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Limacol CPL provided P US$105.6 million boost to region in 2013


Nationwide coverage from the best news team in Guyana Issue No. 2055


Thursday, February 27, 2014

Passage of AML bill seems uncertain

See stories on pages 3&7

– Ramotar says govt ready to compromise


$60 vat included


300,000 P2 tonnes of rice expected in first harvest

PSC gives last warning on antimoney laundering P12 bill

Canadian intercepted with cocaine in achar P17 The Local Government Ministry on Wednesday commissioned an annexe at the Woodley Park Primary School in Region Five to cater for the delivery of secondary education for more than 150 students, including those of the Woodley Park and Rosignol Primary Top. In this GINA photo, Local Government and Regional Development Minister Norman Whittaker assists students of the Woodley Park Secondary School to commission the new building

Woman found murdered in cemetery See story on page 17

Much work to be done before Rodney CoI begins – chairman See story on page 7

Young biker killed in Linden accident P17

2 news

thursday, february 27, 2014|

300,000 tonnes of rice expected in first harvest

GRDB General Manager Jagnarine Singh



uyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) General Manager Jagnarine Singh said some 300,000 tonnes of rice is expected to be produced in the first crop of this year. Singh, speaking with Guyana Times in a recent interview, noted that over the years, the rice production in Guyana has continued to grow exponential-

ly, due to the hard work of farmers over the years. The general manager said this year more land is being put under cultivation, pointing out that Guyana is set for another record-breaking year of production. Last year, the industry produced some 400,000 tonnes of rice, exporting to varying importers around the world. Singh said production this year is expected to top 600,000 tonnes, 50,000 tonnes more than that what was previously expected. The target for the first crop is also 100,000 tonnes more than production achieved last year. The GRDB general manager said he is optimistic that the industry will achieve its target, despite some hiccups earlier in the year. Last month, Airy Hall rice farmers were affected by severe flooding following a massive breach in the water conservancy in their village. The breach had resulted in some 150 acres of rice cultivation being de-

These include African nations, England, Columbia and Caribbean territories such as Haiti, Belize and Jamaica.

RPA General Secretary Dharamkumar Seeraj

stroyed due to flooding. The farmers were also hit by a pest infestation, when some strange “green looking” worms invaded their fields. The “heart worm” pest, as it is being called, is stunting rice fields, which were replanted subsequent to the flooding in January. This problem is being addressed. Singh said there are talks with other countries to buy rice from Guyana.

Optimistic He said despite the unrest in Venezuela, he is optimistic that the GuyanaVenezuela rice trade would not be affected. The GRDB general manager said given the increase in rice production, some amount of decrease in prices is expected on the local and international markets, citing the demand and supply theory. Regarding the operations of rice mills, Singh told Guyana Times that so far only 40 plus mills have been licensed so far by the GRDB to operate. Last year, the GRDB registered some 72 mills. As part of the licensing system, mills are required to go through rigorous inspecting by both the rice board and the Guyana National Bureau of Standards. Meanwhile, Rice Producers Association

Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) General Manager Jagnarine Singh said some 300,000 tonnes of rice is expected in the first crop of this year

General Secretary Dharamkumar Seeraj told this publication that harvesting has already commenced and is expected to last until August. He reported that over 220,000 acres of rice has already been harvested in Essequibo and some areas of Region Six. The RPA general secretary also noted that all licensed rice mills are in operation and readily accessible by farmers. In October 2013, the rice industry produced a

record production, surpassing its 500,000 tonnes target. “On Monday, the 21st October, for the first time in our history, we reached a goal which many persons in this country said would be impossible, and those who believe it was possible, thought that it would not happen until 2020. On the 21st October, 2013, Guyana surpassed 500,000 tonnes of rice in our production,” Agriculture Minister, Dr Leslie Ramsammy had announced.

Granger appeals exclusion form budget cut case

Opposition Leader David Granger


pposition Leader Brigadier (retired) David Granger through his Attorney Basil Williams on Tuesday filed an appeal in the Supreme Court of Judicature against the court’s ruling to exclude him from the budget cut case. Granger had subsequently appealed the case at the Full Court, but this court said it lacked jurisdiction, but has, however, granted

him leave to approach the Appellate Court for redress. The grounds for appeal state that the Full Court of Appeal comprising Justice James Bovell-Drakes and Justice Rishi Persaud erred in law and misdirected themselves in holding that the Full Court lacked jurisdiction to hear and determine the appeal instituted by way of Notice of Appeal, against the order of Chief Justice Ian Chang made on June 19, 2013. It further states that the Full Court of Appeal erred in law and misdirected itself when it failed to appreciate the legal principles which determine whether the decision of a judge of the High Court was final or interlocutory. Brigadier Granger’s legal team also includes Messrs Rex McKay SC, Llewellyn John, Robert Corbin, James Bond, Deborah Backer and Bettina Glasford.



thursDay, february 27, 2014|


The Demerara Harbour Bridge will be closed to vehicular traffic on Thursday, February 27 from 14:30h to 16:00h The Berbice River Bridge will be closed to vehicular traffic on Thursday, February 27 from 14:55h to16:25h


Passage of AML bill seems uncertain – Ramotar says govt ready to compromise

Countrywide: Thundery showers can be expected during the day and into the evening over coastal regions and near inland locations. Temperatures are expected to range between 24 degrees and 27 degrees Celsius. Wind: East north easterly between 3.05 metres and 3.33 metres per second. High Tide: 03:01h and 15:21h reaching maximum heights of 2.56 metres and 2.70 metres respectively. Low Tide: 08:53h and 21:21h reaching minimum heights of 0.63 metre and 0.48 metre respectively. President Donald Ramotar flanked by junior Finance Minister Juan Edghill and Attorney General and Legal Affairs Minister Anil Nandlall at the press briefing at the Office of the President on Wednesday BY SVETLANA MARSHALL

T wednesday, february 26, 2014

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he passage of the AntiMoney Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (amendment) (AML/CFT) Bill seems unlikely to be passed in the National Assembly although a lastminute meeting is scheduled for this morning before the House votes on the legislation. Following a fruitless meeting with President Donald Ramotar and opposition parliamentarians earlier in the day, the special select committee fine-tuning the bill met to address some amendments, which the A Partnership For National Unity (APNU) had tabled. However, by the time the meeting concluded, there was no clear indication as to whether they will be able to conclude their work in time for the House vote today. The committee headed by Gail Teixeira is scheduled to meet today at 11:00h at the Parliament Buildings, where it is expected that the draft amendments proposed by APNU will be submitted by the Chief Parliamentary Council (CPC). The committee met on Wednesday night to further discuss the AML/ CFT (amendment) Bill of 2013. However, the CPC has expressed uncertainty as to whether the draft amend-

ments can be completed by today. Meanwhile, at a news conference at the Office of the President, Ramotar, who was accompanied by junior Finance Minister Juan Edghill and Attorney General and Legal Affairs Minister Anil Nandlall, expressed profound disappointment over the varying positions of APNU and Alliance For Change (AFC), contending that even at the 11th hour the opposition parties continue to shift the goal posts. AFC on countless occasions had made its position clear, explaining that it was willing to support the passage of the AML/CFT (amendment) Bill which was crafted based on the recommendations of the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF), once the Public Procurement Commission (PPC) was established and adequately funded to sustain its operation. But when President Ramotar pitched his proposal on Wednesday to set up the PPC once the government at the level of Cabinet is allowed to maintain its “no-objection” powers, the AFC said that was not sufficient for the passage of the bill which can prevent Guyana from being blacklisted at the level of FATF. Guyana, like other countries, is mandated to submit

a report by Friday, February 28 to CFATF to determine its level of compliance. “I told the AFC that I am ready to work towards the establishment of the Public Procurement Commission but the government’s no-objections must be preserved,” the president told the media. However, AFC during the early morning meeting with the president said APNU’s proposed amendments to the principal act of 2009 must be adopted before any support is given. On February 9, at the level of the parliamentary special select committee, APNU tabled three amendments to the AML/CFT bill. However, CFATF Financial Advisor Roger Hernandez said while CFATF is not directly involved in the legislative process of a country, it has concerns that some of the amendments proposed to the principal act may make those that were formerly compliant, non-compliant. There is a risk attached to that, he had warned.


“The jeopardy could be if you pass the bill with the amendments that are there, we would still be blacklisted because it could stand the danger of not meeting the requirement of CFATF,” President Ramotar said based on the discussions the com-

mittee had with Hernandez. President Ramotar said APNU and AFC were encouraged to support the AML/CFT (amendment) Bill that is in compliance with CFATF/FATF standards to prevent the country from being blacklisted, expressing the notion that the opposition proposed amendments can be submitted to the regional financial institution for its advice. “If they are not in compliance then the opposition should give up the amendments but if they are in compliance then they have the majority in Parliament, they can move back the motion to the House, they can amendment… I am giving my public commitment that I will assent to the bill,” President Ramotar said. In addition to the amendments to the principal act, Opposition Leader David Granger in recent weeks wrote the president requesting that a committee be established to review the bills that were passed at the level of the National Assembly but were rejected by him. APNU had also called for the bills to be assented to by President Ramotar. The president had long stated that the bills, though passed by the opposition using their one-seat majority, were unconstitutional. Turn to page 7



Views Editor: Nigel Williams Tel: 225-5128, 231-0397, 226-9921, 226-2102, 223-7230 or 223-7231. Fax: 225-5134 Mailing address: 238 Camp & Quamina Streets, Georgetown Email:,


Full circle in Egypt T

hree years after Egyptians overthrew the 29-year-old dictatorship of General Hosni Mubarak in a defining moment of what became known as the “Arab Spring”, they are about to replace him with another general drawn from the same old mould – the recently elevated Field Marshall Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. The “Arab Spring” was supposed to be ushering a wave of democracy in North Africa and the Middle East and was fervently supported by the U.S. in its self-declared mission to “export democracy” to other parts of the world where it had determined the practice to be lacking or deficient. What is playing out in Egypt illustrates the homily that the best laid schemes of big powers oft go awry. In the case of Mubarak, who had been a staunch ally of the U.S. and whose regime consistently received US$1.5 billion annually in mostly military aid, the latter had been caught unawares by the civilian-led protests inspired by revolutionary and regime changing actions in nearby Tunisia. The protests led to the removal of Mubarak and the promise of elections. The U.S. quickly deployed its “NGOs”, such as the International Republican Institute (IRI), to influence voting against the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), the most organised group in Egypt. However, in the subsequent elections, the latter group emerged victorious under the leadership of Mohamed Morsi.  The U.S. was caught between a rock and a hard place. On one hand, it could not be shown publicly to be denying the legitimacy of the democratic process that had brought the MB to power. This was the product it was exporting. But on the other hand, it was fearful that the Islamist party would not support its policies in the Middle East – mainly those that guaranteed the security of Israel. Its closest Arab allies in the area, notably Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf States, such as the United Arab Emirates, were also opposed to the radical Brotherhood, which had threatened their legitimacy. Under threat of being destabilised, they pressured the U.S. not to support the MB. The latter did not help their cause as they proved to be very incompetent rulers who felt they could placate the military, even as they cracked down on their internal “enemies” by stressing the religious schisms. The Gulf States funded those “enemies” even as the U.S. tightened the screws of the regime through pressures from the international financial institutions. The deteriorating economic and social conditions brought the opponents of the MB into the streets. Last July, when the Morsi government was removed in what was an army coup in all but name, the U.S. went along with the overthrow of a democratically elected government. When Mubarak had been threatened with ouster, he had warned that it was either going to be the Islamists or chaos. After a year, it became obvious that the people, having experienced both prongs of the prophecy, were willing to bring back the army. An interim government was established to run the government’s affairs until the election. However, an army-led crackdown against Islamists and Liberals followed and Sisi was appointed by the army to take over the reins of power. He was made Field Marshall, even though he has no battlefield experience, and as head of the Defence Ministry, resigned along with the rest of the Cabinet, clearing his way to contest the elections.  In the meantime, Ibrahim Mahlab, a member of the old guard, and outgoing Housing Minister, was appointed as the interim PM as the nation awaits a “second Nasser”. Sisi has in fact been consciously imitating Nasser – even going as far as visiting Russia to secure an alternative source of arms, much as Nasser had done back in the 1950s. To everyone’s surprise, Russian President Vladimir Putin endorsed Sisi for the Egyptian presidency. In the next few months we will see whether the U.S. overreached in Egypt’s “democratisation”.

