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WEDNESDAY 15th January, 2020

No.105880

Nine to contest general elections PAGE

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‘No salary hike for 15 President’

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…Finance Ministry slams mischievous report on PPP blog

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Dual citizen Bandhu bows out

Carter Center 2 launches election observer mission

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The various flavours of ‘Grace’ coffee on display at the launch on Tuesday at the Pegasus Hotel (Adrian Narine photos)


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Carter Center launches election observer mission

President David Granger (centre right) meets with representatives of the Carter Center at State House in 2019. Also present were Minister of Public Health, Ms. Volda Lawrence, and Minister of State, Mrs. Dawn Hastings-Williams. The Carter Centre was represented by Ms. Brett Lacy, Associate Director of Democracy Programmes; Mr. Carlos Valenzuela, Senior Adviser and International Electoral Expert; Ms. Anne Marlborough, Legal Analyst and Mr. Nicholas Jahr, Political Adviser

A TEAM of experts from the Carter Center is being mobilised to observe t h e p re - e l e c t i o n a n d post-election processes in Guyana to ensure that the ongoing electoral process is in compliance with the country’s laws and international commitments. In a release on Tuesday, the centre stated that it had accepted an invitation from the government of Guyana to observe the March 2, 2020 elections, and has already begun to deploy its team countrywide. “The mission will observe and examine key aspects of the electoral process, including the pre-electoral environment, status of the Guyana Elections Commission’s preparations for elections, and campaigning. Teams of long-term observers are currently deploying across the country and will later be joined by short-term observers and high-level leadership to observe voting, counting, and tabulation procedures. The Carter Center will also follow the post-election process, including the tabulation of results and reso-

lution of any legal disputes. The international election observation mission will build upon the work done by four fact-finding delegations deployed by the center in 2019 in the leadup to election,” the center stated in the release. Through the Carter Center, former United States (US) President, Jimmy Carter, had led the first mission to Guyana with the aim of encouraging sustainable development and developing democratic institutions. Since the passage of the no-confidence motion in the National Assembly on December 21, 2018 and during the legal challenges which ensued, representatives of the center have visited the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM); members of the government, members of the opposition and other small parties to assess the situation. On Tuesday, the center stated that it would be building on the information gathered during this period for a final assessment of the 2020 elections in Guyana post March 2, 2020.

“Throughout election season, The Carter Center will issue periodic statements on key findings. At the end of the mission, it will provide an independent assessment of the electoral process and its compliance with the country’s international commitments, national law, and standards for democratic elections. All statements and reports will be available at www.cartercenter.org. The center has launched a Twitter account especially for this election observation mission – keep up with mission statements and activities @CarterGuyanaEOM,” the release stated. The election observation missions are being conducted in accordance with the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, which provides guidelines for professional and impartial international election observation. The declaration was adopted at the United Nations in 2005 and has been endorsed by more than 50 election observation groups.


GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

11 parties cleared to contest polls

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…only nine approved for general elections THE number of parties contesting the March 2020 elections has been narrowed even further as only nine parties will be contesting the General Elections and 11, the Regional Elections. The numbers were shaved down further on Tuesday when the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) confirmed that at least two small parties were disapproved after failing to meet the necessary requirements to contest the elections. These two parties are the Guyana National Service (GNS) and the National Independent Party (NIP) headed by Saphier Husain. Chief Elections Officer (CEO), Keith Lowenfield, will inform the parties – which were given a period for correction – of their non-approval.

The lone Saphier Husain hands in his party’s list on Nomination Day

GNS representative, Oral Semple, hands in his party’s lists on his own

“Those letters will be sent off, I believe today (Tuesday), by the CEO to those persons to inform them,” Commissioner Sase Gunraj said, coming out of the commission’s statutory meeting on Tuesday.

“Even prior to today, I understand, it was reported to us that they were informed of their defects and given opportunity to remedy them. Of course those parties will be placed on various places on the ballot dependent on

the lists that they submitted.” GNS representative, Oral Semple, had told the newspaper ahead of Nomination Day that his party was “already set for Nomination Day” and would be contesting all 10 regions.

Meanwhile, Hussain, who held both a Guyana and American flag on Nomination Day, had proposed that Guyana become a State of the United States of America. He belted out his plan to surprised reporters, even as he referred to Guyana as “primitive society”. The Elections Commission had initially stated that 19 parties had signalled their interest in contesting the 2020 General and Regional Elections by submitting their symbols for approval. By the end of Nomination Day on January 10, only 13 made the cut – 11 of which were either small or new parties. For the elections, the lists to be presented are categorised as General Elections Lists and Regional Lists. The General Elections List is made up of the National Top-Up List, which must have at least 300

to 330 nominators countrywide, and at least 42 candidates, who are to be elected to sit in the National Assembly. The General Elections List is also made up of the Geographical Constituency

List, which must see at least 150 to 175 nominators from each of the 10 Constituencies (Regions). The list should also include no more than 45 candidates. When it comes to the Regional Elections List, only the Regional Democratic Council List is being presented. This list must have 150-175 nominators, who must be residing in the region for which they placed their names, and it must have 12 to 36 candidates who also reside in the region. On January 12, the CEO had notified representatives and deputy representatives of several small parties that their lists were defective, meaning that it had some degree of error. The parties had a period in which to submit a corrected list, through its representatives. Those who are now excluded would have failed to meet the necessary requirements even with a second chance. The final action with regard to the lists will see GECOM gazetting approved lists on January 16, 2020.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday January 15, 2020

Iran arrests person behind videoing of plane downing Iran says it has arrested the person who filmed the footage showing a Ukrainian passenger plane being shot down by a missile. It is believed the person being detained will face charges related to national security. Flight PS752 was brought down after it took off from Tehran on Wednesday, killing all 176 people on board. Iran has said it was shot down by accident and an-

nounced the arrest of several people over the incident. President Hassan Rouhani said his country’s investigation would be overseen by a “special court”. “This will not be a regular and usual case. The whole world will be watching this court,” he said in a speech. Mr Rouhani also stressed that the “tragic event” should not be blamed on one individual. “It’s not only the person who pulled the trigger, but

also others who are responsible,” he said. Iran initially denied that the aircraft was hit by a missile, but later conceded that the passenger jet was hit by its air defence systems. When the video was shared on social media, it led analysts to say it showed the plane was hit by a missile. Iranian media reported that Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards had taken a person who posted a video last week of the missile striking the plane into custody. But an Iranian journalist based in London who initially posted the footage has insisted that his source is safe, and that the Iranian authorities have arrested the

wrong person. Earlier on Tuesday, Iranian judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili said that several people had been detained over the downing of the plane. He added that about 30 people had been arrested for “taking part in illegal gatherings” - an apparent reference to recent anti-government protests. Separately the New York Times said security camera footage showed two missiles were fired at the plane, more than 20 seconds apart. The paper said this would explain why the plane’s transponder seemed to have stopped working before the missile strike - it had been disabled by the

first missile. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the BBC on Tuesday that he was “glad” Iran had acknowledged making a “terrible mistake” in shooting down the plane. “It’s good that they’ve apologised. The most important thing now is that tensions in the region calm down,” he added. Mr Johnson said the next step for Iran was to “repatriate in a dignified way” the bodies of the passengers and crew of flight PS752, who included three Britons. Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko said on Monday that five of the countries that had citizens on board the airliner - Can-

ada, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Sweden and an unnamed country - would meet in London on Thursday to discuss possible legal action. He said the “grieving nations” would work out what steps to take individually and collectively to “bring the perpetrators to justice and how we can repay those families who have suffered”. Canada, which lost 57 citizens, will meanwhile play a more active role than international rules require in the investigation into the shooting down of the airliner, according to Kathy Fox, the head of its Transportation Safety Board (TSB). (BBC)

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GUYANA CHRONICLE, Wednesday January 15, 2020

Mexican police found mass grave holding 29 bodies The bodies of at least 29 people have been found in a mass grave on the outskirts of the city of Guadalajara in western Mexico, officials say. It was near two other shallow graves in which 81 bodies were found last year. Last week, Mexico revised the figure of people who had disappeared since 2006 from 40,000 to 60,000. Many of them are thought to have been killed by Mexico’s powerful criminal gangs, their bodies disposed of in makeshift graves. Officials said they had been able to identify four of the 29 bodies so far and that they belonged to those of people reported missing. Forensic tests are continuing on the remaining

bodies. All three graves were found after members of Mexico’s National Guard raided a warehouse in nearby Toluquilla on 6 November. They were on a routine patrol of the area when they spotted armed men outside the warehouse. They raided the premises and found eight people who were being held by the gunmen as well as an large arsenal of weapons. They arrested 15 people, three of whom were juveniles, and information provided by them led them to the three graves at a local farm. The discovery of mass graves in Mexico is not unusual.

In the 13 months between 1 December 2018 and 31 December 2019, more than 1,000 bodies were exhumed from clandestine burial sites. Some are believed to have been gang members killed either by their own gang for perceived trespasses or by rival gangs. Others were kidnapped for ransom and killed when their relatives were not able to pay up. Others were killed for entering territory controlled by a gang or because they were perceived as a threat by a criminal group. The state of Jalisco, where Guadalajara is located, is one of the five Mexican states where the biggest number of the clandestine graves have been found. The others are Coli-

ma, Guerrero, Sinaloa and Veracruz. While the graves are mostly found in rural areas, bodies have also been dumped in homes in Guadalajara as criminals realise it is more difficult for police to search private properties. In some areas, relatives of the missing have banded together and are digging for the remains of their loved ones themselves whenever they get a tip-off about the location of a suspected mass grave. In November, the government of President Andrés Manuel López created an online portal where people can report people missing, in an effort to get more accurate figures of the number of disappeared. (BBC)

Retired Pope against relaxing priestly celibacy rules Retired Pope Benedict XVI has issued a defence of priestly celibacy in the Catholic Church as his successor considers easing a ban on married men serving as priests. Pope Benedict made the appeal in a book co-authored with Cardinal Robert Sarah. It comes in response to a proposal to allow married men to be ordained as priests in the Amazon region. Pope Benedict, who retired in 2013, said he could not remain silent on the issue. In the book, Pope Benedict says celibacy, a centuries-old tradition within the Church, has “great significance” because it allows priests to focus on their duties. The 92-year-old says “it doesn’t seem possible to realise both vocations [priesthood and marriage] simultaneously”. It is rare for Pope Benedict, who was the first pontiff to resign in almost 600 years, to intervene in clerical matters. The Vatican is yet to comment on the book, which was previewed in part by French newspaper Le Figaro before its full publication on Monday. Vatican commentators have reacted with surprise to Benedict’s intervention,

suggesting it breaks with convention. “Benedict XVI is really not breaking his silence because he (and his entourage) never felt bound to that promise. But this is a serious breach,” Massimo Faggioli, a historian and theologian at Villanova University, tweeted. The comments by Pope Benedict were described as “incredible” by Joshua McElwee, a journalist for the National Catholic Reporter. A theological conservative with traditional views on Catholic values, Pope Benedict pledged to remain “hidden from the world” when he retired, citing poor health. But since then, he has made his views known in articles, books and interviews, advocating a different approach to Pope Francis, who is seen as more progressive. Pope Benedict still lives within the walls of the Vatican in a

former monastery. In October, Catholic bishops from around the world gathered for a meeting, known as the synod, to discuss the future of the Church in the Amazon. At the conclusion of that meeting, a document detailing issues affecting the Church was released. In it, there was a suggestion that in remote parts of the Amazon, older, married men should be ordained. South American bishops have advocated this in an effort to address the shortage of priests in the region. Pope Francis will consider it, along with many other proposals, including the environment and the role of women in the Church. He is expected to make a decision on the matter within the next few months. There are already some exceptions, such as priests in Eastern Catholic Churches and Anglican priests who

Pope Benedict XVI retired due to ill health in February 2013 (BBC photo)

convert. Priestly celibacy was introduced about 900 years ago. Before then clergy were often married - priestly celibacy is not explicitly required by the Bible but is a discipline required by the Church.

For many, celibacy is a key part of being a Catholic priest, who is supposed to devote himself to the church and not be distracted by what some consider to be worldly concerns like a wife or a family. For traditionalists, this is

about the direction in which Pope Francis is taking the Church. Some critics regard the idea of allowing married priests in the Amazon as a pretext to abolishing celibacy as a requirement altogether. (BBC)


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday January 15, 2020

Civility on the campaign trail THE past week has been turbulent, in large part stemming from the uncivil manner in which some Opposition members have behaved on the campaign trail led by their leader, Bharrat Jagdeo. This, sadly, has become a trend. The People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) has, rightfully, condemned in the strongest of terms, the vile attacks by Jagdeo and known PPP activists on the health of President David Granger. On Friday, following the handing over of his party’s nomination papers, Jagdeo was asked by a journalist what would be his position if the party’s Presidential Candidate Irfaan Ali, who is facing 19 criminal charges, is convicted of the fraud. Jagdeo sought to brush aside the issue, but answered, “What is APNU’s plan if Granger gets a relapse and can’t continue for the elections…” Minutes after, known PPP activist Edward Layne, in a most disgusting post on Facebook, and obviously following the lead of the Opposition Leader, described the President in very disparaging terms. Jagdeo also went on to say, “What if somebody drops dead on the other side.” There continues to be similar vile attacks from other Opposition supporters on social media. It is instructive that the Ethnic Relations Commission (ERC), perhaps unnerved by these remarks, issued a statement over the weekend calling on citizens, particularly politicians, to promote messages of peace and harmony, and eschew incidents of abuse and intimidation during the current elections campaign. The ERC said it remains mindful of the various incidents of intimidation, abuse and assault on Guyanese while they were engaged in activities to sensitise on political messages reflective of the parties they represent. “Such acts, which are counterproductive to the valiant efforts being made for the

fostering of unity and harmony, have no place in society, and must be condemned,” the body said, adding: “In doing so, the Commission wishes to reiterate sentiments it repeatedly expressed in the past for the periods prior and post of the March 2, 2020 General and Regional elections, be free of hate, violence and racial or any other form of incitement.” What has been most instructive in this period is how much civility has been disregarded in our public sphere. Guyanese were known for and took great pride in being a civil people. Respect shown for others was not singularly due to familial relations, but also for the office persons held. There were ethics, nurtured and ingrained from infancy, such as “manners maketh Man.” Ethics, according to the Online dictionary, “is synonymous with moral code, morals, morality, values, rights and wrongs, principles, ideals, standards (of behaviour), value system, virtues, dictates of conscience.” It is this universal culture that sets the tone for acceptable standards, norms and practices by which persons are judged, accepted or rejected. The blurring of lines or unconcern to retain these values did not start yesterday, but instead of making determined efforts to halt the erosion, there is a sense that such values are no longer considered important. There was a time when adults, particularly those in public and influential offices, were ever so mindful of how society sees and judges them, often feeling compelled by such observation and critique to be on their best behavior, or put their best foot forward. Equally of value was not to disgrace the family, or do anything that would cause children, including theirs, to see them in a less than positive light. When these values are no longer considered sacred, or are being discarded, condemnation of any untoward behaviour of the younger generation becomes hypocritical.

Children learn what they see and model themselves after their elders/seniors. Society bemoans the fall in the standard of education, and expresses concern about school drop-outs, functional illiteracy, rising illiteracy and juvenile delinquency, attributing these dysfunctions to the Education System. Learning is holistic, i.e. formal and environmental. Even with the best of educators/teachers, and full complement of teaching aids, best techniques and physical environment, children are not insulated from what happens outside of the classroom. When persons holding offices of esteem behave undignified, their decisions and actions impact children, including theirs, in deciphering right and wrong behaviours. In this school or university of life, this creates confusion in the minds. Some will emulate, while others will reject, setting in train clashes of influences, re-defining new ‘norms’ and ‘ethics,’ invariably contributing to the lowering of standards in society by making unacceptable behaviour acceptable. Of concern, too, is the seeming or determined behaviour of being unable to separate ‘not liking’ the leaders to respecting their offices and right to discharge their responsibilities. Correspondingly, leaders have a responsibility to conduct themselves in a respectful manner, given that uncivil behaviour lowers ethical standards, bringing shame and disrepute to the office they hold. Public and influential office holders play a very significant role in society, and it would help should they reflect on their importance and live up to society’s expectations of them. They are not only there to serve the public good, but also be role models for others. And where civility is losing its pre-eminence in society, our children suffer, given that they can only be what they learn, see and are exposed to.

