Thursday December 06, 2018
Kaieteur News Printed and Published by National Media & Publishing Company Ltd. 24 Saffon Street, Charlestown, Georgetown, Guyana. Publisher: GLENN LALL Editor: Adam Harris Tel: 225-8465, 225-8491. Fax: 225-8473, 226-8210
City Hall needs an overhaul
ll of Guyana, at one time or another, and for one reason or another needs Georgetown. Citizens and taxpayers, passing through on business; residents and rate payers bound to the town; and central government standing in holistic administration should expect and experience a clean healthy capital city; a viable and dynamic one. It can be a city that, though it may not be a shining one on a hill, would be a place that instills pride and offer an ambience that is as attractive, as it is welcoming to all who pass through its portals. In view of the sorry state of affairs today of the management of the once pristine Garden City, it is time that Central Government take decisive action and move forward with a rescue plan to bailout the overwhelmed city and its besieged stewards. Take a look at the streets, the atmospherics, and the attitudes prevalent and it becomes clear that there is trouble all over. Take a closer look at City Hall’s management itself, and across the board it is the same dispiriting story: no care, no effort, no clue, and no answers. Thus, a city suffers while the big cats and fat cats purr contentedly, as if all was well. Well, according to them in their arrogance and disdain, all is well. And thus, there has been one excuse and subterfuge and embarrassment after another to mask a litany of weaknesses and chronic mismanagement. The enduring excesses and errors—egregious failures all—hurt the image, the welfare, and the future of this once proud city. Central government has to put a stop to the mischief and overhang that now cripples the functioning of that management team. Central government has to act and act now. Right now, City Hall needs money to run the most basic of services, to honor past and accumulating obligations. The city needs money and lots of it immediately. At a quick rough approximation, City Hall is up to its eyeballs in debt. It does not matter, currently, how matters got to this terrible state; that will come later with official triages, post mortems and all the usual activities that surround the near-death experience of an entity. But the city must not be allowed to collapse under the now unbearable weight of its mountain of liabilities. Each succeeding day only adds exponentially to the financial agony of its officers and managers, who are now reduced to silent, helpless bystanders. Central government has to step up to the patient and infuse it with several hundred million dollars of life-giving funding. In short, a bailout is called for at this time. It is a dirty word, and an expensive one, too. It is made dirtier and heavier and unforgivable by the cast of characters, who infest its corridors and ran the place into the ground and raises the hackles by the distortions of their presence and pretended innocence. Too much is at stake: workers’ welfare, citizens’ wellbeing, and the reputation of the country. In addition, there are the hard, quantitative issues of huge sums due to the NIS, the GRA, and the garbage contractors, to name a few of the bigger creditors owed. There is no choice. While, the GRA could be prevailed upon to consent to an arrangement for a suspension or moratorium on taxes due, the others have to be given some substantial portion of what they have earned, if merely to keep things going. This is where things are reduced to right now: keep things going. As much as there may be tremendous distaste in some circles for throwing good money after a bad situation—some would say dirty setup—this has to be done. And it has to be done soon.
Editor’s Note; If your sent letter was not published and you felt its contents were valid and devoid of libel or personal attacks, please contact us by phone or email.
I hope that my views on this law enforcement issue will clear up some grey areas DEAR EDITOR, For diverse reasons I took a break from writing about matters relating to law enforcement. However, numerous persons have bombarded me to continue writing. A recent letter to the editor in the print media written by Sherwood Lowe under the caption, “What are the rules for police ‘ stop and search’ in Guyana?” has titillated me to pick up my pen again. I hope that my views will clear up some grey areas and/or encourage
more enlightened confabulation on the issue. In his missive, the writer asked some pertinent questions: is reasonable suspicion required? If so, how do the ranks operationalise it on the ground and what is the scope of search of persons, their belongings and their vehicles? He questioned stop and frisk activity. He attempted to equate the American justice system with that of Guyana, particularly on the issue of reasonable suspicion.
We are patterned after the British not the American way of dispensing justice. Several years ago I attended the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy in the United States of America. Among the many courses I successfully completed was one entitled, ’Legal Issues For Commanders.’ We discussed numerous legal issues, but reasonable suspicion never emerged. Probable cause was the dominant issue. I graduated from the Academy with the
feelings that in America, reasonable cause went through the window a long time ago, if it was in fact in the building. The law enforcement officers generally deal with probable cause and not reasonable suspicion as the writer was positing. I am no legal expert, but it is my layman’s understanding that reasonable suspicion is vastly different from probable cause. They are far apart as Imbotero on the (Continued on page 6)
The Indian Arrival Monument at Palmyra - Beautiful and quite simple DEAR EDITOR, I was fortunate enough to view pictures posted by one of the noted Guyanese artists who worked on the newlycompleted Indian Arrival Monument. Not having seen it before, I found the monument to be uniquely relevant and evocative of our history, one that began with millions of people being removed from their home continents and settled in other parts of the world; an action based solely on the work their bodies could provide. Signing their lives away for the right to toil in a distant colony, somewhere that probably seemed as remote as the moon is to us. Our ancestors did this, their travails making a wealthy empire even wealthier. This distant child of indentureship feels humbled
by what the monument conveys. With outstretched hands, ready to embrace not engage in combat, Indians came to work alongside former slaves and other labourers. Not to be prideful or with an imposed arrogance, they brought the vestiges of an ancient culture, its languages, clothing, religions and food. The women, as always, bearing the heaviest burdens, but looking boldly ahead, unafraid of what they might face or see. It is striking...personally evoking the spirited, strong women that were my grandmothers and all other foremothers of a formerly colonized people. Experiencing prolonged physical hardship, they thrived and prospered when they could easily have given in to despair.
Fetching their tools to prepare the aromatic, flavourful dishes of their homeland, I wonder if they ever imagined that their foods would become the dish of preference of the empire that brought them here? Or that the land they left would become a world power in its own right, poised as it is on the absolute cutting edge of technology, with more educated women than men. Although it is another flawed democracy, fraught with the challenges of an evolving civilization, it is still succeeding and overcoming impossible hurdles. We all take for granted the disparate places where our foreparents arrived from; whether by choice or force they left bonded or enslaved, coming not to conqueror this Guyana, but at the hands of
the conquerors. Indentureship and transshipment were undoubtedly frightening, who wouldn’t be afraid of such a process? Nonetheless, as impoverished in their homeland (as most labourers probably were) they boarded the ships and came. Our foreparents weathered this, evolving, becoming stronger, educated, emancipated and eventually independent. So much poignancy in this long journey... Beautiful and quite simple, the monument starkly reflects ancestors whose undaunted bravery and optimism led them to reach out to figuratively close the divide they had just physically crossed. We should reflect on this as they came in peace, humbly (Continued on page 5)
Ministers must justify their public statements DEAR EDITOR, It is irresponsible and taking the people for granted for Ministers to make public statements without evidence and justification to the national community. Finance Minister Winston Jordan publicly alleged that the national economy under the PPP-C administration was supported by drug money. Where is the evidence Minister Jordan? Establish your credibility with a sense of integrity and prove your allegation. The population is waiting for the evidence. Please provide it Minister Jordan. There is also the misleading statement by Public Works Minister Patterson justifying the takeover of the operations of the Berbice River Bridge on the grounds of public safety. The Minister needs to explain to the nation what public safety was involved? He is challenged to prove to the nation that public safety was in danger. Everyone knows that there were no threats to public safety, but a cheap, colluded political ploy and shenanigan to get some votes from Berbice at the last local government elections. That ploy of rescuing the Berbicians from unconscionable prices for crossing vehicles over the bridge did not work, AFC Ministers. Everyone knows the colluded timing of the increases - 12 November 2018, the day for the
last LGE.The other consequence of this action is engendering the lack of confidence in the public-private partnership and scaring away private investors. Let the Government buyout all the shares with full compensation, and manage/operate the Berbice River Bridge with the same pricing for the crossing the Demerara Harbour Bridge, thereby bringing equity in the river bridge transport system. The people await the responses of the Ministers. Yours faithfully Joshua Singh
Please end this traffic nightmare DEAR EDITOR, I am sure the Traffic Department can do a much better job at regulating the flow of traffic during parliamentary sessions. There is an unacceptable level of inconvenience to commuters, not to mention the loss of valuable manhours by those trapped in traffic congestion. I wish to urge the authorities to come up with a plan to end this traffic nightmare. Hydar Ally
Thursday December 06, 2018
THE GUYANESE PEOPLE CLEARLY HAVE BEEN DECEIVED DEAR EDITOR, The 2019 Budget Debates which have been interesting thus far will wrap up on December 07, 2018. The Administration, with the belief that it is saving the best for last, will put up its heavyweight speaker, First Vice President and Prime Minister, Mr Moses Nagamootoo up to bat. He will try as best as he can to offer a defence for what clearly is an indefensible budget. Mr Nagamootoo in his own words will seek to charm the Guyanese people like the famed snake-charmers of India. He will tell our people that he and his Government are doing wonderful things for them; he will tell them better will come and he may very well tell us we will become the Emiratis of Latin America. The Prime Minister, true to form, may also repeat to the sugar workers that he loves them though thousands have been put out of jobs; the rice farmers may hear how he cares for them, though he lost them their most lucrative market, and the farmers may hear how he has their well-being at heart, though his Administration has raised land rents and D&I charges. Let us also expect tangential explanations about the hardships he imposed; and the launching of personal attacks on those he deems his opponents, as he reminisces about yesteryear, while ignoring the realities of today. Surely, he must eulogize his Budget innings in his Sunday Chronicle column and his DPI, true to form, will promote his remarks as the best thing ever.
But after all of that, the fact remains that the Prime Minister will not be able to convince many Guyanese people that he is sincere in what he said. Today, the Prime Minister’s naked political behaviour is there for all to see and evaluate. Today, he sits near to the apex of power, though he deeply wants to reach the pinnacle. He should ask himself why he’s the proverbial bridesmaid and never the bride. Today, Mr Nagamootoo presides over a land and people that feel oppressed and unsure about the future. Today, he occupies a place in the most expensive Government in our country’s history. Today, Mr Nagamootoo has betrayed all his ideals – his so-called Jaganite-principles – and his roar has become less than a whimper as he participates, advocates and approves willingly in measures that punish rather than reward the Guyanese people. As Mr Nagamootoo will belt out another tune on the Parliament floor, I thought it wise to look at some of the other tunes he sung before in the hallowed chamber. The Prime Minister will make a lot of hay about the size of the Budget – $300.7B – the biggest in our nation’s history. But while he will express pleasure about that fact, at the same time he will not say that tax revenues have also risen exponentially too. It has been pointed out that between 2014 and 2019, tax revenues are expected to go up by $88B, a 64.5 per cent increase. But more than that, using
2014 as the base year, increases in tax revenues will see Treasury receiving just over $210B. That large sum has been removed, whether directly or indirectly, from the pockets of our people. This, in itself, is a staggering sum, especially when one considers the short time that has gone by. Through my research, I found Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, then as an Opposition MP, in his 2012 Budget debate contribution saying ”…take the money that you have increased from VAT and give it to the pensioners, give it to the workers, and give it to the people who deserve social assistance. That is the proof of growth. It must be people centered”. These are indeed good suggestions and I ask the Prime Minister what has happened now? The Prime Minister in that speech too said ”[i]t must be the duty of this National Assembly, not the Opposition but as a whole, to lower unjustified spending, to lower our national debt and to lower our fiscal deficit”. Again, indeed insightful words from our ‘indomitable’ First Vice President. But with those words in mind, it is, therefore, lamentable that Ram and McRae, in its 2019 Budget Focus, pointed out that the Budget will record ”…an overall deficit of $52.1 billion”. It, therefore, means the Government will have to borrow, whether domestically or internationally, 17.3 per cent of the budgeted expenditure which will have to be paid back with interest, tomorrow and the days after that. The PM in his 2013 Bud-
Party Paramountcy…This Govt. is once again crossing its limits DEAR EDITOR, I am reminded of an article, ‘Party Paramountcy’ published in Caribbean Life in August 2016 which aptly summarizes the PNC’s ideology during the Burnham dark era. It stated that, ‘Burnham ruled Guyana using his publicly proclaimed euphemism: “party paramountcy.” The party, not the state, controlled the arms of the Guyana Defence Force, the Guyana Police, departments of government; and, in critical matters, parts of the judiciary, the electoral machinery, the media, the trade unions.’ It went further to state that, ‘Burnham possessed two additional arms: the “Death Squad,” that is police in plain clothes; and Rabbi Washington’s House of Israel. These conducted surveillance, and viciously smashed opposition elements, using hockey sticks and batons. The second were enforcers, bullies, extortionists, hit squads, strike-breakers, antiunion operators, deacons, black Jews and nuts and plantain-chip vendors in one.’ I could vividly recall during the early ‘70s poverty and hunger were everywhere and jobs were few and only those with PNC membership cards gained access to scarce food items and employment. It was during this time that the Burnham dictatorship promised to ‘Feed, Clothe and House’ the Nation by 1976. Many persons were forced to join PNC groups and youths joined the Young Socialist Movement, the youth arm of the PNC. Many of my friends joined and yet could not secure jobs, because of their race they had to go through a more stringent test.
They were forced to join the Guyana National Service and some who went to Kimbia came back disillusioned. Moreover, I could also clearly recall the ‘co-op shops’ run by the PNC, again PNC membership cards were needed to access food items. ‘The state-run External Trade Bureau, handled all imports which it then redistributed to PNC-organized “cooperatives” known as Knowledge Sharing Institutes strategically located in predominantly AfroGuyanese areas. These retail outlets sold preferentially to persons who produced PNC membership cards and they acted to squeeze the small rural mainly Indian-owned groceries out of business.’ (http://www.guyana.org/features/postindependence) I could recall persons from my village going to the neighbouring Fyrish Village in the hope of getting some cooking oil and butter, only to be disappointed when they reached the end of the ‘Guyline’. The PNC members lived happily in those days because they could enjoy the ‘scarce’ goods. Party paramountcy invaded every aspect of Guyanese lives, be it food, be it jobs, be it contracts, be it any form of Government services, and I have seen that PNC ideology slowly surfacing since this Government
took office. Recently, a young woman was promised a job if she contested the Local Government Election as an APNU candidate in a PPP stronghold. She managed only 13 votes, but I do hope she gets the job, since she fulfilled her side of the bargain. Therefore, what Volda Lawrence said was an echo of the truth, and no amount of apology and whitewashing will remove the fact that party paramountcy is being revived by the PNC like many other traits inherent in the old PNC Order. Her message is clearly received that if anyone wants a job or contract then a PNC membership card is a vital qualification requirement. What is shameful though is that the AFC and its Leader have become ineffectual, just agreeing and disagreeing as the situation demands. Moreover, Trotman’s attempt at damage control by labeling the statement as an ‘unnecessary distraction’, simply accentuates the AFC’s inability to be factual, decisive and independent of the influence of the PNC’s faction of the Coalition.This Government is once again crossing its limits and must be reminded that the root of all evil is the abuse of power, and the masses are cognizant of this abuse and will speak decisively come 2020! Yours sincerely, Haseef Yusuf
The Indian Arrival...