Located on Woodland Walk, in the Lost Gardens of Heligan, is an amazing sculpture of a sleeping goddess entitled ‘Mud Maid’. The incredible larger-than-life sculpture even has grass and moss growing atop it ( .

Town hall meetings were held in areas not considered PPP/C strongholds Dear Editor, It is with sadness and deep concern that I respond to a statement allegedly made by Joseph Harmon in an exclusive interview with iNews, which stated that the recently held town hall meetings were staged and that persons were paid to attend or it was a command performance. As the Cabinet member, who was tasked with this responsibility, and from whose office invitations to stakeholders originated, I take serious offence and umbrage at such an unfounded, unsubstantiated and ridiculous allegation. The A Partnership for

National Unity (APNU), and Harmon in particular as their spokesperson, should be ashamed to utter such confounded nonsense. Or is it that they paid their supporters to attend to carry out an unknown agenda? And their supporters, having listened to presentations from members of the government’s side of the Parliamentary Special Select Committee on the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Amendment Bill, were convinced of the inappropriateness of APNU’s position on this matter? The attendance at these events as far as the govern-

ment is aware was as a result of stakeholders’ interest in this matter. We put out public notices, contacted stakeholder organisations and extended invitations by telephone. There was no command performance, no one was paid, no one was promised anything, and people attended on their own volition. The town hall meetings were held in Linden, New Amsterdam and Bartica – areas that cannot be easily identified as People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) strongholds. Yet there were large turnouts and known People’s National Congress

(PNC) activists were in attendance. All were welcome and all were given a chance to speak. None supported APNU’s amendments. All asked that the bill be passed and that we meet the February 28 deadline. It is clear that the APNU is not even willing to listen to their own supporters who voted for them. This is the truth. No spin doctoring by anyone can change this. I call on Harmon and APNU to withdraw this ludicrous statement. Respectfully, Bishop Juan A Edghill Minister within the Ministry of Finance

The case against Fatima Martin Dear Editor, I refer to a letter to the editor in another section of the press, written by Professor Linda Peake (York University, Toronto, Canada) on February 20, about the case involving babysitter Fatima Martin. Martin is an adult and knows that she cannot beat a baby. She accepted the job on November 13, 2013 and she knows she had been given the charge of caring for the baby. Martin was living at the lawyer and magistrate’s residence. According to the news,

the medical report stated that the infant was strangled and was suffering from a series of injuries. Further, medical examinations revealed that the infant might have hit her head on the bathroom tile, which resulted in repeated traumas. Moreover, the infant is one-year-old and her bones and muscles are not developed, are very tender, and such injuries can cause serious health defects at present and in the future. Parents in Canada are prohibited from beating

their own children. That is the reason why statistical reports show that an increasing number of children are turning to alcoholism, smoking and end up pregnant. Parents in Canada can be charged for scolding or even speaking loud to their pre-adolescent and young teenagers for their acts of wrong doing, much less to hit a baby. Martin is a mature 19-year-old woman and she should have exercised some element of patience in caring for the child.

If the Professor has the honour of feeling the pains and joys of motherhood, she will understand that it is not easy and fair to know that you entrusted the life of your infant in the hands of an adult and came home to see that trust betrayed. I strongly believe that the Professor needs to display some level of understanding and avoid any bias. Since all Canadians are equal, in like manner, all Guyanese are equal. Yours sincerely, Rayann Persid



You can send your letters with pictures to: Guyana Times, 238 Camp & Quamina Streets, Georgetown, Guyana or

Maha Shiv-raatri – the great Emergency medical technicians and the health sector night of auspiciousness Dear Editor, Maha Shiv-Raatri is translated into the “Great Night of Auspiciousness”, which commonly is observed and celebrated once annually with great pomp and festivities. It is indelibly marked with elaborate rituals and as a time when there appears to be recommitment and, to an extent, an awakening of that religious instinct among those who observe the occasion. It is one of the major Hindu celebrations, which is observed according to the Hindu calendar on the 14th day of the dark fortnight in the month of ‘Phalguna’ (corresponds to February/March). Maha Shiv-raatri originally refers to the much perfected state of spiritual realisation, divinity and holiness which the true spiritual seekers of yore had achieved. In order that the pursuit of the path of such realisation may come to the masses, and that the lesser God-realised persons may spend time in lifting their minds to noble ideals, directing it to the Lord,

Maha Shiv-raatri has been brought into a very significant ritual, dedicating this day to Lord Shiva. Hindu mythology depicts Lord Shiva with many signs and symbols, each of which is symbolic on the path of spirituality. Lord Shiva is depicted sitting in a meditation posture which represents omniscience and oneness with universe. A crescent moon and a lock of matted hair through which the River Ganges flows are apparent. The moon represents the stillness and tranquillity of the mind that is imperative for spiritual growth and evolution. The movement of time is also another meaning of the moon. The matted hair symbolises the journey of the soul to achieve purity, spiritual wisdom and union with God. The flowing of the Ganges represents the purity and spiritual wisdom that has to be attained to become one with the Supreme. The serpent coiling around him may appear to be horrifying, but it has

lofty significances. It signifies spiritual powers and cosmic energies and also, the Supreme command and control God has over nature. Moreover, the snake around Him stands for fearlessness and power to remove fearlessness. The trident he wields represents the sharpness of the mind to conquer vices and traverse to unite with the Supreme. In essence, Shiv-raatri is an opportunity to begin to realise the latent divine self within. It is ideally a spiritual observance and reminder of the need for spirituality. It is marked as the “Great Night of Auspiciousness”, where true spiritual seekers rededicate themselves to the subjective science and the pursuit of excellence in their daily lives. Regards, Pandit Charranlall Nandalall Secretary of Sanatan Vaidic Dharma Pandits’ Sabha Region Three

Greenidge, Goolsarran presided over Guyana’s worst economic mismanagement Dear Editor, Both Carl Greenidge, former Finance Minister and Anand Goolsarran, former Auditor General, pride themselves as being transparent, accountable and credible financial gurus. However, the facts are that these two gentlemen presided over Guyana’s worst economic mismanagement. It was characterised by gross financial mismanagement, wholesale corruption, and high levels of unemployment, inflation rates and an overall sense of lost hope, which permeated the entire society. Guyana’s social and economic stability also took a severe beating. Greenidge, now Shadow Finance Minister of A Partnership for National Unity (APNU), and Goolsarran appar-

ently of the Alliance For Change (AFC), have both been nominated to become permanent fixtures on the Public Procurement Commission (PPC), and have proposed a whopping $100 million for the operation of the PPC. This exorbitant demand must be met before any definitive decision is undertaken by government, and so the blackmail continues. My view is that the return of Greenidge and Goolsarran is far from coincidental and can be tied to APNU and AFC’s ludicrous proposals/conditions/ demands in exchange for the passage of the AntiMoney Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Amendment Bill. These demands and their intransigent position are by design, intended to

hurt Guyanese businesses and financial institutions. I strongly believe that regardless of whatever concessions are offered by the government, APNU and AFC will not support the AML/CFT Bill, since it is their ideological intent and best interest to capitalise on the impending financial crisis, should Guyana be wholly exposed to economic sanctions by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Furthermore, in my opinion, the establishment of PPC, along with the already established Public Accounts Committee (PAC), will serve as proxies of APNU and AFC to puppeteer the strings of the Executive to achieve their narrowminded political agenda. Yours respectfully, Erin R Northe

Dear Editor, Though Guyana still has some work to do as it relates to enhancing the country’s health sector, I must say that I am proud to see that effort is continuously being made to do so. The Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) profession is one that allows for an entry-level patient care provider, who works in the field of emergency medical services. I am happy and pleased to know that 22 individuals recently graduated with qualifications in this profession. They play a vital role in saving one’s life, since they are usually the first set of qualified individuals to administer care to someone in need of medical assistance. These individuals

should be respected and should be allowed to do their job when they arrive at the scene. All over the world, paramedics, doctors, nurses, and firefighters have used their EMT education and experience as a stepping stone to their new career. EMTs have profound knowledge and skills to provide emergency care and transportation of patients. They can work in a variety of roles even after being first on the scene of accidents, medical emergencies, and natural disasters. It brings a lot of ease to many to know that Guyana is now equipping itself with this much needed profession. The Health Ministry

must now continue to train more and more persons in not only this field, but also in other areas, so that our health sector can be filled with qualified and trained professionals. Sometimes the panic at many accident scenes is so much that I am sure more damage than good is done. In fact, in the past, many victims have been further injured due to bad handling, prior to arriving at a medical institution. The work of EMTs will surely help to minimise such instances and so I encourage the ministry to be persistent in their training. Respectfully, Wendy Sinclair

Swimming facilities in Guyana Dear Editor, What was supposed to be a fun day out for both present and past students of the St Stanislaus College turned out to be a dreadful one. A young man lost his life after he plunged into the pool at the Princess Hotel. As one of the most frequently visited pools in Guyana, it is almost embarrassing to know that there was no qualified lifeguard on duty at the Princess Hotel swimming pool. Additionally, it is beyond me why parents allow

their young children to venture out on such activities unsupervised. Swimming pool facilities have always been considered as a form of recreation and relaxation for both locals and foreigners of all ages. It is therefore important that the management and staff of all swimming pools set out clearly defined safety rules and regulations to protect the wellbeing of their guests. Ideally, it should be made mandatory for every public swimming pool to have a qualified and trained life guard on duty

at all times. Additionally, though many perceive swimming to be a hobby, it should also be considered as a very vital skill that every individual should acquire some time in their life. My condolences go out to the family and friends of the deceased, but if I must say, I think many of us take things for granted, and it is only until it is too late, that we realise how much more responsible we should have been. Sincerely, Akil Gopie





Financial lessons children learn from having a job


f your teen was lucky enough to snag a summer job (quite a feat in this economy), congratulations! For your child, a rush of pride and possibility comes with their first job. Hello, financial freedom. Goodbye, begging mom and dad for $2000 to grab pizza with friends, or $500 for taxi fare. A teen’s first paycheque is an exciting moment for mom and dad, too – and not just because the begging stops (or at least slows down). A summer job is a child’s first real-world experience with earning their own money. That means it’s a great opening for parents to impart some critical lessons about financial responsibility:

Savings first Save, save, save – even when it feels like you don’t need to. When you have a steady paycheque coming in, it’s easy to believe that things will always be this

Five tips for teaching your children how to care for their belongings

it. Just because your contract says you make $250 an hour, doesn’t mean you’ll have $2000 in your pocket at the end of the day. Consider this an opportunity to talk to children about everything that taxes pay for: schools, libraries, police, the roads we drive on to get to work, NIS, and so much more.