The ‘usual suspects’ have surfaced on the issue of elections coverage Dear Editor, AS expected, the “usual suspects” have surfaced on the issue of elections coverage and how it ought to be handled in terms of fairness, balance, accuracy and truth. As a former President of the GPA (Guyana Press Association) and as a journalist, I have advocated for years, the position that in an environment where the state/or government owns and controls the dominant TV, a monopolistic radio station and in the then absence of social media, it was palpably unfair to dominate the airwaves with only one position. It would appear that Kit Nascimento and his classist comrade Anthony Vieira have converged platforms in this day and age of a plethora of platforms

and multiplicity of media. I reiterate, there is a difference between broadcasting and telecommunication services in the Guyanese context. Let me add for clarity: NCN on its broadcast TV Network carried the President and only the President as general programming. coverage of all of its NEWS and other current affairs programmes is available for review by the Guyana National Broadcast Authority. Kit in his usual highbrow attitude called me a few months ago insisting that under “The Fairness Doctrine” I should comply with a request he made.  I pointed out that his reference to “The Fairness Doctrine” is over 30 years old, it is obsolete and not applicable in his case. He was wrong then as he is now, but I know he likes the attention and will entertain him. Using his

usual logic it means everyone who “live streams,” licensed broadcaster or not, is a broadcaster. Here he is taking the world down a silly if not crooked path. I have been an election observer, am a graduate in International Relations, and a journalist for over three decades. I am aware that certain individuals/groups in society will speak out at particular times and places to catch the ear and eye of the media, observers and the  soi-disant “International Community” because those individuals know how the reports are formatted and want their views reflected within that template. So the chatter has started.  NCN is governed by a board and the board has considered and indicated to management how election coverage shall be conducted by NCN within the period of Nominations Day to the declaration

of results. The board will also be guided by what GECOM promulgates and work within the guidelines, if any, set out by the GNBA. “Kit” as is his wont states “ the fact”, “quite properly points out “and goes down a media maze of terms and opinions as if all of what he says is the unvarnished truth and profound learning. I have documents dating back to the early 1960s authored by Kit Nascimento and as the saying goes, even an old leopard cannot change its spots. Watch the Classist, Contemptuous Community Clapback. Regards, Enrico Woolford Chairman


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GUYANA CHRONICLE, Wednesday January 15, 2020

The GuySuCo promise that was always dead on arrival Dear Editor

THERE was never a doubt that Bharrat Jagdeo and cabal’s proclamation about re-opening the closed sugar estates, thus restoring affected sugar workers back to their jobs, was nothing more than the continuation of the PPP/C shameless dishonesty about the status of an industry which they had caused to collapse under a mountainous weight of debt -- some $82B. In fact, it was quite clear that such misleading announcement sometime ago by the hapless Irfaan Ali, was a means of introducing himself as the PPP/C’s official candidate, thereby highlighting what has been the party’s most deceptive playing card in a broader criminal political scam of all and every means possible, of holding on to the votes in the sugar belt ad nauseam, since it has comprehensively been proven that there is no other value of the sugar belt to the PPP/C, even when it had held the reins of government, except as a captive supplier of votes. There will not be a repeat of what has

been already publicised and available for those who may want to understand how the opposition party as government undermined the once prosperous giant of what had been sugar. One would only hope that the children of those workers, who have been brought up in an environment of seemingly only listening to their seniors, Freedom Radio and other allied media, in addition to being bombarded with criminal lies and disinformation, will one day begin to read and find out for themselves who the real culprits were in the destruction of an economic earner which contributed so much to their upbringing. Such an empty promise, bereft of any reasonable explanation, was never a reality as exposed by government spokespersons, the nation’s foremost trade unionist Lincoln Lewis, and even the leader of one of the newly formed political parties, who branded such an Ali statement as “fooling the sugar workers.” Nothing was more shocking and plainly irrational than when there were supporting voices of well-known personalities who obviously sold their consciences for hoped-for future political rewards. All of

them are as guilty as Jagdeo and his party of fostering a falsehood in the minds of the nation’s sugar workers. They were equally willing contributors to an opposition tradition of pandering to race. They know who they are, for they have been erstwhile partners in an act of marked political crookery that aided opposition deceptions. They by their collaboration, did not do truth any good. But now the PPP/C has changed its “re-opening of sugar estates’’ tune, to one of “finding jobs, assistance for former sugar workers, and “ensure that sugar workers get back a job” -- a la Jagdeo, to Ali’s “we will look at the creation of jobs … not only ...restoration of jobs in the sugar industry…that our people here and all across Guyana…” These are, again, promises, with no explanations as to how these new creations will be possible. This smells very much like the 50,000-job promise which is now being watered down. This, too, was never supported by any credible factual statistical evidence Ali would have known that the coalition government did not leave the terminated

workers without post-sugar support, as many of them in addition to being paid severance had been offered skills training which prepared them for self-employment and other earning opportunities in areas best suited to their newly acquired skills. Quite a number have been shopped by the private sector, and even by the oil and gas industry. It is obvious that this somersault has been done to detract from what would have been justified criticism by other political parties, since it never in the first instance made any sense in terms of being viable, and was just another gambit to keep false hopes alive among sugar workers. Editor, again, here is just cause and very good reasons for those people within the sugar belt, particularly those who are PPP/C supporters, to demand of their party leaders an explanation as to another piece of political gymnastic, which can only lead them into a hopeless future. Regards Earl Hamilton

City treasurer’s suspension cannot be deferred Dear Editor,

I HAVE read with some hilarity, but mostly considerable repugnance, a recent report in the press of the formal suspension of the Georgetown municipality’s treasurer by the Local Government Commission (LGC) following the completion of an investigation of the discovery of a bag of money in a vehicle assigned to the constabulary and then the deferral of the suspension of this officer by the Mayor and Councillors

of the City of Georgetown to facilitate preparation of their budget. Deferral of a suspension? Suspension is not vacation leave or special leave the employee is choosing to proceed on when it is convenient to him/her and the employer, but rather it is disciplinary action being meted out to an employee when he or she has been found guilty of gross misconduct or other serious disciplinary matters. It cannot be treated lightly, deferred or disregarded at the whims and fancies of anyone as the LGC has ruled and therefore

Give me hope Guyana Dear Editor  WITH nearly a week gone the parties are gradually settling down into outlining their promises for the future if elected. Last Sunday at Albion it was the turn of the PPP. It is interesting that they seem to be drifting away from heated arguments, on their part, to stick to sugar and re-open the closed estates. The reality of the situation is that any proposed project from the  parties must be economically viable. Sugar was, over the years, a substantial burden on Guyana and the only justification for

keep it going was for the political support gained by the PPP. A simple example would elucidate the point. Today, as before, the cost to produce a pound of sugar is over US35 cents a pound-the price on the world market is well below US14 cents-- it therefore follows that this product is not viable for export and has been so for years!. Closure of the estates had to come and should have been done within the 23 years that they were in power, as they had all the time to readjust and reinvest for the benefit of all Guyanese. The US$200M

wasted on the Skeldon white elephant should have been better spent on this. Mr Jagdeo recklessly blundered on this project, as with many others, as it was totally unjustified with no hope in hell to succeed. Today there is a dire need to move away from these chains that shackle our growth and prosperity and concentrate on what is best for Guyana. The coalition’s decision to close the estates was a step in the right direction. The emphasis must be to proceed with their divestment and attract new business entities which will bring   jobs and a bright future.

If we were to look at the Caribbean, those with foresight have turned away from sugar with little or no criticism. It is true that the workers were left without jobs, which is most unfortunate, but their sacrifice will be addressed with constructive handling of the economy. My dream is that with all the factors in our favour all Guyanese must have an equitable share in our future wealth. It therefore follows that we must vote for who we can trust to lead us to the promised land. Regards Tom Kharran

the Council which is supervised by the LGC is compelled to carry out their diktats faithfully without any divergence. One is left to wonder if and when the Georgetown City Council will stop being a circus. The state of disorder for a number of years that has existed there due to the absence or non-recognition of authority or other controlling systems by the Georgetown City Council is responsible for the present state of the capital city. The question to be asked is whether the current city treasurer, who is relatively new to that position is the only person amongst their nearly 1,000 workforce at the council that can provide stewardship for the preparation of a budget? And why only now midway through the month of January in 2020 is the council preparing the city’s estimates of income and expenditure? The renown Frédéric Bastiat once said: “When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorises it and a moral code that glorifies it.” Regards  Anu Bihari


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday January 15, 2020

That Nigel Hinds premature withdrawal

Dear Editor

ON Monday I had some free time on my hand. It was just one of those days: sluggish, boring, unproductive and forgettable. Kind of like Irfaan Ali. As a result, I did some research; research to determine the average time it takes to form and launch a political party. This research does not imply that I have elected-office ambitions. The fact is that I will be proudly sporting that green and yellow until I’m dead like FED-UP. My reason for undertaking this research was an attempt to rationalise the enigma, Nigel Hinds. Forming a political party is an arduous process that can take months, if not years. There are many managerial and legal hurdles to overcome. These include but are not limited to, meetings after meetings to determine the party’s ideology, funding, party’s symbol, leader and deputy leader, identifying target groups, determining optimal method of communicate messages, launching, sponsorship, etc. I am not sure how long Badal and Hinds took to get through these processes, but let’s assume it started in June 2019 when the CCJ made its ruling. It is at that point that most Guyanese recognised that elections are imminent. Let’s examine more closely the formation of Change Guyana. Remember we agreed that it likely started in June 2019. At this time Nigel Hinds must have known that he is a dual citizen. He must have been aware that it would take months to renounce his American citizenship. The question is, what a reasonable person and someone with serious political ambitions in Guyana would have done? In my opinion, a reasonable person would have started the process in June 2019, or soon after. Nigel did not. How do we know that? He is still an American citizen and if he had started the process in June, in all likelihood it would have been completed by now. What about Badal? What a reasonable

presidential candidate would have done before selecting his PM candidate? He would have thoroughly vetted him/her and at a minimum, he would have ensured that his prime ministerial candidate fulfilled all the legal requirements to be PM. Apparently Badal never did, despite the fact that dual citizenship was very topical in 2019, as a consequence of the CCJ’s ruling. This represents very poor leadership by Robert Badal, just when I thought that TCI was the only headless, visionless, directionless and hopeless political party in Guyana. Nigel Hinds said, on multiple occasions, that if he is fortunate to become prime minister, he would not have accepted his monthly wages, since he is already wealthy. He said this knowing pretty well that he cannot be PM since he has dual citizenship. Robert Badal said the same. A massive deception. Hinds accompanied Badal on Nomination Day knowing that he was not eligible to be on the Change Guyana list. He argued that his name was not on the list so he had not committed a crime. That’s irrelevant Nigel, it is the intent; you intentionally misled Guyanese on Nomination Day for which you should apologise. Nigel Hinds alluded to health issues and medical results in November 2019. Nigel, let me tell you this. All untreated medical conditions would have symptoms before they are diagnosed. The fact that there is a significant gap between diagnosis and treatment would suggest that it is not acute or life-threatening. Hence, Nigel Hinds would have had symptoms for a while and mostly likely would have known about it long before the formation of Change Guyana. I would bet all of my 2020 wages and the promise to power wash Nigel’s driveway and cars daily for one year, that his medical condition is longstanding, hence it is unlikely a determining factor that he is making it out to be. This is not a wild

guess on my part. This conclusion is based on someone who is a highly qualified medical doctor. Also, I am reasonably certain that Badal would have been aware of this medical condition on formation of Change Guyana; therefore, he cannot try using it as a factor for Nigel’s withdrawal.

Here we have Robert Badal, who wishes to lead a country and cannot even lead his own political party. Nigel Hinds said he was awaiting medical results before he renounced his citizenship. He said unfortunately, the results were not good, so he cannot renounce his citizenship. Nigel thinks that Guyanese are fools. What if the results were good Nigel, would you have started the process of renouncing your American citizenship on Saturday? There is just one problem Nigel, one big problem. You would have had to complete the renunciation in three days. A process that takes months, would have had to completed in three days. Nigel, you are a special kind of person to come up with this story. Guyanese would have more likely believed a Dexta Daps kind story than the one you are peddling. Dexta Daps is a Jamaican artiste who was trying to convince us that the young lady in his hotel room, under his blanket, in his bed, hugging, kissing him and taking pictures of him, he does not know her. Her mysterious entry into his hotel room was possible despite him locking his door securely, multiple CCTV cameras, hotel security and him sleeping with

the door key in his underpants. Nigel Hinds is apparently afflicted with the Dexta Daps syndrome. He too went to bed on Saturday, took all reasonable security precautions, but when he awoke there was an American passport in his bed with his name, Dob, country of birth, height, ethnicity and shockingly his photo. He was not aware of this passport existence when quite a few politicians were speaking of renouncing their naturalised citizenship. He just sat quietly with his mouth zip tight like Irfaan Ali’s, knowing pretty well that he too is a dual citizen. Mr Editor, is there an unexplained phenomenon with the Hinds’ name and being made prime ministerial candidate? That combination always results in some very inexplicable comportment. First, we had Sam and now we have to contend with Nigel. Two Hinds oddities in less than a generation. I seriously hope Dr David Hinds does not have prime ministerial aspirations. As it stands, most Guyanese are of the opinion that Robert Badal was a part of this scheme. He must have known something. Dual Citizenship in Parliament was a topical issue in 2019. Change Guyana clearly wanted to maintain the status quo. I think a more appropriate name for Badal’s party is Unchanged Guyana. Get well soon Nigel. I trust my harsh words have not exacerbated your medical condition. Regard Dr Mark Devonish

Trio plead not guilty to Rubis accountant murder THREE men on Tuesday pleaded not guilty to the brutal murder of Jason Cort, the Rubis Accountant who was shot and killed by bandits at his Meadowbrook Gardens home in 2015. Stancy Rodney, 30; Linton Eastman, 33, and Clifton Gibson, 33, pleaded not guilty to the charge which read that on June 17, 2015, at Meadowbrook Gardens, Georgetown, during the course of a robbery, they murdered Cort. The trio will stand trial for the capital offence before Justice Brassington Reynolds at the Demerara High Court. The trial will continue today.

On the day in question around 22:30hrs, Cort was shot to the chest when gunmen invaded his home before making off with his licensed firearm, mobile phone and Nintendo game. Cort had just returned home from an outing with his girlfriend. She was also at home at the time of the incident but was unhurt. It was reported that the bandits took Cort’s licensed firearm, cellphone, gold band, chain, ring and an X-Box console. One person from the community had indicated that after hearing the loud explosion and looking outside, they

DEAD: Jason Cort

observed persons scaling the fence of Cort’s home and fleeing up the road. Cort was rushed to Dr Balwant Singh’s Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

L-R: Clifton Gibson, Linton Eastman and Stancy Rodney


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

IDPADA-G renews call for restoration of history as part of school curriculum CHIEF Executive Officer of the International decade for people of African descent general assembly in Guyana (IDPADA-G), Olive Sampson, has renewed a call for the government of Guyana to restore the teaching of the accurate history of all Guyanese and not just African Guyanese. Her call came as she addressed the 32nd anniversary conference for African

rican Guyanese,” she noted. Sampson went on to tell the audience that as Africans live alongside their Indian brothers and sisters, it is crucial that they know their long history and shared heritage. This, she said, can be drawn from the historical African civilisation that thrived in the Indus Valley Civilisation (IVC). She posited that all Guyanese children must know

the Pan African garden on the Merriman Mall under the theme, “Towards the Decade of National Development,” sought to reflect on Africa’s contributions to global civilisation and history across the world dating as far back as from the year 5,000 BC to one AD and AD one onwards and to examine who the Africans are as a people. Walking through the pages of Africa’s history, Samp-

tributions to culture, science, industry and government; and that all Africans should pay attention to the breadth of Africans’ contribution to ancient cavitation and how it flourished long ago. These contributions she noted echo through the ages and Africans must fight to honour and preserve this knowledge and pass it on to their youth. “Be proud of what they

Chief Executive Officer of the International Decade for People of African Descent general assembly in Guyana (IDPADA-G), Olive Sampson, making her presentation to the gathering

Booths displaying literature

have to do to put them back into the position where they truly belong. The programme began with an opening prayer done in the African ancient language Geez, a language Sampson said is still being upheld by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and used in its religious services. She noted that the restoration of history as a part of the school curriculum in Guy-

Africans to let their knowledge be the weapons they use in their struggle to regain and secure their rightful place in Guyana and on the world stage. Also in attendance were Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Karen Cummings, His Worship the Major of Georgetown Ubraj Narine, Minister of Public Health the Hon Volda Lawrence and former Mayor of Georgetown

Gem Rohlehr performing her cultural item

A booth displaying art and craft products Some craft products on display

Civilization day observance organised by the Pan African movement in Guyana on Sunday. She told the small gathering that the call was first made at a recent Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the IDPADA-G, when a motion was passed that called for the restoration of history as a part of the school curriculum in Guyana. This, she acknowledged, remains a priority for the government, one in which she noted President David Granger has taken a personal interest. “Not only must we work hard to ensure that this motion gets traction within government, but we must also work hard to ensure that the text used in this restored history conveys an accurate history of all Guyanese and not just Af-