From page 4 greeting equals in a land foreign to them all. Guyana’s collective moral compass has always pointed to a joined destiny in this once-strange land that is now, amongst the most valuable in the world. After all they withstood and survived, we are still working on realizing the vision of becoming one people in this singular nation that is on the cusp of an even greater destiny. Sincerely, Scheherazade Ishoof Khan
Thursday December 06, 2018
The Brexit Deal and the British Appeal DEAR EDITOR, The decision deadline approaches, it is not only what has been said but clearly what lies ahead. In a June 2016 referendum the Brits, seemingly exposed their grits and made a hit, voting to leave the European Union by 52% to 48%. Come March 29, 2019 at 11.00 p.m Greenwich Mean Time, the United Kingdom will officially exit the European Union—an economic and political alliance of 28 countries. Such a move will bring 46 years of membership to an end. Exit Brexit-Enter Theresa May who took over on July 13, 2016 from David Cameron without an election either of the Conservative Party membership or the country at large, as per British protocol. When she became Prime Minister, Brexit negotiations were high on her list of priorities, and she made every effort to reassure those who had voted to leave that Brexit meant Brexit and that together they would make a success of it. During her tenure in the Home Office, media reports often referred to May as “steely”, “single-minded”, and even “ruthless”. Could the once ruthless be slowly transforming into the truthless. During the Brexit campaign Theresa May was a “Remain” supporter, and now here she is trying to remove that stain and convince the same people to get out of the E.U. Granted she was not one of the most outspoken during the campaign, often quiet, nevertheless she stuck to the government line, that in general Britain would be better off remaining part of the European Union.
Recent leaks from Downing Street reveal a further deceptive political sleight of hand on her part. At a cabinet meeting, the Prime Minister intends to run her own private policy through officials in the Cabinet Office and No. 10 Downing Street, requesting that they choose an unknown third way, instead of the two prior options for leaving the European Union. Such a policy is in clear divergence, and arguably different from the Brexit policy that had the approval of both the Cabinet and the British public. Scotland, one of the UK’s four nations, voted to keep its EU membership by 62-38 percent. But Britain’s overall vote to leave takes Scotland with it, and polls show that Scots are increasingly opposed to the idea. Leaving the E.U would be disastrous for the union with Scotland, as the Scottish National Party would most probably try again for independence, if Scotland voted to remain while the United Kingdom as a whole voted to leave. Such a statement may have some truth to it, for Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister of Scotland’s devolved Parliament, made it absolutely clear that she wants to examine the options available to Scotland. She further added that she is not in agreement that Scotland must leave the EU with the rest of the UK, and asserted that “all options must be on the table. With every passing day closer to the deadline, May’s deal gets pale and seems almost certain to fail, when it comes to the vote in Parliament. How do Brits feel about May’s deal? What does Brit-
ain stand to lose? Police and security agencies, have been warning for more than two years of the risks Brexit poses to UK security. The British Security Minister Ben Wallacet claims that a no-deal scenario would expose the public to a greater risk from terrorism and crossborder crime. The government says it wants to work together to identify the terms for the UK’s cooperation with Europol and Eurojust – two agencies that deal with law enforcement and judicial cooperation between member states. Exiting the European Union without an agreement would have a real impact on protecting the public. A great deal of uncertainty still surrounds post-Brexit security arrangements, as there is no guarantee that data sharing arrangements and other cross-border crime fighting tools would remain in place. Real experience of the last few decades has taught Britain that close cooperation is at the heart of effective security, and both Europe and Britain can bitterly avow that instances of things being overlooked or a mistake being made, have been repeatedly attributable to a failure of cooperation. A no-deal scenario would have a truly profound impact on Britain’s ability to work together with her European partners in protecting the public. No longer would UK agencies be plugged into systems for exchanging data including criminal records, alerts on wanted suspects, DNA, fingerprints and airline passenger information. Extradition requests would take longer, while cooperation on counter-terrorism, cyber security and illegal migration would be affected. Access to EU databases used by police to track terrorists and criminals would also be lost. . The British Security Minister opines that the Brexit deal secured by May “hits a harmonious counterbalance to keep everyone safe”, pro-
moting the agreement as the foundation for the most comprehensive security relationship the EU has ever had with any country. Should the deal fall dead, for Britain what lies ahead? The Prime Minister can bring it back to the Members of Parliament, and perhaps after minor tweaks and a clearer view they can then perhaps vote it through. She can also immediately resign, leaving the country a more appealing leader to find. Should Jacob Rees-Mogg get his way, and a no-confi-
dence vote comes into play, then a new leader can a majority assemble behind a tweaked deal. On the other hand, Prime Minister May can a general election call, hoping that over the heads of squabbling MPs, voters would back her deal and not let it fall. A second referendum may garner support; this is most likely if the Labour Party decides to go along. The EU Withdrawal Act has identified Friday March 29, 2019 as Brexit Day, when Great Britain would be free to go her own way.
Would the 585-page withdrawal agreement be viewed as being heaven sent, or is Britain on a path to destruction bent? The Eurosceptics in the room have already portended doom. From now until the fated day, Theresa May’s government and all warring factions should carefully consider a course of action which would positively benefit Britain in the years ahead, even after the deal is sealed. There may be no Fix-it for Brexit. This may well be it. Y. Sam
I hope that my views on this law ... From page 4 northern tip of Guyana is from Wai Wai village, Gunn’s Strip in the Deep South, Rupununi or Orealla on the east is from Kaikan on the west of Guyana. Here is the law as it relates to the police powers to stop, search and detain as set out in Section 18 of the Police Act Chapter 16:01, “Any member of the Force may stop, search and detain any aircraft, vessel or vehicle in upon which there shall be reason to suspect that anything stolen or unlawfully obtained, or that any person suspected of having committed any indictable offence, may be found; and he may also stop, search and detain any person who may be reasonably suspected of having or conveying in any manner anything stolen or unlawfully obtained.” There are several operative words in this section of the law; reasonable suspicion; any member of the force; anything stolen or unlawfully obtained; indictable offence; conveying in any manner anything stolen or unlawfully obtained. The vexed question that the policeman would have to answer is: prior to the stop and search what triggered his reasonable suspicion? To hazard a guess, the most common answers one will receive are: the policeman was acting on information re-
ceived; the rank was acting on intelligence received; it was an intelligence-led operation. Those are common buzzwords. In addition, there is the power to establish Road Barriers. Section 26 (1) of the Police Act Chapter 16:01 states, “Notwithstanding any other Act, any officer, inspector or subordinate officer may, if he considers it necessary so to do for the maintenance and preservation of law and order or for the prevention and detection of crime, erect or place or caused to be erected or placed, barriers in or across any road or street or in any public place within Guyana in such manner as he may think fit. “ Under Section 26 (2) of the said Act, there is penalty for any driver of any vehicle who fails to comply with any reasonable signal of a member of the Force in uniform, requiring such person to stop such vehicle before reaching any such barrier. He/she is liable on summary conviction to a fine of forty-eight thousand, seven hundred and fifty dollars, and to imprisonment for twelve months. What about the reasons for frisk and other searches? I can vividly recall when I was a police trainee over four decades ago, my instructor posited several reasons for searching including: possibility of the prisoner injuring the searcher; possibility of self-
injury; finding evidence relative to the charge; finding evidence of some additional charge; ensuring safe custody of the prisoner’s property; to prevent escape; to prevent the prisoner damaging property - public or private; preventing further offences; gravity of the offence; and weight of evidence. Those reasons were apposite then. They are even more relevant today. They are indelible in my mind. In order for the police to enforce the law the Commissioner of Police is required to make Standing Orders or what is popularly known as Standard Operational Procedures to give guidelines to his ranks for their efficient and effective performance in order to deliver the highest quality of service to the citizens they swore to serve and protect. These Standing Operational Procedures and Standing Orders must not be inconsistent with the law. They must fit nicely within the ambit of the law. However, it is not unusual that on occasions ranks will breach those SOPs and SOs. Wow! Did I hear somebody say that the law is an ass, or some persons who interpret it, or others who enforce it, or all of the above? Yours faithfully Clinton Conway Assistant Commissioner of Police (retired)
Thursday December 06, 2018
Drug treatment in courts - alternative route to incarceration- Ramjattan Minister of Public S e c u r i t y, Khemraj Ramjattan, has stated there is a dire need to address non-violent drug offenders in a court operated rehabilitation programme. “In our national drug master plan for 2016-2020 there is the policy that states we have to reduce the use of incarceration which is a punitive response for non-violent drug offenders,” Minister Ramjattan said. “We wanted through that policy to provide treatment and rehabilitation and so the establishment of a drug treatment court was identified as one such programme.”
Minister Ramjattan was at the time delivering remarks at the high-level meeting on exploring alternatives to incarceration including drug treatment courts in Guyana. The discussion engaged law enforcement officials, representatives f r o m G u y a n a ’s j u d i c i a l system as well as representatives from the Organisation of American States and Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission. Minister Ramjattan said that the programme will yield many benefits. “I can also see that with treatment, recidivism will fall and not only with drug
offences but with other offences because drug users support their bad habits just for the want of getting more money so they can buy some more drugs.” The initiative will be cost effective in the long run and forms part of the transformation needed in Guyana’s justice system, Ramjattan said. Also delivering remarks, was National AntiNarcotics Agency Head Major General (Ret’d) Michael Atherly who remarked that “drug addiction is a chronic relapsing disease that must be dealt with as an essential element of public health policy.”
Bureau of Standards to pursue action plan for construction sector –Business Minister Come 2019, the Guyana National Bureau of Standards will procure a consultant to conduct a situational analysis and action plan for the construction sector. This revelation was made on Monday by Business Minister, Dominic Gaskin. Speaking on the importance of the analysis and action plan, Gaskin noted that billions of dollars are lost annually due to the poor quality of products and services provided for the nation. He said that this study will identify the areas of weakness and make recommendations for correcting these. The Business Minister said, “An action plan will also be drafted and a framework provided for regulating the sector through the use of updated and revised building codes; and the certification and accreditation of testing facilities for construction materials.” Gaskin said it is anticipated that with the establishment of a framework for the
Business Minister, Dominic Gaskin certification of practitioners, there will be a significant improvement in the delivery of construction services in the medium-term as well as substantial savings by both public and private builders. He said that the sum of $14M has been budgeted in 2019 for this
exercise. Also in 2019, the Guyana National Bureau of Standards will continue to build its own capacity to provide testing and calibration services to a variety of industries. Through a capital allocation of $71M, the Business Minister noted that the Bureau will acquire a test bench for testing electricity metres, test masses in various denominations for calibrating scales and weigh stations in multiple regions of the country, an impact tester for testing PVC, a hydrostatic pressure pump for the testing of PVC pipes, temperature calibrators for use in the food preparation and processing industry, and scale and tape measure verification systems. Gaskin said that all of this combines to support businesses in delivering products and services of the required quality and standards to local and international buyers while ensuring that imported items also conform to local standards.
He reiterated the Public Security M i n i s t e r ’s sentiments noting that the strategy calls for the exploration of offering treatment, rehabilitation and recovery support services to drug dependent offenders. “Today represents an important step forward,” Atherly said and encouraged stakeholders to continue supporting the cause. Earlier in the year, Minister of Public Health, Volda Lawrence, Acting Chief Justice, Roxane GeorgeWiltshire, Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Dion Mc Calmont and Major General (Ret’d) Atherly attended meetings in Chicago and New York that explored problem-
Minister of Public Security, Khemraj Ramjattan solving courts and alternatives to incarceration for drug-
related offences. There they experienced innovative models first hand and asked questions of those directly involved in programmes’ implementation and operation. The initiative is a commitment made by the Executive Secretariat of the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (ES/CICAD) and Secretariat for Multidimensional Security of the Organisation of American States (OAS). The commitment embodies the goal of providing technical assistance to OAS member states in the implementation of alternatives to incarceration programmes.
Guyana holds on to lucrative Panamanian rice market Despite a major incident by a miller that threatened the Panamanian rice market earlier this year, Guyana has managed to secure another contract for the coming year. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, it has inked another supply agreement for rice shipments to the lucrative Panamanian market for the period December 2018 through 2019. The value of this latest contract is US$5.2M and will see the supply of 200,000 quintals equivalent to 9,075 tonnes of white rice over the next few months. Shipment for the first set of white rice under this new agreement will start later this month. This development comes in the wake of Guyana successfully meeting its quotas in a timely and consistent manner. Statistics released by the GRDB indicate that over the last three years, Guyana shipped a total of 183,683 mt
of rice. The dollar value of these shipments to Panama over the period stands at US$77,147,322M. General Manager of the Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB), Nizam Hassan, has expressed his satisfaction at the performance of the industry and the confidence the Panamanian government continues to show in Guyana’s rice industry. “We are doing exceptionally well at the moment despite the recent issue which occurred. Nonetheless, the Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) has secured and signed another contract and shipment will commence shortly,” he said. Exports for January to
November 2018, as compared to 2017, show a value of US$25,856,293 when compared to US$19,257,176 for 2017 for rice. Hassan added that opportunities appear to loom large for Guyana’s rice industry as enhanced efforts are being made to ensure not only the security of existing markets, but that additional markets are secured. The Panamanian market has impacted the price farmers receive per bag of paddy. It has also increased farmers confidence in the industry, which has manifested itself into increased acreages under cultivation, GRDB said. Earlier this year, the Panamanian authorities (Continued on page 8)
Thursday December 06, 2018
MARAD officers excel at regional shipping programme
Participants during a field visit Two officers from the Maritime Administration Department (MARAD) successfully completed the Caribbean Ship Inspector Training (CASIT) programme during the period October 29 - November 16, 2018.
The programme was held in Trinidad and Tobago. It sought to prepare participants to function in their respective administrations as Flag state and Port State Officers. Trainees will now be able
to perform Flag State inspections (FSI) on all ships under 24 meters in length and carry out annual and renewal surveys on vessels up to 500 Gross Tonnage (GT). Sherry-Ann Wilson gained maximum marks while
MARAD officer, Sherry-Ann Wilson during her presentation at the training Trey Simon achieved 93% in their respective evaluations. Among the 40 persons from 13 Caribbean member states, and four territories who participated in the programme, Guyana emerged tops in its performance and
evaluation sessions; the programme is expected to prepare participants further for the Diploma course that is offered online. The CASIT programme is designed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO)
to train Flag and Port State Inspectors. This training helps to ensure that ship standards are maintained, and that there is compliance with international codes and regulations, aiming to reduce accidents and marine pollution.
Dem. Bridge collects $703M in revenue as vehicular traffic increases by 2.9% The Demerara Harbour Bridge Corporation (DHBC) has recorded a bump in revenue earning in 2018, according to figures released by Minister within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Annette Ferguson. During her presentation on the 2019 budget debate yesterday in the National Assembly, Ferguson disclosed that the main revenue for the over 40-year structure is derived from toll. As at October 31, 2018, revenue stood at $703M, while its current expenditure was $454M. For the corresponding period in 2017, revenue generated was $389.5M while current expenditure was $444M. â€œDespite not receiving maximum subvention from Central Government in 2018, the Management and staff continue to ensure efficient and effective maintenance of this structure,â€? the Minister disclosed. T h e M i n i s t e r s h a r ed that in 2018, Government appropriated $5M to DHBC, which was utilized on the fabrication of connecting posts. Apart from this expenditure, the Minister stated that
The Demerara Harbour Bridge
DHBC utilised its generated revenue to execute a number of capital works. Specifically, $354.2M to procure items, fabricate buoys, maintenance to equipment/ machinery, rehabilitation of main offices, rehabilitation of pontoons $284M. Using the same period 31st October 2018, as against 31st October 2017, Ferguson stated that total vehicular traf-
fic was 302,798 and 293,911 respectively; giving a daily average of 9,683 with a 2.9% increase in traffic. The DHBC, according to the Minister, continues to effectively manage the asphalt plant along the East Bank of Demerara. Production of asphalt at 31st October 2018 stood at 2 3 , 0 6 7 M e t r i c To n s a s against 23,735 Metric Tons
for corresponding period in 2017, a decrease of 2.8% in production. Revenue generation for same periods under review showed $748.4M in 2018 , while expending $672.2M as against $891.5M and expending $778M for the same period in 2017. According to
Ferguson, a total of $224.6M was expended using revenue from asphalt production to procure a new asphalt plant with an advance payment of $146M made, representing a 30% advance. Revenue was used from the plant to secure a new bitumen tanker at $44.8M;
vehicles for $19.8M; construction of stores building at $9.7M and design consultancy for a new laboratory building for $4.3M. In 2019, the DHBC intends to use $101M for the procurement of wire rope at $1M and $100M for the Project readiness for the new river bridge crossing.