Needs vs wants Earning your own money teaches you to take care of needs before wants. Having a minimum-wage job doesn’t mean your daughter needs to be instantly responsible for all her bills, but she can certainly start chipping in for things like gas or her cell-phone bill.

Reward yourself Go ahead, live a little. Hey, earning a paycheque isn’t only about delaying gratification. Part of the reason we work is so we can enjoy the fruits of our labours! Encourage your hard-working child to set aside some of her takehome pay to go out with friends or buy a new pair of shoes – she’s earned it! good. But you never know when you’ll need money for an emergency, like if you get laid off or your car breaks down. Learning to save money is one of the most important lessons a child can take into adulthood. Talk with your newly minted worker about putting 10 per cent of each paycheque into her university fund and another 10 per cent into a general savings account.

job than just getting hired. He can pick up extra shifts, stay a little late if the boss needs him, and hold himself to a high standard, even when doing menial tasks like folding napkins or shredding papers. A strong work ethic makes him the kind of employee that gets a raise, a good recommendation, or an invitation to come back next summer. At the very least, he’ll take pride in his work.

Hard work pays off Your child may think that all he has to do is show up, but there’s more to a

The tax man cometh A teen’s first paycheque contains a painful surprise – the GRA takes a slice of

Be grateful Remember how lucky you are. Typical jobs – cashier, lifeguard, fastfood employee, etc – all have their highs and lows. If your child starts complaining about the good old days of “doing nothing,” remind him how lucky he is even to be employed. With teens facing a 25 per cent (in the U.S.) unemployment rate for the past few summers, up from 15 per cent in 2007, and many of the adults in their lives laid off since the recession, it’s a good time to instil sensitivity and gratitude. (



n the modern world, there are more disposable things than ever before. This phenomenon causes many to not truly value the things they have since they are all replaceable. Children are particularly vulnerable to a philosophy of waste. It is the parent’s job to teach them the value of caring for their belongings.

Limit the amount of toys they have Parents love to shower their children with gifts. However, research shows that having many belongings available to them causes children less enjoyment. It is as if they are saturated and cannot appreciate what they have. Purchase quality items When parents do buy toys for their children, it is best to focus on quality. Having a few well-made, long-lasting toys is a better experience for children than to have many easily broken things. Rotate toys Parents cannot always control the gifts others give to their children. When the amount of toys threatens a child’s space, rotating them is a solution. Some can be stored away for a later time. Unfortunately, many attics and basements have issues with climate control or dampness. When storing a child’s belongings, renting a storage unit can be a better option. These units insulate items from damage by maintaining constant temperature year round. Teach them to work for what they want Children appreciate what they have and take better care of it when they have earned it themselves. If a child has his heart set on something, parents can help him do small jobs for them or others and teach him or her to save money to buy the item or at least contribute to the cost of the item. Do not hastily replace ruined belongings Inevitably, a child will destroy one of his belongings due to negligence or immaturity. Instead of rushing out to buy another to replace it, the parent can use this as a teaching opportunity. When things are not cared for properly, the child will no longer have those things. (



thursDay, february 27, 2014|

OP last minute AML Passage of AML bill... meeting fruitless From page 3

President Donald Ramotar and his delegation face off with Opposition Leader David Granger and his team during their meeting at the Office of the President on Wednesday


meeting between President Ramotar and opposition leaders to hammer out a lastminute deal to secure the passage of the anti-money laundering bill was fruitless, with both sides failing to arrive at any consensus after over two hours of talks. It was yet another standoff at the meeting at the Office of the President. Speaking with media operatives after the meeting, Alliance For Change (AFC) Leader Khemraj Ramjattan said that all the parties involved want their demands met before the bill is passed. He said while the government would like the opposition to support the bill in its current form, when it is presented in the National Assembly, it is not fulfilling any of the opposition’s demands or requests. Meanwhile, A

Partnership for National Unity (APNU) leader David Granger posited that the coalition will not support the bill unless their demands are met and this was made clear to the president during the meeting. Granger noted that the position of APNU will remain the same. He contended that they want a bill that is enforceable. He also related that there were some governance issues that should be given due attention without delay. APNU Member of Parliament (MP) Joseph Harmon at a subsequent press conference noted that in addition to the conditions that would have been mentioned by Granger and Ramjattan, the opposition also wants the local government bills that were previously assented to by the president to be operational-

ised. He added that there were a few other bills that were passed in the National Assembly which the president has refused to assent to. He said that the opposition wants those bills to be assented to as another prerequisite for them to pass the anti-money laundering bill.

All must pass

“All of these things must be done and be passed simultaneously… let everything come together on the floor and we will vote for everything at once,” said Harmon. He said that the president is asking for some amount of prioritisation on the voting on the laundering bill, but this will not be done since the president’s promise that the other bills will be addressed is nothing, but a promise.

Harmon also believes that the actual meeting with the government and members of the opposition was an improvement of some sort. “The fact that we are talking on this matter, the fact that we are talking before February 27 is itself an improvement,” said Harmon. On the issue of APNU’s proposed amendments to the principal act of 2009, Harmon contended that the amendments were not those of the APNU. “When an amendment goes to the select committee, it is the select committee’s amendments,” the Member of Parliament said. In response to questions of how far APNU is willing to compromise, Harmon related that the bill is now in the hands of the executive and there will be no further compromise on the part of the APNU.

However, Nandlall made it clear that the non-passage of the bill can put Guyana at risk, with severe impacts to be felt from the highest level right down to the man on the street. “This bill has to be passed because it is important to Guyana and one would expect that every national party, every national leader in this country would see the importance of this bill.” He also criticised the AFC for changing its position after approximately 10 months of deliberations. “This morning we said to the AFC that we are prepared to give you the PPC for tomorrow (today), we are prepared to do everything that can be done today (Wednesday) and tomorrow all things being equal so you can have the PPC as far as possible that which can be accomplished by tomorrow morning, to get your support,” the legal affairs minister said. However, he said the AFC responded in the negative, stating that the APNUpeddled amendments must be adopted. According to him, after 10 months of championing the cause for the PPC, the AFC failed to deliver at a time when the government was willing to compromise.


Nandlall contended that APNU’s position has changed continuously. He explained that the opposition is also pushing for the president to reverse his position in relation to the bills he did not assent to. “So it is no longer now the amendments alone… now it

is to re-look at all the bills, and give assent to them, irrespective of how wrong they are, irrespective of unconstitutional they are, irrespective of the danger that the presidency will be exposed to, in terms of condoning unconstitutionality, all of that we must turn a blind eye to.” Currently, the proposed amendments by the APNU are before the Chief Parliamentary Council (CPC) Cecil Dhurjon. According to Nandlall, Dhurjon, who is well aware of CFATF standards, has been unable to put into legislative terms the drafted amendments. The CPC has written the select committee twice requesting clarification. “Because of those fundamental conceptual difficulties with the instructions given to the draft person, he has been unable to convert that into a legislative formulation and that is where we are at,” Nandlall said.


However, Ramotar said he responded favourably to the opposition, expressing his willingness to establish the committee with the aim of arriving at a consensus. Meanwhile, lashing out at APNU and AFC, Nandlall said the opposition seems to be operating on the premise that the AML/CFT (amendment) Bill is the government’s piloted bill and “therefore if this bill is not passed, the government will lose something, so they are trying to extract all manner of things”. (

Much work to be done before Rodney CoI begins – chairman The three-member commission was on Tuesday sworn in at the Office of the President to investigate the circumstances surrounding the death of the late co-founder of The Working People’s Alliance (WPA), Dr Walter Rodney, who was killed when a bomb exploded in the car in which he was sitting 33 years ago.



hairman of the recently formed Walter Rodney Commission of Inquiry (CoI), Sir Richard Cheltenham said the meeting with the commission’s secretariat on Wednesday has revealed that much work still needs to be done before the actual inquiry commences. Cheltenham said he, along with Jamaica Queen’s Council Jacqueline Samuels- Brown and Guyanese-Trinidadian Senior Counsel Seenath Jairam, have commenced work in accordance with the terms of reference published in the Official Gazette and will continue doing so leading up to the commencement of the public hearings. The two groups met in the boardroom of the Supreme Court Library Building on Wednesday and were engaged in fruitful discussions. However, Cheltenham, speaking with Guyana Times just after the meeting said that from all indications, there are a few hiccups to the inquiry. “The commissioners regret that time has not allowed us on this occasion to engage in as many comprehensive pre-hearing meetings and courtesy calls with organisations and individuals as intended. However, arrangements are in place for this to be completed in the near future,”

Bomb explosion

Members of the inquiry commission. From left to right: Jamaica Queen’s Council Jacqueline Samuels-Brown; Chairman, Sir Richard Cheltenham; and Guyanese-Trinidadian Senior Counsel Seenath Jairam

he told this publication. He said that the commissioners will keep in contact with the secretariat, to ascertain its readiness for the commencement of the inquiry.

Not yet approached

The information received from the secretariat, he said, revealed that over 90 individuals and agencies have been identified to testify at the inquiry. However, these persons have not yet been approached. “We have a list of persons who may be of interest in helping us, but many of them have not been

contacted. But all of that will become clear in the next two weeks or more.” He said work is now gathering momentum and hopes that persons would come forward now that the commission has been formed. Cheltenham said the commission will decide on how soon the inquires would commence, as soon as adequate witness statements are taken by the secretariat. He stressed also that work cannot commence until the council for the commission has been established. Some six members sit on the commission’s secretariat.

He is hoping that the public will render its full cooperation. “The commissioners are grateful for the widespread expression and assurances of cooperation and support from the general public and the commissioners commit to a comprehensive and transparent process, in accordance with the oath solemnly taken.” He said that the commission will keep Guyanese informed through communication by the secretariat on the commission’s schedules and activities. Cheltenham left Guyana on Wednesday.

Dr Rodney was 38 years old when a bomb exploded in his lap on June 13, 1980. Reports are that an ex army sergeant, Gregory Smith, planted the bomb that killed the political leader. The then electronics expert, who later lived under the pseudonym Cyril Johnson, was accused of giving Rodney a walkie-talkie (in which the bomb was concealed) to test on Camp Street, Georgetown outside the metal fence of the Georgetown Prison. It exploded on his lap while he was seated in a car driven by his brother Donald. There have been claims that Dr Rodney’s assassination was set-up by the Forbes Burnham administration, which he had strongly opposed. However, Burnham’s party, the People’s National Congress (PNC) had denied orchestrating the bomb blast. There have been widespread accusations and finger-pointing over the years, thus the call for CoI.



