some measure of consolation when they defeated Demerara in the third place playoff. At the presentation ceremony, Chattergoon was awarded the Most Valuable Player prize as well as the player with the highest score on the winning team while Parasnauth copped the MVP for the losing team and Seeram the trophy for highest score.
Berbice MVP Hemanrine Chattergoon collects his trophy from a member of the Khan family.
The tournament was once again played in honour of the late Samad, Cecelia and Simon Khan while this year’s championship trophy was spon-
sored by Dr Rudy Singh and his brother Dr Raj Singh. Among the other sponsors were the Khans family, Nirad Lall, Nasser Baksh,
Raymond Seecharran (First Class Printing), Nari Khan, Charlie Yakoob, Errol Bodhoo, All Trade Rentals, Ramesh and Roger Sunich (Trophy Stall).
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Ben Stokes was main aggressor Sri Lanka edge South Africa by three runs in rain-affected run-fest in night club fight, court hears
NGLAND cricketer Ben Stokes was the “main aggressor” in a fight outside a nightclub, a court has heard. The Durham all-rounder is one of three men accused of fighting in Bristol on September 25. Bristol Crown Court previously heard Ryan Ali, 28, and Ryan Hale, 27, were knocked unconscious by 27-year-old Stokes, who denies affray. Ali and Hale have also pleaded not guilty to affray and are on trial alongside the cricketer. Witness Mark Spure, an off-duty police community support officer (PCSO), said that after he left Mbargo nightclub he spotted “three to five” people involved in a “scuffle” on a nearby street. In a statement, Spure said he had tried to separate Stokes and Ali, with the others continuing to row behind him. “The individual seemed to be the main aggressor or was progressing forward trying to get to another individual,” he told the court. “In my statement I describe him as a gentleman with ginger or light brown hair. He had a green T-shirt on.” Ali “seemed to be trying to back away or get away from the situation” before he was punched by Stokes, he added. Spure told the court he had tried to move Ali out of the road, as there were passing cars, but he was “completely unable to move”. The jury heard he then identified Stokes to police officers, who arrested the cricketer.
Stokes first hit Hale, knocking him to the ground, before rendering Ali unconscious in the punch seen by the PCSO, jurors have been told.
males were because I was unable to identify them,” PC Alway said. “From the moment I approached Stokes he calmed down and he was completely
Ben Stokes leaves Bristol Crown Court after the third day of trial.
Ali is alleged to have threatened Stokes’ England teammate Alex Hales with a bottle during the altercation, while it is claimed Hale broke off a metal pole from a nearby road sign after being allegedly knocked out by Stokes.
compliant with me.” The court heard that when PC Alway said to Stokes “a guy over there was covered in blood and I’ve been told you punched him”, he replied “because he was abusing my two friends for being gay”.
‘SQUARING UP’ The jury heard Ali had suffered a fractured left eye socket, a cracked tooth and cuts and bruises, while Hale suffered bruising and a cut to his forehead. Footage from a body camera worn by PC Stacey Alway, who arrested Stokes, was shown to the jury. She told the court the cricketer had been “squaring up” to a group of men at the side of the road as she approached them. “I didn’t know who these
IMAGE CAPTION The fight took place after Stokes was turned away from Mbargo nightclub, the court heard Nottinghamshire batsman Hales told PC Alway he had not seen the alleged fight, the court was told. “I came after you guys turned up,” he told her. After Stokes had been put in a police car and PC Alway told Hales to leave, he replied: “I feel bad. He’s my best friend. I saw him after everything happened.”
In a statement Stokes gave to police after he had been arrested, he said he had acted in self-defence when he punched Ali and Hale, after seeing them verbally abuse two gay men, Kai Barry and William O’Connor. ‘DEFEND MYSELF’ “These men were speaking to the gay guys in what I would call a harsh and abusive way,” the statement said. “It was homophobic in nature. It wasn’t at all like banter. “I took exception and said ‘leave it out’.” Stokes told police Ali approached him while holding a bottle and he believed he was going to be assaulted. He said the pair “scuffled” before Hale grabbed and pulled him. “I felt the need to defend myself. I felt I was going to be attacked. “I didn’t feel I had an option to leave in the heat of the situation.” In a second statement given to police, Stokes said he did not mimic Barry and O’Connor and had not flicked a cigarette butt at them. He told detectives he witnessed Ali and Hale verbally abusing the two gay men. When Ali was interviewed by police, he denied saying anything homophobic to O’Connor or Barry. “No, I wouldn’t do that, no,” he said. Stokes, of Castle Eden, Durham; Ali, of Bristol; and Hale, of Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol all deny a joint charge of affray. (BBC Sport) The trial continues.