Guyana holds on to lucrative... From page 7 halted shipments after it was discovered that the quality of rice they asked for was not what was in the containers. Guyana had to send fresh shipments. The matter was reported to the police and a rice miller has been implicated. Some 60-plus containers are being thoroughly checked by the police Special Organised Crime Unit as investigators seek to determine how the wrong rice ended up in Panama.
Thursday December 06, 2018
Executive power is weak It is said that it takes a true leader to apologize and move on. But what sort of leader does it take to make a statement to the effect that she will only be granting jobs to PNC persons? That leader had to have been confident that the audience to which she was addressing that obnoxious comment would not demur. And this is the tragedy of the country; political leaders are not being held accountable for their mistakes. They are being allowed to apologize and move on in the same job. If someone makes a mistake, it is commendable that they should accept responsibility, apologize and
accept the consequences which flow from that mistake. There has been an acceptance of responsibility by the Minister of Health for a comment which she made; there has been an apology but there has been no sanctions imposed on the Minister. It is usual when someone makes a remark which breaches the public trust or is highly objectionable otherwise, there is an attempt by persons and institutions connected to that individual to distance themselves from those comments and from the person making the comment. CNN recently severed ties with Marc Lamont Hill
over comments he made about Israel. Apology or no apology, the damage had been done and CNN wants nothing to do with Hill. Last year, a press officer to the President made some race-laced remarks. The President immediately distanced himself from those comments saying that these were not consistent with his philosophy. But he did not distance himself from the individual. In fact, it was reported that the person was part of his delegation to the United Nations. The person reportedly accepted responsibility and apologized to the persons to whom the comments were directed and an
Dem boys seh ...
Dem got nuff wheelchair pushers at Ohh Pee Parliament force some people to face dem own jumbie. When Soulja Bai been in de Opposition he and he parliamentarians notice that Jagdeo use to run racket. He use to hire people pun contract and pay dem more than public servants. This cause big problems. Soulja Bai use to stand up in Parliament and vow to stamp out contract workers if he get in power. And every time he seh suh de whole parliament use to thump de table. Up come election and Soulja Bai win. When dem boys look at de contract workers, dem see nuff. and was not dem alone. Jagdeo see de thing and he get he people to ask what about de
contract workers. One man seh Soulja Bai and Li’l Joe see how dem can run racket. If dem want to give anybody a job dem didn’t have to go through de public service; dem just got to give dem a contract job. Dem boys seh dem could understand if Ohh Pee got more contract workers that when Jagdeo was president. Dem know that nuff old people wukking at Ohh Pee so dem have nuff wheelchairs. It gun tek contract workers to push dem around. Of course, pushing wheelchair is a skilled job. If you miss, de person you pushing could fall out de chair. Nuff of dem fall out. And Jagdeo seh that is a good thing. He seh that none of
dem coulda come out of parliament yesterday to meet de sugar workers who was protesting. That protest was anodda story. De sugar workers claim how dem don’t have money to buy food. Dem boys want to know how dem find money to come to town. Some come from Skeldon. Jagdeo did talk to dem and when dem men ask he fuh a raise to pay dem passage back home he tell dem fuh ask Soulja Bai because he got to keep he money to pay lawyer in case SOCU charge him. Talk half and count how many contract workers dem have now compared to when Jagdeo was president at Ohh Pee.
investigation later found, ingeniously, that the statements were not ‘malicious’. The person was not sanctioned. In the case of the recent comments by the Minister of Health, neither the President nor the government has publicly distanced itself from the comments or from the Minister. In fact, one Minister rushed to vouch for the character of the Minister. And so the question has to be asked, does an apology absolve an egregious act or comment? Is the mere preferring of an apology sufficient? It cannot always be so because this would encourage persons to make the most extreme comments and if the comments attract public outrage all they have to do is apologize and everything will once again be honky dory. An apology cannot, for example, be sufficient in case of sexual harassment and rape or an attempt to maim someone. The apology may mitigate the penalty but a mere apology, in these instances, can never absolve the wrongs which were done. And so when it comes
to political remarks, it must be asked when is the ‘red line’ crossed? In what instances is an apology not sufficient when it comes to remarks? Just like in crimes against the persons, there are certain types of statements which when made breach the public trust and therefore cannot be condoned, apology or no apology. There is no way the PPPC government should have allowed Anil Nandlall to be in the government after that telephone conversation with a reporter from Kaieteur News was made public. In fact, there is no way the PPP should have allowed him to belong to the Party. Certain comments go beyond the pale and an apology in those instances
is not good enough. There must be some further sanction depending on the degree to which the public trust has been breached. The Minister of Health has apologized for the comments she made. But can this nation move forward without any guarantees that there will be fairness in employment practices now and in the future? I don’t think so. The Minister should have been sanctioned by the government. And the fact that she was not shows the weakness of the exercise of Executive power.
Thursday December 06, 2018
=== The Freddie Kissoon column ===
Lawrence and Nagamootoo, et al, know it but they don’t care People do not put politicians in front of other types of humans. Always religious authorities, business achievers, academics, sporting personalities, entertainers are on the top of people’s list but never politicians. And the reason is extremely simple to understand. There isn’t anything complex about it. Politicians are obsessed with wanting power so in opposition they hide their true colours. In power, they become completely oblivious to the kind of loving character and inviting personality they displayed when they were dissidents.
There are countless numbers who believed that if Mrs. Clinton had won, she would not have been the type of leader she portrayed herself to be when she was on the campaign trail denouncing the Republicans. From the time the struggle against colonialism began in the forties, the huge, famous names in this country’s history turned out to be the opposite to what they proclaimed they were, once power was achieved. The list is very long. It begins with Jagan and Burnham and all the big names in the PPP from the fifties onwards, right up
to 2018. Just look at the WPA, AFC, Royston King, David Granger and others today. Some behavioral traits are simply incredible. You cannot believe them when you see them. I grew up admiring literally dozens of famous names in Guyana. Then I got to know them when I became somebody in my country and what I saw has left an indelible imprint of pessimism in the human capacity to be good, caring and concerned people. I would never have believed for a fraction of a moment that once the PPP was out of power and Carol Sooba was removed as Town Clerk that Royston King would have turned out to be a far more terrible and insensitive City Council monarch than Sooba. Today, I would close my eyes and choose Sooba over King to run anything in this country. I felt disgusted to the core of my soul when I saw what Robeson Benn as Minister of Public Works was doing to very poor people like folks
who set up fruit stands to sell along the East Coast Highway and places like J.B. Singh Road and teenage boys and girls selling water at Vlissengen Road and Lamaha Street . I did several heartbreaking columns on those assaults. Then my personal friend, David Patterson, succeeded Robeson Benn as minister in that portfolio when the PPP lost power in 2015. As I walk with my dog on the seawall, vendors would come up to me and tell me what Patterson was doing to them. He even turned off the seawall road lights. One morning, a woman came up and showed me the destruction of stalls Patterson’s ministry had committed; some of these victims I knew well because I have been a fixture on the seawall since dinosaurs roamed the earth. Patterson was my friend. This was not the David Patterson I knew. After a vendor complained, I rested my dog on the sand and called
David. The David I knew had changed. He told me the vendors are dirty people. They defecate in the area. The old fridges are an eyesore etc. See my column of Tuesday, November 14, 2017 captioned, “A telephone call from the beach to the Minister.” It is not that politicians change when they get power. The masks simply fall off. No sooner Volda Lawrence’s career headed in the direction of the presidency, we see the pomposity and arrogance on display. Addressing her Region Four party members, she chastised them for not showing continued gratitude and even accused some of them of being friendly with other parties (I think she had the AFC in mind). Then the warning came – she told them once they show ingratitude to the PNC, she is coming for them. What Lawrence didn’t tell them though she knew it is that these very party faithfuls quickly change allegiance when they see how their leaders behave in government. Lawrence knew very well that
Frederick Kissoon party loyalists will lose optimism when they see how undemocratic those they admire have become. The Walter Rodney Commission of Inquiry brought to light an interesting, phenomenal fact that the media did not pick up, but historians, I believe, have taken note of it. One of the witnesses, describing the violent intentions of Rodney, said that Rodney had definite links to the army. This columnist knows that. The point is, many admirers of Burnham had become disillusioned with him. Lawrence can preach how much she wants; her party will lose support if it continues to mistreat poor people. Every Guyanese knows why Nagamootoo lost the 2018 LGE in Whim.
Thursday December 06, 2018
Thursday December 06, 2018
Sugar workers stage protest outside Parliament for severance Former and current workers of the Albion, Blairmont, Uitvlugt and retrenched cane cutters from the Wales sugar estates yesterday staged a picketing exercise in front of the Parliament Building during the Budget Debate, yesterday. They said that they wanted to draw attention to their growing concerns towards their severance pay and pay increase. The workers lined the barricades on Brickdam and waved placards and shouted for justice. First, the workers are arguing that since the cost of
living has increased they are in need of a raise in pay for current workers. According to the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) the salary paid to the current workers has declined by nearly $300,000 between 2014 and 2017 further placing a strain on the industry. The union further made a stand for the workers who are yet to be paid their severance. Approximately 350 workers remain to collect their pay after being jobless for well over two years ago. “They lied to us saying
they would give increases, that they won’t take away our jobs and they would give us our severance pay. But they have failed to deliver on all these promises,” said one protester. Another protester stated, “This severance pay is what they owe us; they are required to pay us our money but they are denying us like if the money is they own.” “We need money for Christmas.” Some Members of the Opposition, including Bharrat Jagdeo, Juan Edgihill and Priya Manichand, came out to
give support to the protesting workers. The Opposition parliamentarians could be seen conversing with the workers and voiced their support for the workers plights to be heard and attended to. However, Minister of Agriculture, Noel Holder, told the National Assembly during the debate of the 2019 budgetary estimates that the workers who were severed in 2016 were prevented from receiving their severance pay because of a court action filed by the Guyana Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU).
Moreover, a ruling on the rate of interest to be paid on the outstanding severances was expected to be released yesterday and therefore the government will be able to issue the payment. He added that the workers severed by the Guyana
Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) are likely to receive their severance pay by the end of this week. The Minister stated that the funds are already on hand and will be paid once the court announces the interest rate for the severance payments.
Plaisance woman charged for killing reputed husband during argument A teary-eyed mother of three who is accused of fatally stabbing her reputed husband was yesterday charged and remanded to prison for the offence. Melissa Playter, 25, of 41 Prince William Street, Plaisance, East Coast Demerara, appeared before Magistrate Alisha George in the Sparendaam Magistrate’s Court where the murder charge was read to her. Playter was not required to plead to the indictable offence which stated that on December 2, last, at 41 Prince William Street, Plaisance, East Coast Demerara, she murdered Victor Roberts, 38, her reputed husband. She was remanded to prison by the Magistrate and is expected to make her next court appearance on January 17, 2019. According to information on the day in question, Playter and Roberts had an argument at their residence when she became annoyed and stabbed Roberts, once, to the region of the heart with a knife. Roberts fell to the ground and was rushed to the
Charged: Melissa Playter Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) where he was pronounced dead on arrival. The matter was then reported and Playter was arrested. Neighbours told police that they did not pay much attention to the couple when they were arguing, since they often had arguments. It is unclear what caused the argument on the day in question.
Thursday December 06, 2018
Opposition MP blasts Govt over contract workers Opposition Member of Parliament, (MP) Indranie Chandarpal, has criticized the coalition Government over a failure to act on its own recommendations. In her contribution to the 2019 budget debates, Chandarpal highlighted the issue of hiring contract workers. Alluding to information in the 2017 Audit General Report ,Chandarpal had noted that despite recommendations of the Public Service Commission (PSC) to minimize the number of staff employed on a contractual basis, the Government continues to hire workers on contract. According to Chandarpal, as a result, employment costs from the year 2014 -2018 increased to some $28 .9 B or by 68 percent. Of that figure, the Opposition MP noted that a notable percentage has been expended on contract workers. She said that while in Opposition, the coalition Government had been heavily critical of the presence of these classes of workers and had promised to cut out the practice of having contracted employees.
Opposition MP, Indranie Chandarpal However based on the AG report 2017, Chandarpal said the government has failed to act on its own advice. The reports outlines that Ministry of Presidency, expended over $969 M on payment for over 309 contract workers for last year, alone. Further, Chandarpal expressed concerns at the overall lack of action in regards to recommendations in the AG report. She noted that “Of 602
recommendation made in 2016 AG report— only 30% were partially implemented. Seventy percent was not implemented.” Quoting from the report, Chandarpal noted that the AG observed the lack action of the various budget agencies. In many instances recommendations are not implemented. As a result, each year weaknesses and issues continue to impact negatively in level of governance with regards to accountability mechanism….” she added. According to the information recorded in the Auditor General Report of 2017 an amount of $1.112 B was set to be expended on four employment projects under the Ministry of the Presidency in Regions One, Two, Five and Six. Of the $1.112 B set to expend on four employment programmes, 87 per cent was spent on contract workers employed under the Ministry of the Presidency. The report further highlighted that last year February a Public Service Commission circular was sent out recommending that all Permanent Secretaries, Heads of Department and Regional Ex-
Auditor General probe uncovers various questionable practices at Petrojam KINGSTON, Jamaica CMC – A report of an investigation conducted by the Office of the Auditor General into the state-owned oil refinery, Petrojam, has catalogued a series of lavish parties and unapproved sponsorships as well as glaring human resources breaches costing millions of dollars (One Jamaica dollar=US$0.008 cents). The findings of the Auditor General was tabled in the House of Representatives on Tuesday and it warned that bad management practices, if left unresolved, would increase the risk of corruption and further erode Petrojam’sprofitability, which has declined over the last three years. The probe found that although liquidity levels were inadequate to cover Petrojam’s obligations, the state-owned company made questionable payments related to procurement activities, had significant project cost overruns and overspent on donations, which further impaired cash flow. The Auditor General’s report noted that Petrojam did not provide documentary evidence to substantiate payments of J$14.9 million for counselling service for employees and consultancy services relating to its 35th anniversary planning activities. It noted that management also spent J$2.6 million to host two birthday parties, which were unrelated to its opera-
Pamela Monroe Ellis tions and did not conform to good corporate practices. The Auditor General also noted that the value of donations doubled from 2013 to 2014 and 2017 to 2018 with the largest year-on-year increase of 141 per cent coming during the last two years, when donations totalled J$84.2 million in contrast to J$34.9 million in 2016 to 2017. Petrojam exceeded the donation budget in 2015 to 2016 and 2017 to 2018 by 33 per cent and 47 per cent respectively, without approval from the Board and in contravention of its donation policy, despite cash flow challenges. According to the Auditor
General the expenditures underscore the need for Petrojam’s management to be prudent with the costs over which it has control. The Auditor General also found deficiencies in human resource recruitment and management practices at the oil company which included explicit acts of nepotism. It stated that two individuals closely connected to employees of Petrojam were employed despite being rejected by the interviewing panel. The audit found that the board of the agency was deficient in its oversight and monitoring of its operations.