Interior worker charged for robbery, break and enter


man appeared on Tuesday before Chief Magistrate Priya Sewnarine-Beharry in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts charged for breaking and entering. Elton Calder, an interior worker, who resides in Mahdia, North West District, pleaded not guilty

to the charge after it was alleged that on February 12, the accused gained illegal entry into the property of Sonali Lima and stole one laptop computer valued $120,000, one Sony camera valued $35,000 and two gold rings valued $150,000. Police prosecutor Michael Grant had no ob-

jections to bail. Attorney Paul Fung-AFat said his client has nothing to do with the matter, further noting that the defendant was apprehended by ranks of the Guyana Police Force. A search was conducted and the articles mentioned were not found in Calder’s possession,

Fung-A-Fat claimed his client was identified by the virtual complainant. Bail was granted in the sum of $200,000. The defendant is expected to make another court appearance on April 14 in the Mahdia Magistrate’s Court.

Taxi driver on bail East La Penitence for causing death by man remanded for dangerous driving robbery under arms


man appeared on Wednesday in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts before Chief Magistrate Priya Sewnarine-Beharry charged for causing death by dangerous driving. Wendell Sooklall, 21, of Lot 353 Cummings Street, North Cummingsburg, Georgetown, pleaded not guilty to the charge after it was alleged that on February 18 on Homestretch Avenue, Georgetown, the accused while driving motor car PPP 6592, caused death to Quacy Leigh. Police Prosecutor Michael Grant stated that

from facts received, on the day in question the deceased was proceeding west along Homestretch Avenue on a pedal cycle when the defendant collided with the back wheel of the pedal cycle, causing the now deceased man to fall to the ground. The deceased was picked up in an unconscious state and taken to Georgetown Public Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. Bail was granted in the sum $250,000 by the Chief Magistrate. The accused is expected to make another court appearance on April 1.


n unemployed man appeared in court on Wednesday before Chief Magistrate Priya Sewnarine-Beharry in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts charged for the possession of an unlicensed firearm and robbery under arms. Ron Mc Farley, of Lot 25 East La Penitence, Georgetown, pleaded not guilty to the charge after it was alleged that on Monday ,February 24 on America Street, Georgetown the accused had in his possession one pistol without being the licensed holder of the firearm. The defendant also pleaded not guilty to

the charge which stated that on Monday, February 24, he robbed Wilford Mack of one BlackBerry cellphone valued $35,000 and $75,000 in cash. Police Prosecutor Michael Grant objected to bail on the grounds of the nature of the offences and the penalties attached. He also noted from statements received that on the day in question, the virtual complainant was proceeding west along America Street when the accused came up to him and dealt him several cuffs about the body before stealing the items mentioned. A report was made, and acting upon information received, a chase was conducted. The defendant was apprehended with the said articles and the pistol in his possession. Bail was refused by the Chief Magistrate. The accused is expected to make another court appearance March 18.

Men charged for unlawful assault


wo men appeared in court on Tuesday before Chief Magistrate Priya Sewnarine-Beharry in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts, both charged with unlawful assault. Raymond Adolph pleaded not guilty to the charge after it was alleged that on February 19 on Hadfield Street, Georgetown, he assaulted Lyle Khanhai. Lyle Khanhai pleaded guilty to the charge which stated that on February 19, he assaulted Adolph. They were both placed on a bond to keep the peace by the Chief Magistrate. The matter was dismissed due to both men deciding not to give evidence against the other.

Eyew tness

Finally... ...a Rodney CoI? ell, you might wonder why we have a question mark about the Rodney Commission of Inquiry (CoI) when the President just swore in the three Commissioners. (Is it “assassination” or “death”? Back when the PPP/C moved in Parliament in 2005 for a CoI, there was a big fight over this point. The PPP/C finally didn’t even vote on their motion since “death” had been substituted.) But the question mark is there because – when it comes to Walter Rodney, there have been too many slips between the cup and the lip. Believe it or not...Burnham himself claimed to have done an inquiry. He called a couple of “experts” from England – Drs Skuse and Johnson back in 1980 – but we’ve never been told as to what they actually found. Even at the trial of Dr Rodney’s brother, Donald. Yes the fella was tried because presumably he committed a crime by being with his brother at the time of the latter’s death. Luckily Dr Rodney’s brother wasn’t convicted, so we have to be thankful for small mercies under Burnham. But we got no closer as to who actually murdered the historian and political leader – even when the smoking gun was probably still smouldering. Now we’re not surprised at that verdict...I mean why would Burnham have even called up people who could assert with certitude and records that Gregory Smith, who’d prepared the walkie-talkie that exploded in Dr Rodney’s lap, was a sergeant in the Guyana Defence Force (GDF). So that inquiry died stillborn. We then had another CoI under Burnham’s successor Desmond Hoyte in 1988. Pressure from Rodney’s widow, Pat and international figures like Dr Ali Mazuri, who was in Guyana as part of the 150th Anniversary of the Abolition of Slavery, convinced Hoyte. Maybe the IMF also had something to do with it. Who knows? But lo and behold, just like how Hoyte flattered to deceive in the political realm, so was it in the search for closure on the assassination of Dr Rodney. Then in 1996, there was supposed to be another CoI after Rodney’s son, Shaka protested in Georgetown, in 1994, to stir some consciences. Doodnauth Singh was part of this...but it got nowhere after being bogged down in the extradition of Smith from French Guiana. And that brings us to the false start of 2005, in which the WPA derailed any inquiry because they didn’t want to embarrass the PNC before the 2006 elections. So call us “jaded”. We’ll believe in a Rodney Inquiry when a report’s submitted.


...exposure of labour ignorance Lincoln “the Loud” Lewis, is still the General Secretary of the TUC. And the TUC is still supposed to be an “umbrella body” of the labour movement. And now you can understand why the labour movement in Guyana is so moribund. And if you still needed convincing, listen to this. Yesterday, Lewis in his usual belligerent tones, told the Opposition that all bets are off with him and his outfit unless they do what he dictates on the AML/CTF Bill. Now Lewis’ position has always been identical to the Opposition’s – which is not strange since Lewis is part and parcel of that Opposition. But this time the Loud Wonder gave the Opposition another “rationale” for their intransigence and antinational stance. Lewis asserted that sanctions by the FATF will not affect established businesses – just the ones doing illegal hanky panky!  Imagine in this day and age of instantaneous financial flows, the wanker thinks a slowdown of money transfers, is immaterial to big businesses! ...information! Less is known about who’re the officials of the Demerara Cricket Board (DCB) than about who’re running things in the Ukraine. Is this a job for the Commissioner of Information? And don’t say the DCB isn’t a government body. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a goddamn well better be a duck!




Executed cambio dealer was shot Rice export to twice – autopsy Venezuela to resume – Dr Ramsammy says trade not affected by unrest P G uyana’s rice export to Venezuela is expected to resume once all logistics have been completed between the two governments, Agriculture Minister, Dr Leslie Ramsammy said on Wednesday. He stated that the agreement, which is in its final stage, remains a significant one for Guyana. Last week, a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA), was inked between La Casa (on behalf of the Venezuelan government) and Guyana’s Ambassador to Venezuela Geoff Da Silva. “We have made progress in completing arrangements for shipment of rice to begin. There are three stages in terms of the annual shipment of rice to Venezuela… at the end of every year, we have to have a period of reconciliation in order for Venezuela to issue payment to the Ministry of Finance,” he said. In the past, the reconciliation process, which is critical in the Guyana/Venezuela rice deal, took months to be completed; however, this year it was completed in a much shorter time and shipment is now closer to recommence. In 2013, 110,000 tonnes of white rice and 88,000 tonnes of paddy were shipped to the Spanish-speaking country. However, this new agreement will incur a slight change in shipment. “There will be a change in paddy versus white rice and once the contract is inked we will announce that, but the MoA has already established those numbers,” Minister Ramsammy said.

Final stage

With the MoA already inked, the final stage of the Guyana/Venezuela agreement is near completion. This would include the purchasing order and shipment schedule. With the 2014 rice harvesting (first crop) already started, shipment of

Agriculture Minister, Dr Leslie Ramsammy

Caribbean diplomat Sir Ronald Sanders

rice has already commenced to Europe, the Caribbean and to new destinations. Guyana and Venezuela are currently engaged in a few partnerships which seek to strengthen their economic and social sectors. The PetroCaribe agreement allows Guyana to pay 40 per cent of its bill within the first 90 days and repay the rest at one per cent interest over a period of 25 years. In 2005, former Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez had given Guyana and several other Caribbean countries economic support. The head of the oil-producing powerhouse had offered the region oil at concessionary prices with, in Guyana’s case, oil supplies being paid for with paddy and rice.

would end abruptly.” He said that the Nicolas Maduro government, which has been in power for the past 10 months, is facing one of its worst unrests over food and foreign currency shortages. He continued that there have been numerous calls for steps to be taken to reverse Venezuela’s economic decline. PetroCaribe accounts for 30 per cent of Venezuela’s production, Sanders revealed. Sanders predicted that countries that are benefiting from the deal will be required to increase their productivity and eventually pay the original price for oil. He said the effects will be strenuous on Guyana, which depends on fossil fuel. He noted that some of the monies Guyana receives under its rice-for-oil agreement with Venezuela are used to pay rice farmers. However, with the instability in Venezuela, the Guyana government and farmers should be nervous, as the situation “spells real trouble”. Some 13 persons have so far died in the massive political protests, which began some two weeks ago. More than 500 persons have been charged and 50 have been thrown in jail. And as the tension continues to mount, more than 150 persons have been injured.

Be prepared

Caribbean diplomat Sir Ronald Sanders, in a recent publication, had urged leaders of Caribbean countries that are members of the PetroCaribe Agreement to “begin preparing for the worst-case scenario and start thinking about buying oil at market prices”. He wrote: “This is especially important for the countries of the Eastern Caribbean that appear to have made little provision for the possibility that the arrangement with Venezuela

Second bulletin issued for businessman wanted for cocaine-in-achar bust


he Customs AntiNarcotics Unit (CANU) has issued another wanted bulletin for Tarachandra Persaud, a businessman and resident of Republic Park, East Bank Demerara, in connection with the cocaine found in achar at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA). The bust was made on February 8. Two persons were arrested and charged for possession of narcotics for the purpose of trafficking. U.S. citizen Winston Blake, 77, and Sadika Neola Odie, 38, of Lot 186 Thomas Street, Kitty, Georgetown, pleaded not guilty to the charge and were remanded to prison. The 20 kilograms of cocaine was discovered during

Tarachandra Persaud

the scanning of the couple’s luggage by CANU ranks. The duo were outgoing passengers destined for the John F Kennedy Airport, New York, on BW Flight 526.