In photo seated from L to R are Olive Sampson, Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Karen Cummings, Minister of Public Health the Hon Volda Lawrence, Gem Rohlehr and Penda Guyan. Standing are former Mayor of Georgetown Hamilton Green, present Mayor of Georgetown, His Worship Ubraj Narine, a member of the Pan African movement, medical student Nicholas Elliot, another Pan African movement, Albert Bentick and Leon Mc Donald

from whence they came and not be fooled by the warped views of the conquerors and colonisers, but by the stories of brilliant civilisation Guyanese who have risen and what those civilisations have given to the world. The anniversary, held at

son drew from the publication entitled “When we ruled,” by Robin Walker and shared with the audience glimpses of Africa as a continent and beyond. She reminded those present that the present generation must be aware of what Africans built and their con-

have given the world and you should draw on that past to get the resilience and strength to battle forward,” the CEO said. She encouraged all Africans not to let their changed fortunes paralyze them, but that they should go side by side with the work that they

CEO Olive Sampson delivers her presentation to the gathering

ana would help IDPADA-G meet its objective of teaching history. In this vein, the IDPADA-G CEO recommended to the audience the reading of Robin Walker’s work, “When we ruled,” along with other texts and advised all

Hamilton Green, among other dignitaries. The event had booths displaying art and craft products and on sale were sweet meats, books CDs beverages and African clothing. Cultural presentations were also done by Gem Rohlehr and Albert Bentick.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday January 15, 2020

Phillips promises to help improve security IT’S not a bird, it’s not a plane, but it’s the “super” of the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) retired Brigadier, Marks Philips, the prime ministerial candidate of the party, who has promised to improve and equip the armed forces, if the PPP/C is elected at the upcoming elections in March. Amidst loud cheers from PPP/C supporters at Albion, Phillips added to the excitement by saying: “they used to call me super in the GDF… that was my war name so I’m taking back my war name- I am the super of the PPP/C.” With over 36 years of experience in the public service, specifically in the field of defence and security in Guyana, Phillips, who is the former army Chief-of -Staff, said he is ready to utilise that experience to make Guyana a better place. “We will implement our anti-crime and security measures to again make your community safer…the crime levels remain high and our police capacity is low throughout Guyana… there are too many armed and violent robberies toward businesses and individuals in both the urban and rural communities in Guyana,” he said, during his address to the PPP/C supporters

at Albion, on Sunday. Phillips’ remarks about crime, however, contradicted what was said by Acting Crime Chief, Michael Kingston who had said serious crimes decreased by 2.5 per cent in 2019 compared to 2018. He also said there was a decrease in robberies and more persons were charged for ganja smuggling. The retired brigadier, nevertheless, said he will address the existing shortfalls in the security sector by equipping and improving the operational readiness of the Guyana Police Force. He told the crowd of PPP/C supporters: “we will also work to improve the effectiveness of your community policing groups…we will address the conditions of work, welfare and quality of life and issues affecting members of the police force.” His view is that the joint services were allocated increasing sums of money every year when the PPP/C was in government. He said a lot was invested into the improvement of infrastructural development and to acquire new equipment. Phillips also promised that if the PPP/C is elected, they will look at returning the payment of bonus to the joint services and even review

the pay and allowances for the members of the armed forces. Speaking specifically about Berbice, he said “Berbicians” deserve to enjoy a peaceful night’s rest and enjoy the fruits of their labour. In expressing his commitment to tackling crime in Berbice, Phillips said: “you are assured a friend in me… the criminal situation is out of control and the PPP/C has heard your cries for safety… again, the PPP/C will equip the Guyana Defence Force, the Guyana Police Force, the Guyana Prison Service and the Guyana Fire Service to do their jobs better.” He believes that crime will also decrease if more young people are given opportunities to become skilled workers and gain meaningful employment opportunities here. In 2017, Guyana had signed a US$14M agreement with the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) for a Skills Development and Employability Project aimed at enhancing Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) here. Guyana will continue to work together with the CDB to enhance the country’s development in this area and according to Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan, the signing of the agreement with

Prime Ministerial Candidate of the PPP/C, Brigadier (Rt’d), Mark Phillips

the CDB demonstrated government’s commitment to enhancing the skills of its people. The US$14M project was scheduled to begin on June 30, 2017 and conclude on December 31, 2021 and is geared at assisting the government to enhance access to, and improve the quality and effectiveness of the TVET system.

Guyana recognised as top destination to visit this year

THE colloquial phrase “up top” best describes Guyana’s rise in the global tourism industry, with the country being recognised as a top destination to visit this year. According to a press statement from the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA), the new year is off to a strong start for Guyana, as the destination continues to earn praise from a number of influential travel and lifestyle publications across the United States of America (USA) and the United Kingdom (UK). The GTA said there have been multiple features in annual travel lists and other high-profile media coverage, highlighting the region’s diverse travel offerings and increased accessibility, interest in Guyana. These things are at an all-time high. Guyana’s inclusion in Condé Nast Traveler’s highly-anticipated “Best Places to Go in 2020” list most recently landed the destination a feature on the popular U.S. morning show, NBC’s “TODAY.” On January 3, millions of viewers tuned in as contributing editor, Mark Ellwood touted Guyana’s rich cultural diversity, abundance of natural beauty and new direct flight options among the many reasons for travellers to visit in 2020. The segment is just one of several accolades in recent months that have helped the once under-the-radar Guyana step into the spotlight. Other prominent news coverage has included the Telegraph’s “20 Destinations You Must Visit in 2020” as number one; Travel + Leisure’s “50 Best Places to Travel in 2020” as number 21; Condé Nast Traveler’s 20 Best Places to Go in 2020; Wall Street Journal’s Adventurous Vacations for Overachievers; and the Family Vacation Critic’s “10 Best International Family Vacations for 2020” as number 6. “To have such renowned media outlets acknowledge what makes Guyana one of the world’s most compelling travel destinations to visit this year is a tremendous honour,” said Director of the GTA, Brian Mullis. He added: “few destinations offer as much variety and contrast as Guyana, both culturally and geographically, and we can’t wait to welcome more travellers to experience this unforgettable combination firsthand. 2020 is only just the beginning for us!” Late last year, the Guyana Chronicle reported that Destination Guyana had won its sixth tourism award for 2019. The country won the Silver Prize in ‘Best of Adventure’ from the International Travel and Tourism Awards for its sustainable adventure practices framework communities have embodied. The award was presented at the World Travel Market in London on November 5. In a brief statement, the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) had expressed appreciation to its partners at Lotus UK for helping to make the award possible. The honour for ‘Best in Adventure’ recognises the destinations or businesses within the travel and tourism industry that have dedicated time in supporting and promoting adventure travel, through creative marketing and campaigns as well as increasing interest to their particular destination through this sector. In 2019, Guyana was also named: The World’s #1 in ‘Best of Ecotourism’ and one of the Top 10 Sustainable Destinations at the ITB Berlin – the world’s leading travel and trade show in March 2019. In June of this year, the country won First Place at the Golden City Gate Awards for its Welcome back to Nature and won first in Sustainable Tourism at the LATA Achievement Awards that same month. At the CTO’s Sustainable Tourism Awards Programme in August, Guyana was awarded first in Best in Destination Stewardship.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

‘LCG CoI appeal was not struck out’

― rather it was moved to the Appeal Court, says Mingo CHAIRMAN of the Local Government Commission (LGC), Mortimer Mingo, said the commission’s appeal against the High Court ruling of the City Hall Commission of Inquiry (CoI) being unlawful was not “struck out” by the Demerara Full Court but rather was withdrawn and filed with the Court of Appeal.

GC Chairman, Mortimer Mingo

The appeal hearing came up before Full Court Judges Justices Naresh Harnanan and Franklyn Holder at the Demerara High Court last Monday. “It was not struck out. The appeal was filed at the Full Court and we withdraw the matter from the Full Court and it’s now in the Appeal Court. The judges granted the withdrawal from the Full Court, it was not struck out,” Mingo informed. The LGC is being represented by Attorney, Everton Singh-Lammy. Mingo explained that as a matter of technicality, the Full Court was not the appropriate court to hear the matter. “Because it’s a constitutional case, the rules are that a constitutional review must only be done by the Appeal Court and not the Full Court,” Mingo related. The LGC is a constitutional body established under the Local Government Act 2002. The appeal is an important one for the commission as it challenges the entire contents, including recom-

mendations contained in a report emanating from the CoI into the operations of the Georgetown Mayor and City Council (MCC). The CoI concluded on November 2018. It was presided over by chairman, and sole commissioner, Justice (ret’d) Cecil Kennard. In September 2019, the CoI was deemed unlawful and void by Justice Simone Morris-Ramlall at the Demerara High Court, in a challenge brought against it by former Town Clerk, Royston King, whose employment was terminated in January 2019 as a result of recommendations in the resulting report. Based on CoI recommendations, King was charged with gross misconduct, abuse of office, recklessness, dishonesty, conspiracy, and misappropriation of funds at the municipality. In February 2019, King moved to the High Court to challenge his dismissal and subsequently in September, Justice Morris-Ramlall said the LGC unlawfully delegated its investigatory powers to the CoI, which was not part of the LGC or attached to it. Additionally, the LGC disinvested itself from the CoI when it transferred the investigation and unlawfully delegated its powers. By doing this, the LCG committed an error of law and the decisions made by the CoI must be squashed. In November 2019, the LGC filed the appeal against Justice Morris-Ramlall’s ruling, listing five grounds of appeal. One of the grounds stated that the learned trial judge committed errors of law when she found that the LGC did not have the authority to delegate its powers to a CoI. Another ground in the document stated that Justice Morris-Ramlall erred in law and fact in finding

that the LGC had delegated its authority to the CoI to enquire into allegations against King. The LGC is calling for the appeal to be allowed, and the decision of Justice Morris-Ramlall, dated September 13, 2019, to be quashed.

Former Town Clerk, Royston King

Churches rally for peaceful elections GUYANA United Apostolic Council and St. Peter’s African Apostolic Church held a Peace March and Rally at the Parade Ground on Sunday January 12, 2020 as their contribution to encourage citizenry to keep the peace and have respect for each other as elections day draws closer. The rally was held under the theme “Deceit is in the Heart of those who devise evil, but those who plan peace have Joy”. Addressing the large crowd gathered at the rally was Chairman of the People’s National Congress Reform and Minister of Public Health, Volda Lawrence. The Guyanese Public Health Minister made the point that the rally came at a time when Guyana was eagerly awaiting the outcome of critical Regional and National Elections, while being on the cusp of phenomenal economic growth and development as the country transitions into a Petroleum State. Minister Lawrence made the point that prayers for peace, unity and good must prevail in all communities and regions to calm the tension and anticipation as polling day draws closer. She thanked the organization for spearheading the initiative of prayers for peace, respect and tolerance for each other across the country. Lawrence focused her attention on one of Guyana’s national songs “Hymn for Guyana’s Children” and pointed out that there was inspiration behind the writings of the songs, thus forging unity, peace and respect for each other as Guyanese. “The God, whom we serve, we believe, be we Christians, Hindus, Muslims or Pentecostals is not asleep”, Minster Lawrence was quoted as saying to the gathering. She urged those gathered to learn to live and work together for the good of the country. The Guyana United Apostolic Council and the St. Peter’s African Apostolic are both 100 years old.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Communities Ministry begins planning for next five years By Tamica Garnett THE Ministry of Communities (MoC) has begun crafting a five-year strategic plan even as it reviews the challenges and successes of 2019. Work on the plan began at the ministry’s Annual Senior Staff Conference held at the Arthur Chung Convention Centre, Liliendaal, on Tuesday. “MoC is at a juncture where we have come a fullfive year planning cycle since establishment. We have to commence a process of review to see how impactful we have been since establishment and simultaneously design solutions that will allow the ministry to improve 2020 and beyond,” noted MoC Special Projects Officer, Roger Rogers, whose department organised the event. Delivering the keynote address at the conference, Minister Ronald Bulkan commended the staff for the many achievements and emphasised that no amount of misinformation can eclipse the developments made in neighbourhoods across Guyana. These occur in the areas of water supply coverage, road construction, street light

installation and housing development. “No amount of political spinning or twisting can denigrate the solid achievements of the Ministry of Communities. Our local government organs and agencies have laid the foundation for sustainable community development,” Minister Bulkan stated. The conference is being held under the theme “Advancing Local Government and Sustainable Community Development through enhanced collaboration for effective service delivery in a green economy”. Emphasising the need for synergies among the various departments, the minister said the theme was fitting and timely. “The importance of collaboration and coordination cannot be overstated. We can no longer afford to operate in silos. For sustainable communities, collaboration will maximise the impact of interventions which will allow for public sector efficiencies,” Bulkan told the gathering of departmental heads and other officials. Also present were many of the regional executive officers from across the country and MoC Permanent Sec-

A section of the gathering at the MoC 2019 Senior Staff Conference (Delano Williams photo)

Minister of Communities, Ronald Bulkan delivering remarks at the ministry’s 2019 Senior Staff Conference (Delano Williams photo)

retary, Emil McGarrel and Chairman of the Board of the Central Housing and Planning Authority, Elsworth Williams.

VALUE FOR MONEY Bulkan underscored the need for effective functioning of the ministry to ensure taxpayers get value for their money. “What we spend is taxpayers’ resources. As taxpayers, we all feel the pinch and squeeze when we get our payslip and see the portion that is taken out to go to the treasury. I would like to see efficiency for those tax dollars, to which I help to contribute. As we await the 2020 budget, it is incumbent on you to review your systems, identify the impediments, possible solutions, offer the best possible advice so we can hit the ground running after the passage of that budget,” he said. The first day of the event saw presentations by the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CHPA) and Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) as well as presentations from the MoC Sanitation Management Unit; Planning Department; Local Government and Regional Development; Community Development Council Department; and the Engineering Services Unit. The CHPA presentation was ‘offered’ by Chief Executive Officer, Lelon Saul, who noted that over the past

five-year period, the entity performed satisfactorily, notwithstanding being faced with challenges such as inadequate resources, unfavourable weather and inadequate contractor capacity. He also spoke of the trials the authority faced as it pertained to squatting and finding adequate housing to meet the massive and ever-growing demand by the Guyanese populace. “These challenges did not deter us from providing services to the nation. We responded positively to the challenges by implementing new policies, methods, tools and techniques,” he said. Achievements by the authority included the on-going infrastructural upgrades in the Sophia community, the construction of 25 houses at Upper Mazaruni; and sustainable housing for hinterland projects in Regions One and Nine. Housing solutions as well as financing solutions for prospective homeowners were some of proposals discussed during the interactive session, in which the minister ‘fielded’ questions from his senior staff. GREAT STRIDES During the GWI presentation, Managing Director, Dr. Richard Van West Charles, spoke of the utility’s achievement of extending the coverage of potable water to approximately 97 per cent of coastlanders and 85 per cent of residents in the hinterland. Using an example of how new technologies had improved efficiency at GWI, Minister Bulkan highlighted the need for the exploitation of technology to increase efficiency in all the other areas of the ministry. “The choice we have is to be a part of that technological world or run the risk of being left behind. Irrespective of

which part of the ministry we are, it is imperative that we make use of technology to ensure not only our efficiency but our relevance. We would hear during the course of this conference some of the newer technologies employed and adopted within parts of the ministry,” he said. Bulkan attributed many of the strides made in communities across the country to the reinstatement of the country’s local government system, which was practically non-existent prior to 2015. “Local government is not where it was four and a half years ago, it has been elevated. With huge political and financial investment made by this administration over the past four years, this system has now been positioned to strategically support national development as it was intended when it was conceptualised,” Bulkan said. Local government elections were held in 2015 after an ‘absence’ of more than 20 years. Such elections were also held in 2018. “In 2015, we were given the opportunity to be part of a new ministry. We were given the task of being trail-blazers of a new philosophy which aimed to depart from the delivery of individual services, such as housing or water, to the delivery of a holistic community experience through restoration of local government system,” Bulkan noted. Tuesday’s event marked the first day in a series of events being held by the ministry, which will conclude on Friday with an Action Round Table on regional development. Aside from the continuation of the staff conference on Wednesday, some 25 staff members are also expected to be honoured at an inaugural Local Government Awards Ceremony. The Action Round Table for Regional Development will begin on Thursday.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Grace launches first line of coffee

Graces’s Coffee line which comes in five different flavours (Adrian Narine photos)

but after learning that Grace’s coffee was made from Colombian coffee beans, the homeland of the world’s richest and finest coffee, he was inclined to try it. After the formal introduction of the product, the invited guests who were coffee lovers were treated to samples of the

Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Massy Distribution, Mr Navin Thakur addressing attendees at the launch held at the Pegasus Hotel