Tendulkar’s message to Kolhi: Never be satisfied By Andrew Miller
IRAT Kohli has been urged by Sachin Tendulkar to keep his focus and let his “heart guide the way”, after his brilliant batting display in last week’s first Test fell short of delivering an Indian victory at Edgbaston. In a match in which no other Indian player reached a half-century, Kohli made a brilliant 149 in the first innings, before leading his team’s push towards their victory target of 194 with a further 51 in the second. However, his dismissal on the fourth and final morning proved to be the defining moment of the match, and in the wake of India’s 31-run defeat, Kohli came under fire in the media - most notably from the former India captain Sunil Gavaskar, for failing to recognise that his lesser team-mates needed more practice than he did. Nevertheless, Kohli’s efforts at Edgbaston lifted him above Steve Smith to the top of the ICC Test batting rankings. It was the first time in his career that he had attained the No. 1 ranking, and the first time that any Indian batsman had achieved the feat since Ten-
dulkar himself in 2011. “I would say, just continue, he’s doing a fantastic job so just continue,” Tendulkar told ESPNcricinfo. “Don’t worry about what’s happening around you, keep your focus on what you want to achieve, and let your heart guide the way. “Along the way there will be plenty of things said and done, but eventually, if you are passionate about what you want in life, then the results will invariably follow.” Speaking at the launch of the Tendulkar Middlesex Global Academy in North London, Tendulkar acknowledged that - in spite of the disappointment of the final result - Kohli deserved to be immensely proud of his personal achievement at Edgbaston, in particular the manner in which he atoned for his disappointing maiden tour of England in 2014 with a century at the first opportunity. However, he also warned that there could be no resting on any laurels for Kohli, now that he has scored that maiden Test hundred in England, one of the clear goals of his career. “I can tell you from my own experience, however many runs you score they are never enough,” Tendulkar said. “You want more
runs, and that is the case with Virat. However many runs he scores, it will never be enough for him. “The downfall starts when you are satisfied. It’s nice to be happy, but never be satisfied when you are a batsman. Bowlers can only get ten wickets, but batters can go on and go, so don’t be satisfied, just be happy.” The circumstances of Kohli’s maiden century in England were far removed from those of Tendulkar’s, way back in 1990, when as a 17-year-old, he scored his first Test hundred against an opponent to save the second Test at Old Trafford and win the Manof-the-Match award. “Until then I hadn’t attended a press conference, so everyone in the dressing room was saying they are going to grill you!” he recalled. “I was most scared, but it wasn’t that bad, everyone was very friendly. But there was one question, ‘will you open the bottle of champagne?’, and I was only 17, so I said no way, I’m not going to do that now!” There will be no-one quite as young as Tendulkar was back then when England and India reconvene at Lord’s this week for the second Test. However,
with the 20-year-old Sam Curran producing a match-winning all-round performance at Edgbaston, and Surrey’s Ollie Pope in line for his Test debut at the same age this week, the question of when to blood young players is once again a hot topic. Tendulkar, however, is unequivocal. “If somebody is good enough, they should play for their country, it’s as simple as that,” he said. “Age shouldn’t be a criteria. “When I played my first game (against Pakistan in 198990), I was only 16, and in a way it helped,” he added. “I didn’t know what it was like to face Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Abdul Qadir, possibly the best bowling attack in the world. “You are fearless; you only see one side of the coin. With experience and maturity you start to see the other side of the coin as well, and you learn to balance things out. “That is the age when you only go out and give your best, and that is what I would ask both these guys to go out and do. Enjoy the game because there will be tough moments, but that is what you practise for, that is what you live for.” (ESPNCricinfo).