This publication was told that upon arrest, they told ranks that someone had given them the achar as present for persons in the U.S. The cocaine was wrapped in brown tape and shaped to mimic seeds in the tamarind achar. Blake was intercepted with 9.6kg, while Odie was intercepted with 10.45kg, Guyana Times was informed. It was reported that Odie has a U.S. visa, and is a frequent traveller. She was offered the sum of US$10,000 to transport the substance, but was only given US$400 and the plane ticket, a deal she accepted. Anyone who has information on her whereabouts can contact CANU on telephone numbers 227-3507.

athologist, Dr V i v i k a n a n d Brijmohan has confirmed that slain businessman Bridgelall “B Boy” Persaud of Eccles, East Bank Demerara was shot twice. The calibre of weapon was not determined since ballistic tests are still to be conducted on the two warheads recovered at the scene of the shooting. In addition, the cause of death was given as shock and haemorrhage due to multiple gunshot injuries. Police spokesman Ivelaw Whittaker told Guyana Times that a suspect was detained several hours after the shooting, but was subsequently released. He said the police are still to make an arrest and are working on several leads at their disposal. Guyana Times understands that Persaud, on the morning of his death, was on his way to finalise a business deal. According to information reaching this newspaper, the man was carrying two separate bags, one with $1 million and the other with an undisclosed sum. About a week ago, Persaud, 42, was gunned down in the vicinity of Builder’s Lumber Yard, Lombard Street, Georgetown by two gunmen,

Slain businessman Bridgelall Persaud

who escaped with the bag containing $1 million. According to information received, the man was in his blue Toyota Raum, and as he approached the truck park at Lombard Street, two men armed with handguns exited a white car that was parked some distance away, walked up to his vehicle and opened fire. At the time of the shooting, traffic was moving at a snail’s pace due to the frequent congestion in the area. One bullet reportedly struck Persaud in the head while the other caught him in the abdomen. After shooting the businessman, one of the rob-

bers reportedly reached into his car and removed the bag containing the money. They then made good their escape in a waiting vehicle which went through a cross street, then into Princes Street and disappeared. The businessman was rushed to the Georgetown Pubic Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. Based on investigations, the police received information that the two suspects disembarked a white motorcar and went in the direction of the businessman’s vehicle, during which they shot the back glass, causing it to shatter. They then went to the driver’s side of the car and discharged several rounds, shattering the windscreen. One of the bullets reported went through Persaud’s head. Police suspected that the man might have been trailed and was under surveillance by the gunmen for quite some time. Persaud was cremated on Wednesday. He has been involved in the cambio business for the past 20 years, conducting his business in the vicinity of America and Water streets. He leaves to mourn his parents, wife, four children, two brothers and a sister.

Consumers warned against fake Del Monte corn products


he Government Analyst, Food and Drug Department is advising consumers of a counterfeit “Del Monte” gold and white corn product with a gold coloured labelled cap. The product is a semi-rigid container and will be sunken and subsequently deformed with the use of a normal firm finger pressure. According to a release by the department, there is a canning/packaging defect that does not guarantee the integrity of the contents, which may lead to the possible inflow of air (oxygen) and this can give raise to oxidation, resulting in chemical and or microbiological contamination. This is manifested by broken seals, bloating and explosions of cans; thereby putting consumers at risk of poisoning by chemicals. The original product has a silver cap, is hard to the touch and difficult to place an indentation on the can. The manufacturer, Del Monte Foods/Del Monte Brands of San Francisco, U.S.A. has since distanced itself from the gold coloured cap product and has confirmed that the sole authorised distributor of Del Monte Foods/Del Monte brands in Guyana is Toucan Industries Inc of Lot 10, Water Street, Georgetown. The counterfeited product is wholesale in a carton

The original Del Monte corn product

of 24 cans by 432 grams. The carton is labelled “Super Foods” which states that its content is manufactured by Super Foods Inc, of Lot 8 Ruimveldt, Industrial Estate, Georgetown, Guyana.

Remove from system

The department is strongly advising unsuspecting wholesalers and distributors of this product to immediately remove it from their shelves or distribution system and return it to Super Foods Inc or surrender the same item to the food and drug department or any environmental health officer in the region. Consumers are being advised not to use this or any product with the aforemen-

tioned characteristics. The department has commenced an investigation to determine the extract location where the counterfeiting is being done. Containers/consignments are currently being detained for comprehensive examination before items are entered into the country and other products suspected to be counterfeited are also being investigated. The department is calling on the general public to provide them with information of other canned products with the abovementioned characteristics, while they conduct further investigation inclusive of analytical testing within their capability in the interest of consumer safety and protection. Meanwhile, Chief Medical officer, Dr Shamdeo Persaud on Wednesday commended department for their swift approach in addressing this problem. Persaud noted that the action is timely and welcomed by the Health Ministry and he hopes that it is effective. He further noted that the ministry and other stakeholders need to continue to work with importers and distributors to make sure that standards are maintained. He further stated that he is looking forward for the report from the food and drug department.




Infrastructural works on ACIC to be completed next month P

hases one and two of the four-phased multimillion dollar upgrading/expansion of the facilities at The Anna Catherina Islamic Complex (ACIC), Guyana’s leading Islamic centre, is expected to be completed within a month. The works commenced a month ago to better serve the needs of its membership and the hundreds of persons who use these facilities each year. The complex, which is also the centre of Sunni Islam in Guyana, is the venue of more than 80 per cent of the national Muslim programmes in Guyana. It is the headquarters of several organisations and institutions, both local and overseas. According to a release, these first two phases, now in construction, will see the construction of a canopy on the western section of the masjid, just off the main entrance to the complex which is being done, keeping in place, the beautiful architecture of the mosque. This project will also allow the area to be used as an extension of the masjid when the capacity of the mosque is exhausted and persons have to pray or be seated outside of the masjid. A wheelchair ramp will now be constructed to allow physically-disabled persons to gain easy access into the masjid. Phase two of the project entails

The Anna Catherina Islamic Complex (ACIC) said upgrading/ expansion works at its facilities are expected to be completed within a month

the construction of a new annex for ladies praying at the complex. This facility will be fully air-conditioned and carry a large television monitor to allow the sisters to see the imam/khateeb at Juma prayers and other activities held in the masjid. The glass facility will also allow the annex to be used as part of the lecture hall for programmes and sisters can be in the annex and able to view any programme in the lecture hall. The third phase will see the complete upgrading of the famous Akbar Hussain Lecture Hall, where all lectures and other large programmes are held. Most local and international

scholars visiting Guyana have spoken from the podium of this facility and it has been blessed with the presence of some of the greatest Sunni scholars ever to visit this country.


Recently, Maulana, Dr Hisham Kabbani and Maulana, Dr Waffee Mohammed, both spoke at programmes held in this hall. The upgrading of this hall will also allow it to be used as a classroom for the Markaz Al Ihsan Guyana Branch. The final phase of the project will see the expansion of the building currently being used as the sisters’

annex, to an indoor facility capable of hosting weddings, receptions and other private functions. It will be able to accommodate 300 persons seated at tables and will be equipped with all modern amenities in addition to it being fully air-conditioned. Persons interested in the projects are asked to contact ACIC by email: or anna_catherina_islamic_; telephone numbers 2690210, 276-0029/ 641-5948/ 628-4179/ 276-0232/ 6256833; or visit the ACIC Facebook page at   https:// Persons are free to visit the complex for a firsthand view of the expansion projects. The projects are expected to cost the complex over $9 million. The ACIC is one of the few such institutions in Guyana which produces and circulates publicly, its financial statement each year. In addition, its facilities have always been open to the attendance from both Muslims and non-Muslims and it shares a good relationship with all Islamic organisations in Guyana as well as all other religious groups. The programmes and activities at this complex are second to none in Guyana, the release said.

Roy Stone de Tongue Clerk wanna be Town Clerk


ccordin to de good book, when God mek man and woman, He mek dem in He own image. In Guyana, it got nuff people who mek in de image of other people. Some in looks. Some in words. Some in deeds. One does be God and de other does be man, woman, or in-between. Whah ever de God seh goes. Before de Mook, de headitor had nuff gods. One was Burnt Ham. Another was de Heights Man. From since Burnt Ham days, de headitor does have to bow down to he God. Every body know that de headitor God is now de Mook. De Mook tell people that de headitor know good how to bow down. De Mook seh wid he own mouth that de headitor like bow down and stay down. Until he ready to bow down again. Only de Mook and de headitor know whah ever that mean. Roy Stone God is de Mayor-fuh-Life. Whah is true in de good book is true fuh Roy Stone and Green Ham. One in de image of de other. Roy Stone wanna be Town Clerk. De amount of talk Roy Stone got in he mouth, he is already Tongue Clerk. Any ting de Mayor-fuh-Life do, Roy Stone does have to praise it. Never mind de whole s*ity deh under garbage. After all, de Mayor-fuh-Life is Roy Stone God. And no local guvament elections can change that. Roy Stone even gone to court to knock off Carol Sober, who is de real Town Clerk. Now de Stone Man claimin that de Sober Woman ain’t qualified, and that he qualified. And Roy Stone claim to be a communication man. Is only de real God in heaven gone be able to explain how a communication man, who can only communicate fuh de Mayor-fuh-Life, qualify to be Town Clerk! And even God might get a hard time explainin that. Ting-a-ling-a-ling…friend tell friend…mattie tell mattie! But whah is much easier to explain is how a Tongue Clerk and a Mayor-fuh-Life got de whole of GT under garbage!

Race on for F1 tickets with Shell


he race is on for motorists using Shell V-Power gasoline and Shell diesel to have a chance to win the Ultimate VIP Ferrari Experience at

the 2014 Formula 1 Shell Belgian Grand Prix from August 22 to 24, at the iconic Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium. This exciting Shell

V-Power promotion, which was launched on Tuesday afternoon at the Shell Service Station on Vlissengen Road, commenced on February 25 and will run until April 17,

with the grand prize winner receiving a trip for two to Belgium, Grand Prix tickets, and US$1000 in spending money. Sol Guyana Inc General Manager Orlando Boxill said the aim of the promotion was to reward customers with the experience of a lifetime to re-energise the market by sharing the key attributes associated with the Shell brand. He further noted that Sol was passionate about offering quality, high performance fuels and encouraged customers to keep trying Shell V-Power, which features a unique double action formulation designed to actively clean engines and reduce friction to help deliver more power throughout a car life. “We hope that by using our Shell V-Power gasoline and diesel, drivers can improve their driving experience, and now they can also have the ultimate Formula 1 experience soaking up the atmosphere and passion of the Belgian Grand Prix with other Formula 1 fans,” he noted. With every $3000 spent on Shell V-Power gasoline or Shell Diesel, customers will

The race is on for motorists using Shell V-Power gasoline and Shell diesel to have a chance to win the Ultimate VIP Ferrari Experience at the 2014 Formula 1 Shell Belgian Grand Prix from August 22 to 24

receive a coupon which they can complete and drop into boxes provided to be eligible for the grand prize trip. Motorists can also instantly win random giveaways of Ferrari watches by spending $8000 in fuel; while there will be daily $5000 fuel vouchers for entrants receiving calls from 98.1 FM. Sol uses the Shell brand under license across its regional Shell Service Station network and is the sole distributor of Shell’s fuels and lubricants, which are fully backed by Shell’s world class

technical expertise Every summer, Formula 1 enthusiasts converge on Spa for the Belgian Grand Prix. Located 87 miles from Belgium’s capital city of Brussels, Spa is located in an idyllic wooded valley surrounded by hills and many rivers and springs. Famous for its healing cold mineral springs, Spa became famous as early as the 14th century among Royals and wealthy persons who visited the city’s water sources, believing they possessed healthgiving properties.