ecutive Officers submit a list of all officers on contract/gratuity to be appointed on the pensionable establishment. However, as of December 31, 2017, the Ministry still had 309 contract employees on its payroll. In response to the concerns raised, Head of the Budget Agency indicated that the Ministry of Presidency had promised that action will be taken to have eligible contracted employees transferred to the fixed establishment as required. However, due to the expiration of the tenure of the Public Service Commission, the process was put on hold. “Given that the Commission has been reactivated, the process for transferring the remaining staff will be actively pursued,” the Ministry had said in a response. The Audit Office, therefore, recommended that the Ministry minimize the number of staff being employed on a contractual basis and continues with the process of moving its current eligible em-
ployee over to the pensionable establishment in keeping with the instructions. Within the Ministry of the Presidency itself, contracted cleaners account for a net salary of over $206,000 per month; inclusive of gratuity and vacation allowance. A typist clerk is paid over $170,000 per month, inclusive of these benefits as well, while a contracted driver makes $219,000. In the case of administrative assistants, their net salary range is $492,000; while an administrative officer makes $551,000 and the administrative manager makes almost $1.5 million, inclusive of gratuity and vacation allowance. The two highest paid contracted staff within the Ministry are Senior Executive Director of the Public Service College, Retired Colonel Lawrence Paul ($1.9 million); and Director of Training, Calvin Benn ($1.8 million), the document highlighted. The issue of contracted employees has been a sore
one for successive Governments. In 2016, chartered accounting firm Ram and McRae pointed out that too much strain was being placed on the public coffers with the employment of contracted workers. It made the finding following the delivery of this year’s National Budget. The firm had noted the Ministry of the Presidency’s increase in contract employees from 298 in 2015 to 505 in 2016, as well as an increase in the cost of wages and salaries for contract employees from $142 million to $798 million. In the case of the Office of the Prime Minister, it had noted that the cost of wages and salaries for contracted employees rose from $21 million to $82 million. It also addressed the Public Infrastructure Ministry, which saw an increase from $9 million to $51 million in a particular programme, and from $182 million to $533 million under its Public Works Programme.
CCJ hears record number of cases since establishment PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad - CMC – The Trinidad-based Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) yesterday said it has this year, delivered the highest number of judgements in a calendar year since it began its operations in 2005. The CCJ, which was established in 2001 to replace the London-based Privy Council as the regional final court, said that it had issued 34 judgments and reasons for decisions in 2018. “Throughout that period, the CCJ also heard 28 new matters in both its Original and its Appellate Jurisdictions,” the CCJ said, noting that this court term ends on Monday, December 17. It said that its last hearing for the year was yesterday involving a case from Barbados, where Renaldo Alleyne, who was convicted of man-
slaughter after six young women died when the Campus Trendz Mall was firebombed during a robbery in 2010, is appealing the six concurrent life sentences imposed by the court in Barbados. The CCJ said that it is also preparing for the staging of its fifth Biennial Conference to be held in Jamaica from December 13, in partnership with the General Legal Council. The conference is being presented with the support of the Judicial Reform and Institutional Strengthening (JURIST) Project, the Caribbean Development Bank, CaribExport and Scotiabank Jamaica and will feature over 50 international and local speakers. CCJ President Justice
Adrian Saunders will deliver the keynote address while recently appointed CCJ judge, Justice Denys Barrow will be presenting a paper on ‘Judicial Delay as Misbehaviour’. “During the conference, the Jurist Project will be launching a Criminal Bench Book for Magistrates and Parish Court Judges. The Bench Book provides guidelines, based on best practices gleaned from courts and judicial officers throughout the region. The Bench Book will be an excellent resource document for judges and magistrates and will provide a template for judiciaries to adapt for their unique situations,” the CCJ noted. The CCJ said it is also preparing to launch its second Strategic Plan early next year and that the new plan will cover the period 2019-2023.
Putin vows ‘support’ as Venezuela’s Maduro seeks financial aid Moscow (AFP) - Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday voiced support f o r Ve n e z u e l a n l e a d e r Nicolas Maduro as he visited Moscow seeking financial assistance for the socialist country’s collapsing economy. Putin at a meeting at his residence outside Moscow told Maduro “we support your efforts to achieve mutual understanding in society and all your actions aimed at normalising relations with the opposition”.
Putin added that “naturally we condemn any actions that are clearly terrorist in nature, any attempts to change the situation by force.” Hit by low oil prices, mismanagement and the impact of US sanctions, Venezuela is in freefall and Maduro is seeking support from allies after winning a second presidential term this year. Maduro, who took over following the death of Hugo Chavez in 2013, has come un-
der strong pressure from US President Donald Trump’s administration, which calls him a “dictator”. While he won the May elections, most of the international community did not recognise the results. Formally, Maduro’s second mandate only begins in January next year. Maduro told Putin he was sure their talks would bring “good news for cooperation between our countries and for the economies of our countries.”
Thursday December 06, 2018
GPOC explores... FOR RENT
SERVICES PLANNING AN EVENT? BIRTHDAY PARTY, GRADUATION, W E D D I N G S , ANNIVERSARY, ETC. CALL DIAMOND TENTS: 216-1043; 677-6620 Visa Application: U.S.A, Canada & UK; Graphics design, advertisement, Wedding arch rentals. Tel: 626-7040; 265-4535. ICONIC MARKETING & PRINTING –TEL: 6006887: We create A/works, logos, business cards, posters, etc, placements of ads included. Eagle’s re-gas AC, Fridge, Washing machine & computer repairs, Gas stove, Plasma flat screen, Electrical installation & more. Call: 697-2969/6460966 Installations, Repairs and parts for AC, Fridge, Washing machine, Stove etc call Nick 627-3206, 630-1600 TO LET Business apartment on ground floor 70 Quamina Street. $50,000 monthly Negotiable. Phone: 225-6741
FOR SALE Generac Pressure Wash for sale 3100 PSI. Tel#654-5267/ 652-2244/220-4203 One Ford explore sportage jeep, fully loaded $3.7M. Call# 684-4636/676-4810 Four (4) Pure Breed German Shepherd pups, Black & Tan six (6) weeks old. Tele No #650-9998/626-0953 Business place on 5th St Albertown $30 Million Negotiable. Call: 684-9409 Imported bedroom, Living room, Bathroom: Furniture/ Accessories-Beds, Dressers, Lamps, Carpets, TV Stand etc. Owner leaving #655-3070 One heavy duty sewing machine, only used 4 months, price neg #661-5396
HERBAL REMEDIES: Diabetes, Hypertension, Infertility, Menstrual disorders, Enlarged prostate, Kidney,Gall stones & Arthritis etc. Call Sparman #676-5924 ACCOMMODATION Secret Villa & Harmony Inn. Fully furnish, air-condition rooms & apartments. 2256337, 668-0306, 218-1400, 6028769, 266-5243-4 PEN PAL Indian Male from England seeks female Age 29/32 with good personality. Call or Text #690-6639
1 Apt for rent- Bottom flat for rent, for business. Contact Radica Kassim #264-2639 Lot 7-8 Plantain Walk WBD Mini excavator $8,800 per hour, also Bobcat service available. Tel#623-0290 1 & 2 Bedroom apartments, 3 bedroom house. Can be used for storage also ECD. Contact Mr. Khan #695-6550/656-9313 LAND FOR SALE 35 acres land at Yarrowkabra, situated next to the Soesdyke Linden Highway. Tel#2612553
Bourda Green Market Stall. Call: 610-0227, 219-3435 2 sets Golf clubs! Ford Econoline van with shelves. LED panel lights. Fishing poles #690-5197
Transported land 11.6 acres. Lot 15 public road. #2 Village W.C.B. Price $18M. Contact 686-4818, 648-7109 Zeelugt $2.3M Tuschen $2.9M Parfaite Harmonie $2M (fenced) Parfaite Harmonie $1.5M #697-6311, 642-1252 Diamond New Scheme, 5th Avenue Double lot (Million Dollar area) $9.2M. Tel#6039700
PROPERTY FOR SALE
Salon for rental, New Market St, Georgetown, also hair/ nails/barber/massage. Makeup stations for rental #638-1106
Farm (East Bank) $3.2M Eccles $7M Herstelling $4M & $5M Schnoord $2.8M Dairy $1.6M & $2.6M Tel#656-0701/6481635
One bedroom studio apartment, Parfaite Harmonie $22,000 monthly #694-7817/ 668-0306
3-Bedrooms spacious colonial house @ Versailles Public road. Huge yard, Fruit trees, all amenities, parking. Price Negotiable Tel#609-7766/2258427
PLANNING AN EVENT? BIRTHDAY PARTY, GRADUATION, W E D D I N G S , ANNIVERSARY, ETC. CALL DIAMOND TENTS: 216-1043; 677-6620
LEARN TO DRIVE
PROGRESSIVE CAR RENTAL: CARS FROM $4000 & UP, SUV’S PER DAY- CALL:643-5122/6560087, ,EMAIL:PRO_AUTO RENTAL@YAHOO.COM
N. Outar Driving School, Learn to Drive the right way. Affordable package. Call: 6445166/691-2561
DOLLY’S CAR RENTALCALL:225-7126/ 2263 6 9 3 DOLLYSAUTORENTAL @YAHOO.COM/ WWW.D OLLYSAUTORENTAL.COM AIDAN’S CAR RENTAL:PICKUP,9-11 SEAT MINI BUS, GOOD FOR AIRPORT & FAMILY OUTINGS, CHEAPEST RATE . Call: 698-7807 WING’S CAR & PICKUP RENTAL: LOW DOWN PAYMENT, CHEAP RATES,SPECIALOFFERS! . CALL: 690-6494
VEHICLE FOR SALE 2005 Toyota Tacoma Ext cab 4x4 $2.6 Negotiable Tel#6901894 Nissan Laurel Executive car, Nissan Pathfinder Jeep, Well kept. Hot Bargains now Call: 660-3415/609-7766 Diesel Toyota canter truck long base double cab. Working condition. Tel: 6266889
WANTED Demerara Bakery Inc. is looking for Distributors, Wholesalers & Retailers. Call us on 266-5847 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org Live in or live out babysitter/ domestic- Call: 223-7500 Monday to Saturday 8:15am4:15pm Office clerk, Senior/Junior CXC English/Mathematics, Computer knowledge an asset. Call: 223-7500 We buy land in Eccles, Herstelling, Farm, Parfaite Harmonie, Uivlugt, Zeelugt, Providence & Dairy Tel# 6117223/651-1969 Buying Wamara Whatsapp: 664-5150
Attractive live in waitressCall: 327-0252/674-4665/6493750 One (1) Security Officer #2271717 Experienced Taxi & Private Drivers #227-0638/622-6413 Husband & Wife or single person to work on small poultry farm. Tel#655-4483 must know gardening One Industrial Electrician. Tel#682-2971
From page 15 number of robberies, the most recent being $2.2Million taken from the Charity Post Office in Region Two. Minister Hughes also indicated that financial transactions conducted at post offices should be done in a more modern manner, hence the move to explore these options. Also, postal services, if they are to become financially viable, must reduce the amount of cash it has on hold. In a more general sense, she said Guyana needs to move into new financial payment methods when it comes to paying our pensioners. “With this in mind the
Confidence trickster... From page 20 was stored in the storage compartment of the car, was also missing. Ms. Khan explained that her nephew stop at the gold smith, where he had dropped off the goldsmith previously. Upon enquires, however, Khan learnt that the goldsmith was never home that day, but was in Georgetown. “ H e w a s r e d s k in. Though the hair cut short I could've seen that he was straight hair. He got a tattoo
Couple or male to live & work on fruit farm, must know to operate weeding machine #697-8928 FOR SALE/RENT American Pool table. Tel#2770578
Paralegal, must have Immigration experience & Excellent communication skills. Please send CV’s to: email@example.com 2 Grillmen (Driver's license a plus) to grill burgers. 1 live in help from Berbice/Essequibo. Contact X's Grill & Cuisine.#695-6550/656-9313 Hick’s Ville HotelReceptionist. #231-0951/2277 7 1 4 / 2 2 3 - 3 4 4 8 firstname.lastname@example.org Vegetarian Garden- Driver/ salesman # 227-7714/223-3448 email@example.com One party store attendant. Tel# 691-7123
on his neck and his tooth got capped gold. Two or three of the teeth in the bottom were colored red, green and gold.” The matter was reported to the police on the Essequibo Coast and investigation into the matter continues. Based on additional reports reaching this publication, the man also conned two other individuals of cash. Persons who have information on the individual are asked to make contact with the hotel proprietors on cell number 592-665-7658.
Man with unlicensed gun charged after argument with police officer
1 General Domestic, must know how to cook. Please call: 225-3832 between the hours 8:30am-4:00pm
postal service is committed to leaving no stone unturned and therefore we have started to look at projects that would be able to increase the convenience of our senior citizens in accessing their pensions.” Additionally, the ministry recognising that a significant number of citizens are approaching the year of retirement has envisioned electronic payment to these persons as a smoother transition. “We know that many of them already have a bank account and are digitally competent and therefore we are sure that they would want to utilise such facility.”.
Remanded to prison Khayyam Ahmad
VACANCY Vacancy exist for Experienced Pharmacy assistants to work @ reputable pharmacy in Georgetown. Call: 696-5098/ 628-8811 between 8am-4pm Inventory clerk/Store keeper 5 Subjects including Maths & English, Computer literate, send application to firstname.lastname@example.org / call #227-1717
A man who allegedly showed a police constable an unlicensed firearm after they were involved in an argument, was yesterday charged for the offence. Khayyam Ahmad, 25, a mechanic of 197 South Road, Bourda, appeared before Senior Magistrate Fabayo Azore in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts where the charge of unlicensed firearm possession was read to him. He denied the charge which alleged that on December 1, last, at South Road, Bourda, he had in his possession one .32 pistol when he was not a licensed firearm holder enforce at the time. Ahmad was represented by Attorney-at-Law George Thomas who in a bail application for his client told the court that the weapon was not found in his client’s possession. The lawyer further argued that his client was confronted by a group of men and one of them may have placed the gun in the shop. The lawyer added that soon after the men left, a party of police officers showed up and arrested his client after they found the unlicensed firearm in a car that he was (Continued on page 23)
Thursday December 06, 2018
Christmas in jail for drug dealer A drug dealer who was hoping to catch a quick raise for the holidays has caught jail instead. He was nabbed whilst on his way to Georgetown with a quantity of narcotics in a car. In court he pleaded guilty and was jailed for three years and fined $577,500. Clive Lionel Charles, 45, of Mai Mai Dam, Angoy’s Avenue, New Amsterdam, B e r b i c e , was jailed by Magistrate Rhondell Weaver when he appeared before her at the Fort Wellington Magistrate’s Court and pleaded guilty
to the charge of possession of narcotics for the purpose of trafficking. The matter was prosecuted by Woman Police Corporal Racquel Mars. The convict who told the Court that he works as a miner and a labourer was among a number of passengers in motor car HC 7859 which was on its way to Georgetown on Wednesday November 28. In the vicinity of the Weldaad Police Station the car was stopped by the police who were conducting a stop and search exercise. The passengers were told to dis-
embark. A black and orange haversack was seen resting in the area of the front passenger seat of the car. The police sought the owner of the bag which was subsequently claimed by Charles. The bag was opened and a black plastic bag with what appears to be seeds, leaves and stem of the marijuana Plant was found inside. Charles was arrested and taken into custody. The bag was weighed and the contents tested and found to be 384 grams of marijuana. He was subsequently charged.