RI Lanka regained a measure of pride in the fourth ODI, holding their nerve to defeat South Africa by three runs in a thrilling rain-affected encounter yesterday. The Proteas came into this clash holding an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series, but the tourists were undone as they fell just short under the leadership of stand-in captain Quinton de Kock. Kusal Perera, Dasun Shanaka and Thisara Perera all starred with the bat for the home side, clubbing rapid fifties - Shanaka, on his first ODI appearance in almost two years, the standout with four fours and five sixes in a 34-ball 65 that propelled Sri Lanka to 306-7 from just 39 overs. A lengthy shower in the early stages of the second innings left South Africa needing 191 from 21 overs - an equation reduced to eight from the last with David Miller on strike but with only two wickets in hand. Suranga Lakmal struck the decisive blow, bowling Miller via an inside edge as the Proteas could only reach 187-9 to leave the Kandy crowd jubilant. Following a couple of early rain delays, Sri Lanka made steady progress with openers Niroshan Dickwella (34) and Upul Tharanga (36) getting starts but at below a run a ball. Kusal added some impetus, crunching six fours and a pair of maximums en route to a 32-ball 51 before his fun was ended by JP Duminy. But it was his dismissal that brought Thisara and Shanaka together, the pair hammering 109 in 11.1 overs as the Proteas lost their way at the death - the latter taking 20 from five deliveries in the penultimate set of six bowled by ODI debutant Junior Dala. Thisara (51 not out from 45) reached his half-century in the final over and after South Africa’s reply was halted just two overs in, de Kock perished from the sixth ball following the resumption, missing a Lakmal full toss. Hashim Amla (40) and Duminy (38) set the foundation for the chase with a 57-stand, ended when the former skewed Akila Dananjaya to backward point. Duminy was looking dangerous, having clubbed three fours and two sixes before he was superbly run-out by Shanaka aiming at one stump. Miller (21 off 17) and Keshav Maharaj (17 from 14) were South Africa’s last vestiges of hope, and when both departed in the space of three balls late in the piece, Sri Lanka were able to celebrate avoiding a whitewash.
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GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
BCB honours Phillips, Hazel and Hetmyer
The BCB executives pose with Lennox Phillips and Mortimer George.
HE Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) last Thursday honoured former presidents Lennox Phillips, Ancel Hazel and Shimron Hetmyer. Both Phillips and Hazel were presented with the board’s highest award, ‘The Hero Award of Excellence’ at a cocktail reception, organised by former secretary of the BCB, Mortimer George, and his wife at their Sheet Anchor Village home, The West Indies middle-order batsman was honoured for his brilliant One-day international hundred (125) against Bangladesh recently. The former secretary told the attentive audience, that Phillips and Hazel were dedicated and honest administrators who worked hard to gain respect and recognition for Berbice Cricket. The duo, along with George and the late Leslie Amsterdam, were in charge of Berbice cricket when five ODIs were played in the county and they also played major roles in the developmental works at the Albion Cricket Ground. They were also responsible
The BCB vice-president Qualis Wynter honours Shimron Hetmyer.
for hosting a team from Pakistan in the 1970s. The county, during that period, produced players such as Alvin Kallicharran, Leonard Baichan, Sew Shivnarine, Milton Pydana, Leslaine Lambert, Tyrone and Romain Etwaroo among numerous others. Phillips stated that serving Berbice cricket was the highlight of his life and urged the current executives to always put cricket in front of their personal ambition. He congratulated the Hilbert Foster-led administration for the outstanding work. President of the BCB, Hilbert Foster, expressed gratitude to the two former presidents for their services to Berbice cricket and most importantly for being positive role models to the present BCB executives. The presentation to Hetmyer took place at the Albion ground. Foster congratulated Hetmyer for his brilliant innings and told the West Indies batsman that the entire county was proud of him. He urged him to always be a perfect ambassador for the younger generation.
Fox Sports Australia joins forces with CPL
ORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) – Australian cricket fans will be able to view all 34 games being played in the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) thanks to a partnership with Fox Sports Australia. The partnership between CPL and Fox Sports Australia was announced on Tuesday and is for a four-year period. Starting yesterday when Australian David Warner turned out for the St Lucia Stars in the opening match against the Trinbago Knight Riders, FOX Sports will provide exclusive live, advertisement free, HD coverage of all 34 games. A number of Aussies will feature in the twomonth competition, with Warner joined by Steve Smith playing for the Barbados Tridents, Chris Lynn, Ben Cutting and Chris Green. Pete Russell, Chief Operating Officer of the Hero CPL, said he was very excited about the new deal. “We are delighted to have signed a long-term commitment with FOX Sports Australia. It is exciting for the Hero CPL to be partnering with a broadcaster whose reputation for delivering high-quality cricket coverage is globally recognised. So we are thrilled that FOX Sports will be our home for the next four years,” Russell said. Head of FOX Sports, Peter Campbell, said he was pleased to add the CPL to the station’s growing number of cricket tournaments. “Fans love the excitement and action the T20 format delivers. And with so many Aussies competing in this year’s Hero CPL including Steve Smith and Dave Warner, there is going to be plenty of interest. “The tournament adds to our extensive line-up of the best local and international cricket as we gear up to deliver a massive summer of action. Every Men’s Test, ODI, T20 and BBL match played in Australia, plus more women’s cricket will be shown live, with no ad-breaks, during play on a dedicated channel — FOX Cricket,” Campbell noted.