11 News


Food importers ECHO launches Most Improved warned against School Yard Competition rodent-infested T goods BY SVETLANA MARSHALL


he Government Analyst, Food and Drug Department on Wednesday warned importers, wholesalers and retail operators against flouting the Food and Drug Act of 1941 and its accompanying regulation of 1977. The department said it continues to receive complaints about rodent infestation, flooding and unhygienic storage facilities. Addressing importers, distributors and operators of retail outlets during a seminar at the Regency Suites Hotel, the Government Analyst, Food and Drug Department Director Marlan Cole said the department will not condone activities that are in contradiction of the law. He stressed that the department situated at the Institute of Applied Sciences and Technology (IAST) building, University of Guyana, Turkeyen Campus, will continue to execute its mandates to ensure that food, drugs, cosmetics, medical devices and water that are produced, marketed, distributed, imported and or exported, meet the highest quality standard. Referencing the complaints received, Cole pointed out that storage facilities continue to be of grave concern. “Now, if you are an importer of food, you must have adequate storage facility,” he lamented. Additionally, it was noted that imported goods must have a 75 per cent shelf life. “You cannot import a product that has two years shelf life and when it meets in Guyana, it has about three to four months.” He warned that if imported goods are intercepted, and it is found that they do not have a 75 per cent shelf life, there is a high possibility that they will be stamped “entry refused”.

Another issue placed on the table on Wednesday, was that of labelling. Food produced or imported into Guyana must be adequately labelled, Cole said, noting that there were cases where labels lack critical information. “The food we bring into the country, the food we retail, the food we whole sale, must be properly labelled. In English, it must have a date mark best before end, expiry date and/or use by date,” he lamented.


Some vendors contend that despite food items may surpassing their expiry dates, they can still be used within a three-month period after the date would have been surpassed, but Cole said this practise will not be condoned by the Food and Drug Department. “When a date has gone, be it expiry, best before, be it used by, that is it for us, we consider it expired. There is a perception that three months it is ok. Well, you know today, it is not ok.” He also said that a label must have the origin of the product, the name of the product, list of ingredients and net content. “In Guyana, we cannot allow you to have for sale on our local market a product that we have no idea, or no way of knowing the exact location where it is manufactured. We have to be furnished with that information before such a product entered our local market.” Fire safety requirements for storage facilities, storage conditions, temperature control, cleaning and disinfection and pest control were among topics deliberated during the seminar at the Regency Suites Hotel. The seminar was also attended by Chief Medical Officer, Dr Shamdeo Persaud. (svetlanam@guyanatimesgy. com)

Britain reports significant seizure of cocaine in Caribbean Sea


ritain said cocaine estimated at 60 million pounds (one British pound = US$1.66 cents) had been seized in the Caribbean Sea last month as part of a joint operation with the U.S. Coast Guard. British Armed Forces Minister Mark Francois told Parliament Tuesday that the 1.3 metric tonne of cocaine had been seized during the counter-narcotics operation in the Caribbean Sea on January 22.

“The Ministry of Defence routinely deploys a Royal Navy frigate or destroyer and a Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessel to the Caribbean under the Atlantic Patrol Task (North),” Francois said. “We are also working to improve our co-operation with regional partners,” he said, noting for example, the Royal Fleet Auxiliary has recently concluded an agreement with the U.S. Coast Guard to allow their helicopters to operate from an RFA vessel. (CMC)

he Environmental Community Health Organisation (ECHO) on Wednesday launched its Most Improved School Yard Competition with a tree planting exercise at the Veed-en-Hoop Primary School, West Bank Demerara. The competition seeks to raise environmental awareness among 300 children, in 20 schools; improve the physical condition of these 20 schools; and reduce littering at the selected schools by 30 per cent in six weeks. The launch was attended by a number of officials including Region Three Chairman Julius Faerber, Assistant Chief Education Officer Marcel Huston and Pan American Health Organisation/World Health Organisation (PHO/WHO) representative Adrianus Vlugman.

ECHO Executive Director Royston King

Faerber in brief remarks noted the importance of the event and encouraged the students to treat their surrounding with respect. He said that the Region Three administration welcomes the initiative by ECHO and urged all school to get in-

volved. Huston underscored the need to inculcate good environmental practices among students, pointing out that “we need to raise the level of awareness not only in our schools but also in our local communities”. Vlugman said the youths are the future, and they must be encouraged to pay careful attention to the environment and public health. ECHO Executive Director Royston King said over the years, the Education Ministry, the Regional Democratic Council and PAHO/WHO have always been supportive of the organisation’s efforts. This has influenced the networking of the organisation among schools, not only in that region, but also throughout Guyana. He said that the tree planting exercise was an environmental

as well as nutritional exercise and that all schools should be part of caring for the environment. He noted that the mission of ECHO is to increase the eco-consciousness and social responsibility of its members by providing them access to the natural world, state of the art social media, innovative educational programmes and resources. Through diverse collaborative partnerships, ECHO will develop the next generation of leaders who will have the knowledge, passion and skills to promote and work toward environmental sustainability, King said. ECHO intends to be the largest entity for youth environmental education, connecting the community with youth, offering expansive programmes, and providing resources for schools nationwide.



PSC gives last warning on GT&T “Merchant Service” coming soon anti-money laundering bill – Mobile Money Guyana doing well after one year


he Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) through its mobile money services will soon launch another initiative that will see customers using their phones to shop for personalised items. With much success after the launch of Mobile Money Guyana (MMG) close to a year ago, Managing Director Eshwar Thakurdin explained that the telephone giant will soon launch the new initiative, which will put Guyana abreast with advancing technology. The new initiative called “Merchant Service” will see GT&T customers using their phones to shop at a number of places including pharmacies, supermarkets, hospitals and service filling stations, among others. He explained that phones will be used as a debit card while noting that customers can stay at home and transact their business. “If you have a particular supermarket that you shop at, you can simply ordered your groceries and sit in the comfort of your sofa and pay the bill… is it as simple as one, two, three… once a transaction goes through, a text message comes back to you with a receipt with the relevant information,”

Thakurdin added. This, he noted, will be implemented in an effort to get more people to be security conscious and not carry around huge sums. He reassured customers that even if their phones are lost, persons cannot transact any business unless they have the security pin in their possession. In March, MMG will celebrate one year in operation, and according to the managing director, at the initial stage of the introduction of the MMG, there were some difficulties in getting people to sign up for one reason or the other.

Increase in subscribers

Nevertheless, he stated that after sometime, customers started to buy into the service, and noted that within the past few months, subscribers have increased significantly as customers trust the system and pass the good news on to others. Thakurdin posited that there are now about 90 MMG locations countrywide, with agents in Annai, Mabura, Mahdia and other interior locations. “We have a lot of customers in Georgetown, who have alternative means in doing business, but they chose Mobile Money, all because

of their hectic lifestyles… it takes time to run to the bank or go to a line and wait your turn to pay a bill.” In addition, he said that a large number of customers on East Coast Demerara use the MMG to pay their bills and those in interior locations use it to send money to their friends and family. With respect to charges, the official stated that a cost of $40 to $60 is deducted to pay bills and $100 for prepaid electricity. When sending money, a minimal fee is charged, this is, about $500 for $60,000. He reiterated that there is no need to have Internet access to sign up for Mobile Money, thus making it easier to pay several utility bills, buy Cpoint credit and more so, transfer money. Currently, he noted that anyone who signs up for the service will get $200 in their MMG account. It takes a few minutes to get registered and registration is also free. Also, for the next nine weeks, five winners will be selected per week to win 50 per cent of the actual transactions. MMG enables customers to pay their utility bills, purchase credit and transfer monies hassle-free, using their GT&T handset.


he Private Sector Commission (PSC) in a last ditch effort is appealing to the government and parliamentary opposition parties to rise above their political interests and do what is right for Guyana and its people by passing the anti-money laundering bill. In a statement on Wednesday, the PSC said it had met with Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) Financial Advisor Roger Hernandez last week Friday who visited Guyana with regard to the AntiMoney Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism legislation (AML/ CFT) required to be passed by February, 28. The PSC said having consulted at length with the CFATF advisor, it is now warning that, should Guyana fail to report on February 28, to CFATF that the National Assembly has passed AML/CFT legislation which is compliant with the requirements of CFATF, extremely severe financial counter measures will inevitably be taken against the country by the Financial Action Task Force and International Cooperation Review Group (FATF/ICRG). “The PSC in meetings with all of the political parties concerned has underlined the fact that, because earlier CFATF deadlines have been missed, already a number of international banks have begun to impose financial restrictions with consequential delays on

PSC Chairman Ronald Webster

transacting business with Guyana and that the consequences will be felt by the entire population.” The PSC said over the past few days, it has met with the Alliance For Change (AFC), A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and the government in an effort to urge that they place the country’s interest above partisan political interests and that they must find sufficient common ground to have the required legislation passed.


“The PSC has asked, at these meetings, that recognition be given to the fact that the current legislation under consideration in the parliamentary select committee without further amendments has been identified as being compli-

ant with the requirements set out by CFATF and has urged its passage.” The PSC said it has emphasised at these meetings that failure on the part of Guyana to effectively respond to the requirements of the international community to meet its anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism obligations is not an option for Guyana. The body said too that it has underlined that fact, noted by Hernandez during his visit and independently reported in the media, that, once Guyana has been referred by FATF to the ICRG, severe restrictions will be automatically imposed by international banking, financial institutions and companies conducting financial transactions with Guyana. “The PSC cannot over emphasise the fact, which we have done at all of our meetings with the political parties, that enormous and irretrievable damage will be done to the country’s economy from which it will take Guyana a minimum of two years to recover after having first met its international obligations to legislate and implement measures against money laundering. The PSC can do no more now than appeal to our government and to our parliamentary opposition parties to rise above their political interest and do what is right for Guyana and its people,” the business umbrella body said.

Govt has no data on scale of wildlife smuggling – but acknowledges it as a pervading problem


overnment on Wednesday said that data on the scale and extent of the illegal trade in wildlife is not readily available, but acknowledged that smuggling is a pervading problem across the world. The acknowledgement came in a letter by the Resources and Environment Ministry in response to one by Charessia Ford published in this newspaper. Ford in her letter to the Editor of Guyana Times said that wildlife smuggling is a serious problem and demands serious attention. Several people have over the years been accused of being involved in the illegal business, but not much has ever been done to address the issue. She said that many people fail to realise that the act of smuggling wildlife contributes to the extinction or depletion of a particular species. Additionally, they take the risk of not knowing whether they are aiding in the transfer of disease-infected animals.