Grace’s brand coordinator, Supriya Gherow addressing persons at the launch held at the Pegasus hotel

AFTER being a household name on a variety of Caribbean foods for over 20 years in Guyana, Grace in collaboration with Massy Distribution has launched its first line of coffee. The launch was held at the Pegasus Hotel on Tuesday morning, where brand coordinator Supriya Gherow revealed the company’s newest addition to its line of products. Grace’s Coffee she stated is 100% pure Colombian coffee, which is considered the finest coffee region in the world. She added that regular instant coffee is exposed to heat five times during its process, whereas Grace’s freeze-dried coffee is exposed only twice; this results in highly soluble coffee that preserves all its aromatic properties and excellent taste. Additionally, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Massy Distribution, Mr Navin Thakur, stated that, Massy Distribution is one of the leading distributors of food and placebo products in Guyana and is pleased to be the number one distributor of Grace’s newest addition of products. Mr Thakur stated that he initially rejected the product,

Grace’s delicious and aroma-filled coffee. Grace’s coffee is naturally freeze-dried to preserve the flavour and aroma to make the perfect cup of coffee; it is available in five different flavours: Vanilla, Amaretto, Irish, Caramel, Regular and also Decaf.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Tobacco Council to get tough on errant companies, citizens By Svetlana Marshall

THE Ministry of Public Health is preparing to take legal actions against companies, businesses and persons who operate in contravention of the Tobacco Control Act by promoting the sale of tobacco products and encouraging the use of products such as ‘Hookah’ in public spaces. This is according to the Ministry’s National Tobacco Control Focal Point, Dr. Kavita Singh. In an interview with the Guyana Chronicle, Dr. Singh said while the majority of the companies, here in Guyana, are adhering to the Tobacco Packaging and Labeling Regulations, Tobacco Advertising, Promotion and Sponsorship (TAPS), public smoking remains a major problem, and the Public Health Ministry will take action. “The National Tobacco Control Council, which oversees the enforcement and implementation of the Tobacco Control Act, has been gathering evidence. Unfortunately, I cannot tell you where these places are but we have been gathering evidence,” Dr. Singh said, while threatening legal action. The Tobacco Control Act, which came into effect in August, 2017, provides for 100 per cent smoke-free environments in all indoor public spaces, indoor work spaces, public transportation, and specified indoor spaces to protect persons from exposure to tobacco smoke. Importantly it mandates that health warnings be featured on 60 per cent

of the packaging for tobacco products, and imposes a complete ban on all forms of advertising, sponsorship and promotion of tobacco prod-

National Tobacco Control Focal Point, Dr. Kavita Singh

ucts among other guidelines. But while the legislation has been in place for more than two years, Dr. Singh said some companies, businesses and persons have shown scant regard for the act. Under the legislation, the use of tobacco products such as cigarettes, e-cigarettes, vapors and Hookah in public spaces are prohibited, but some clubs and bars, particularly in the capital city – Georgetown, are guilty of offering these very products. “All hookah bars are illegal. If you see or you hear of a hookah bar, it is illegal. There can be no hookah bar,” Dr. Singh told the Guyana Chronicle. Singling out the Hookah Lounge at The Strip, a bar

located at the Giftland Mall, Dr. Singh said the Public Health Ministry has long warned the management of the mall about its breach of the Tobacco Control Act. “I can say momentarily, Giftland would have closed down their hookah bar that was offered at The Strip but now it has surged once more in a very inconspicuous manner. We have enough evidence to show that they are still allowing persons to use Hookah within their bar,” Dr. Singh told this newspaper, while iterating that serious actions will be taken. When Guyana Chronicle visited The Strip on Tuesday, a bartender and supervisor, who were working at the time, confirmed

Inside of ‘The Strip’ at the Giftland Mall

that Hookah was available for sale and use at the bar, though several other customers were present and showed no sign of smoking. Signs promoting the “Hookah Lounge” were also very visible. “Persons are of the perception that hookah is a safer alternative to cigarette but that is not true…It is not us banning Hookah, it is me protecting public health, you are free to use your Hookah but it cannot be in a bar where there are food, beverages and other customers,” Dr. Singh clarified. According to Section eight (Sales Requirements) of the Tobacco Control Act, “no person shall go into any public place carrying any tobacco product, electronic delivery system, or component, in a tray, container or otherwise for the purpose of making sales or commercially displaying the product.” It states that anyone who contravenes the provision within the act is guilty of an offence and is therefore liable on summary convic-

tion to a fine of $400,000 and imprisonment for six months. Added to that, Dr. Singh said that companies and businesses are in violation of the Tobacco Advertising, Promotion and Sponsorship (TAPS) prohibition. She explained that some tobacco companies have given signs to vendors promoting their products, knowing very well that such is prohibited. “The go around putting up those signs or giving vendors signs that indicate that they do no sell nicotine to under 18…that’s deemed a form of advertising because it is saying that you are selling,” Dr. Singh explained, while reminding that even having a “price list” is prohibited.

Even as she expressed her frustration and disappointment, Dr. Singh pointed out that at the Massy Stores, located at MovieTowne, there is a similar sign indicating that they do not sell nicotine to persons under the age of 18. When Guyana Chronicle visited Massy Stores on Tuesday, a ‘No Smoking’ sign was visible at the entrance of the building. Tobacco products such as cigarettes were not visible in the mega store, though available for sale. When “cigarettes” were requested, a sale attendant, unaware she was speaking to a reporter, indicated that such could only be bought by the carton. The reporter was then directed to a supervisor, who enquired about the brand needed before opening what looked like a safe. It was on the ‘safe’ that a sign ‘we don’t sell nicotine products to under 18s,” was seen. When the reporter, introduced herself to the supervisor, she informed that the storage box carrying the sign was supplied to them by Demerara Tobacco Company (DEMTOCO). She appeared unaware that the sign was a form of advertising. The National Tobacco Control Focal Point said the Public Health Ministry is increasing raising awareness on the Tobacco Control Act with the hope that persons and companies will bring themselves inline. Important to note, she said, is the fact that the legislation does not ban smoking but restricts it in public spaces.

This sign, according to the Ministry of Public Health, is indirectly advertising the sale of tobacco products and is therefore illegal (Samuel Maughn photos)


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

‘No salary hike for President’ …Finance Ministry slams mischievous report on PPP blog

MINISTER of Finance, Winston Jordan, on Tuesday, rubbished a Citizens Report article, which alleged that President David Granger increased his salary in 2019. Describing the article as “patently false,” the Finance Minister, who did not mince words in his response, said the reporters of Citizens Report should become more acquainted with the tenets of good reporting, rather than pander to their handlers. “Had there been an increase in the President’s salary, there would have been a corresponding increase in the pensions received by the three ex-Presidents – Bharat Jagdeo, Samuel Hinds and Donald Ramotar. If Citizen’s Report was not so bent on causing public mischief, a quick check of the pensions of any of the three ex-Presidents would have shown that they have remained the same since 2015,” Minister Jordan said in a statement. He said it was Jagdeo, who while serving as president, caused the law governing Presidential pensions to be changed to 7/8 of the salary of the current President, instead of 7/8 of the salary of

Jordan, the increase is a tangible demonstration of the government’s commitment to building a Good Life For All Guyanese, as the country enters the Decade of Development. In December 2019, the Granger Administration increased public servants’ wages and salary by 8.5 per cent for those who were earning between $100,000 Finance Minister Winston Jordan

the President at the time he demits office. “It is unfortunate, as we enter the elections season, that the issue of a well-deserved increase in wages and salaries for public servants, who, under the PPP/C administration, were financially impoverished and subjected to poor working conditions, should be twisted into a blatantly false claim,” Minister Jordan said. The latest increase in the minimum wage represents an overall increase of 77 per cent since the A Partnership for National Unity + Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) coalition took office in 2015. According to the Minister

One dead, another hospitalised in separate motorcycle accidents NAVINDRA Balbader of Colombia Village, Region Two, who was involved in an accident on the Cotton Field Public Road Sunday morning, succumbed, hours after, at the Suddie Public Hospital.

Dead: Navindra Balbader

The 23-year-old had allegedly lost control of his motorcycle CF 4897 while going home and fell onto the road. He received severe head injuries. The noise from the

accident reportedly alerted persons nearby who rushed to his assistance. He was transported to the Suddie Public Hospital where he later succumbed to his injuries. Meanwhile, Rajiv Shamnarine, 31, of Adventure Village on the Essequibo Coast is battling for his life in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the said hospital. He was also involved in a motorcycle accident last Sunday. According to information reaching Guyana Chronicle, Shamnarine was riding his motorcycle when a canter driven by a 42-year-old came into his path. The collision resulted in Shamnarine falling onto the roadway and receiving injuries. He was picked up and immediately taken to the Suddie Public Hospital where he remains a patient. The driver of the canter is in police custody.

and $1M. Those who were earning less than 100,000 at the time received a nine per cent increase while the minimum wage, within the public service, climbed to $70,000 from $64,200. All of the increases were tax-free and retroactive to January 1, 2019. Additionally, Cabinet increased the allowances for health sector workers.

Station allowances were increased by over 260 per cent from $2,800 to $10,000; Hinterland allowances were from $4000 and $12,000 to $24,000; Risk allowance was increased by nine hundred percent from $500 to $5000; uniform allowance for health sector workers was increased from $13,000 and $22,135 to $15,000 and $30,000; and On-call allowance for doc-

tors was also increased. The finance minister made it clear that the Constitutional Order, signed by him on December 2, 2019, was issued well within the life of the Parliament, which was dissolved on December 29, 2019. He said it was unfortunate that attempts were made to impugn the Constitutional Order.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Badal in hunt for new PM candidate …after Hinds ‘bulb goes out’ over dual citizenship

Chairman of Change Guyana, Nigel Hinds (left) and Presidential Candidate of Change Guyana, Robert Badal, (right) in discussion prior to the press conference on Tuesday (Adrian Narine photo)

CHAIRMAN of Change Guyana, Nigel Hinds, has taken full responsibility for not announcing his withdrawal from the upcoming General and Region Elections, sooner. Hinds had announced that he will not be contesting the upcoming elections as prime ministerial candidate of the ‘light bulb’ party, Change Guyana, because of his illness and his dual citizenship. Guyana’s constitution, under Article 155, does not allow a dual citizen to be elected a member of the National Assembly, but Hinds said he was committed to renouncing his US citizenship before he found out about his health complications, on November 7, 2019. “After the political party was launched in October 2019, I had done a medical and I got back the results in November and I realised that there were issues that had to be addressed in a ‘first-world’ country. “On December 5, 2019, I concluded that it was best to receive medical attention in the US and at this point I knew I could not be on the party’s list of candidates,” said Hinds during a press briefing at Pegasus, on Tues-

day. Change Guyana and other political parties had submitted their list of candidates to the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) on Nomination Day – January 10, 2020. The political party has since confirmed that its list was approved by GECOM and the party was given the ‘green light’ to contest the elections, but Hinds was, however, omitted from his party’s list. Given that he was aware of his decision to seek treatment overseas well before Nomination Day, he said: “I took full responsibility for the late release of the message which came out a few days ago.” Despite not being a candidate for a party, which he helped to form, Hinds said he is still committed to Change Guyana. “My commitment and involvement in the campaign to have Robert Badal elected as President of Guyana in general elections scheduled for March 2, 2020 and to propel Change Guyana party into becoming the leading political platform for all Guyanese, remains undaunted,” he said in a media release last Sunday.

Presidential Candidate of Change Guyana, Robert Badal, also said Hinds will remain a key member of the party, and will contribute to the development of potential policies and even do research for the party. The reality remains that Change Guyana is without a prime ministerial candidate, but Badal said they are examining the current options and will soon make a decision. “We have candidates ranging from doctors, lawyers, social workers and other professionals, who I believe, are capable of fitting the role,” said the presidential candidate, adding that both men and women are being considered for the post. Despite the elections being less than 50 days away, Badal said a timeline has not been set for the selection of a prime ministerial candidate but the party will hope to do it soon. In laying out the criteria for a potential candidate, he said: “We are looking for a person who is trustworthy, honest, a professional and a person who will work hard to help achieve the goals of Change Guyana.”

Bagotstown resident pleads not guilty to 2015 murder TREVOR Amsterdam, 36, on Tuesday pleaded not guilty for the murder of Jermaine Simon, who was gunned down at Bagotstown, East Bank Demerara in 2015.

other gang-related issues. Two days after Amsterdam allegedly killed Simon, his home went up in flames. Police had issued a wanted bulletin for Simon in connection with the murder of 19-year-old Ryan Sooklall. Sooklall also known as ‘Plyboard’ was gunned down in a Providence, East Bank Demerara shop on March 1, 2015, by members of his own gang. He was shot in the back and was pronounced dead at the Diamond Diagnostic Centre. The trial will continue today.

Trevor Amsterdam

Amsterdam, formerly of Norton Street, Bagotstown, East Bank Demerara, appeared before Justice Sandil Kissoon at the Demerara High Court. He denied that on November 10, 2915, at Bagotstown, East Bank Demerara, he murdered Jermaine ‘Lapsy’ Simon. According to reports, Simon was shot to the forehead by a man believed to be Amsterdam; he subsequently died while receiving treatment at the Georgetown Public Hospital. It was reported that the accused and Simon had a feud over a woman and

Jermaine ‘Lapsy’ Simon


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

―Derron Moonsammy uses ‘pep talks’ to connect with youths in Region One

By Wendella Davidson AS doctor-in-charge of Kumaka General, Dr. Derron Moonsammy is excited about being in a position to help young people fresh out of high school gainfully occupy themselves in their spare time, and better still, to have the facilities at his disposal to help them do so. He’s long been having regular ‘pep’ talks with village youths, and this year he plans going one better by having them volunteer at the hospital, which is woefully understaffed. He’s also hoping to establish an adolescent clinic at the hospital. During a recent sit-down with the Guyana Chronicle, the Cuban-trained medical practitioner who hails from Mabaruma, another of the three sub-regions, the other being Martarkai, expressed concern over the abuse of drugs, unemployment and teenage pregnancy, all of which negatively affect the youths in the Moruca sub-division. Having worked in all of the sub-districts in Region One (Barima-Waini), Dr. Moonsammy said that the Moruca sub-district is the one with the most cases of mental illness. He believes the reason for this high incidence of the disease in this particular community is that many of those afflicted with it may have at one time used drugs or been exposed to some sort of drug or suffer from some other illness that is associated mental illness. He recalled that in quite a few instances, those persons had either wounded or murdered someone. He said that other than cigarettes and alcohol, young people also seem to have a liking for marijuana. And in an effort to reduce this scourge, Dr. Moonsammy said he and a team from the hospital have identified and targeted certain areas

where the drug seems to be most in use. The doctor reiterated that the purpose of he and staff going into identified areas last year to have ‘pep talks’ with the residents on ‘the harmful effects of marijuana’ was to reduce the use of drugs among the young people. However, it was observed that the interventions attract mostly the older folks, who turn out in their numbers, rather than the intended group who usually would just listen and leave the venue. Dr. Moonsammy said he sees the need for more engagements with the youths, hence his desire to establish a Maternal Child Health (MCH) clinic, which will comprise a maternal child health section and an adolescent section. At the latter, the aim is to have the youths go and procure materials and also be engaged in group discussions to address factors relating to mental health and other illnesses. Touching briefly on the issue of teenage pregnancy, the sub-region’s leading medical practitioner said: “It is very common; sometimes in more places than others, but it is very common,” he said, while noting that the youngest case on record last year was 12 years-old. Dr. Moonsammy further explained that once a person is under 19 years of age, they are considered a teenager, as opposed to under 16 years, which is considered rape, whereby action has to be taken and recorded. At 16, 18, or 19 years it is recorded but still considered as teenage pregnancy. “So we have a high number,” he said. Asked what may be the root cause for such a breakdown, Dr. Moonsammy said: “Generally, it may be due to the culture in the sub-region, where teenagers are not prohibited from en-

Dr. Moonsammy, standing in front of a beautiful mural at the hospital

tering bars and clubs; poor supervision by parents; and the degradation of values in the family,” all of which, he added has been going on for years. The doctor said, “There is no line drawn between an adult and a teenager and how they are expected to behave, and what they should be doing or not doing and there is the issue of unemployment.” Expounding on the latter, he said that when the youths leave school at around 15 or 16 years of age, there is no employment avenue available, so they remain in the village and mix with those persons who are doing drugs. The girls engage in sexual activity and sometimes get pregnant. And while such behaviour should not be seen as normal, the fact that it is happening so often, it is perceived as normal behaviour for a teenage girl to get pregnant, go get the baby and return to school. “We are trying to curb this by starting with an adolescent clinic,” Dr Moonsammy said, adding: “It was a long time coming; we had a VSO (Volunteer Service Overseas) officer who was pushing for it. There are clubs in schools which is a good thing.”