Chelsea sign Athletic Bilbao goalkeeper in world record deal
HELSEA have signed Kepa Arrizabalaga from Athletic Bilbao for £71m the highest fee ever paid for a goalkeeper, and a club record transfer. Kepa, 23, arrives at Stamford Bridge after a release clause in his contract was met, with the deal surpassing Alisson’s £66.8m move to Liverpool. He has signed a seven-year contract at the club and replaces Thibaut Courtois, who is set to join Real Madrid. Kepa is Spain’s number two behind Manchester United’s David de Gea. He has spent the past two seasons in Athletic’s first team,
making 53 La Liga appearances, and has one international cap. The fee Chelsea have paid surpasses the £60m they spent on Spanish striker Alvaro Morata in July 2017. “So many things attracted me to the club - all the titles the club has won, the other players, the city, the English Premier League,” Kepa said. “It’s an accumulation of things, and I am very glad Chelsea has decided to trust me and to take me in as well.” In January, Kepa signed a new long-term contract until 2025, amid interest from Real Madrid. He is the second major key
player to leave the club this year, after Manchester City signed French defender Aymeric Laporte for £57m in January.
Kepa made 53 La Liga appearances for Athletic Bilbao
A WORLD RECORD - FOR 20 DAYS Before Alisson moved from Roma to Liverpool in July, Gianluigi Buffon had spent 17 years as the most expensive goalkeeper in world football. The 40-year-old Italian, who this summer left Juventus to join Paris St-Germain, was purchased for 53m euros by Juve from Parma on 3 July 2001. While that record stood for 6,225 days, the fee paid for Alisson was surpassed within 20 days. (BBC Sport)
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Guyana seek to end CONCACAF U15 Second Test starts today at Lord’s Kohli believes India Girls match on a winning note today close to beating England … Technical staff impressed by progress made
S the CONCACAF U15 Girls Championship continues at the IMG Academy, Florida, USA, Guyana will seek to end their participation on a winning note as the team prepare for their final group match against The Bahamas today at 11:00hrs. This was the sentiment expressed by Paul Beresford, Guyana Football Federation (GFF) International Women’s Coordinator following the team’s 2-0 defeat to the Cayman Islands on Monday. “The girls are putting in all the effort and doing everything we’ve asked of them and more and they deserve to have better results in the last two matches of the tournament,” said Beresford. “We again outshot our opponents in the match against the Cayman Islands hitting the post four times but were unable to get a good bounce. Additionally, the Guyana-based and the international-based players are bonding very well and working together as a unit. We know that as they play more games they will get
better. We play the Bahamas today and feel that may be our breakout game of the tournament.”
Island team who were very disciplined. Guyana made some tactical adjustments to their style
opportunities but again could not capitalise on their chances, the half ended 0-0. A defensive lapse early in
Guyana U15 Girls squad
In recapping the match against the Cayman Islands, Beresford said he was pleased with the team’s performance: “The team showed great improvement from their performance against a Cayman
of play that worked to perfection in the first half. The Cayman Islands team were frustrated and did not threaten the Guyana net much in the half. Guyana created many
the second half resulted in a goal for Cayman.” The playoff will begin on August 10, following the group qualifiers, with the final set for August 13 at 11:00hrs.