According to Ford, Guyana has been blessed with a vast content of biodiversity that not only represents its heritage, but also plays a role in promoting nature-based tourism and academic research. “It is therefore important that proper protocols and consequences be put in place for those who threaten the continued existence of our wildlife species.” The ministry, in its response, said it strongly agrees that the illegal trade in wildlife can have deleterious effects on Guyana’s biodiversity, and as such, views the problem of smuggling very seriously.

Not available

“However, by its very nature, data on the scale and extent of the illegal trade is not readily available. Further, policing vast borders is a tall order for any country.” According to the ministry, wildlife smuggling is a pervading problem which plagues the resources of most countries.

Natural Resources and Environment Minister Robert Persaud

“Indeed, the will of the countries to combat the destructive effects of illegal wildlife trade is seen in the growing membership of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) which now stands at 180 member countries. Guyana is a party to CITES and is obligated to implement the guidelines of the convention.”

The ministry said too that it is cognisant of its responsibility to protect and conserve Guyana’s wildlife resources and this could be seen by the successful piloting and gazetting of the Wildlife Management and Conservation Regulations in November 2013. This is to be followed by the Wildlife Import and Export Bill which deals specifically with the regulation of international wildlife trade (import, export, re-export and introduction from the sea). The Wildlife Import and Export Bill will be tabled in Parliament in the very near future as it is under review by the Parliamentary Council.

Collective effort

“These efforts will put in place measures to address illegal wildlife trade. The efforts to combat the illegal trade in wildlife must be done in a holistic manner with cooperation from other agencies such as the Guyana Revenue Authority (Customs) and the Guyana Police Force,” the ministry

asserted. Currently, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is planning a workshop to sensitise the Guyana Police Force on the regulations; thus, increasing patrolling capacity. The ministry said it will continue efforts to strengthen the capacity of the relevant agencies in combating the illegal wildlife trade. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has said that each year, hundreds of millions of plants and animals are caught or harvested from the wild and then sold as food, pets, ornamental plants, leather, tourist curios and medicine. While a great deal of this trade is legal and is not harming wildlife populations, a worryingly large proportion is illegal — and threatens the survival of many endangered species, WWF said on its website.

Difficult to estimate

While being unable to accurately estimate the cost of the illegal trade, WWF

said that as a guideline, TRAFFIC has calculated that wildlife products worth about US$160 million were imported around the globe each year in the early 1990s. In addition to this, there is a large and profitable illegal wildlife trade, but because it is conducted covertly, no one can judge with any accuracy what this may be worth. The trade involves hundreds of millions of wild plants and animals from tens of thousands of species. To provide a glimpse of the scale of wildlife trafficking, there are records of over 100 million tonnes of fish, 1.5 million live birds and 440,000 tonnes of medicinal plants in trade in just one year. Wildlife trade is by no means always a problem and most wildlife trade is legal. However, it has the potential to be very damaging. Populations of species on earth declined by an average 40 per cent between 1970 and 2000, and the secondbiggest direct threat to species survival, after habitat destruction, is wildlife trade.




Limacol CPL provided US$105.6 million boost to region in 2013 – tournament boosted GDP in all six host countries

University of the West Indies Professor Densil Williams


esearch carried out by Mona School of Business and Management (MSBM), University of the West Indies (UWI) has found that the 2013 Limacol Caribbean Premier League Twenty20 (CPLT20) tournament generated a combined impact of US$105.6 million across the region. Limacol CPL was launched last year to sellout crowds, with over 250,000 spectators attending matches across Antigua, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and St Lucia. Global stars including Chris Gayle, Kieron Pollard, Ricky Ponting and Muttiah Muralitharan took part in the tournament, dubbed the “Biggest Party in Sport”, where franchise team shareholders included Hollywood stars Mark Wahlberg and Gerard Butler. At a time when Caribbean nations have been keen to boost economic growth, Limacol CPL provided a much-needed stimulus. Twenty-six days of carnival-like entertainment, coupled with excit-

ing cricket, generated a significant economic fillip to the host countries given the huge dollar spend over a short period of time. The report has established that last year’s tournament had wide-reaching benefits in the six host countries (Antigua, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and St Lucia) across eight different sectors: general services, transport and communication, government services, hotels and restaurants, manufacturing, health care and insurance, and financial service sector. The competition is estimated to have boosted gross domestic product (GDP) by as much as 0.7 per cent in some countries, a tremendous boost given the fact that some countries hosted just three days of cricket. “With the region still feeling the effects of the global financial crisis, (Limacol) CPL has been

Winners of the 2013 Limacol CPL T20 tournament, the Jamaica Tallawahs

Guyana Amazon Warriors players celebrating the dismissal of Chris Gayle

Spectators at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence

a real shot in the arm for the Caribbean,” UWI’s Professor Densil Williams said. “The tournament could trigger an even bigger revival, because as it grows and the brand becomes more recognised, we anticipate that the impact on the economies will be much greater.” The estimated total economic impact of Limacol CPL 2013 for each host country is as follows: Antigua, US$7.35 million; Barbados, US$9.1 million; Guyana, US$4 million; Jamaica, US$10.65 million; Trinidad, US$12.85 million, St Lucia US$7.3 million. An additional US$54 million was raised by spending across all six countries. As well as providing a financial boost to the region, the competition has also helped to put domestic West Indian cricket back on the map, with the tournament televised across the globe, including U.S.A., India, UK, Australia and New Zealand. Hailed by supporters, players and administrators as an overwhelming success, the Limacol CPL is part of a bigger vision to develop the game of cricket in the region. To demonstrate the long-term development strategy, Limacol CPL granted 60 retainer contracts to local players, in addition to those that are already in existence at the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB).

“These findings back up what people have been telling us for months, that the (Limacol) CPL has been brilliant for the region,” said Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Limacol CPL Damien O’Donohoe. “This year, we’re committed to building on our initial success, with more sold-out crowds, fantastic entertainment and a high standard of cricket.” CEO of WICB Michael Muirhead said the Limacol CPL tournament is “central to our vision of developing and reviving cricket in the region. Last year’s tournament not only put a smile back on the face of our domestic game, but this report shows that it also had a huge benefit for the Caribbean in general,” he said. “I’ve played a lot of T20 cricket, and every competition claims to be the most fun, but (Limacol) CPL really is the ultimate party. With fans coming out in their hundreds of thousands, it’s great to hear that (Limacol) CPL has had such a positive economic impact on the region,” said last year’s winning captain of the Jamaica Tallawahs Chris Gayle. The Limacol CPL returns in July and August 2014 when the Jamaica Tallawahs will defend their title against the St Lucia Zouks, Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel, Antigua Hawksbills, Guyana Amazon Warriors and Barbados Tridents.




Pope worried over Venezuela violence UWI professor sees PetroCaribe backlash P ope Francis said he is concerned about recent unrest in Venezuela, in which at least 13 people have died. Speaking at the end of his weekly general audience, the Pope said he hoped that “violence and hostility will cease as soon as possible”. He called on the Venezuelan people “to promote reconciliation through mutual forgiveness and sincere dialogue”. His appeal came after more than two weeks of anti-government protests, some of which have ended in violent clashes. Venezuela’s Attorney General Luisa Ortega says 13 people have died in protest-related violence, but opposition groups say the number of dead has risen to at least 15 after the death of two more protesters on Monday. And on Wednesday, Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel GarciaMargallo said a Spanish national had been killed during a demonstration in Venezuela’s third-largest city, Valencia. Garcia-Margallo did not say how the Spaniard was

Protesters have blockaded roads in the capital Caracas and in other cities, such as San Cristobal

killed. The recent unrest started in the western state of Tachira and neighbouring Merida at the beginning of February. Students took to the streets, angered by Venezuela’s high crime rate and economic woes, including record inflation and shortages of basic goods. After the arrest of dozens of students, the protests spread to the capital, Caracas. Anti-government protesters have held daily pro-

tests since, especially in their stronghold in eastern Caracas, where they have erected barricades. Roads were also blocked in various locations in the states of Maracaibo, Tachira, Carabobo and Aragua, but the protests seem to have diminished in intensity over the past days.

Last legs

In an interview with BBC Mundo, opposition leader Henrique Capriles blamed President Maduro

for the poor state of the Venezuelan economy. “Nicolas [Maduro] is the one who has to answer for the economic crisis. And if there’s no answer, then this creates a political crisis, and if there’s no answer to the political crisis, the regime falls,” he told BBC Mundo’s Daniel Pardo. Capriles, who narrowly lost to Maduro in April’s presidential election, said the government was “on its last legs”. He said the government was “set on a self-destructive course”. Capriles, who has repeatedly called for peaceful demonstrations and urged his supporters to refrain from erecting barricades, stressed that he “wanted change for my country, but within the constitution”. Meanwhile, supporters of President Maduro have been holding rival rallies over the past weeks to show their backing for the government. President Maduro has called a “national conference for peace” for Wednesday to end the protests, but opposition leaders have already announced they will not attend the meeting. (BBC News)

International sales of Cuban cigars increase


International sales of Cuban cigars in 2013 accounted for revenues of US$447 million, eight per cent higher than expected

nternational sales of Cuban cigars in 2013 accounted for revenues of US$447 million, eight per cent higher than expected, industry executives highlighted during the opening of the 16th International Havana Cigar Festival. Habanos Marketing Director Ana Lopez said despite the impact of the global crisis and the antitobacco measures that are increasingly being adopted in some countries, such as Greece and Spain, sales were regarded as favourable, with reports of increas-

es in the new emerging markets. She explained that the company distributes its products to 80 per cent of possible countries, since U.S. smokers of what is considered the best cigar in the world cannot sample it due to the economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed by Washington on Cuba for over half a century now. On the first day of festival, there was a welcome concert in refurbished facilities of the Club Havana, in the municipality of Playa,

in which the popular orchestra of Juan Formell and Los Van Van, which was recently awarded the Latin Grammy for Musical Excellence, performed. Attending the meeting are entrepreneurs, collectors, sommeliers, tasters, executives, artists, producers, officials and diplomats, who will take part in seminars, tasting and combinations with rum and wine. Currently, Habanos has 27 totally hand-made brands, which are distributed in over 150 countries.


nrest in neighbouring Venezuela can have consequences not only for Trinidad and Tobago (TT) but also for neighbouring Caricom states involved in Petrocaribe and oil energy arrangements with Venezuela, said University of the West Indies (UWI) Professor Anthony Gonzales.  He spoke about the situation after unrest in Venezuela in the last two weeks. UWI’s Institute of International Relations will assess the situation across the Gulf at a panel discussion at UWI. Speakers will include Gonzales, Dr Mark Kirton, Dr Michelle Scobie and Dr Armando Garcia. Gonzales said there were implications for TT and the region arising from the Venezuelan unrest, including whether Venezuelans flee to TT. He noted that since the last Chavez administration, several Venezuelans had come to TT and it had shocked him that some middle-class affected by the policies there had started to flee to TT. He said if it continued and there was more repression and opposition supporters were jailed, more would likely look to come this way. Gonzales did not anticipate any increase in trade with Venezuela and TT due to lack of foreign exchange there. Of great concern, however, he said, was how the unrest could affect neighbouring regional islands which

depended on Venezuela for oil, via the ALBA (Bolivarian Alliance of the Americas) and Petrocaribe arrangements. “They in Venezuela have been under pressure to change it. The subsidy from the Venezuelan source is very crucial and several islands, including Jamaica, St Vincent and recently Grenada, have joined the arrangement, so one needs to watch that and the fallout from it,” Gonzales added.  He told the TT Guardian Venezuela was facing a crisis such as it never faced in the last 15 years since the current government came to power. He agreed deceased president Hugo Chavez, formerly that government’s dominant personality, was gone and with that, various things have been falling apart, including causing division in the Chavez movement and a further deteriorating economic situation even more than it was in Chavez’s time.   “It’s now causing even independent Venezuelans to ask questions, particularly because the economic situation is very bad along with high inflation rates, lack of basic foodstuffs, insecurity, lack of access to foreign exchange and other woes.” he said.  He added: “I think those who govern should try for consensus-building if you don’t have a majority in this situation.” (Excerpt from Trinadad and Tobago Guardian)