Man with unlicensed gun charged after argument with... From page 22 working on. H o w e v e r, f a c t s p r e sented by Police Prosecutor Warren T u r n h i l l differed from the defence. The Prosecutor told the court that on the day in question about 23:30 hrs Pol i c e C o n s t a b l e Wi l l iams went to a tyre shop at South Road, Bourda where he was confronted by Ahmad. The court heard
the two got into an argument and Ahmad walked behind the tire shop and returned with a gun which was hidden in his pants waist. A h m a d w a s a b o ut to reach for the unlicensed firearm when someone shouted, “ B o y, h o w y o u t a l k i n g to the police like that.” The court heard Ahmad upon hearing that, ran to the back of the shop and threw t h e g u n i n a c o r n e r.
The officer (Williams) then called for backup and a party of police officers went to the location where they found the firearm. Ahmad was then arrested and taken i n t o c u s t o d y, a n d charged for the offence. He was remanded to prison by Magistrate Azore who instructed him to make his next court appearance on December 19.
CGX inks Joint Venture with Frontera Energy From page 14 of steps designed to provide it with significant working capital and liquidity. Coming as it does against the backdrop of severe financial hardship, this announcement is being heralded by the industry as a major success. Under the terms of the proposed farm-in, Frontera and a wholly owned subsidiary of CGX, CGX Resources Inc., will enter into a farm-in joint venture agreement covering CGX's two shallow water offshore Petroleum Prospecting Licenses in Guyana, the Corentyne and Demerara Blocks. Upon completion of the agreement and receipt of Government of Guyana and regulatory approval for the farmin, Frontera will acquire a 33.33% working interest in the two blocks in exchange for a US$33.3 million signing bonus. Frontera has agreed to pay one-third of the applicable costs plus an additional 8.333% of CGX's direct drilling costs for the initial exploratory commitment wells in the two blocks. Pursuant to the letter agreement, Frontera and CGX have agreed to arrangements to provide additional financial support for CGX. Upon the closing of the JV Agreement, CGX will repay Frontera approximately US$17 million of debt which is currently in default and owing to Frontera. This debt will be extended to March 31, 2019 and is expected to be repaid earlier by way of an offset against the U.S$33.3 million signing bonus payable to CGX referred to above. Frontera will extend its April 25, 2018 bridge loan through September 30, 2019 (which loan is currently in default with principal outstanding of U.S$8,861,339 plus interest), and will seek regulatory approval to amend the terms to provide Frontera the ability to have the outstanding principal amount of the
loan repaid in CGX common shares, at a conversion price of the U.S. dollar equivalent of CDN$0.29 per share, at any point on or before maturity of the loan. This option will allow CGX to enhance its liquidity. Frontera will also agree to guarantee an equity financing of CGX of up to U.S.$20 million, the terms of which CGX expects to announce within the next two weeks. No proceeds from the financing will be payable to Frontera. This financing will enable CGX to settle its U.S.$7,904,037 of liabilities with Japan Drilling Co., Ltd. as disclosed by CGX in its October 31, 2018 press release. The companies further stated that the cumulative effect of the transactions if successfully completed would satisfy approximately U.S$34.5 million of CGX's existing indebtedness and provide CGX with approximately U.S$27.5 million of net cash. As a result of these transactions, Frontera could increase its ownership of outstanding common shares of CGX from its current ownership of approximately 45.6% (or 50,351,929 shares) to up to approximately 77.5% if no other shareholder participates in the equity financing and Frontera elects to exercise the conversion right attached to the bridge loan. Like Professor Narine, Gabriel de Alba who is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Frontera, said he is excited about the new strategic joint venture in Guyana. His partner, Richard Herbert, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Frontera, was keen to share that Offshore Guyana has emerged during the last few years as one of the most exciting exploration areas in the world. Herbert said that CGX's offshore exploration blocks have been significantly derisked by exploration activity in the basin to date and contain multiple play types which offer significant opportunity.
He said, “Once executed, our farm-in agreement with CGX will give the Company a direct interest in the significant exploration potential of both the Corentyne and Demarara Blocks. We look forward to building on our relationship with CGX and the people of Guyana as Frontera expands its medium- and long-term opportunity set in the north Andean region of South America and the Caribbean.” CGX WELL PERFORMANCE CGX Energy Inc., which just celebrated its 20th anniversary on August 10, 2018 at the Umana Yana with the naming of its next exploration well (Utakwaaka) by the Aleluya Religious Group from Amococopai, Region Seven, is one of the more well-known oil and gas exploration companies operating in the Guyana Basin. The company is widely regarded as Guyana's indigenous oil company. It was one of the earlier pioneers in the basin. The company is the only operating oil and gas exploration company with Guyanese management and a Guyanese Executive Chairman, Professor Suresh Narine. The company holds three oil and gas concessions in Guyana -Corentyne and Demerara, which are offshore in shallow water on the continental shelf and Berbice (62% owned) which is onshore in Region Six. The company has drilled three onshore exploration wells and two offshore wells. All of its onshore wells had petroleum “shows” but none proved to have productive commercial potential. CGX in October 2018 re-opened it exploration activities on its onshore block with the completion of a major geochemical study over a significant portion of its Berbice Block. The company's fully owned Eagle Shallow well also did not yield commercial volumes of hydrocarbons, although it did provide indica-
Mr. Richard Herbert, CEO of Frontera (left) and Professor Suresh Narine, Executive Chairman of CGX, shaking hands to seal the deal tion of an active petroleum system in the Guyana basin. CGX drilled the Jaguar well (25% working interest) together with partners YPF, Tullow and Repsol, but that well needed to be plugged and discontinued as high pressures of gas were encountered. The data from these wells have apparently been very instrumental in calibrating the basin, however, and is thought to have played a major role in the successes enjoyed by Exxon Mobil and its partners. The company was also interrupted during the drilling of another offshore well in 2008, when its drilling rig was boarded by a Surinamese gunboat, during a period when neighboring Suriname claimed some of Guyana's maritime territory. CGX Energy took a pivotal decision then to financially support Guyana's legal representations to the United Nations Law of the Sea tribunal, which was ultimately successful. This act of partnership with the people and Government of Guyana was instrumental in CGX being seen by most Guyanese as Guyana's
Indigenous Oil Company. According to CGX officials, the company's on-going sector-leading Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities and in particular, its work with Guyana's Indigenous Peoples, have kept it very relevant as a company fully engaged in the social and cultural fabric of Guyana. FINANCIAL DISTRESS & MOVING FORWARD In 2012, on the backs of a non-producing Eagle Shallow well, and a plugged and discontinued Jaguar well, the company entered a phase of financial distress. Oil prices plummeted from US$120 a barrel to less than US $30 a barrel. CGX, like most other oil and gas companies, faced significant financial challenges and the company was forced to borrow heavily to stay afloat and to default on several service payments, leasing to increased debt. Despite these challenging times, and during which many larger companies filed for bankruptcy, CGX not only held on but also kept all of its local employees. Although several of its overseas offices saw massive reductions in staff, the company's local workforce was retained. Fur-
thermore, the company kept its most important CSR activities going. At the beginning of 2017, with massive restructuring having occurred across the industry, including with the company's major shareholder Pacific Rubiales Energy, Professor Narine assumed the role as Executive Director of the company's Guyana operations and shortly thereafter, assumed the Executive Chairmanship of the company. Narine has previously been Co-Chair of the Board of Directors with a short stint in 2013 as Executive Chairman during when the company was negotiating its way out of financial distress. CGX was able in December of 2017 to re-negotiate its exploration programme with the Government of Guyana, during which the company relinquished 25% of both its Demerara and Corentyne blocks to the Government. With the financial support of its major partner, who was restructured and renamed Frontera Energy Corporation, the company started to aggressively address its new work programs and entered into a restructuring of some of its creditor debt.
Government received above - market price for Guyana Stockfeeds’ shares - Badal Contrary to “uninformed comments” circulating in the press, the Government of Guyana received the highest price possible for its minority shareholding in Guyana Stockfeeds Inc. Hours after former Attorney General, Anil Nandlall, now in the Opposition, criticized the sale, calling for a probe, Guyana Stockfeeds’ Chairman, Robert Badal, defended it. He said that more than $140M was paid to the Government. “If those making the noise on this issue to save their skin from corruption investigation and prosecution have a better offer I would willingly withdraw mine,” vowed Badal yesterday. The businessman also controls the iconic Pegasus Hotel. Last week, Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, announced that the Government of Guyana has sold its 6.7 percent shares in Guyana Stockfeeds Inc., to the majority shareholder. The sale gave the businessman 100 percent control of the company. Harmon told media operatives that Cabinet received a proposal from Badal for the sale of NICIL’s 6 .7 percent shareholding in Guyana Stockfeeds Inc., being 5437 ordinary shares at a price of $25 per share. Harmon asserted that Badal’s offer was the only one Government received in response to two separate requests for proposals. He said that Cabinet then gave NICIL the approval to proceed with the transaction. However, Nandlall criticized the sale saying no evidence of valuation was done. Yesterday, Badal in defending the sale, said that at $25 per share it is way over the $15 he was initially pre-
Thursday December 06, 2018
Businessman, Robert Badal
pared to offer. “It is way over the local stock exchange last sale price. The total value for these shares offered for under 7% shareholding was more than what I paid for 35% of the company when I first took over its management. To go further at $25 per share the Government is getting today 25 times what it would receive in annual dividends,” the businessman stressed. According to Badal, the fact that no other buyer made any bid during an open tender means that no one was interested in a minority stake in the company and that its value to a rational buyer was not there. ”What valuation was
done and by whom means nothing without a willing buyer. I am not affiliated with any political party. I received no favor from the Government; all negotiations were above board and at arms’ length. All due processes were followed. The Government must be congratulated for negotiating this price on behalf of all Guyanese.” According to Badal, this is in stark contrast to the sale prices at which state assets were sold to cronies and friends under the former administration of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic. He would be referring to a number of properties sold to close friends of the PPP/C without the proper process being followed.
Istanbul prosecutor seeks arrest of Saudi officials over Khashoggi killing ANKARA (Reuters) - Istanbul’s chief prosecutor has filed warrants for the arrest of a top aide to Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler and the deputy head of its foreign intelligence on suspicion of planning the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, two Turkish officials said yesterday. The prosecutor’s office has concluded there is “strong suspicion” that Saud alQahtani and General Ahmed al-Asiri, both removed from their positions in October, were among the planners of Khashoggi’s Oct. 2 killing at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, the officials said. The move comes a day after senior U.S. senators said they were more certain than ever that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was responsible for the killing, citing a CIA briefing. The United Nations human rights chief yesterday called for an interna-
tional investigation. Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has pushed to keep international attention on the murder - the order for which he says came from the highest levels of the Saudi government - even as U.S. President Donald Trump has said Washington should not take action that would undermine its relationship with the kingdom. “The prosecution’s move to issue arrest warrants for Asiri and Qahtani reflects the view that the Saudi authorities won’t take formal action against those individuals,” one of the Turkish officials said. “The international community seems to doubt Saudi Arabia’s commitment to prosecute this heinous crime. By extraditing all suspects to Turkey, where Jamal Khashoggi was killed and dismembered, the Saudi authorities could address those concerns,” the official said.
Saddam freed of murder second time around Naresh Ramjohn, called ‘Naresh Mahase’ and ‘Saddam’ of Stanleytown, and Angoy’s Avenue, New Amsterdam, Berbice, who was on a second trial for murder, on Wednesday walked out of the Berbice High Court a free man. This was after High Court Judge Priya Sewnarine Beharry upheld the defence no case submission and directed the jury to enter a formal verdict of not guilty. Ramjohn, 39, was on trial for the murder of 28-year-old Anthony Samaroo, called ‘Scare Dem’of Levi Dam, Angoy’s Avenue, New Amsterdam, Berbice, on July 2, 2008, at Levi Dam. Ramjohn was represented by attorneys Arundanauth Gossai, Mursalene Bacchus and Surihya Sabsook. The Prosecution case was presented by Attorney at law Mandel Moore. Ramjohn was found guilty and was sentenced to 55 ½ years in jail during the first trial. He appealed the conviction and caused it to be set aside by the Guyana Court of Appeal and a new trial ordered. Justice Beharry had earlier rejected the Prosecution effort to have the statement of star witness Ryan Samaroo admitted. Ryan Samaroo who had given evidence in the Magistrate’s Court and at the first trial had suddenly disappeared from the area.
Efforts to contact him proved futile. Another brother, Tejpaul Samaroo, who is in the New Amsterdam Prison and had also testified in the Magistrate’s Court and at the first trial. He told the court that he doesn’t know who killed his brother and had denied helping to take his brother to the hospital. Defence Attorney Arudranauth Gossai In his no case submissions told the court that there is no evidence to link his client to the crime. He said that Prosecution witness, Brian Dhanpat, stated that he saw the incident and it was Saddam’s brothers who were seen boring the deceased. Gossai also submitted that there was no evidence submitted that there was any prearranged plan to commit the crime. Prosecutor Moore then made a lengthy submission. After listening to both sides Justice Sewnarine Beharry agreed with the defence and ordered the jury to return the verdict of not guilty. The prosecution case was that on the day in question, Ryan Samaroo was walking on Levi Dam, when he was confronted by the accused. Ryan did not respond but continued walking. Then he saw his brother Tejpaul. After speaking for a few minutes, the two men looked up the street and saw Ramjohn and his
two brothers, ‘Joe Boy’ and ‘Baboo’ who all had implements in their hands. The Samaroo brothers went home and told another brother, Anthony Samaroo, what had transpired. The brothers left and went back to Levi Dam, where they were attacked; Ryan and Tejpaul were able to escape. The brother hurried home and told their mother what had transpired and they immediately returned to Levi Dam where Anthony Samaroo was later found lying on the ground in a pool of blood. He was taken to hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. The post mortem examination gave the cause of death as shock and haemorrhage due to multiple stab wounds. In May 2010, Ramjohn and Ryan Samaroo, were arrested for separate matters and ended up in the same lock up. Ryan Samaroo used the opportunity to inform the police that Ramjohn was the person who had murdered his brother. Among those testifying were Woman Police Inspector Donna Grant Fraser; Inspector Michael Newland who testified to arresting the accused, Detective Corporal Denesh Baichu and Sergeant Dexter Brandt and Government Pathologist Vivikananda Brijmohan. The dead man’s mother, Meena Persaud, also testified.
UG unions call on Labour Department to intervene in salary ‘row’ Citing delaying tactics on the part of the University of Guyana [UG] administration, the university’s workers’ unions have called for the intervention of the Ministry of Social Protection’s Department of Labour. In a joint statement issued yesterday, the unions – the University of Guyana Senior Staff Association [UGSSA] and the University of Guyana Workers Union [UGWU] said that they have called on the Labour Department’s intervention because of what is being described “a series of delaying tactics seemingly designed to force the staff into acceptance of the imposed three percent and four percent salary increase for 2018.” The unions headed by Dr. Jewel Thomas [UGSSA] and Mr. Bruce Haynes [UGWI] at a recent press conference rejected the salary increases the administration offered which translated to three percent for academic staff [UA] and four percent for support staff [UB] retroactive to January 1, 2018. At a meeting on Tuesday the University staff rejected the attempt by the University administration to delay a meeting with the unions until Tuesday December 18, 2018.