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Fewer blackouts last Christmas

GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

…GPL hails performance as commendable

LAST Christmas the Guyana Power and Light (GPL) did not give Guyanese its heart as the popular Christmas song by Wham goes, but the company delivered a “commendable” service during

the holiday season. The company is usually criticised by the public throughout the year, mainly because of the power outages and usual inconsistences in the delivery of the service. GPL, despite existing

challenges, maintained a stable supply of electricity during the Christmas season. This was the second consecutive year that the company was able to deliver such a service during the holiday period.

According to a press statement from GPL, in 2019 there were five shutdowns, an amount which was “unprecedented.” In comparing the amount of shutdowns to previous years, the power company said there were 12 shutdowns in 2018 and 25 in 2017.

the tasks. According to GPL, between December 18 and December 31, 2019, the Demerara-Berbice Interconnected System (DBIS) had a total of 144.7 Megawatts of generation capacity available, while the Power Plants at Anna Regina, Bartica, Leguan, and Wakenaam,

tenance for the upkeep of units as well as other operational works will continue for the new year, as the company continues its journey towards becoming a “world class utility.” He added that the power company is also pursuing a number of developmental and expansion

GPL’s available generation capacity in the DBIS from December 18 to December 31, 2019

“The aim is to completely eliminate these events, even though this will be a challenge until existing generation, Transmission and Distribution (T&D) systems are upgraded,” said GPL. The company said the improvement in performance had resulted in customers in Demerara, Berbice, Anna Regina, Bartica, Leguan and Wakenaam only experiencing minimal service interruptions, which were largely attributed to localised faults. Despite the challenges faced because of an aged T&D network, the utility company has been diligently conducting planned maintenance activities on the network, while having an increased number of emergency response crews on standby to address localised faults. The power company said the planned maintenance activities were executed by GPL’s workers across the country, who worked beyond their normal working time to complete

together had a total of 17.18 Megawatts. These megawatts were available due to GPL’s efforts to efficiently service aged generation plants, some of which are semi-retired. In addition to the aged generation plants, the company also faced man-made challenges in the form of accidents, during the season. GPL said accidents resulted in damage to some of the company’s poles. Those accidents, coupled with a few transformer failures, resulted in minor service disruptions in some communities. Amidst this setback, GPL’s field staff expedited work to restore electricity. “Moving forward, the power company, intends to continue to ensure there is sufficient and available capacity to meet its demand, while at the same time improving the quality of its supply to all customers,” said GPL. Chief Executive Officer of GPL, Albert Gordon, said planned main-

plans, which, once implemented, will see the systems operating throughout the year with little chance of service interruptions. In 2019, it was reported that GPL was seeking partnerships to remedy its shortfalls in power generation and the government through the Ministry of Public Infrastructure was moving to amend a section of GPL’s licence to allow the purchasing of power from external sources. A notice signed by Minister of Public Infrastructure, David Patterson, stated that GPL’s licence restricts the company from purchasing power from any person other than an Independent Power Producer (IPP), which produces power from renewable energy sources. The IPP also does not include businesses whose main business is not the generation of power and which supply no more than 10 megawatts (MW).


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Dual citizen Bandhu bows out …the URP Presidential Candidate found in breach of Statutory Declaration Act By Lisa Hamilton

LEADER of the United Republican Party (URP), Dr. Vishnu Bandhu, has been removed from his party’s list as its Presidential Candidate by the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) for failure to adhere to the provisions of the Constitution with regards to his dual citizenship.

Leader of the United Republican Party (URP), Dr. Vishnu Bandhu

Even so, Dr. Bandhu may still be in a pickle as the matter could reach the attention of law enforcement as his signature to the Statutory Declaration Form on Nomination Day could now make him answerable to the law. “The URP has indicated that their presidential candidate is a dual citizen and he has indicated a desire to withdraw from the process as a candidate. He sent a letter to the commission,” Commissioner Sase Gunraj told the media coming out Tuesday’s statutory meeting. “We have taken decisions as to how that is to be dealt with…we have given some instructions to the CEO which he’s expected to carry out,” Gunraj added even as he refrained from stating whether this could involve law enforcement. Meanwhile, questioned whether this could involve the police, Commissioner Vincent Alexander said that the possibility exists although it is commission’s responsibility to only remove Dr. Bandhu from his party’s lists. “In the first instance, if Dr. Bandhu is not eligible, what essentially GECOM would do is not approve him as a candidate – that’s essentially what GECOM would do. There’s no other action which GECOM would take with direct relationship with Dr. Bandhu...if we advise the law enforcement then, in fact, we are not relating to him directly anymore,” Alexander explained. WHERE HE WENT WRONG The Statutory Declaration Form signed by Dr. Bandhu

first confirms that he is aware of the provisions of articles 53 and 155 of the Constitution with respect to the qualifications for election as a Member of the National Assembly. Article 155 of the Constitution states: “(1) No person shall be qualified for election as a member of the National Assembly who – (a) is, by virtue of his or her own act, under any acknowledgement of allegiance, obedience or adherence to a foreign power or state.”

of the entire list. Gunraj could not provide a direct response as he stated: “I am not sure that Mr. Bandhu’s list contains exactly 42 names.” WHAT OF SHUMAN? Either way, the media was informed that similar treatment would be given to every candidate the commission is able to verify who would have signed a Statutory Declaration Form but is in breach of the Constitution with regards to dual citizenship. On Nomination Day, when parties showed up at the Umana Yana to hand in their various lists of Candidates, there was mystery around whether Leader of the Liberty and Justice Party (LJP), Lenox Shuman, was still a Canadian citizen.

GECOM Commissioner, Sase Gunraj

The statutory Form also requested that Bandhu “solemnly and sincerely declare” that he is a citizen of the Co-operative republic of Guyana; a citizen of Guyana by birth or parentage; a resident of Guyana on the date of nomination for election; continuously residing in Guyana for a period of seven years immediately before Election Day and qualified to be elected as a Member of the National Assembly. According to the Statutory Declaration Act, Chapter 5:09: “Everyone who makes a declaration according to this Act containing any statement false in fact, which he knows or believes to be false or does not believe to be true, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be liable to imprisonment for one year.” On Monday, Bandhu told the Guyana Chronicle’s Vantage Point: “I am relinquishing my dual citizenship. I sent a letter to the American Embassy since the 2nd of this month. I am hoping to have a meeting with them today to verify everything is okay but I’m relinquishing because I’m a Guyanese.” However, this is after he would have signed the Statutory Declaration Form of a Presidential Candidate named in the National Top-up List. When the media last checked, the URP’s National Top-up List had the least allowed, which is 42 names and, with Dr. Bandhu now out and the period for correction of lists now over, the question was raised about the compromise

GECOM Commissioner, Vincent Alexander

When pressed by the media before handing in his party’s lists — on which he signed a Statutory Declaration Form as candidate — Shuman said that he had surrendered all of his documents to the Canadian Government and it was now “for them to deicide”. He claimed that his “citizenship has been renounced” although he is yet to receive any correspondence from the Canadian Government and he would therefore remain a citizen of Canada until such. “In so far as it relates to Mr. Shuman, we don’t have any information at our hand here which indicates that he is a dual citizen,” Gunraj stated. Meanwhile, Alexander said: “By virtue of information in the public domain, what GECOM is going to do is to seek further clarification from him.” Shuman, a Guyanese by birth, has had dual citizenship for approximately 28 years. On the Statutory Declaration Form signed he would have confirmed that he is aware of the provisions of articles 53 and 155 of the Constitution with respect to the qualifications for election as a Member of the National Assembly. Gunraj admitted that it would be a far stretch for the commission to go as

far as to check every candidate for possession of dual citizenship and put forward that the remit should be on the individual to act in accordance to law. He stated, “The com-

mission does not have a mechanism to verify one’s citizenship. What do we do? Do we write to all the 200 odd countries of the world to inquire whether (a candidate) is a citizen of

that country? I’m not sure that we can do that. There is a Statutory Declaration and there are certain ramifications which flow as a consequence of a false declaration.”


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Demerara Assizes open…

85 murdes, 145 rape cases for trial

DESPITE a heavy downpour in the capital city on

Tuesday, Justice Brassington Reynolds continued inspect-

ing the Guard of Honour and also took the salute at

Justice Brassington Reynolds takes the salute from the police Guard of Honour at yesterday’s opening of the January criminal sessions at the Demerara Assizes (Adrian Narine photo)

the opening ceremony of the January criminal sessions at the Demerara Assizes. Justices Reynolds and Sandil Kissoon will deal with criminal matters while Madam

Justice Jo-Ann Barlow preside over matters in the Sexual Offences Court. A total of 218 case are listed for trial. The list includes 85 cases for murder, 15 for manslaughter and 145 for rape, plus other cases such as abduction, wounding, robbery and robbery under arms. Listed for trial is Muslim scholar Nezaam Ali, who is currently serving a 45-year sentence for raping a nineyear-old boy. Ali will go on trial for eight additional counts of sexually abusing eight boys. He is facing multiple indictments for crimes allegedly committed between 2011 and 2012, including sexual activity with a child under 16 years and sexual activity with a child by abusing a position of trust. Another well-known case is that of former Bishops’ High School teacher Coen Jackson, who is set to be tried for engaging in sexual activity with a child under the age of 16 while being in a position of trust. He is currently out on bail. Meanwhile, for the capital offence of murder, former Guyana Defence Force captain Orwain Sandy will be tried for the murder of his reputed wife in 2018. Sandy allegedly used his service firearm and opened fire at Payne during a domestic dispute. A post-mortem report revealed that Payne died from 14 gunshot wounds to her body– 13 to her chest and one to the head. Also, businessman Robert Benn will go on trial for the murder of 24-year-old Colin Perreira and the attempted murder of his girlfriend, GailAnn Chachon. Four men are also set to go on trial for the murder of Foulis, East Coast Demerara businessman, Rajendra Singh. Currently on remand are : Doenauth Katwaru, also known as ‘Pumpkin’; ‘Doodnauth Katwaroo’ or ‘Doodnauth Ketwaru’; Tony Christopher Thomas, also

known as ‘Mataran’, ‘Matteron’, ‘Job’ or ‘Fix Up; Michael Lewis called ‘Michael Joseph’, ‘Jet Lee’, ‘J- Ice or ‘Mikey and Adony James, called ‘Don. Meanwhile, Mark Lowchee called Mark Lee is finally expected to face trial for the September 21, 2003 murder of Collis DeAbreu at Fifth and Light Streets, Alberttown, Georgetown. Also, there is the case of Regan Rodrigues, called ‘Grey Boy,’ who is charged with the murder of political activist Courtney Crum-Ewing. The bullet-riddled body of Crum-Ewing was found at Third Avenue, Diamond New Scheme, EBD, on March 10, 2015. The 40-year-old was shot twice to the temple, once to the back of the head and twice to the stomach. The political activist was well-known for his one-man protest outside the office of former Attorney General (AG) Anil Nandlall. Minutes before he was gunned down, he was reportedly heard via a bullhorn urging residents of the neighbourhood to vote against the then ruling PPP/C. In December 2019, gaol delivery was done by Justice Kissoon which brought an end to the October 2019 criminal assizes. During this assizes, which commenced in October 2019, a total of 322 cases were listed to be heard. Of these 322 cases, 49 were disposed of. Of these 49 matters, 36 received attention in the Demerara High Court, while 12 were deemed nolle prosequi by the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) by letter. OF these 36 matters that were presented, 20 were for the offence of murder, while 16 others were for sexual offences. There were 13 guilty pleas, nine guilty verdicts by jury, 3 not-guilty verdicts, six formal verdicts of not guilty, two hung juries and three aborted trials.


GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Buffy wanted in connection with Non Pareil wedding house murder ERROL Thapordeen called “Buffy/Bowie/Powie” is wanted by the police for questioning in relation to the murder of Rudendra Persaud, on Sunday, at Non Pareil, East Coast Demerara. Anyone with information that may lead to the arrest of Thapordeen is asked to contact the police on telephone numbers 226-6978, 225-8196 or the nearest police station. His last known address has been given as Lot 319 Enterprise, E.C.D. Twenty-five-year-old Persaud of Foulis, East Coast Demerara died at the Georgetown Public Hospital on Sunday afternoon, hours after he was allegedly savagely beaten by a group of men, while he was attending a wedding reception of his cousin in Non Pareil. The Guyana Chronicle

was told that no one knew how the incident started but the relatives of the bride and groom were in the yard and on the road at the wedding house, when they observed a commotion further up the road. Prior to that, the mother of the dead man, according to his aunt, was constantly looking for him in the wedding house to ensure that he was okay. “We had a bar out there and so we selling, I was busy then my sister come one time and say you see boyo? so I said yes look he stand up over that one side, that is right opposite the neighbour, she go and she talk and see he and she come in back” the aunt of the deceased told this publication.

also attempted to hit her but she was forced to indicate to them that if they wanted to enjoy themselves, they could come at the wedding house but that no fighting should take place. However, within seconds, the violence again erupted. “By then that the music boy came out and ask what wrong if yall alright and by the time he said that, wood start pelt pon he bla dam bla dam ah him face and meh hold meh sister hand and me meh push meh neighbour and meh seh yall come on, yall move out move come leh awe go them boys them dis ignorant,” she further explained.

Dead: Rudendra Persaud Wanted man, Errol Thapordeen called “Buffy/Bowie/Powie

The woman said that she was alerted to a fight up the road but was not aware that it was someone who was part of the wedding that was involved. “Meh sister and brother-in-law said where boyo deh again and my sister said you better go and see if is he gone till at the end so because watch them get a set of boys deh, deh got a fight there-like and with a set of stick in dem hand” Boodran recalled. Boodran said while her sister went in the direction of the strange young men, she remained at her wedding house but sent her husband behind her sister and brother-in-law to see what was happening. “So she said now watch how them boys this a beat people Pickney hay and that is not right…” The woman said the boys

The commotion also caused the groom to leave his bride and went to inquire what was going on and he too received a lash to his hands. After the family and guests returned to the house, the mother of Rudendra Persaud again began inquiring about her son. This time she said that something seems wrong and she decided to return to the location where the gang of boys was, according to what Boodran told this publication. After she returned to the location she pleaded with the boys not to hurt her and said that she was just looking for her son as she was not finding him. “One of them said oh aunty ah you son you a look for, he said watch one boy lay down there, he get lash and lay down there…” When the woman saw her son she raised an alarm and he was rushed to the hospital where he succumbed.


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Commentary: BEIJING, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- How to supervise the exercise of power is a tough test for political parties all across the world. Those failing to solve the problem will fall into the historical cycle of rise and fall. The Communist Party of China (CPC) is determined to face the challenge as it seeks to continue its successful rule. The fourth plenary session of the 19th Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of the CPC, which opened in Beijing on Monday, has reaffirmed continuous efforts to promote full and strict governance of the Party as well as the resolve to supervise power and enforce discipline and laws. The CPC’s supervision system is unique in many aspects. One of the features is that intraparty oversight takes the leading role, while oversight by people’s congresses, democratic oversight, administrative oversight, judicial

CPC’s version of power supervision effective

oversight, auditing oversight, accounting oversight, statistics oversight, public oversight and oversight through public opinion are coordinated. Party and state supervisory systems have been set up and improved so that power is exercised in a fair, law-based and clean manner. With a comprehensive supervisory mechanism in place, it is equally important to implement it, effectively and precisely. From January to November in 2019, disciplinary inspection and supervisory organs across the country filed and investigated 555,000 cases, with 485,000 people receiving disciplinary measures within the Party or government agencies. It is a strong signal that no one is above the law. The CPC has stressed stepping up supervision regard-

ing the tasks of securing a victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and the battle against poverty. It will also crack down on disciplinary violations more severely in key areas, including the financial sector, state-owned enterprises, local government debt risks, medical institutions and overseas state-owned assets. The CPC is a Marxist party with the unique advantage of strict discipline. The determination to limit power through the system and punish those violating discipline demonstrates the strength of the Party and has won the hearts of the people. By governing itself strictly, the CPC becomes stronger. It is also contributing wisdom to the world about what is the true meaning of power, how to supervise the exercise of power, and how to use it for the people.