T&T trounce Guyana inside two days, Bishop grabs nine wickets for Barbados
INGSTOWN, St Vincent (CMC) Defending champions Trinidad and Tobago trounced early leaders Guyana by nine wickets inside two days, while Barbados’ Joshua Bishop grabbed a historic nine-wicket haul to put Barbados in control against the Leeward Islands after the second day of play in the Regional Under-19 Championships here yesterday. Resuming from their overnight score of 51 for four, T&T were eventually dismissed for 102, two runs shy of Guyana’s first innings
NDIA captain Virat Kohli believes his team are close to beating England as they prepare for the second Test of the five-match series at Lord’s. The visitors fell to a 31run defeat in an enthralling first Test, despite Kohli’s first century in England.
total. Kevin Sinclair was the top bowler for Guyana, taking 5-42, while Ashmed Nedd took 3-34. In their second innings, Guyana found themselves in early trouble, slipping to 28 for three. However, through the efforts of Joshua Persuad who made 71 and Baskar Yadram (26), Guyana recovered to 86-3. But Justyn Gangoo triggered a middle-order collapse, which saw Guyana lose four wickets for just 28 runs and their last seven wickets for 51 runs. Gangoo finished with
the impressive figures of 5-27 and he was ably assisted by Nathaniel McDavid (3-35) and Navin Bidaisee (2-40). Chasing 139 for victory, T&T lost the early wicket of Bidaisee, but it was oneway traffic from thereon as Leonardo Julien who finished unbeaten on 87 not out and Cephas Cooper 41 not out shared an unbroken partnership of 119 to steer T&T to victory.
CRICKET QUIZ CORNER (Thursday July 12, 2018)
CRICKET QUIZ CORNER (Thursday July 12, 2018) COMPLIMENTS OF THE TROPHY STALL-Bourda Market & The City Mall (Tel: 225-9230) & CUMMINGS ELECTRICAL COMPANY LTD-83 Garnett Street, Campbellville, Georgetown (Tel: 225-6158) Answers to yesterday’s quiz: (1) Shoaib Malik (2) Johan Botha Today’s Quiz: (1) What has been the result of the first game of Hero CPL this season? (2) Who was voted Man of the Match in the first game of Hero CPL 2018? ANSWERS IN TOMORROW’S ISSUE
Barbados are in prime position to push for victory against the Leeward Islands thanks to Bishop’s best-ever bowling figures of 9-70. Spinner Camarie Boyce picked up the wicket of Jemuel Cabey to deny a Bishop whitewash as the Leewards fell 10 runs short of Barba-
dos’ first-innings total of 249, being dismissed for 239. Joshua Grant was the mainstay of their innings, scoring an unbeaten 89. Barbados were then dismissed for 239 in their second innings, setting the Leewards 249 for victory. Opening bowler Matthew Forde then claimed three quick wickets before the end of play as the Leewards limped to 10-3, still requiring another 239 runs. Jamaica are also on course for victory against the Windward Islands, as they only require another 33 runs heading into today’s final day. Led by half-centuries from Bryan Brown who hit the top score of 73 and Ricardo McIntosh (64), Jamaica were able to achieve a 79-run first-innings lead, being eventually dismissed for 263 runs. Sanjay Brown then took five wickets to help limit the Windwards to just 125 in their second innings, leaving Jamaica to score just 46 for victory. Jamaica closed on 13 for two and are heavy favourites to complete victory tomorrow.
India, the top-ranked Test side, won by 95 runs on their last appearance at Lord’s four years ago. “It’s not like we’re getting rolled over - every Test match that we’re playing is competitive,” Kohli said. “I feel as a team we’re just about there. We’re in the zone where we’re very positive.” India have not won a Test series in England since 2007. Kohli top-scored in both
India innings at Edgbaston with 149 and 51, but the next biggest contribution was Shikhar Dhawan’s first-innings 26. “Being in the right mindset is a very individual thing,” Kohli said. “Getting to captain the country, I feel, is an honour and I definitely leave no stones unturned when it comes to that.” India could field two spinners at Lord’s, given the recent hot weather, and Ravichandran Ashwin took 4-62 and 3-59 at Edgbaston. Wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav, who initially impressed in the one-day series against England, and leftarm all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja are the most likely to be brought into the final XI. “The pitch is going to be, I think, an all-round wicket,” Kohli added. “When the wicket wears off, the spinners can come into play as well. It’s a tempting thought to field two spinners but we will have to take a call on that depending on the team balance. “It’s definitely in contention.” (BBC Sport)
Shabazz quits as TT women’s head coach
Jamaal Shabazz has stepped down as head coach of the women’s national football team
ORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) – Following a disappointing performance by the Trinidad and Tobago women’s national team at last month’s Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games in Colombia, head coach Jamaal Shabazz has resigned. His resignation comes just 13 months after he replaced Italian Carolina Morace at the helm of the local women’s programme. In a letter addressed to general secretary of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association, Justin Latapy-George, on Wednesday, Shabazz said he was preparing for a different role. After careful consideration of all the factors surrounding what is required for
this team to go forward, it is in the best interest of the team and the country, that I step aside and allow for someone who can bring more to the table at this point,” he wrote in the letter. “A major part of my life has been given to develop the women’s game as a coach. Now I think Allah has a different role for me to play in the development of the game locally and regionally,” he further added. The Women Soca Warriors finished fourth at the CAC Games, but managed just one draw and suffered three losses from their four outings. Shabazz also served as head coach for the Women’s National Under-17, Under-20 and senior teams during that period.