The offer to the unions to meet to discuss 2018 negotiations was made on Friday November, 30, 2018 but in response to a request for clarification, the Vice Chancellor, Professor Ivelaw Griffith, made it clear that the administration would have no time to meet with the unions before that date. The unions, moreover, found it especially worrying when they learnt that the administration had already indicated via a memo to staff that it intends to pay the unilaterally imposed increase before the university closes. The University is set to close on Friday, December 21, 2018 for the Christmas break. The unions revealed that on Tuesday, the University’s Registrar, Dr. Nigel Gravesande, who serves as Secretary to the University’s Council “finally circulated a proposed date of Thursday 20th December for the Council meeting to address the issue.” The matter, according to the unions, had been referred to him by the University’s Pro Chancellor, Major General (retired), Joseph Singh, since November 19, 2018. This means, the unions noted, that Council will not
have an opportunity to deliberate the matter until the day before the University closes. “The discussion would also take place at a point where most likely the increase would already have been paid out to staff. “It is also noteworthy that the time proposed for the Council’s meeting is 09:30 hrs,” the unions noted. They also brought to the fore that “it has proven difficult for many Council members in the past few months to attend morning meetings in view of their work commitments.” Moreover, the unions are questioning whether the administration is actually attempting to secure the full participation of all Council members. “The University administration has made it clear through its actions that it is attempting to force staff into accepting the imposed increase,” said the unions. They reiterated dissatisfaction with the moves by the administration to undermine its concerns. As such they’ve categorically stated, “The University’s staff reject this attempt, and call on the Department of Labour to intervene before the situation deteriorates further.”
Thursday December 06, 2018
Thursday December 06, 2018
Thursday December 06, 2018
River deaths, accident reduced amidst clampdown The Maritime Administration Department (MARAD) has embarked on several safety initiatives in 2018 to reduce accidents on the waterways of Guyana. Some of the initiatives taken involved training and certification exercises for passenger vessel operators in Regions One, Two, Seven and Eight, and enforcement activities along the riverain areas of the country. The enforcement activities were a collaborative effort between MARAD and the GDF Coast Guard. Additionally, operators were also given an opportunity to visit MARAD’s Safety Centres located in Bartica, Mabaruma, and Charity, to commence the process of certification so as to operate their vessels on the waterways. The total number of boat
operators receiving Harbour and River Competency Licenses so far, stemming from training in the hinterland areas is 65. “As a result of these initiatives, the Department has seen a reduction in river accidents and deaths so far in 2018, when compared to 2017. In 2018, there were four deaths from January to October, whereas in 2017, nine deaths were recorded during the same period,” MARAD disclosed. In the case of persons sustaining injuries as a result of river accidents, during the period, January to October 2018, only three were recorded, as compared to seven for 2017. The total number of river accidents recorded so far for this year is five, whereas in 2017, 18 was recorded for that year.
MARAD will be implementing new safety measures in the New Year in an effort to minimize accidents occurring on the waterways of Guyana.
No fuel for irrigation pumps - over 40,000 acres of farmland affected in Berbice Fuel that was supposed to be sent to operate the irrigation pumps are being diverted and sent to operate drainage pumps instead. This is according to rice farmer and President of the Rice Producers Association, Leeka Rambrich. He explained that over 40,000 acres of farmlands are under threat since the pumps located in Black Bush Polder are yet to receive fuel to kick start the
operations. Rambrich disclosed that farmers from Rose Hall, along the Corentyne, Number 52 Village and Black Bush Polder, are the ones feeling the effects of such a delay. “I spoke to the contractor who was supposed to carry fuel into Black Bush Polder and the man say Travis (responsible for coordinating the fuel) is diverting the fuel from the Black Bush pump to the drainage pump”, Rambrich
Kato Secondary School up and running- MP Bancroft The Kato Secondary School located in Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni) is ‘up and running’. It has a resident population of over 300 students, according to Government Member of Parliament (MP), Rajcoomarie Bancroft during her presentation at the National 2019 Budget Debate, yesterday. The Kato Secondary School caters for students in Kato and surrounding communities in Sub Region One. It was completed three years ago, under the stewardship of the former administration at a cost of almost $1 Billion, but was never commissioned since a number of structural defects had to be remedied by the APNU+AFC Administration before students and teachers could occupy the building. Bancroft told the National Assembly that in addition to spending more than $100 million on remedial works on the school, the Coalition government has invested large sums on the construction, rehabilitation and maintenance of several schools in the region. This year, a new Primary School was constructed at
Ms. Bancroft Itabac. The Regional Administration continues to provide transportation for the students of Sub Region One, who travel by air each term to attend the Mahdia Secondary School. Of the $2.1 Billion allocated to Region Eight for next year, $88 Million will be spent on the construction of Information and Communication technology laboratories at Kato and Paramatakoi Primary Schools while the Mahdia and Chenapou primary schools will be extended.
claimed. He stressed that farmers are currently without water and “cultivation is at its peak. This is very stressful on farmers.” According to him only two were being operated during last week at Mibicuri, BBP but the pumps have been down since Monday. “That’s a long time to have these pumps out of operation during this time”, he said. Kaieteur News under-
stands that the person responsible for fuel distribution to the pumps “is in connection with the REO, Kim Stephens”. While efforts were made to contact the Regional Chairman on the issue, he was unavailable but this publication was told that officials from the engineering department of the region were instructed to transport the fuel today on a trailer but they however opted to use a vehicle.
That vehicle subsequently while on its way with the fuel in Black Bush “got stuck on the muddy dams”. It was advised to use the trailer because of the conditions of the dams but the engineers thought it best to utilize the vehicle. It is unclear when the fuel will arrive to get the pumps up and running but the matter is expected to be r a i s e d a t t o d a y ’s R D C statutory meeting.
RPA’s head, Leeka Rambrich
Thursday December 06, 2018
Former head of police charged in connection with 2016 illegal arms shipment PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti CMC – The lawyers representing former director general of the Haitian National Police (PNH), Godson Orelus, is threatening to take legal action against an investigating judge probing the importation of illegal arms in 2016, after their client was slapped with several charges related to the seizure. The nine, including seven, who failed to answer subpoenas to appear before the investigating judge, are now facing charges ranging from transnational illicit trafficking in firearms and ammunition, smuggling, forgery and forgery, money laundering and criminal conspiracy. Justice Dieunel Lumeran, the investigating judge of the Court of First Instance (TPI) of Saint-Marc, had been probing the illegal arms that were seized at the Port of St. Marc in September 2016. The lawyers contend that their client had been asked to appear before the judge as a witness only to be charged later with the crimes. They said also that the examining magistrate had refused to decide on their re-
quest for denial of justice. The former West Departmental Director of Police, Vladimir Paraison, who had also been questioned by the judge, had also made a request for his removal on the ground of legitimate suspicion. The former minister of the interior, Reginald Delva, has become the latest high profile former Haitian official to be questioned in connection with the illegal shipment of arms from the United states in 2016. Last month, unidentified gunmen fired bullets at the residence of Justice
Lumérant,. Customs and police officials had in 2016 carried out a search of a truck loaded with used items from Miami where they discovered and seized a large quantity of weapons, ammunition and various military equipment. In 2016, two suspects, Klétex Laguerre and Nomie Saül Bata, were arrested after they were accused of complicity in the matter. In addition, the two men have been arrested in the United States and accused of illegally shipping weapons to Haiti. Three other people are being sought.
Thursday December 06, 2018
Olympics: Tokyo 2020 formally propose earlier marathon time TOKYO (Reuters) - Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games organizers have formally proposed moving the start time of the marathon races forward to avoid the worst of the Japanese capital’s scorching summer heat. The marathon events were initially scheduled to start at 7 a.m. local time but now Games organizers have asked the IAAF, athletics’ governing body, to approve moving the start time to either 5.30 a.m. or 6.00 a.m. local. The Tokyo 2020 Games will run from July 24 – Aug. 9. Temperatures in Tokyo reached a record 41.1 degrees Celsius (106 Fahrenheit) this year, with the July average reaching more than 30 degrees since 1998, according to the Japanese Meteorological
Agency. There were even calls to introduce daylight savings time for the Games but with those plans squashed, an earlier start time is likely to appease athletes and spectators alike worried about the heat. The times for the rugby and mountain bike events have also been changed after the IOC’s Coordination Commission took advice from a team of experts. “Based on the proposals of the IOC’s expert group, we are proceeding to recommended earlier starting times for the men’s and women’s marathons and the 20 kilometer race walk,” said Tokyo 2020 President Yoshiro Mori in Tokyo yesterday. “As it is necessary to receive approval of such
changes from the IAAF, we will work closely with them and aim to make a decision by the end of this year.” All the morning rugby sessions will now start at nine a.m., one and a half hours earlier than previously scheduled, with the cross-country cycling push back an hour into the early evening. “It will continue to be front of mind for us and the organizers and front of mind for the teams that are coming here,” added commission chair John Coates. “We will do everything possible to ensure they are not competing at risk.” Tokyo 2020 organizers are due to announce version three of the budget on December 21 and the swathe of heat counter-measures proposed,
Thursday December 06, 2018, ARIES (Mar. 21–Apr. 19) Bring things back into balance, Aries. You've probably been so focused on yourself that you've completely forgotten about others. TAURUS(Apr.20–May20) This is a good day to look at the big picture and discuss your ideas with others, Taurus. As you walk down the street, make sure you pay attention to what's going on around you. GEMINI (May 21–June 20) You will be in an excellent mood, Gemini, and find your positive attitude amplified as you come into contact with more and more people. The one thing to watch out for today is laziness. CANCER (June 21–July 22) Speak your mind clearly, Cancer. Other people aren't mind readers like you are. If you keep waiting for someone to figure out what you're thinking, it will be a long time before the truth comes out. LEO (July 23–Aug. 22) You can soar to great heights on a moment's notice today, Leo. There's a fastpaced, socially minded quality to the day that will encourage people to share more of themselves with others. VIRGO (Aug. 23–Sept. 22) Try to see the positive in people, Virgo. Relax and don't get so worked up over your internal drama. You're the one responsible for creating this turmoil. Find comfort in a creative project.
LIBRA (Sept. 23–Oct. 22) You should find that the adventurous side of you has the support of your emotions, Libra. These two parts of your spirit are working in harmony to help you stretch beyond your limits. SCORPIO (Oct. 23–Nov. 21) Dress in your very best today, Scorpio. Feel free to kick up your heels and take on the town. This is a great time to go out with friends, socialize, and have a fabulous time. SAGIT(Nov.22–Dec.21) ou will find that the more peaceful and understanding you are today, Sagittarius, the better off you will be in general. CAPRI (Dec. 22–Jan. 19) Make sure you leave things in better condition than you found them, Capricorn. This is a good time to tidy your personal space and the environment. This is also a great time to do some shopping for yourself. AQUARIUS(Jan.20–Feb.18) This is one of those days in which it's easier to be yourself, Aquarius. Don't feel like you need to change your personality to fit a situation. You naturally add an important dynamic to the group. PISCES (Feb. 19–Mar. 20) Communication is a key part of the day, Pisces. You will find that a great deal of information is available to you when you ask for it.
Running track is seen through a clock tower near the construction site of the New National Stadium, the main stadium of Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics, in Tokyo, Japan August 6, 2018. (REUTERS/Issei Kato) including increased shade for spectators and a heat-blocking surface to the road, will add to the costs involved. “There is a list of about 20 precautions they think we
ought to take and they are not going to be free,” said Coates. Despite this, Coates and the Tokyo 2020 organizers are confident that the operating budget will break even.
“There is still someway to go in terms of sponsorships, to balance the operating budget and there is still the ticket revenue to be achieved,” said Coates. “But I would be very confident that it would be a balanced budget, which in effect means the operating costs will not cost the taxpayers anything.” “The Olympic movement, the Games, will have provided all the revenues for the operating costs.” The costs for the Games’ venues, which are largely all running to schedule, will be absorbed by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government and are separate to the operating costs.
T&T's 3-star... From page 32 attended. I am satisfied that they learnt a lot and I hope that when I leave that's not the end of the process for them. I am also satisfied with the standard of Refereeing in Guyana,” Beckles added. The very experienced Evaluator feels that the standard of the Referees in Guyana is high because Guyana has more boxers who fight more often at this level which is good for the pugilists and also the Referees. “In the same way that time in the Ring gives the Boxers experience and confidence it does the same for Referees,” said Beckles Beckles said he hoped that those here could maintain their consistency and work with more computerised scoring instead of using paper. He informed that the Referee and Judges will not be evaluated on their status but on who performs the best. He assured them that once a name is put into the system the computer will automatically grade their performances which cannot be changed. This he said will take favouritism out of the equation since this is possible if someone is doing that manually. (Sean Devers)
Thursday December 06, 2018
NBA roundup: Jazz sink 20 treys, rout Spurs Donovan Mitchell scored 20 points, and the Utah Jazz made a franchise record 20 3pointers in a 139-105 victory over the visiting San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday night. Rudy Gobert had 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Kyle Korver added 15 points off the bench in his first home game since Utah reacquired the veteran guard in a trade. The Jazz won for the third time in four games since dealing for Korver. Jakob Poeltl contributed a career-best 20 points and seven rebounds off the bench for San Antonio, which lost for the third time in four games. DeMar DeRozan scored 16 points and dished out seven assists, and LaMarcus Aldridge added 16 points. The Jazz went 10 of 17 from long distance over the first two quarters and opened up a 63-47 lead by halftime. Overall, Utah hit 20 of 33 3point attempts. Kings 122, Suns 105 Buddy Hield had a dunk and a pair of 3-pointers in a game-opening 13-2 flurry, and
Sacramento went on to lead by as many as 35 points en route to a blowout win at Phoenix. The Kings held the Suns to one field goal in the first 5 1/2 minutes and a total of nine points in the first quarter, taking a 36-9 lead after one period. Hield finished with 20 points in 18 minutes to lead seven players in double figures for the Kings, who were opening a four-game trip. Rookie De’Anthony Melton recorded a seasonbest 21 points for the Suns, who played without Devin Booker (strained hamstring) and T.J. Warren (sprained ankle). Mavericks 111, Trail Blazers 102 Rookie Luka Doncic scored 21 points and grabbed nine rebounds as Dallas polished off visiting Portland. Wesley Matthews added 17 points and DeAndre Jordan contributed 12 points and 17 boards for the Mavericks, who have won eight in a row at home and nine of 11 games overall. Damian Lillard collected
Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) dribbles the ball as San Antonio Spurs guard DeMar DeRozan (10) defends during the first half at Vivint Smart Home Arena. (Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports) 33 points, eight rebounds and eight assists for the Trail Blazers, who have lost three in a row and six of their past seven games. CJ McCollum scored 18 points, and Al-Farouq Aminu chipped in 12 points
Serena confirmed for Australian Open return
Serena Williams of the USA hits to Magda Linette of Poland in a first round match of the 2018 U.S. Open tennis tournament. (Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports) MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Serena Williams will resume her quest for a record-equaling 24th grand slam title at the Australian Open in January after organizers yesterday confirmed her entry to the tournament she won for a seventh time on her last appearance in 2017.The 37-year-old American achieved her victory over sister Venus in the final two years ago while eight weeks pregnant with her daughter Alexis Olympia, who was born the following September. Williams reached the Wimbledon and U.S. Open finals after her return last year but lost both, leaving her one short of Australian Margaret Court’s tally of grand slam singles titles. Her final match last season was the final at Flushing Meadow, where her loss to Naomi Osaka was overshadowed by her row with
umpire Carlos Ramos. Williams is scheduled to play an exhibition tournament in Abu Dhabi in the final week of the year before heading to Australia to warm-up for her assault on the Melbourne Park title at the Hopman Cup in Perth.Also among the 102 women and 101 men to have confirmed they will compete in the first grand slam of 2019 is five-times runner up Andy Murray, who missed three of the four majors last year because of a hip injury.The 31-year-old Scot has entered the tournament with his protected ranking of number two after sliding down to 259th in the world in the wake of surgery on his injured joint.Reigning champion Roger Federer will be gunning for a record seventh men’s single crown from Jan. 14-27, while Caroline Wozniacki will embark on her maiden grand slam title defense at Melbourne Park.
and 13 rebounds for Portland. Magic 105, Heat 90 Orlando’s defense shut down Miami in the third quarter, and the Magic overcame poor first-half shooting to earn a road win.