China is the partner of choice for Africa (China Daily)There is a debate among geopolitical commentators about the merits and even the intentions of Chinese engagement in Africa. Some suggest the Chinese seek to undermine democracy; others accuse China of saddling the continent with decades of debt that can’t be repaid; few seem to believe that China genuinely has the interests of Africa at heart. And almost no one in the international community cares to seek the views of Africans themselves. In the case of Zimbabwe, it cannot be disputed that China has been a strong and true friend over many decades. In the late 1970s, China was a key supporter of the protracted liberation war in Zimbabwe, which ended in April 1980. Post-independence, Chinese support across all sectors of economic and social development has been generous and consistent. This hardly chimes with the narrative suggesting that China is seeking to impose its own identity and its own form of governance upon African nations. I am not aware of any single example?save, perhaps, in the minds of anti-Chinese, largely Western, policymak-

ers?where China has imposed itself, its philosophy or its system of governance on any African nation. Over the past 40 years, in full alignment with the Charter of the United Nations, China has resolutely adhered to a policy of “noninterference” in the domestic affairs of other countries. China’s strategic focus has been one of trade facilitation and investment in essential infrastructure projects, an area shunned, until relatively recently, by Western cooperation partners and development institutions. China has also placed high priority on education and health sector partnerships with African countries, including Zimbabwe. A key aspect of China’s relationship with Zimbabwe as well as with all African countries is that its engagement comes without political conditions. China’s intensified focus on Africa, especially since the launch of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation and its evolving synergy with Africa’s own continental development blueprint, the African Union’s Agenda 2063, has, in a sense, “democratized” foreign direct

investment by affording African nations a far wider range of options, boosting FDI inflows into African countries. India, South Korea, Turkey and Russia, among others, have developed their own Africa-focused partnership forums, all aimed at advancing Africa’s development and integration agenda while, at the same time, seeking invest-

ment and trade opportunities for their respective private and state companies across all sectors. Other key cooperation partners, including the United States and the United Kingdom, have recalibrated their Africa-focused initiatives to incorporate support for infrastructure development, with the UK an-

nouncing that after Brexit, it aspires to overtake the US as the G7’s top investor in Africa by 2022. Some may view the statements of intent by other nations as some form of challenge to China’s position as the No 1 investor in Africa. There is more than enough room in Zimbabwe and across the continent to accommodate all who, like China, seek genuine and mutually beneficial partnerships. For the newer entrants and those who have recently woken up to the enormous potential, it is clear they face an uphill task in seeking to

replicate or attain the levels of Chinese engagement or infrastructure investment. That engagement has been in place for a generation or more and, as the visit of State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi so clearly illustrates, is set for further expansion and acceleration. Contrast this with our friends in the West, who continue the “carrot and stick” approach, undermining their stated intent of more trade and investment by keeping in place what they euphemistically refer to as “restrictive measures” (sanctions), effectively deterring trade and investment and depriving their own companies of lucrative opportunities in Zimbabwe. The best partnerships are found through mutual self-interest. Each should recognize and respect the other’s sovereignty. As first among equals, with a long and uninterrupted history of genuine friendship, it is clear that China will continue to be the partner of choice for Africa because it understands and respects the continent. (Author: Sibusiso Moyo, Zimbabwe’s minister for foreign affairs and international trade)


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GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday, January 15, 2020

16 Jamaican companies for trade mission this month

THE Regional interest continues to grow in Guyana, as a delegation of 16 companies from Jamaica will be coming to Guyana from this month with the aim of forming business-to-business connections with local companies. On Tuesday, President of the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), Nicholas Deygoo-Boyer, said that the visit is being organised by GCCI with the assistance of CARICHAM, a private sector-led Caribbean Chamber of Commerce. It was the hope that the delegation would have been present in Guyana since in November 2019 when Jamaica’s first female Head of State, Portia Simpson-Miller, had visited for GCCI’s 130th Annual Awards Ceremony. However, the plans which were in the works since then will finally take place from January 26–31, 2020.

Man accused of ‘robbery under arms’ remanded

Joshua Austin

MAGISTRATE Sherdel Isaacs-Marcus, on Tuesday January 14, 2020, remanded a 21-year-old man on a robbery charge. Joshua Austin of Lodge Housing Scheme appeared at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court and denied the charge, when it was read to him. Particulars of the charge stated that, on December 22, 2019, at Albouystown, while in the company of another, and armed with a gun, he robbed Darrin Gaskin of a gold chain with a pendent valued at $510,000, a gold ring valued at $42,000, and a gold band valued at $180,000. Attorney-at-law Paul Fung-a-Fat, who represented Austin, told the court that the police showed Gaskin a video footage of the robbery and the men in the footage were tall. Fung-a-Fat stated that his client was not that tall. He also made application for bail to be granted to his client. “I never rob nobody and escape in no car, me in get no escape charge. The police tell this man to point to number 5 cause he done pick somebody else,” Austin said. Police Prosecutor objected to bail being granted to Austin and told the court that, after Austin robbed Gaskin, he escaped in a car and Gaskin gave chase. Another prosecutor told the court that Austin was before the court for robbery under arms and he was there on another robbery-under- arms charge. Austin was also positively identified by Gaskin. Magistrate Isaacs-Marcus, after listening to prosecutors and Austin, remanded him (Austin) to prison and adjourned the matter until January 28, 2020. He will make another appearance before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan.

“I think that a lot of Jamaican business people are interested and excited with the prospect of doing business both in Guyana and with Guyanese businesses,” Boyer said. He noted that the delegation represents a very wide cross range of businesses offering different types of services and products. During their time here they will be introduced to various local businesses with the help of the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA); the Private Sector Commission (PSC) and other Regional Chambers of Commerce. Added to this, GCCI is expecting a delegation from Finland which also has similar interests with the private sector or diplomatic missions. He stated: “We have been encouraging everyone to look at bringing trade missions in to Guyana.”

Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) President, Nicholas Deygoo-Boyer


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GCB, Everest officially unveil... practice home of the national cricket team as well as the Jaguars Academy players. He said GCB is currently geared towards ensuring that venues such as the Shiv Chanderpaul outdoor facility are erected across the country, as it will help to target the development of players on a wider demographic plane. The GCB executive also confirmed that the board will be unveiling another such facility in Parika on Friday, adding that the highly-anticipated LBI facility, which has been un-

From Backpage

dergoing immense upgrades, will be unveiled soon. Sanasie added that such moves to have these venues named after iconic Guyanese cricketers is something the GCB plans to continue doing as the other potential facilities could also bear significant names. Meanwhile, TDO Stuart, in closing, said the developmental committee of the GCB was happy to make such strides with regard to providing proper training grounds for its players.

Lady Jags eyeing Women’s... From Backpage

and will no longer participate in the 2020 CONCACAF Women’s Under-20 Championship, meaning that the two remaining slots in the World Cup will be determined via the 2020 CONCACAF Women’s Under-20 Championship. “We don’t plan on doing anything different that we’ve done when we played here. I know the girls are working hard and that we’re having some talent-spotting, but I think we have a good chance. Despite the quality of the opponents, I know the girls are going to work hard because of what’s at stakes – the World Cup,” Forde stated. Forde lamented that the team’s goal is to qualify for the FIFA U-20 World Cup, and added that realistically, it’s also a chance for the GFF to test their women’s programme against some of the top teams in the confederation.

“I think this also gives us a chance to rub shoulders with some of the top teams in CONCACAF and will also tell us just how far we’ve come, where we want to go and how much harder we have to work to get there. We will take away as much as we can from this experience,” Forde noted. Forde also sees Guyana’s participation as a “major achievement for the country,” taking into consideration that not much emphasis was placed on women’s football at the level below the senior women’s – the Lady Jags. For the group stage of the 2020 CONCACAF Women’s Under-20 Championship, to be played at the Felix Sanchez Stadium and Panamericano Stadium, in Santo Domingo and San Cristobal, respectively, Guyana (top-ranked team in qualifying Group A) and St Kitts and Nevis (topranked team in qualifying Group B) will

be replacing Costa Rica and Panama for the group stage of the final championship. In Group C, the United States, Honduras, Dominican Republic and Cuba will go head-to-head, while Group E is set with Canada, Jamaica, Guatemala and El Salvador. Group F conprises Haiti, Trinidad & Tobago, St Kitts & Nevis and Cayman Islands. For the Round-of-16, Bermuda (thirdplace finishers in qualifying Group A) and Barbados (third-place finishers in qualifying Group B) will occupy the positions vacated by Guyana and St Kitts & Nevis. All knockout round matches (round of 16, quarterfinal, semifinal and final) will be played in a single match elimination format, with the finalists will qualify to the FIFA Women’s U-20 World Cup 2020.

MCC backs continuation of five-day Test matches

THE Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) has given its backing to the continuation of five-day Test matches, amid debate over whether cricket’s longest format could be shortened. The International Cricket Council (ICC) has raised the possibility that Tests after 2023 could be cut to four days. The MCC’s cricket committee and world cricket committee have

discussed the issue. A statement said: “Both committees believe that Test cricket should continue to be played over five days.” However, the statement did acknowledge the “benefits that four-day Test cricket could bring”. MCC remains the guardian of the laws and spirit of cricket, while its world cricket committee is

an influential independent panel of former and current players and umpires, which meets twice a year to discuss cricketing issues. Test cricket has been standardised at five days since 1979, though in 2017 the ICC did permit for certain matches to be played over four days, such as England’s Test against Ireland at Lord’s last summer. Since the prospect of all matches becoming

four days was raised, a number of international players, including England Test captain Joe Root, have spoken out in support of the five-day game - although the England and Wales Cricket Board said it “cautiously” supported a switch to four days as a possible way of easing the strain on players and the international schedule. (BBC Sport) 10:50 hrs Glockenspiel 11:25 hrs Notachance 12:00 hrs Flinteur Sacre

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FA Cup THIRD-ROUND.

Tottenham Hotspur v Middlesbrough - Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London, Britain -Tottenham Hotspur’s Giovani Lo Celso scores their first goal Action Images via Reuters/Matthew Childs

Argentine duo help Tottenham past Boro in replay, Newcastle through

By Martyn Herman

LONDON (Reuters) - Tottenham’s Hotspur’s Argentine midfield duo Giovani Lo Celso and Erik Lamela both scored as Jose Mourinho’s side edged past Middlesbrough 2-1 in their FA Cup third-round replay on Tuesday. In eight-time winners Tottenham’s first FA Cup tie at their new stadium, Lo Celso slotted them in front after two minutes before Lamela doubled the lead in the 15th minute. Second-tier Middlesbrough made it an anxious final few minutes for the hosts as George Saville’s low shot halved the deficit in the 83rd minute but Tottenham survived for a first win in five games to set up a fourth-round

trip to Southampton. Newcastle United strolled past third-tier Rochdale, winning 4-1 at St James’ Park. Eoghan O’Connell’s own goal put Newcastle ahead and Matthew Longstaff and Miguel Almiron ended any chance of an upset with goals before halftime. Joelinton ended his 20game goal drought in the second half as Newcastle cruised through to face third-tier Oxford United. Third-tier Shrewsbury Town set up a dream fourthround home tie against Liverpool as they sprang something of a surprise by knocking out Championship club Bristol City 1-0. efender Aaron Pierre’s superb long-range effort in the 89th minute sparked wild celebrations at New Meadow.

“Football’s all about entertainment, enjoyment — the FA Cup is special — and now we get the chance to play Liverpool,” Shrewsbury boss Sam Ricketts said. Former winners Coventry City, who have fallen on hard times, beat Bristol Rovers 3-0 in their replay to set up a ‘home’ tie with Birmingham City at Birmingham’s St Andrews ground where they are currently tenants. Second tier Reading won 2-0 at Blackpool. Tranmere Rovers’ replay at home to top-flight Watford was postponed after heavy rain left the pitch waterlogged. Mourinho made five changes to his starting lineup with Lo Celso and Lamela, who both impressed as substitutes in the 1-0 defeat by Liverpool on Saturday, given

the chance to impress. They did just that although both goals came from poor Boro defending. The 4,000 Boro fans who made the trip south were silenced after two minutes when keeper Tomas Mejias played a risky pass out and Lo Celso intercepted before cutting inside and side-footing home. Boro almost levelled when Lukas Nmecha left Japhet Tanganga on the ground after

a great turn but he was denied by Paulo Gazzaniga who had a relatively quiet evening. Tottenham’s second goal was almost a carbon copy with Lamela seizing on some sloppy Boro play before slicing through and finishing neatly with the outside of his left foot. Mourinho’s side failed to turn their domination into more goals and things got edgy late on when Saville’s shot evaded Gazzaniga who

seemed slow to get down. “I told my players at halftime if we don’t make it 3-0 then if 2-1 we would be in trouble and it happened,” Mourinho, who has gone on a nine-match run without a clean sheet for only the second time in his 923-game managerial career. “We did lots of things well, we conceded the goal, a bit frustrating, but more frustrating was that we did not score three, four or five.”

Stadium lights will bring even larger crowds: Mitchell ST GEORGE’S, Grenada, (CMC) – Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell has praised his country’s support for last Sunday’s One-Day International and believes crowd turnout will be even bigger with the installation of lights at the Grenada National Stadium. Speaking during the contest which West Indies won by five wickets to complete a 3-0 series whitewash, Mitchell said the match would have seen even larger numbers had it not been staged on a Sunday when the “religious community” was otherwise engaged.

“The turnout is clearly to me an example of the interest Grenadians have in cricket,” Mitchell contended. “It is well-known that Ireland is not considered one of the top teams. The fact that we have this turn out for a game of this nature on a Sunday, without a top team in world cricket playing West Indies, I think is a clear demonstration of how Grenadians feel about cricket in general and West Indies cricket.” The ODI was the third at the venue over the last 12 months, following the doubleheader against

England last February, as part of the five-match series. Prior to the doubleheader, however, Grenada had not hosted a white-ball game in nearly five years and international cricket since 2015. Mitchell, a former chairman of CARICOM’s Prime-Ministerial subcommittee on cricket and an avid fan, said he expected the marketability of the stadium to be further enhanced once lights were installed in the future. “I think one of the things you will see in the future with the advent of the lighting of the facility [is in-

creased turnout],” Mitchell pointed out. “… if we had lights, [the ODI] would have started about 1:30 pm and gone into the evening and you would’ve seen an even bigger crowd, and the T20 game on Wednesday would have started at 7 pm and gone on for four hours – imagine the entertainment. “With the love for this facility and the country, the entertainment involved and the people, I think you will see a lot of good cricket Prime Minister Dr Keith matches here in the future.” Mitchell.

Poor air continues to disrupt Australian Open qualifying By Ian Ransom MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Australian Open qualifying was disrupted for a second successive day due to poor air quality on Wednesday as smoke from bushfires continued to blanket Melbourne in an acrid haze.11 Organisers of the year’s first Grand Slam said practice had been suspended at Melbourne Park until 11 a.m. (0000 GMT) and qualifiers would not get underway until 1 p.m. Australia is experiencing one of its worst bushfire seasons on record, with fires burning for months and claiming the lives of 28 people, destroying more than 2,500 homes and razing forests and farmland the size of Bulgaria. Qualifying was delayed for more than an hour on Tuesday but organisers were criticised for allowing it to resume, with Slovenia’s Dalila Jakupovic forced to retire after suffering a coughing fit during her match. “Conditions at Melbourne Park are being

constantly monitored and further decisions will be made using the onsite data and in close consultation with our medical team, the Bureau of Meteorology and scientists from EPA Victoria,” governing body Tennis Australia said in a statement on Wednesday. Play and practice at regional tournaments in Traralgon and Bendigo, along with a junior event at Royal Park in Melbourne, had also been suspended, it added. Scheduled horse race meetings in two separate Melbourne suburbs were also cancelled on Wednesday, governing body Racing Victoria said, “due to smoke haze and poor air quality”. Races in Melbourne’s western suburb of Werribee were scrapped a day earlier. Air quality is expected to improve later on Wednesday when rain showers are forecast but the weather is likely to cause more delays to the Australian Open schedule, creating further headaches for organisers. Bushfire smoke has affected a number of elite sporting competitions involving soccer, rugby

A general view of the city skyline shrouded by smoke haze from bushfires during an Australian Open practise session at Melbourne Park in Melbourne, Australia, January 14, 2020. AAP Image/Michael Dodge/via REUTERS league and cricket, and the pollution has raised fears for player safety at Melbourne Park, with the tournament starting on Monday. While TA has said they were consulting experts, Victoria state’s Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said the governing body should establish a proper air quality policy along with its existing extreme heat policy to determine whether conditions are fit for play.

“They do have a heat policy, I think they need to plan out an air quality policy in the same way,” he told local media. “We’re all trying to work out the best approach and there’s no ‘one size fits all’. “You can’t have a blanket solution, you need to look at the individual circumstances and what the alternatives are for protecting people.”