GUYANA CHRONICLE Thursday, August 9, 2018
Boyce and Jefford Classic 2018 ready to excite Linden … Police will not underestimate the other teams this weekend
RECORD 168 athletes from eight local clubs are set to touch down at the Mackenzie Sports Club in Linden this weekend, where the ninth edition of the Boyce and Jefford Classic is set to bring a lot of excitement to the mining town. This was revealed at the event’s launch yesterday in the Boardroom of the Headquarters of Ansa McAl Trading Limited, one of the event’s leading sponsors of the Classic. Of the eight clubs, the best will walk away with $700 000, second-place will take $400 000, while there will be $250000 for third and $150 000 for fourth. Meanwhile, defending champions, the Police Progressive Athletics Club will not be underestimating any of the competitors, this weekend, when they come out seeking their fifth consecutive, and seventh overall, title at the event. However, notwithstanding their longstanding run as the most successful team at the Classic, they are still wary of other teams looking to take them down. “We’re prepared for the challenge from the rest of clubs. I always see any opponent as a threat because no one is going to
The head table at yesterday’s launch, from left, Boyce and Jefford coordinator Mark Scott, Ansa McAl representative Errol Nelson, and Boyce and Jefford co-chairmen Edison Jefford and Colin Boyce
The winning Police team from last year’s Boyce and Jefford Classic
come there to lose, they come to win. So when we prepare ourselves. “We’re not just looking at Guyana Defence Force (GDF), we’re looking at every club that will be participating because there’s no club that’s going to just sit back being beaten all the time and won’t prepare to someday get to the top,” said team coach Lyndon Wilson. So far Police’s closest challenge has come from the GDF team, who are yet to land a title at the annual event. Always one of the most
populated team at the competition, Police will be continuing their strategy of maximising participation with athletes in each event. “Basically the police team are not focusing on just one area, we’re focusing all around. When we go out there we try to perform at our best and the first thing is to ensure that we get at least three athletes in each event. And it’s not only getting them in the events but ensuring that they reach the finals and then we can start counting our points,” Wilson expressed. According to Wilson, the players have been selected and working together for some weeks now, based on their performance at the recently concluded Guyana Police Force Swimming and Athletics Championships, and he is very happy with what he has been seeing from his athletes. “Coming off Police Sports I think my athletes are in good shape because only two weeks ago they were in competition and we had an opportunity to judge and pick our team; so for me we’re pleased with where the athletes are and where they will be for Boyce and Jefford this weekend,” he said.
Trophy Stall on board Nand Persaud Sprint Classic Horse race meet
HE leading trophy and engraving entity in Guyana, the Trophy Stall of Bourda Market, continues to make good on its many promises. Through its Managing Director, Ramesh Sunich, Trophy Stall has made a significant contribution to the Nand Persaud ‘Karibee Rice’ Mega Sprint Classic Horse Race meet which is scheduled for this Sunday (August 12). The event, which is organised by the Company’s Sky Plus Promotion Group, is set for the company’s No.36 Village, Macedonia Estate, Corentyne, Berbice racing facility.
The Trophy Stall has donated the Champion Jockey and Champion Trainer trophies along with other incentives for other outstanding participants on the day. There are seven races carded with over $4M in cash up for grabs, along with trophies and other incentives for the taking. The event which is being organised by the Company Sky Plus Promotion Group will see the horses run in a straight line on Guyana’s only grass track. So far over 40 horses have taken entry and a number of other sponsors are on board. Among them are Ansa McAl through STAG Beer, Republic
Mrs Devi Sunich, wife of Trophy Stall Managing Director Ramesh Sunich, displays some of the trophies that will be up for grabs.