The Magic turned the tables on the Heat in the third quarter, outscoring the Heat 30-12. It was Miami’s lowest point total in a quarter this season, and Orlando took a 76-62 lead after three quarters.
Orlando’s Aaron Gordon scored 16 of his 20 points in the critical third quarter. Nikola Vucevic had 19 points and 10 rebounds, and Terrence Ross added 19 points off the bench for the Magic. Justise Winslow led the Heat with 14 points. Pacers 96, Bulls 90 Darren Collison scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds, and Indiana held on for a win over visiting Chicago. Myles Turner added 18 points and 11 rebounds to go along with five blocked shots for the Pacers. Bojan Bogdanovic (14 points) and Tyreke Evans (10) also scored in double digits for Indiana, which snapped a two-game losing streak. Chicago lost its first game since dismissing head coach Fred Hoiberg and replacing him with Jim Boylen on Monday. The Bulls have lost seven in a row and 11 of 12. Lauri Markkanen led the Bulls with 21 points and 10 rebounds in his second game since returning from a sprained elbow. (Field Level Media)
“Gov’t did not destroy Inter-Guiana Games” - Min. Norton DPI, Guyana - The accusation by the Opposition that the Coalition Government destroyed the Inter-Guiana games was yesterday dismissed as “farthest from the truth” by Minister of Social Cohesion, with responsibility for Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr. George Norton. The minister, speaking on the sidelines of the 2019 National Budget Debate, was responding to Opposition Member of Parliament and former Director of Sport under the PPP administration, Need Kumar. “This administration, in no way or form, would try to destroy something we enjoy, something the athletes look forward to. We had good success at past games and we want it to continue,” the minister stated. Dr. Norton said during Kumar ’s tenure as Sport Director, he demonstrated little interest in the sector, citing his absence during the 2013 Inter-Guiana Games. F u r t h e r, Minister Norton made reference to the bad state of the National Aquatic Centre located at Lilliendaal and the Leonora Track and Field, both constructed under the PPP government. According to the minister, there are visible cracks at the bottom of the pool at the National Aquatic Centre
- Aquatic Centre, Leonora Track in bad state
Minister of Social Cohesion, with responsibility for Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr. George Norton. (DPI) while the synthetic material is already peeling at the Leonora track. This, he estimates, has just a few more years before it is totally destroyed. “We do hope, because we are in the process of
constructing two other tracks, in Region Ten, Linden and Region Six, New Amsterdam, that they are a much higher quality than that at Leonora.” (Stacy Carmichael)
Thursday December 06, 2018
Azhar and Shafiq hit tons as Pakistan take control of decider (Reuters) - Centuries by Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq helped Pakistan overhaul New Zealand’s total of 274 but a lower-order collapse saw their lead restricted to 74 on day three of the third and final test in Abu Dhabi yesterday. Sarfraz Ahmed’s side nevertheless regained control of the match by picking up two quick New Zealand wickets to leave them in trouble at 26-2 in 14 overs at close of play. Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson, who scored a fighting 89 in the first innings, was batting on 14 with nightwatchman William Somerville for company on one with the visitors trailing by 48. Pakistan, who resumed on their overnight score of 1393, rode on Azhar’s 134 and Shafiq’s 104 to get into a commanding position in the series decider at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium. The pair’s 201-run partnership for the fourth wicket ended when Azhar became off-spinner Somerville’s first test victim.The 33-year-old batsman mistimed a sweep to offer Ajaz Patel a catch at short fine leg and leave Pakistan at 286-4. Shafiq perished shortly afterwards after failing to read left-armer Patel’s arm ball and was adjudged leg before with a review confirming the dismissal.His wicket triggered a Pakistan collapse as they
Debutant William Somerville sparked a fightback late in the day, picking up four wickets. (AFP)
Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq had a highly profitable union at the crease. (AFP) went from 304-5 to 348 all out with Somerville ripping up the tail after tea to finish with figures of 4-75.New Zealand could not capitalise as opener Jeet Raval was dismissed for a duck by left-arm paceman Shaheen Shah Afridi before leg-spinner Yasir Shah sent back Tom Latham for 10. Shah, who has four wickets in the match, needs one more to replace Australian
Clarrie Grimmett as the fastest man to claim 200 test victims. Leg-spinner Grimmett reached the 200 mark in his 36th test back in 1936. Shah is on 199 in just his 33rd test match. New Zealand won the opening test in Abu Dhabi by four runs before Pakistan squared the three-match series with victory in the second test in Dubai by an in-
nings and 16 runs. Stumps: New Zealand 26 for 2 (Williamson
14*Somerville 1*, Yasir 1-5) and 274 (Williamson 89, Watling 77*, Bilal 5-65) trail
Pakistan348 all out (Azhar 134, Shafiq 104, Somerville 4-75) by 74 runs.
Ferrari would have won with Hamilton driving, claims ex Scuderia boss
Guinness ‘Greatest of the Streets’ Tournament
Two-day competition planned for Dec 14 & 21
Cognizant of the teams and fans disappointment that the Guinness ‘Greatest of the Streets’ Competition has been pushed backed to January 18, 2019, Organisers of the event has scheduled a two-day tournament which will be staged on December 14 and 21, at the National Cultural Centre Tarmac. This was confirmed by Brand Manager Lee Baptiste, who spoke with Three Peat Promotions recently. According to Baptiste, the decision to push back the tournament to January was made following a review of this year’s competitions.
Baptiste said they wanted to make the tournament more compact meaning that instead of the stop and start format where a Zone is completed and then fans and teams have to wait a few months they are now going to run the Zones every month so as to have continuity until the National Playoffs. However, Baptiste said they’ve considered the understandable disappointment of the teams and fans and have decided to stage a two-day competition later this month in appreciation of the effort usually shown by teams and fans. More details will be forthcoming shortly.
Bartica FA to hold EGM on December 17 next; New executive to be elected
embers of the Bartica Football As sociation (BFA) will later this month elect a new executive to chart the way forward for the sport when it brings off an Extraordinary General Meeting as mandated by the Guyana Football Federation (GFF). The association is currently being administered by an Interim Management Committee (IMC) headed by Michael Dos Santos. The BFA recently submitted a number of required
documents to the GFF to prove that they are now in a position to conduct elections which has been set for Monday December 17, in the Board Room of the Regional Democratic council from 19:00hrs. The agenda is as follows: 1. Call to order, 2. Prayer, 3. Roll Call, 4. Election of Members of the Executive Committee, 5. Adjournment. Only Members are allowed to submit their respective List of Candidates for the proposed positions to the General Secretary of the GFF.
Former Ferrari president Luca Di Montezemolo believes the Formula One title would have been theirs had Lewis Hamilton been driving. Omnisport - Lewis Hamilton would have delivered the 2018 Formula One title to Ferrari had he been driving for them, according to exScuderia president Luca Di Montezemolo. The Mercedes driver won his fifth world crown and fourth in the past five years with another dominant campaign, finishing 88 points clear of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel. Vettel’s year was marred by a number of costly mistakes as he earned only five race victories to Hamilton’s 11, and Di Montezemolo believes the latter would have made better use of the same car. “This year Hamilton made the difference in his best season since his debut,” Di Montezemolo told Rai radio. “He has had moments of weakness and crisis, but this year with Ferrari he would have won.
“I say that not to belittle Vettel, who has every opportunity to rebuild with a competitive car.”He added: “This Ferrari is a very different Ferrari to the one I left in October 2014, in terms of men and mentality. Ferrari did a good car this year, which in some situations was even better than Mercedes. But the final part was missing. “Vettel made some decisive mistakes, but for the world championship you have to do everything to keep him up. He is a driver of the highest order and always close to the team. “In frustration he must be supported, even more so with the arrival of a very strong boy [Charles Leclerc] with a great future. “[Michael] Schumacher also made mistakes in the first days, but it is always important to speak clearly in the locker room and support the team in public.”
Thursday December 06, 2018
Hamilton Green 9-a-side Inter-Ward/ Village KO Cup
Letter to the Sports Editor
Exhibition matches causing Happy K&S are back promoting futsal but a buzz -Final set for Sunday at Den Amstel why is CASH being denied as host venue
As we approach the final day of action in this year’s Hamilton Green 9-a-side InterWard/ Village KO Cup the three exhibition matches planned are receiving much talk from fans. The winner take all matches will see the winner in the respective encounters collect $25,000 each and trophies and tournament coordinator Lennox Arthur said the scheduled games has been receiving quite a surprising buzz since many feel they are grudge matches and teams believe they have all to play for come Sunday when the tournament is set to conclude at the Den Amstel Community Centre ground. In the fixtures: host Den Amstel tackle Soesdyke for cash and trophy sponsored by MACORP. In the next encounter, Goed Fortuin square off with Timehri and this will be for cash and trophy compliments of Sterling Products Ltd, while the other engagement pits Pouderoyen against Lilliendaal for cash and trophy sponsored by Muneshwar Ltd. Meanwhile, play in the competition has reached the quarter-finals stage with the winners advancing to the semi-finals and subsequent final In the fixtures: Sophia is
set to take on Newtown Kitty, while Central McKenzie go up against Mahaica. In the other two quarterfinals, Charlestown square off against Mahaicony, while Uitvlugt and Crane face each other for a place in the last four. The Ministry of Citizenship has sponsored the first place of $400,000 and the winning trophy, while John Fernandes Ltd has done likewise for the losing finalist and it carries a prize of $200,000 and a trophy. The Highest Goalscorer and Most Valuable Player will
collect gifts compliments of China Trading and A.H. & L Kissoon. They will also receive trophies donated by Javon Dazzell. Among the other sponsors on board are: Courtney Benn Construction Services, Techno Mills, IPA, Alfro Alphonso, Sattaur Gafoor, Ansa McAl, Top Brandz Distributors, MACORP, Starr Computers, Cummings Electrical, Ready Mix, B.K International, New Thriving, ENetworks, NaMilCo, Sleep In, Comfort Sleep and E.C Vieira Investments.
UDFA names 10 clubs for year ending football championship The Upper Demerara Football Association has named the ten clubs which will participate in its annual year end football championship which kicks off on Sunday. The clubs were determined at the last General Council Meeting held last Saturday at the Linden Enterprise Network building and include the nine clubs which participated in the just concluded GTT League. They are namely the GT Beer defending champions Botafago, recently declared Senior League champions Christianburg Eagles United, Net Rockers, Amelia’s Ward Panthers, Winners Connection, Silver Shattas, Topp XX, Blueberry Hill, Hi Stars and they will be joined by newly formed Capital FC. The championship will be played in a round robin format with two groups of the named clubs where the final four will emerge to play in the semifinals and the final.
Dear Mr. Editor, I was so delighted when I heard that the Kashif and Shanghai Organisation will be back to help organize the lovely game of Football during the holiday season, but my spirits and hope came crashing down when I heard that the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall was not being used to play the International Futsal Tournament involving teams from Brazil (World power in football), Suriname (Guyana’s Greatest Football Rival), Trinidad & Tobago (One of the Caribbean Top Team), Guyana the host, and selection teams from West Demerara, East Coast, Georgetown and Linden. Mr. Editor my son has been selected to represent Guyana in this International Futsal Tournament and we (my family) are all excited to attend these games, but if not the Sports Hall, then where. Not at the National Park where I see it is being advertised and worst yet The National Gymnasium. That venue is an accident waiting to happen. If is not gunshot, it is excessive smoking, or the humidity is ridiculous coupled with poor ventilation, there is limited exit and an unsafe playing surface for International Futsal with a wall where players risk damage to their limbs if they collide with same. The flimsy excuse that is being pedaled for the refusal
of CASH by the Director of Sports is that the ball will damage the clock and a fan was broken a few years ago. Mr. Editor, The other middle class people which play hockey with a ball that can cause immense injury and damage is allowed to play there unhindered. Basketball plays there, volleyball plays there, table tennis plays there, boxing uses there, badminton and the list goes on. But why is football being debarred, the previous Director of Sports hated football (I am not saying this present Director hate football) and he banned Futsal from playing there. Is it because it is considered a grass root sports played by “ghetto youths” is the cause for it being treated so? Football is the most passionate sport in the world, when there is World Cup Football the world slows down and sometimes come to a standstill, Ronald i n o p l a y e d F u t s a l a l s o N e y m a r, Ronaldo, Messi, Rivaldo just to name a few and they played on proper surfaces hence the tremendous skill they inherited. If the games have to be played at the National Park the spectators, officials and players will have to face the elements of the weather with no protection from the rain. Toilet facilities will be limited and if any at all it will be atrocious to say the least.
The turf which is tar and stone is not suited for Futsal, yes Futsal is played on a hard surface but not international Futsal, in every other Country which plays Futsal, players do so on similar types of venues and most times better facilities than CASH. There are measures that can be implemented to safeguard the equipment that Mr. Jones is alluding to that may be damaged. When his organisation hosted the Inter Guiana Games a few years ago I wonder if all those things were considered. Mr. Director of Sport, please let your patriotism be evident and don’t follow the footstep of your predecessor and operate like if CASH is your property, four (4) days of fun filled, capacity filled and entertaining football will be showcased at CASH if you approve the use of same. All Sports should be given the opportunity to have the use of CASH especially if international teams are involved. Remember it is Guyana’s image which will be tarnished if substandard venues are used and it will hamper the tourism industry. Thank you in advance Mr. Director for your understanding we appreciate your change of heart. Yours faithfully, Charles Campbell Parent of an aspiring National Footballer.
Mangra, Mohamed capture individual Men’ and ... From page 33 each securing 1 point. However, the following 2 ends wound up with Mangra coming out on top while Madray took the silver. Meanwhile, Sean Duncan and Ryan McKinnon battled for the bronze. After winning the first three ends thereby securing full points, McKinnon upset Duncan to take the bronze medal.As soon as the Individual rounds ended, the Team rounds began. In much the same as the ranking rounds, excitement between the teams was high as they shot their rounds hoping to come out as number 1. The top team gold medalists were Umasankar Madray & Nicholas Hing, while team silver medalists were Sean Duncan & Vidushi PersaudMcKinnon and team bronze medalists were Jeewanram Persaud & Talitha Kissoon. All medals were sponsored by the National Sports Commission and presented by Director of Sport, Mr. Chris-
topher Jones to each archer. In his Closing Remarks, Jones expressed his commitment to seeing archery’s development in the schools and the regions, while working along with Archery Guyana.