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BCB/Ramnaresh Sarwan U-17 tournament

Tons from Rampersaud, Ramdehol steer Rose Hall into Friday’s final with Albion

GUYANA CHRONICLE Wednesday January 15, 2020

BCB launches Nand Persaud/RHTYSC Female Cricket tournament THE Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) and Nand Persaud & Co. joined forces as they launched the 2020 Rose Hall Town Sports Club (RHTYSC) Female cricket tournament. The tournament is set to be played between Rose Hall Town Metro, New Amsterdam/Canje and West Berbice. The three teams would play each other on a round-robin basis with the team with the most points emerging as the winner. Local women stars like Shemaine Campbelle, Erva Giddings, Sheneta Grimmond, Tremayne Smartt, Shabika Gajnabi, Lafona Gilgeous, Kantana Mentore and others will be on show. The tourney will be used as a platform into the Berbice team as the ladies will be vying for spots in the upcoming Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) Female tournament. The BCB president expressed gratitude to the Management and Staff of the Nand Persaud Co. Ltd especially its Marketing Manager Mr Devash Persaud for coming on board with Guyana’s most dynamic cricket board within days of receiving the proposal. The company contributed financially while the RHTYSC would provide the trophies, medals for the winners and runners-up. Persaud expressed delight at sponsoring the tournament for the second time and stated that he has full confidence

BCB president Hilbert Foster receives sponsorship cheque from Marketing Manager of Nand Persaud Co. Ltd, Devash Persaud.

in the organising skills of the BCB. Over the last decade Berbice has produce six West Indies players; Campbelle, Smartt, Giddings, Sabrina Munroe, Grimmond and Gajnabi. Others like Melanie Henry, Plaffina Millington, Marian Samaroo, Ashley Ramnauth, Lafona Gilgeous, Dian Prahalad, Ashmini Munisar, and Mentore have played for Guyana at different levels.

Central/South Essequibo T20 League

Reliance SC, Cotton Field Strikers keep hopes alive Centurions! Jonathan Rampersaud (left) and Ricardo Ramdehol

JONATHAN Rampersaud and Ricardo Ramdehol struck centuries as spinner Matthew Pottaya bagged a 5-for to pilot Rose Hall Town (RHT) Bakewell to a record 351-run win over Rose Hall Community Centre Cricket, advancing to the final of the Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) Ramnaresh Sarwan Under-17 tournament. Rampersaud, a former Guyana U-15 player cracked 141 while Ramdehol hammered a majestic 191 not out. Rampersaud, who played for the Upper Corentyne franchise in the GCB tournament, and Ramdehol added a record 331 for the 3rd wicket off 27 overs as their side piled on 418 runs. Seven huge sixes and nine boundaries were the elements which highlighted Rampersaud’s 141 not out. On the other hand, Ramdehol blasted eight sixes and ten fours with Sanjay Algoo chipping in with a useful 91. In reply, Rose Hall Canje were bowled out for 67 with only Aditya Doobai reaching double figure with 21 not out. Off-spinner Pottaya then spun webs as he bagged 5 for 23, Nyron Hicks had 2-10. The BCB has scheduled the final for Friday, January 17 at the Area ‘H’ Ground from 09:30hrs. Rose Hall Town would be spearheaded by Jonathan Rampersaud, Jeremy Sandia, Ricardo Ramdehol, Lucas Arthur, Mahendra Gopilall, Vikash Subramanir, Jai Tika, Matthew Pottaya and Alex Mangla. Albion would be led by Sarwan Chaitnarine, Gourav Ramesh, Hemendra Gurdyal, Reyad Karim, Tameshwar Mahadeo, Leon Cecil, Surendra Ramcharitar and Pavendra Ganesh.

THE South/Central T20 League resumed in Essequibo with Reliance Sports Club (SC) and Cotton Field Strikers improving their chances for a semi-final spot with contrasting wins in the penultimate round of the competition played last Sunday. At the Reliance ground, the hosts posted a challenging 178-4 from their 20 overs. In-form Rovin Doodnauth batted impressively in his robust knock of 59 laced with x4 nine fours and two sixes. He got support from Chun Lall 28 (4x4) and Basil Persaud 25 (2x6). In reply, Crown XI despite losing early wickets were kept in the game by a brilliant unbeaten half-century from Tamesh Deonarine (14x4, 2x6) in his 78.

However, rain intervened to prevent further play with Crown XI at 142-8. The Duckworth Lewis Method was then applied and was tilted in Reliance SC’s favour to win by 16 runs. Off-spinner Kumar Dass had a destructive spell claiming 4-21 from 4 overs, including the tournament’s first hat-trick, to ensure his side remain on target for the knock-out stage in Group ‘B’. At the Imam Bacchus ground in Affiance, Cotton Field Strikers reached 117-4 from a reduced 15 overs due to a late start. Avinash Persaud who belted 44 (8x4) and Parmanand Persaud 38 (5x4) were the principal scorers. The Masters, in reply, reached only 77-5 when their overs expired to be com-

fortably beaten by 40 runs. National all-rounder Ricardo Adams 30 (4x4) and Linden Daniels 28 (3x4) got starts but they were strangled at the end. Medium fast bowler Suresh Persaud grabbed 3-18 from his 3 overs in a tight spell to also give his side a chance to qualify in Group ‘A’. The competition continues on Sunday with Cotton Field Strikers vs Aurora Knight Riders at Imam Bacchus ground in Affiance in Group ‘A’, Group ‘B’ Reliance Hustlers vs NOC at Reliance and Rising Star vs Golden Fleece at the Pomona ground. Four teams from each group will qualify for the semi-final play-offs. (Elroy Stephney)

AB de Villiers ponders T20 World Cup return (REUTERS) - AB de Villiers has confirmed there have been talks about his return to South Africa’s team for this year’s Twenty20 World Cup in Australia. de Villiers, widely regarded as one of the best limited-overs batsmen in the world, retired from all forms of international cricket in 2018, citing a desire to spend more time with his family. But after a change in personnel and structure at Cricket South Africa (CSA), in which his former team mates Graeme Smith (director of cricket) and Mark Boucher (head coach) have taken key positions, the 35-year-old has had a change of heart. “There’s a lot that needs to happen before that becomes reality, but I would love to,” de Villiers told reporters in Australia. “I’ve been talking to Bouch, Graeme Smith and Faf (du Plessis) back home. We are all keen to make it happen, it’s a long way away still and plenty can happen – there’s the IPL (Indian Premier League) coming. “I’ve still got to be in form at that time. But I’m thinking of throwing my name in the hat and hoping everything will work out.”

AB de Villiers has confirmed he is in talks to play for SA in the Twenty20 World Cup


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GUYANA CHRONICLE, Wednesday January 15, 2020

Barcelona knock Real Madrid off top of Money League LONDON, England (Reuters) - Barcelona have overtaken Real Madrid to top the Deloitte Football Money League for the first time and become the first club to break the 800 million euros (686 million pounds) revenue barrier. The 23rd edition of the table shows an 11% rise in combined revenues, excluding transfer fees, for the top 20 clubs who between them enjoyed turnovers of a record 9.3 billion euros for the 2018-19 season. Real Madrid have dropped to second, generating income of 757.3 million euros, while Manchester United remain third. Arsenal have slipped out of the top 10 for the first time. Barcelona’s rise to the top with income of 840 million euros is a clear sign of ‘a club adapting to changing market conditions’ by bringing merchandising and licensing activities in-house, according to Dan Jones, partner in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte.

“Barca have reduced the reliance on broadcast revenue and focussing on growing revenues within its control,” he said. “With the club expecting further growth of 30 million euros in commercial revenues and total revenue of almost 880 million in 2019-20 we expect them to retain the top spot next year. “Barca are on course to achieve their stated ambition to be the first one billion Money League club in years to come.” Bayern Munich remain in fourth position with Paris St Germain (PSG) entering the top five ahead of Manchester City. Champions League winners Liverpool are seventh, one place ahead of Tottenham Hotspur whom they beat in the final. Tottenham’s 521.1 million euros income pushes them ahead of Chelsea and Arsenal, making them the capital’s highest revenue generating club for the first time since 1996-97.

General view outside the stadium before the match Barcelona v Inter Milan Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain (REUTERS/Albert Gea/File photo)

Once again the Premier League’s eye-watering television broadcast deals have enabled it to dominate the Money League with eight clubs inside the top 20. Spain’s La Liga has three and the Bundesliga has three while Serie A has four but Juventus are the highest-placed in 10th. Napoli have moved into the top 20. Juventus’ revenue increased 17% to 459.7 million euros, helped by the arrival of talismanic Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo. Apart from PSG, only Olympique Lyonnais of France’s Ligue 1 are on the list. While Jones says revenue growth in Europe’s

big soccer leagues continues to outpace other sectors, mainly because of broadcasting rights, there is a marked concentration of increase at the top with the combined revenue of the top five clubs more than the combined total of the clubs ranked 10th to 20th. “What is notable in this edition of the Money League is the apparent continuing emergence of ‘mini-leagues within the Money League’,” he said. “The largest revenue-generating clubs continue to pull away from the rest.” The highest-ranked club outside the big five leagues is Ajax Amsterdam in 23rd place.

Dr Tulsi Dyal Singh commits $1.3M to BCB for 2020 … Board raises $2.5M of $10M target in two weeks THE Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) was the recent beneficiary of a million-dollar grant from overseas-based Guyanese Dr Tulsi Dyal Singh, as the board inches closer to its projected $10M target for development in 2020. The BCB has already raised $2.5M worth of sponsorship in just two weeks, with Dr Tulsi Dyal Singh, last Saturday confirming his support for 2020 to the tune of almost $1.3M, as the Texas-based Berbician since February 2018 invested over $4M of his own funds to assist the Hilbert Foster-led administration. BCB president Hilbert Foster welcomed the sponsorship deal from Dr Tulsi Dyal Singh and stated that the medical doctor was one of the main reasons his presidency has been successful. Foster stated that Dr Singh would sponsor county-

wide coaching at the cost of $860 000 and the 3rd annual BCB Cricket Academy in July. These events would be the main programme in a comprehensive Berbice-wide developmental effort to unearth new talents. With Dr. Singh sponsorship, the BCB would host four major two-day coaching clinics in West Berbice, New Amsterdam/Canje, Upper Corentyne/ Black Bush Polder and Lower/Central Corentyne. The BCB is aiming to coach at least 70 youths between the ages of 11 to 19 years in each sub-zone, for a combined 280 youths. The coaches would be Winston Smith, Delbert Hicks, Leslie Solomon and Balram Samaroo. Special emphasis would be placed on identifying young females as the BCB continues to invest heavily in them. At the end of the coaching programme, the coaches

would select 70 players to participate in the Cricket Academy. They would also take part in several special one-day clinics for batsmen, fast bowlers, wicketkeepers and spinners. The 70 players selected would attend the 3rd Annual Dr Singh Cricket Academy from August 3 to 7 while the preparation of all Berbice teams will be also covered under the sponsorship. He expressed gratitude to Dr Singh for his massive investment and reassured him that all of his funds would be used for the intended purposes Dr.Singh, who received the BCB highest award, Tribute to Heroes, in 2019, stated that he was very impressed with the work of the Berbice Board, it’s feedback to sponsors and accountability of his funds.

Dr Tulsi Dyal Singh

It was the right time to change coach, says Barca president BARCELONA, Spain (Reuters) - Ernesto Valverde was sacked as coach even though Barcelona are on top of La Liga because the team needed an injection of momentum, president Josep Maria Bartomeu said yesterday at the presentation of new coach Quique Setien. Former Real Betis coach Setien has signed a contract until June 2022 after Valverde was sacked on Monday despite winning back-to-back league titles and the 2018 Copa del Rey. “We made a change now because we are halfway through the season and we needed some new momentum to face the final stretch of the season as we always have very big objectives,” Bartomeu said. “Even though the results were very good we knew that there was room for improvement in the team’s play and we spoke to Valverde about this and in the last few days we had told him that the team needed to improve.” Barcelona romped to the league title in

Valverde’s first two seasons, finishing way ahead of nearest challengers Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid. But the coach’s reputation was severely damaged by twin shock eliminations from the Champions League to AS Roma and Liverpool. The team’s performances have declined this season and even though the Catalans are top of the table on goal difference, the board lost faith in Valverde after last week’s defeat to Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup. Bartomeu dismissed suggestions that the decision to sack Valverde was made hastily and with no clear successor. Barca confirmed they tried to hire club great Xavi Hernandez, while Spanish media reports said they also approached Netherlands coach Ronald Koeman and former Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino. “I want to say that in the last few weeks and months we’ve been speaking to other

New FC Barcelona head coach Quique Setien (C) poses for the media,(Getty Images)

coaches about the future, that’s our obligation,” Bartomeu said. “The work had been done and so this was the right time to make a change.” Barca sporting director Eric Abidal said new coach Setien fit with the club’s ideas on attacking football. “We’re very happy to present Quique;

he has shown he has a clear football philosophy and is focussed on the small details - which reminds me of when I played for this club,” said the former Barca defender, a two-time Champions League winner. “We know he can achieve great things here.”


Records tumble as Australia crush India by 10 wickets … Warner 128 not out, Finch 110 unbeaten

DAVID Warner and Aaron Finch have powered Australia to their biggest-ever ODI win in India, thrashing the hosts by 10 wickets in the series opener in Mumbai. Warner and Finch both scored centuries in the largest partnership against India in one-day cricket, for any wicket anywhere in the world, as they easily chased down their target of 255 with 12.2 overs to spare. Warner finished on 128 from 112 balls, while Finch was unbeaten on 110 from 114. The result kept Australia’s unbeaten summer alive, after they cruised through six Twenty20s and five Tests at home without losing a match. But in a summer of maulings, this was close to the biggest. After Mitchell Starc took three wickets and Pat Cummins bowled superbly for 2-44, Warner and Finch put on a show in the first of the three ODIs.

SCOREBOARD Rohit Sharma c David Warner b Mitchell Starc 10 Shikhar Dhawan c Ashton Agar b Pat Cummins 74 Lokesh Rahul c Steven Smith b Ashton Agar 47 Virat Kohli c & b Adam Zampa 16 Shreyas Iyer c Alex Carey b Mitchell Starc 4 Rishabh Pant c Ashton Turner b Pat

It marked just the fifth time in history that two Australian openers have both scored centuries in the same game, and it’s the team’s first-ever 10-wicket win in India. Finch started the faster of the pair, as he put any width away through the off-side early, before his opening partner launched a brutal attack on India’s bowlers. Warner hit 17 fours and three sixes in his knock, bringing up his hundred in just 88 balls. The left-hander was powerful all around the ground, drastically upping the scoring rate from a World Cup last year where he also hit three centuries. It was his fifth triple-figure score of the summer, with his record across all formats now 1 193 runs at an average of 170.42 Meanwhile, it marked the fourth century opening stand between the pair in the past year, after they also tore apart the World Cup. Finch brought up his century off 107 balls, with 12 of his 13

Cummins 28 Ravindra Jadeja c Alex Carey b Kane Richardson 25 Shardul Thakur b Mitchell Starc 13 Mohammed Shami c Alex Carey b Kane Richardson 10 Kuldeep Yadav run-out Steven Smith 17 Extras: (lb-3, w-8) 11 Total: (all out, 49.1 overs) 255 Fall of wickets: 1-13, 2-134, 3-140 4-156, 5-164, 6-213, 7-217, 8-229, 9-255. Bowling: Mitchell Starc 10-0-56-3 (w-2), Pat Cummins 10-1-44-2 (w-2),

Kane Richardson 9.1-0-43-2 (w-2), Adam Zampa 10-0-53-1, (w-1), Ashton Agar 10-1-56-1 (w-1). AUSTRALIA innings David Warner not out 128 Aaron Finch not out 110 Extras: (b-4, lb-7, w-9) 20 Total: (no loss, 37.4 overs) 258 Bowling: Mohammed Shami 7.4-058-0 (w-2), Jasprit Bumrah 7-0-50-0 (w-1), Shardul Thakur 5-0-43-0 (w-4), Kuldeep Yadav 10-0-55-0 (w-2), Ravindra Jadeja 8-0-41- 0 (w-1)

Aaron Finch and David Warner embrace as the runs pile up. (AAP) boundaries coming through the off-side, while he also whacked Kuldeep Yadav for a massive six back over his head. Starc had earlier taken 3-56 for the Aussies with the ball, while Cummins was arguably their best bowler as he took the key wicket of Shikhar Dhawan for 75. Dhawan had lived a charmed life - with chances missed on one, 31 and 55 - before he fell caught at cover as part of a collapse that derailed India’s innings. Adam Zampa (1-53) also got Virat Kohli caught and bowled for 16, as India lost 4-30 after being in a dominant position at 1-132 after 27 overs. It marked the sixth time in Zampa’s international career that he has removed the Indian superstar, by far his best record against any batsman. Kane Richardson also finished with 2-43 from 9.1 overs after being picked ahead of Josh Hazlewood. Marnus Labuschagne had the quietest possible debut, not required to bat or bowl in the win. (AAP)

Warner shatters 28-year-old Australian record

IT may go slightly unnoticed in the wake of Australia’s unprecedented batting blitz in Mumbai, but David Warner smashed a 28-yearold Australian record during his breathtaking century yesterday. On his way to his 18th ODI hundred, Warner became the fourth-fastest man in history to score 5 000 one-day international runs, reaching the mark in just his 115th ODI innings. That puts him behind only Hashim Amla (101 innings), West Indian legend Sir Vivian Richards and Indian skipper Virat Kohli (both 114 innings) among males in one-day international cricket. Among Australians, Warner is streets ahead of the pack, reaching the milestone well ahead of Dean Jones, who broke through 5 000 runs in his 128th innings way back in 1992. Matthew Hayden (133 innings), Michael Bevan (135) and Ricky Ponting (137) are the only other Australians to reach the mark in less than 140 innings. Warner pushed on and finished unbeaten on 128 last night as he and Aaron Finch (110 n.o.) shared a record-breaking 258-run stand in a crushing 10-wicket win. Warner has spoken at length in the past about his early struggles in the 50-over format, despite making an instant impact in both

CRICKET QUIZ CORNER (Wednesday December 15, 2020) 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) Old Trafford, Manchester (vs ENG, 1976) (2) 30 & 163 (vs IND, Bangalore, 1974-75) (1) (2)

Today’s Quiz:

What was WI Deryck Murray’s highest Test score? When did Andy Roberts make his Test match debut?