Bank, Jumbo Jet Auto Sales, NTN, Prem’s Auto, Retired Jockey Abdul Latiff, businessmen Deo Persaud, Jaikaran Seegobin and Jaikishan Persaud. The feature event is for animals Classified D and Lower over four furlongs for a winning purse of $400 000 and trophy. This race will see the likes of ‘TNT’ and ‘Isn’t She Charming’ battle for the attractive purse. The other events are for horses Classified H and Lower for a take-home prize of $260 000 and trophy over 3 furlongs. The race for 3-year-old animals is for a winning take of $200 000 and trophy, also
over 3 furlongs. The event for 2-year-old animals has a winning purse of $200 000 and trophy over 4 furlongs. The K Class and Lower animals will have at stake a first prize of $140 000 and trophy over 3 furlongs. There is an event for male animals classified L and Lower over 4 furlongs for a winner’s purse of $100 000 and trophy. The L class event for female horses over 3 furlongs also has a first prize of $100 000 and trophy. Race time is 12:00hrs and there will be lots of attractions for the families and children. An action-packed day of racing is anticipated.
Guyana’s first leg of Hero CPL bowls off tonight
Guyana Amazon Warriors begin CPL title hunt against St Kitts and Nevis Patriots
Guyana Amazon Warriors head coach Johan Botha makes a point at yesterday’s pre-match press conference. He shared the head table with Shoaib Malik, Donavon Miller and West Indies T20 captain Carlos Brathwaite.
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Shoaib Malik and West Indies T20 captain Carlos Brathwaite
KFC gives away over 400 tickets to CPL fans Former world 400m hurdles champion Nicholas Bett dies in car crash, aged 28
Some of the GAW players with their fans HE local Kentucky KFC, Livasti Bhooplall, told as the tournament progresses F r i e d C h i c k e n the Chronicle Sport that and Guyana gets ready to host (KFC) franchise has KFC is an official sponsor two playoff matches and the decided to add to the for CPL and has an ongoing final two matches before the Caribbean Premier League promotion to giveaway free playoffs, persons can expect (CPL) fever in Guyana by tickets to customers but the to meet more players through giving away over 400 tickets franchise also wanted to KFC - and win more tickets! and giving fans a chance to provide fans an opportunity She promised, “Come Sepmeet some of the players. to interact with the players. tember, we will have (players Yesterday, fans were able “We gave away 400 tickets from) Jamaica and Trinidad to meet some of the cricketers already,” Bhooplall highlight- for persons to meet and we from the Guyana Amazon ed and explained that these will have lots of giveaways for Warriors (GAW) at the KFC were all tickets to the premier tickets for every game.” Vlissengen Road outlet Green Stand at the Guyana The CPL kicked off last Newcomer and Australian National Stadium, Providence. night with the Trinbago all-rounder, Chris Green and Every single person who Knight Riders vs St Lucia national players: Devendra purchased KFC’s 20-piece Stars and will continue toBishoo, Romario Shepherd and meal got free tickets for the night with the first home Sherfane Rutherford spent one matches and yesterday, cer- game: The Guyana Amazon hour with their fans, as KFC tain purchases entitled cus- Warriors vs the St Kitts and gave away more tickets. tomers to receive tickets. Nevis Patriots. (Vishani Marketing Manager of According to Bhooplall, Ragobeer)
Nicholas Bett celebrates his historic gold at the 2015 World Championshi
HE Kenyan former world 400m hurdles champion Nicholas Bett has died in a car accident at the age of 28. Bett was involved in an accident in Nandi, north-west Kenya, a day after returning from the Continental Championships in Nigeria. A tweet from Athletics Kenya confirmed the news yesterday morning. “We regret to learn of the sudden demise of one of our top athletes, the 2015 400m Hurdles World Champion #NicholasKiplagatBett who represented Kenya in the just concluded Africa Championships. Our condolences to his family and the entire athletics fraternity,” it read. Bett became the first Kenyan to win a gold medal in a distance shorter than 800m when he triumphed in the 400m hurdles at the World Championships in Beijing in 2015. He was also twice an African Championship medallist, and his twin brother Haron Koech is also a 400m hurdler. (Guardian Sport)
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THURSDAY, AUGUST 9, 2018