Archery Guyana’s next and final archery competition to close the year will be the 2018 Outdoor Recurve Championships on Sunday, 16th December at the Carifesta Sports Complex Ground.
Thursday December 06, 2018
Caribbean Boxing Championships
GFF STAG Super 16 Draw Held
No Guyanese hospitality inside the ring – Poole warns
Mouth Watering Shindigs anticipated from December 14
he Guyana B o x i n g Association (GBA) has announced intent to regain the Caribbean Boxing Championships’ (CBC) overall title after failing to defend their crown last year in St. Lucia where they only had four fighters; through their Technical Director (TD), Terrence Poole, during the event’s first press conference yesterday at Tower Suites. T h e f o u r- d a y championships which punches off tonight at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall (CASH) is expected to see a total of 76 fighters from 12 nations going head to head in the event which is being dubbed as ‘Caribbean International Nuff Cuff’ and despite the strong and flooded field, Poole is still positive. “We know it will be a stiff competition with the likes of T&T (Trinidad & Tobago), Guadeloupe and others but we are confident, so enjoy the nice treatment in the hotel but it will be a different story in the ring,” the TD genially bantered with his regional counterparts.
Present at the presser were some representatives from the competing countries, in addition to GBA executives and the Director of the National Sports Commission (NSC), Chris Jones. Julian Jackson Jr., coach of the USVI, shared that he was pleased with the welcoming nature of the Guyanese people, “This is my first time in Guyana and it’s been a pleasure so far and I want to thank everyone who put in effort to make this tournament a reality.” He further posited that this tournament is part of a bigger picture in developing boxing in the Caribbean, “After being hit by the storms, we are still putting ourselves back together. We are not only here for ourselves but for all of us (the Caribbean) as we move to help develop the sport in the region.”Chris Jones comended the GBA for what he believed to be stellar work being done with the development of Boxing in Guyana while noting that the Executive Committee face a huge task of managing the association while keeping all the different clubs active.
The Candy Boss, GT Beer and Antics Promotion Football Competition
Paradise Invaders, Rosignol United score contrasting wins
aradise Invaders Football Club and Rosignol United Football Club were the two teams going forward in contrasting style when play in the Candy Boss, GT Beer and Antics Promotion Football Competition continued with two more matches on Sunday at the All Saints Scot Church Ground. Paradise Invaders of West Berbice swamped fellow We s t B e r b i c e t e a m Hopetown United 4-0. Olvis Mitchell in the 12th minute and Jawell Fraser in the 23rd minute scored early for Paradise to give the team a 2-0 at half time advantage. When play resumed Carlos Paul scored twice in the 48th and 55th minutes to give Paradise the 4-0 rout. Earlier, Rosignol United gained a walk over from
Mahaica Determinators after the latter failed to show up for their encounter. The competition is scheduled to continue tomorrow with a double header: Cougars U-20 will take on Number 5 while Georgetown Police will come up against Hopetown A. Matches are also expected to continue on Sunday with Monedderlust facing Soccer City and Golden Star battling Rosignol United. The final is set for January 5, 2019 at the same venue. The winning team is set to take home $600,000 with the second place collecting $300,000 and third $200,000. Additionally, $50,000 each will go to the MVP, best goalkeeper and the person scoring the most goals. (Samuel Whyte)
Jones shared that in addition to $300,000, the NSC has made available the CASH to be utilised by GBA for this tournament, free of cost. Head of the GBA, Steve Ninvalle, revealed that the tournament has cost the association upwards of $8.5 million and expressed gratitude to the American Boxing Confederation (AMBC) President, Osvaldo Bisbal, who played a critical role in the tournament being held in Guyana a reality. All systems are in place for the smooth running of the event which was first held in Guyana back in 2015 and tickets to the venue each night will cost $500, ringside $1000. Fans are encouraged to come out and support the fighters, especially the home team over the nights at the Sports Hall. The full list of sponsors read: AMBC, Guyana Olympic Association (GOA), DDL, National Sports Commission (NSC), Ministry of Social Cohesion: Department of Culture Youth and Sports, Courts, Khalsan PR Inc, Trustee’s Pawn Shop, Bounty Farm, Toucan Industries, Eton Cordis, Maggie’s, Briso Promotions and Ministry of Indigenous People’s Affairs.
ith the final sixteen teams that will contest this year’s Guyana Football Federation, Stag sponsored Super 16 Championship now known following yesterday’s draw, fans, supporters and lovers of the sport can now look forward to some exhilarating showdowns and upsets.Led by GFF Competitions Coordinator and assisted by some of the Captains of the contesting clubs, yesterday’s event held at the federation headquarters, Section ‘K’ Campbellville saw the ante upped in terms of how these events take place with the
teams being placed into four categories of four each. Category 1 consisted of the top four Elite League teams following the conclusion of season three: Fruta Conquerors, Guyana Defence Force, Den Amstel a n d We s t e r n T i g e r s . Category 2 was made up of Victoria Kings, Buxton United, Milerock and Ann’s G r o v e U n i t e d . Category 3 consisted Regional Member Association champions: Soesdyke Falcons (EBFA), Eagles FC (WDFA), Rivers View (Bartica FA) and Buxton Stars (East Demerara FA). Category 4 constituted
Regional Members Association Selections and two Georgetown Football Association teams: EssequiboCoast/Pomeroon, Berbice, Guyana Police Force and Santos. Alves in remarks prior to the conduct of the draw said that the aim was to ensure that there was a transparent and fair process of match ups for t h e c o n t e s t i n g teams.”Eliminating the possibility of any contentions at least where the draw of the fixtures are concerned.” Fixtures and the rules of engagement are expected to be out during the course of this week.
Thursday December 06, 2018
T&T's 3-star Boxing Referee concludes workshop CBC scheduled to begin at CASH this Evening Trinidadian James Beckles, a 3-star referee (the highest level) of the international boxing association AIBA, yesterday concluded a fiveday workshop on Refereeing and Judging at the Andrew 'Six Head' Boxing Gym in Albouystown were the practical sessions were held. The aim of the Workshop, which was also held at the National Resource Centre on Wo o l f o r d Av e w e r e theoretical sessions where conducted, is to help improve the standard of referees and judges locally and also to bring them up to speed with several changes made to the rules of the sport internationally. Yesterday's sessions also included one of the seven overseas Referees/Judges set to officiate at the four-
Hall (CASH) scheduled to commence at 16:00hrs this afternoon. The 57-year-old Beckles is the Caribbean's highest AIBA-ranked boxing referee and his presence in Guyana is synonymous with international competitions here. Beckles, officiated inside the Ring in over 300 International Boxing matches including the Beijing Olympics and five World Championships and last visited Guyana in August for the Caribbean Schoolboys and Juniors tournament and is now back for the CBC scheduled for this Evenin.“There has been refereeing and judging concerns during a few tournaments in the past and in addressing this aspect of
National Boxing Coach Terrence Pool was among those at Six Head Gym yesterday. satisfied with the results of fights,” Beckles explained.His role at the CBC is as an Evaluator of the
looking for during the Championships and focused yesterday on how Judges and referees could lose
Beckles shadow boxes with a participant to strengthen a point from the projector screen during his workshop yesterday.
night 2018 Caribbean Boxing Championship (CBC) at National Sports
the sport will help ensure minimal errors and boxers and fans will be more
Referees and Judges and the former T&T Policeman outlined what he would be
points and the three main things to look at during a bout.
“Scoring bouts seem to be the most problematic issue for the spectators and even Coaches since most times they seem dissatisfied with decisions and at times can be hostile towards the Referees when they make decisions they don't like,” Beckles said.Beckles said that good Referees looks at the eyes, knees and arms of boxers since this could indicate the physical condition of the Boxers while he stressed Judges need to look (1) the number of quality blows to the targets, (2) dominance of a bout tactically and technically and competitiveness. In the past, points were deducted for infringements from the Pugilists in each round but now the deductions are from the overall points at the end of the fight while only the Ring Doctor could override the Referees' decision to stop a fight. Beckles, who been a Referee for 21 years, also spoke about stoppage during a
bout, Interference with the flow of the fight and counting too early in his informative interactive season as he addressed questions from the participants and shared his experiences when he visited different places for Boxing including those in India where was he was a Referee i n t h e F e m a l e Wo r l d Championships.Beckles, whose ambition is to be Referee and Judges' Supervisor, informed that while Judges could wear 'glasses', Referees are not allowed to do so although they could wear contact lens. Beckles, who was scheduled to attend a technical meeting last even at the Tower Hotel, said that while the turnout for the workshop could have been better he was aware that work commitments were among the reasons for this not happening. “I was pleased that some new Referees (Continued
on page 29)
Thursday December 06, 2018
GFF/ExxonMobil International Futsal Festival Ansa McAl through its Stag Beer brand is the latest corporate partner to get on board with the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) for this month’s (December 27-30) GFF/ExxonMobil International Futsal Festival set for the National Gymnasium, Mandela Avenue.The company’s Brand Representative, Ms. Gabriell Lopes was on hand at the GFF Headquarters, Section ‘K’ Campbellville yesterday afternoon to hand over the cheque of an undisclosed sum to federation President, Wayne Forde in the presence of o rg a n i s e r, K a s h i f a n d S h a n g h a i a n d representatives of the four Association All Star teams. Forde expressed gratitude to Ms. Lopes and her company for being an enduring partner of the GFF, noting that the federation is aiming to build on the current partnership in 2019. Eight teams would be battling for attractive cash prizes on offer, the four association All Star teams
Ansa McAl’s Stag Beer on board; Provisional Squads announced
along with a Guyana National team, Trinidad and To b a g o , B r a z i l a n d Suriname. Representing Georgetown at yesterday’s activity was Frank Parris; East Demerara’s rep was Insford Charles, Jermain Samuels (Linden) and O’Neil Heywood (West Demerara). Following are the Provisional Lists of players for the respective All Star Teams:Linden All Stars – John Waldron, Deon Charter, Donovan Francis, Colwyn Drakes, Kennard Simon, Rudy Halley, Kellon Major, Shane Luke, Andre Myers, Deshawn Joseph, Joel McKinnon, Jermaine Samuels, Damien Williams, Rawle Gittens, Darius Frank, Clifton Halley, Clive Nobrega, Emanuel Atkins, Kevin Beaton and Tyric McAllister. Felix Inniss (Coach), Shariff Major ( M a n a g e r ) . Georgetown All Stars – Gregory Richardson, Jermain Junor, Eusi Phillips, Sheldon Shepherd, Jamal Pedro, Randolph Wagner,
Ansa McAl Brand Representative Gabriell Lopes (center) pictured with GFF President Wayne Forde (3rd right), Co-Director of the Kashif & Shanghai Organisation Aubrey Major (3rd left) and Reps. of the All Stars Teams. Deon Alfred, Daniel Wilson, Kelsey Benjamin, Pernel Schultz, Solomon Austin, Lennox Cort, Roy Cossou, Dwayne McLennan, Benjamin Opara, Okeney Fraser, Eon Alleyne, Andy Duke, Leon Yaw, Colin Nelson, Darren Benjamin, Cortez Kellman, Wickham Sancho, Omar Jones (GK), Akel Clarke (GK). Sham
Porter (Coach), Calvin Allen (Coach).East Coast All Stars – Dellon Aright, Jermain Castillo, Kevon A s s a y, L e s C h a r l e s Critchlow, Phillip Williams, Kevon Garnette, Akeem Curry, Dwain Jacobs, Keon Norville, Quason Mc Lean, Orson Washington, Shemar Beckles, Kobe Durant, Clive Andries, Okeme Edwards,
Dwight Peters, Quincy Holder, Delroy Deane, Samuel Critchlow, Mark Cromwell. West Demerara All Stars - Marvin Josiah, Stephan Jupiter, Kayode King, Dexroy Adams, Travis Bess, Kacy John, Seon Hope, Derville Stewart, Delon Lanferman, Gedeon Payne, Kester Jacobs, Jamal Harvey, Chris Macey,
Jermaine Cumberbatch, Ashley Harding, Sherwin Bernard, Amaniki Buntin, Dwayne St. Kitts, Emanuel Thomas, 20. Trayon Bobb, Deon Kennedy, Adami Hoyte.Meanwhile, trials for the West Demerara squad will commence on Sunday morning from 07:00hrs at Pouderoyen Tarmac, West Bank Demerara.
Mangra, Mohamed capture individual Men’ and Women’s gold in Archery Indoor Recurve Finals T h e N a t i o n a l Gymnasium came alive on Sunday 2nd December when Archery Guyana’s Indoor Recurve Championship Finals were run off. The action began at 12:30pm after brief remarks and introduction of officials by Secretary-General Mrs. Vidushi Persaud-McKinnon, Director of Shooting Mr. Umasankar Madray and National Sports Commission Director of Sport Mr. Christopher Jones who declared the competition open. Individual Match Play commenced with Women’s Semi-Finals and QuarterFinals whereby Competitors were required to shoot 4 rounds of 3 arrows each with the aim of winning the round (2points) and trying to reach 6 points to qualify for the Finals. This was hotly contested by the ladies as nerves seemed to play a part going to 5 ends but the gold was secured by Narda Mohamed, giving Shereeda Yusuf the Silver. In the Match-Play between Samira D u n c a n a n d Vi d u s h i Persaud McKinnon the first end was won by Duncan
Director of Sport Mr. Christopher Jones, President of Archery Guyana, Mr. Mohamed Khan, (kneeling left) at 2018 Indoor Archery Finals at the National Gymnasium. with a score of 18 vs. 7 but Persaud-McKinnon won the 2nd end with her score of 16 vs. 5. Thereafter, Duncan won the other ends thereby securing the Bronze Medal. In the Individual Cadet Women’s division Talitha
Kissoon and Jessica Callender went head to head with Kissoon winning gold and Callender winning silver.Next were the Men’s Individual Match Play; Umasankar Madray, Anand Mangra, Sean Duncan, Ryan
McKinnon, Latchman Singh, Mohamed Khan, Jeewanram Persaud and Nicholas Hing battled in the Individual Men’s division. The same 4 rounds were shot for the Semis & finals as competition heated up.
Persaud was knocked out by Madray, while Duncan knocked out Singh, Mangra knocked out Khan and McKinnon knocked out Hing to gain top spots in the medal matches.Competition was stiff between Mangra
and Madray for the Gold with both men determined to win. The first end was a win by Mangra with a score of 21 vs. 17. The shooters both tied in the 2nd end with a score of 19 thereby (Continued on page 32 )
rt o p S Caribbean Boxing Championships
No Guyanese hospitality inside the ring – Poole warns P.33
Steve Ninvalle (seated center) being flanked by Chris Jones (left) and Stuart O’ Connor (right); coach of Cayman Islands in the company of GBA execs, fighters and country reps all pose for a photo yesterday at Tower Suites.
Mouth Watering Shindigs anticipated from December 14
GFF STAG Super 16 Draw Held P.33
GFF’s Ian Alves, some Team Captains and other players following yesterday’s Draw at the GFF.
T&T's 3-star Boxing Referee concludes workshop CBC scheduled to begin at CASH this Evening P.34 GFF/ExxonMobil International P.35 Futsal Festival
Ansa McAl’s Stag Beer on board; Provisional Squads announced
Printed and published by National Media & Publishing Company Ltd., 24 Saffon Street, Charlestown, Georgetown. Tel: 225-8458, 225-8465, 225-8491 or Fax: 225-8473/226-8210.