Answers in tomorrow’s issue

Test and T20 cricket at international level. Up to and including Australia’s 2015 World Cup triumph, the lefthander averaged less than 35 with the bat in 62 matches, scoring just four hundreds in that time. But since that World Cup final, he has averaged almost 60 in 56 games, adding 13 more hundreds and striking at better than a run a ball. “I think first and foremost it’s probably been the format I reckon I struggled at early in my career,” he said in 2016. “The last 18-24 months I’ve really worked hard on trying to construct my innings and build an innings and not play too many big shots early on. “And just relay that Test match attitude into the one-dayers because you do get a few more balls in your area in one day stuff where you can actually play through that line.” Underlining his improvement in the past five years, Warner was the equal-56th fastest man to reach 1 000 career runs, equal-42nd fastest to 2 000 and the 20th fastest to 3 000. But having raced from 3 000 to 4 000 runs in just 12 innings during a golden period in 2016-17, he’s added another 1 000 runs in just 22 innings. (Cricket.com.au)

Left-handed opener David Warner becomes the fastest Australian and fourth-fastest man ever to reach the 5 000-run milestone in ODI cricket. Fewest innings to 5000 ODI runs 101 – Hashim Amla (South Africa) 114 – Viv Richards (West Indies) 114 – Virat Kohli (India)

Ahye banned for two years over ‘whereabouts violation’ LONDON, (CMC) – Reigning Commonwealth Games gold medallist Michelle-Lee Ahye has been slapped with a two-year ban over a “doping whereabouts” violation. The Trinidadian sprinter, provisionally suspended last August when the matter first emerged, will now miss this year’s Olympics in Tokyo from July 24 to August 9. “[World Athletics] Disciplinary Tribunal has banned Trinidadian sprinter Michelle Lee Ahye for two-years for Whereabouts Failures with effect from 19 April 2019,” track and field’s world governing body confirmed by Twitter on Tuesday. Ahye missed three drugs tests during a 12-month period between 2018-19, which constitutes a violation of anti-doping regulation and carries a mandatory two-year suspension. The World Anti-Doping Agency requires international athletes to disclose their location for one hour every day in order to facilitate out-of-competition testing.

115 – David Warner (Australia) 116 – Joe Root (England) 118 – Brian Lara (West Indies) 118 – Shikhar Dhawan (India) 119 – Kane Williamson (New Zealand) Commonwealth Games gold medallist Michelle-Lee Ahye.

Ahye, who missed last year’s World Championships in Doha, will now also have her results between April 19 to August 30 last year scrapped. Trinidad and Tobago’s national record-holder in the 100 and 200 metres, Ahye won her first major title at the Commonwealth Games two years ago when she raced to victory in the women’s 100 metres. The 27-year-old subsequently captured silver at the Pan American Games in Peru last July, behind Jamaican star Elaine Thompson. Ahye was also a member of T&T sprint relay team which took bronze at the World Championships in Beijing five years ago


43

GUYANA CHRONICLE, Wednesday January 15, 2020

Wilder v Fury II

Lions cart off Trophy Stall-sponsored dominoes in feature

Fury fears he will not get a points decision in the United States

Unbeaten WBC heavyweight World Champion Deontay ‘The Bronze Bomber’ Wilder (left) and undefeated lineal champion Tyson ‘The Gypsy King’ Fury continued their war of words and previewed their much anticipated rematch at a Los Angeles press conference on Monday before they square off Saturday, February 22 in a historic, joint FOX Sports PPV & ESPN+ PPV from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas..

BRITAIN’S Tyson Fury says he will never get a judges’ decision in his rematch with Deontay Wilder and his desire to knock the American out was one of the reasons he dropped trainer Ben Davison. Fury, 31, will fight WBC heavyweight title holder Wilder on February 22 in Las Vegas after their 2018 bout in Los Angeles ended in a controversial draw. Last month, Fury moved from Davison to team up with Javan ‘Sugar’ Hill. “I know I will not get a decision in the US,” said Fury on Monday. In a news conference held in Los Angeles to promote the fight, Fury added: “They had to rob a man who had been out of the ring for three years and they still couldn’t beat him. “I’m not coming here for a points decision, I’ve had too many of them - nine of them - I’m coming here for a knockout, I’ve had 21 of them and from the heart that’s what I’m looking to do. “This is why I employed Sugar Hill. If I didn’t want a knockout, I wouldn’t have hired a Kronk (the famous Detroit gym) trainer. If I didn’t want a knockout, I’d have kept Ben Davison and working on that herky-jerky style.” Davison had worked with Fury for two years and oversaw the fighter’s 10-stone weight loss

and five fights, including the draw with Wilder in December 2018. However, after a points win over Sweden’s Otto Wallin in September, Fury’s father John was critical of Davison, saying his son looked “weak as a kitten” and the display was “the worst I have seen from Tyson”. Three months later, it was announced Fury had chosen Hill, the nephew of the late Emmanuel Steward, as his new trainer. Steward, who died in 2012, trained Lennox Lewis and Wladimir Klitschko, while Fury worked out in Steward’s Kronk Gym back in 2010. “You’re going to sleep in two rounds,” Fury told Wilder. “I keep having the same dream and when I’m playing poker I keep getting dealt two. It’s definitely a thing. He is getting knocked out in two. “I want him to meet me in the middle of the ring and the best man wins. I’m going to give him a boxing lesson.” Despite knocking Fury down twice in their original meeting, many pundits thought Wilder deserved to lose on points. This time, the American, who is unbeaten in 43 fights, said: “It’s called unfinished business and he won’t be able to get back up. I’m going to knock him out.

“I’m the lion, the king of the jungle, and come February 22 I’m going to rip his head off his body. I’m going to knock him out of those ropes.” FEAR, FASHION AND A LIVELY FACE-OFF After their news conference, Fury and Wilder - who appeared on good terms after their first fight - engaged in a lively face-off. Wilder put Fury down heavily in the 12th round of their first meeting and Fury sarcastically replied to comments he is scared it will happen again. Wilder (DW): I said I am going to baptise you. I did that. Fury (TF): I am still waiting to be baptised. You’re listening to me now, getting some class with some suit on. I’ve given you some dress sense, you sucker. Two rounds and you’re out. You’ve even got a nose piercing. DW: I want you to be terrified. It’s not going to be pleasurable. TF: I am so frightened. I was so frightened last time, wasn’t I? DW: It’s OK to be nervous. That’s human. TF: I am nervous. Look at me, I’m quaking. (BBC Sport)

Match fitness no concern fo Bravo ahead of Ireland Twenty20 series PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, (CMC) – Veteran all-rounder Dwayne Bravo does not believe his match fitness will be a major issue in the Twenty20 International series against Ireland starting Thursday in Grenada, and said he was anxious to make his presence felt in the squad. The 36-year-old has played little competitive cricket of recent after a finger injury ruled him out of last September’s Caribbean Premier League. His only real action since then was his campaign in the T20 League in Abu Dhabi last November when he helped Maratha Arabians capture that title. “The good thing about me at this stage of my career is that yes, a lot of cricket is important but for me because of the experience I’ve gained over the years, I’m more concerned about my health, my fitness,” Bravo, who was this week recalled to the Windies T20 squad following a 3-½ year break, told i95 FM here. “So I spend most time working on my fitness. I do a lot of gym work. Obviously I had the broken finger where I still do therapy for my finger just to keep getting it stronger. “Over the years I know that despite not playing much cricket, I can still go there and compete and contribute in a very good way. For example, look at the last T20 league – I hadn’t played any cricket in four months prior to that and I was still able to go there and deliver and win the title.” `He added: “Since announcing my return in December, my mind and motivation was on this series and now that I’m selected I’m very happy. It’s an exciting young team [and] going in there I’ll be the oldest person obviously but that’s good. “I have a very good professional relation-

ship with all the players there and I’m just happy I’ve gotten the opportunity to work with them now.” Bravo, a deceptive seamer, has taken 52 wickets from 66 T20 Internationals and is widely considered one of the finest exponents in the shortest format. In announcing his return earlier this week, chief selector Roger Harper said the Trinidadian had been recalled with the “specific intention of bolstering our ‘death’ bowling”, and Bravo said he believed this was an area in which he could make an impact. “Death bowling is an art and not much people around the world really have nailed death bowling to a ‘T’,” he pointed out. “If you ask anyone in world cricket to name five good death bowlers in the last decade, my name will come up along with Lasith Malinga, Mitchell Starc and these guys. I don’t have to prove anything to anyone. My stats are there, what I’ve done over the years is there for everyone to see. “Recently you can see that’s where West Indies have been faltering. If you look at the 50-over World Cup, the series in India – both in T20s and ODIs – we lack a really, really proper death over specialist but this is my current motivation, to try and work with the current bowlers that we have.” Bravo will reunite with fellow countryman and ‘best friend’ Kieron Pollard who was appointed white-ball captain ahead of the Afghanistan series last year. Both players have played together extensively throughout the years and Bravo said he expect-

Veteran West Indies all-rounder Dwayne Bravo.

e d that chemistry to continue. “ I ’ m lo o k in g f o rward to it. I’m happy that he is the captain. As most people would say, it’s a bit late but for me nothing happens before its time and I think now is the right time as I said to him when he was offered the captaincy,” Bravo said. “This is a very good time to take over because the team is at the bottom and they can’t go lower than it is now. I think the partnership with him and [head coach] Phil Simmons, the relationship that they both have … they can only work together and get West Indies cricket going upwards. “As you can see in a very short space of time with the results that have been happening on the field and the attitude, a lot of things have started shaping up in a positive way. I’m very happy that now I have an opportunity to also be a part of a great rebuild in West Indies cricket. “Pollard is my best friend so definitely [with] all my experience, we both collectively can actually work together. It’s just about how we can contribute and make things better for the younger players and also for the West Indies team.”

Manniram Shew hands over the winners’ trophy to Keith Riley in the presence of his teammates.

LIONS registered a comprehensive victory when the Trophy Stall-sponsored feature dominoes tournament took place at the Everest Cricket Club (ECC), Camp Road, Georgetown last Friday night. Apart from trailing by a mere two games in the second sitting when International 6 led with 28 games to their 26, and Canal 6 trailing on 19, Lions never relinquished the lead. They eventually finished on 83 games while International 6 placed second on 78 and Canal 6 in the cellar on 74. Keith Riley led the way for the winners with the maximum 18 games while great support came from Orin Jordan (17), Vanroy Alfred 13), Ken Phillips (12) and Leonard Leung (12). The top players for International 6 were Intikab ‘Corbie’ Ali with 17 games, Claude Stuart (14) and Ronald Beharry who made 28 games (playing through). For Canal 6, Avinash Persaud and B. Mahdu scored 14 games each while there were also 13 each for Maheshwar Samjewan and Rajiv Doodnauth. Apart from the winners’ and first runners-up trophies, prizes were awarded to the top player in each team. Riley of Lions, Ali of International 6 and Persaud of Canal 6 were the recipients. Persaud, by virtue of giving away fewer games than Mahdu, received the coveted trophy. At the presentation ceremony, which followed, organiser Manniram ‘Packer’ Shew expressed sincere thanks to proprietor Ramesh Sunich of Trophy Stall for his kind gesture in sponsoring the trophies.


By Clifton Ross THE Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) in partnership with Everest Cricket Club (ECC), officially unveiled its all-purpose outdoor practice facility, named after Guyana/West Indies batting legend Shivnarine Chanderpaul. With much emphasis being placed on upgrading cricket facilities across Guyana, GCB opened up their first of many venues yesterday, right in the backyard of ECC. The area will serve as the primary practice venue for Guyana Jaguars national team, who practise for days weekly at the Everest ground. The venue is also open to players and clubs around the city as Everest president Manzoor Nadir, during the ceremony, said the facility will now play a bigger role in the development of the city-based cricketers. Present at the ceremony to officially commence the opening of the facility was GCB secretary Anand Sanasie, Territorial Developmental Officer (TDO) Colin Stuart and GCB Administrative executive Selena Bacchus. Nadir said players will now have more opportunities at honing their skills come practice time, as the venue’s newest area was equipped to handle rigours of the weather, without robbing players of valuable training time. He further thanked the GCB for continuing its mandate which is aimed at infrastructural expansion of venues across the country. Sanasie noted that the move to upgrade ECC was always in the pipeline, as Everest was basically the

GCB, Everest officially unveil ‘Shiv Chanderpaul Practice Facility’ 38 PAGE

… Another venue to be opened on Friday

See page 38 GCB’s Anand Sanasie (left) and ECC’s Manzoor Nadir (right) shake hands to observe the opening of the Shiv Chanderpaul Practice Facility in the presence of Ms Spencer, national players Gudakesh Motie, Akshaya Persaud and Clinton Pestano and Colin Stuart

Lady Jags eyeing Women’s 38 U-20 World Cup Qualification PAGE

… GFF president believes qualifying is realistic

FLASHBACK! Lady Jags’ Serena McDonald (#8) dribbles by Suriname’s captain Cady Chin-SeeChong during Guyana’s 3-1 win at the National Track and Field Centre in 2019. (Samuel Maughn photo)

By Rawle Toney PRESIDENT of the Guyana Football Federation (GFF), Wayne Forde, believes that the Dr Ivan Joseph-led Women’s U-20 side have what it takes to go all the way, as Guyana prepare for CONCACAF Women’s U-20 World Cup Qualifiers in the Dominican Republic, where they will open against Nicaragua on February 23. Following their opening game on ‘Republic Day’, Lady Jags will suit up against Puerto Rico on February 25, and will close their Group D play against Mexico on February 27. Speaking to Chronicle Sport yesterday, Forde said the Guyanese women, who played undefeated during the preliminaries, are currently working hard behind the scenes and on the pitch to

give a good account of themselves, and show that they belong among some of CONCACAF’s top-playing nations. Following confirmation from FIFA that Costa Rica and Panama will co-host the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, in August of 2020, and that CONCACAF has been awarded one additional slot (four in total), the Confederation announced changes to its World Cup Qualifying tournament, to be hosted in the Dominican Republic between February 22 and March 8, 2020. CONCACAF announced on Monday, that their Council had determined that Costa Rica and Panama, as host countries of the World Cup, will automatically qualify to the World Cup See page 38

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Basil Butcher returns to the MSC ground today for viewing, wake THE body of former Guyana and West Indies middle-order batsman of the late 1960s and early 1970s, Basil Butcher, who died in the United States, will return for the last time to the Mackenzie Sports Club (MSC) ground, today, where there will be viewing from 14:00hrs to 16:00hrs and a wake in the evening. It is significant that the outstanding batsman of the once-dominant West Indies team, which was led by Sir Frank Worrell, will grace the MSC ground where he got his first coaching job back in 1965 while still a member of the West indies team. Butcher in 1965 made Linden his home when he took up the responsibility to coach the Mackenzie Sports Club team and players attending both primary and secondary schools across Mackenzie, through the Demerara Bauxite Industry (DEMBA). Outside of cricket, Butcher was later involved with other activities in the town and was a member of the Jaycees of Mackenzie which initiated Mashramani in 1970, as the national event for Guyana’s Republic celebrations. It is expected that the community leaders from both the Regional Democratic Council of Region Ten and the Linden Mayor and Town Council and other well-wishers will join the Butcher family in showing respect to a man who helped produce several national players from the mining area. Among them is Dr Vincent Adams, who was the first-ever Linden player to don senior national colours. The body of the late Basil Butcher is to be cremated tomorrow on the East Coast. WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2020

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