Major earthquake, tsunami in the Caribbean worries St Lucia PM

(Caribbean News Now)

Race on to save Caribbean banana industry from climate change S

St Lucia Prime Minister, Dr Kenny Anthony is urging regional countries to take seriously predictions by scientists that the Caribbean could be hit by a major earthquake that could trigger a tsunami


hen Dean, the first storm of the 2007 Atlantic hurricane season, lashed Dominica on August 16, it left behind a trail of destruction, claimed the lives of a mother and son, and decimated the island’s vital banana industry. Seven years later, Dominica’s agricultural sector remains painfully vulnerable to natural disasters and climate variability. Every year, farmers lose a significant portion of their crops and livestock during the six-month hurricane season. “Our first major hurricane was Hurricane David

The banana industry is a valuable source of foreign exchange for several Caribbean countries, including Dominica

in 1979, which ravaged the entire country. Everything went down,” former Prime Minister Edison James,

himself a farmer, told IPS. “Since then we’ve had storms and hurricanes from time to time which have caused

damage of varying extent. Sometimes we have 90 per cent crop damage, particularly bananas and avocados and tree crops generally.” The banana industry is a valuable source of foreign exchange for several Caribbean countries, including Dominica. The island produces approximately 30,000 tonnes of the fruit annually, earning an estimated EC$55 million. The neighbouring islands of St Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines, which together market their fruit under the Windward Islands Banana brand, earn an average of EC$68 million. (Excerpt from Caribbean360)

t Lucia Prime Minister, Dr Kenny Anthony is urging regional countries to take seriously predictions by scientists that the Caribbean could be hit by a major earthquake that could trigger a tsunami. “There has been considerable anxiety and concern about earthquakes in the Caribbean. It is true to say that over the past 24 months, there have been several mini-earthquakes and scientists have warned us that our region should prepare for the big one, meaning at some point there might well be a major earthquake in the region,” Dr Anthony said as he accepted an US$10,000 donation from Chile in the aftermath

of the destruction caused by the low level trough that affected the island over the Christmas Season. “Over the past few days, I have been thinking of asking our emergency organisation to begin to intensify their efforts to sensitise St Lucians about the possibility of a major earthquake and an accompanying tsunami,” Dr Anthony added. Last week, several Caribbean countries including St Lucia and Barbados were jolted by a 6.4 magnitude earthquake with University of the West Indies Seismic Research Unit Director, Dr Joan Latchman indicating this was the “biggest” quake to occur in the Barbados zone since 1980. (Caribbean360)

15 Around the world THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2014

South Africa illegal Ukraine crisis: Yatsenyuk is mining: Bodies PM-designate, Kiev Maidan told found in Roodepoort U T kraine’s new interim government has been presented at Kiev’s main protest camp, the Maidan, following last week’s ousting of President Viktor Yanukovych. The Maidan council named Arseniy Yatsenyuk to become prime minister. The cabinet – to be voted on by MPs today – includes leading activists. The U.S. has offered Ukraine’s struggling economy – which faces default – loan guarantees of up to US$1 billion (£600 million). Meanwhile, Yanukovych has been put on the international wanted list. The fugitive president – whose whereabouts are unclear – is accused of being behind last week’s deaths of more than 100 protesters at the hands of riot police in and around the Maidan. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Washington planned to offer Ukraine the loan guarantees to help stabilise the country’s economy. Kerry also warned Russia it would be a “grave mistake” to embark on any military intervention in Ukraine. The Maidan council – made up of protester groups and activists – announced its nominations at a big gathering of protesters at the camp, which is spread over Kiev’s

Ousted President Viktor Yanukovych

Independence Square. The council proposed Fatherland Party leader Arseniy Yatsenyuk to lead the cabinet until early presidential elections on May 25. Yatsenyuk – a former speaker of parliament and Foreign Minister – has been one of the main opposition leaders during the protests which first erupted in late November, 2013.

“We are to undertake extremely unpopular steps as the previous government and previous president were so corrupted that the country is in a desperate financial plight,” Yatsenyuk told BBC Ukrainian. “We are on the brink of a disaster and this is the government of political suiciders! So welcome to hell,” he added. (Excerpt from BBC News)

he bodies of five illegal miners have been found near a disused gold mine in South Africa, emergency workers say. Four men and a woman were discovered by the shaft of a mine in Roodepoort, west of Johannesburg. Their deaths come a week after the high-profile rescue of more than 20 illegal miners trapped underground at an old mine east of Johannesburg. They were arrested after they emerged and are facing charges related to illegal mining. South Africa loses millions of dollars to illegal mining activities annually, officials say. The land around Johannesburg is dotted with disused mine shafts, which attract men from around the region, including Lesotho, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, with the promise of remaining gold deposits. While many are no longer commercially viable, they still contain

enough deposits to attract scores of the region’s city’s unemployed. “It looks like they might have been brought to the surface by their colleagues because we found the bodies outside the shaft,” Emergency Management Services spokesman Robert Mulaudzi told the AFP news agency. Paramedics have not ruled out the possibility of finding more miners trapped underground. A body of another illegal miner was recovered on Sunday in Roodepoort, near where the five bodies were found on Tuesday night. Mining is a vital part of the South African economy and the country is the fourth-biggest gold exporter. According to South Africa’s Department of Mineral Resources, a 2008 study of the gold sector found that an estimated US$509 million (£309 million) in revenue was lost a year as a result of illegal mining. (Excerpt from BBC News)

Uighur professor could face death Syrian forces kill many rebels in Eastern Ghouta sentence in China – lawyer



prominent ethnic Uighur economist is unlikely to receive a fair trial and could face the death penalty after being charged with separatism in China’s far western Xinjiang region, his lawyer said on Wednesday. Beijing police last month detained Ilham Tohti, a professor who has championed the rights of Xinjiang’s large Muslim Uighur minority. Unrest in Xinjiang has killed more than 100 people in the past year, prompting authorities to toughen their stance. Tohti was taken after his detention to Xinjiang’s regional capital Urumqi and on Tuesday his wife was notified of the charges. His case has draw concern from the United States and Europe over human rights abuses. “To a degree, his name has already been black-

Guzailai Nu’er, the wife of Ilham Tohti, speaks as she has an interview with Reuters by a phone from the window of her house in Beijing, January 17

ened in the court of public opinion,” Tohti’s lawyer Li Fangping said by telephone from Urumqi, where he said he has not been allowed to see his client after a month and a half in detention. “We’ll have to wait and see if his trial will be fair. We are not feeling very optimistic.” If found guilty, Li said, Tohti was most likely to receive a sentence between 10 years and life in prison, but China’s criminal code also

provides for the death sentence for separatism. With strategic border regions like Xinjiang and Tibet populated with ethnic minorities, separatism is considered a serious crime. “It includes the possibility (of a death sentence). If there are no other violent circumstances, it should be 10 years to life,” Li said. Tohti’s wife, Guzailai Nu’er, has dismissed the charge as “ridiculous”. (Excerpt from Reuters)

Indian Navy Chief Admiral DK Joshi quits after another submarine fire


n an unprecedented step, Navy Chief Admiral Devender Kumar Joshi resigned on Wednesday, owning “moral responsibility” for warship and submarine accidents over the last six months, including the latest mishap on board submarine INS Sindhuratna off Mumbai. The incident involving INS Sindhuratna that left two officers feared dead and seven sailors injured on Wednesday proved to be

the final trigger for Admiral Joshi’s shock resignation. Equally stunning for the armed forces was its quick acceptance. Admiral Joshi, in his resignation letter, said though the government had reposed faith in his capabilities, it had become untenable for him to continue as Navy chief in terms of accountability. His image as a “nononsense, if slightly impulsive guy” was well known in the corridors of South Block,

but what raised eyebrows all around was the resignation’s prompt acceptance by the UPA government, leading to suggestions that he had “received a nudge or two” from the defence ministry to put in his papers. Though the Navy maintains that only four of the socalled dozen accidents were serious enough to merit attention, Admiral Joshi had run into rough weather with the media as well as the political authority. (Times of India)

yrian government forces have ambushed and killed a large number of Islamist rebel fighters in the eastern outskirts of the capital Damascus, reports say. Syrian state media say 175 died. The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says it has received reports that about 70 died in the fighting in the Eastern Ghouta region. The Observatory, which is close to the rebels, also said about 3300 people had been killed in fighting between rebel factions so far this year. “Some 3300 people have been killed ever since the start of fighting on January 3 between the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant on

one side, and Islamist and other groups on the other,” it said. The deaths came in “car and (other) bomb attacks, suicide blasts and fighting”, it added. The Eastern Ghouta, a collection of rural towns outside Damascus, is a rebel stronghold where Syrian forces are believed to have carried out a chemical weapons attack last year. Some analysts suggest Wednesday morning’s army operation – said to have taken place near Otaybeh village – may have tightened President Bashar al-Assad’s grip on Damascus. Images and footage from the scene showed the bodies of dozens of men – some dressed in military fatigues, others in civilian clothes

– lying on a dirt track in a rural area, and also government tanks and armoured personnel carriers. Lebanese Hezbollah’s alManar TV station reported that the fighters were trying to break out of Eastern Ghouta to join battles in either the town of Deraa or the Qalamoun Mountains. “Acting on information and in a well-organised ambush, our courageous army killed dozens of terrorists, most of them non-Syrians,” said Syrian state television. The Observatory said: “Dozens of Islamist fighters were killed and wounded in an ambush by loyalist troops, with the help of (Lebanese Shia group) Hezbollah.” (Excerpt from BBC News)

Qatar’s foreign domestic workers subjected to slave-like conditions


oreign maids, cleaners and other domestic workers are being subjected to slave-like labour conditions in Qatar, with many complaining they have been deprived of passports, wages, days off, holidays and freedom to move jobs, a Guardian investigation can reveal. Hundreds of Filipino maids have fled to their embassy in recent months because conditions are so harsh. Many complain of physical and sexual abuse, harassment, long periods without pay and the confiscation of mobile phones. The exploitation raises further concerns about labour practices in Qatar in ad-

vance of the World Cup, after Guardian reports about the treatment of construction workers. The maids are not directly connected to Qatar’s preparations for the football tournament, but domestic workers will play a big role in staffing the hotels, stadiums and other infrastructure that will underpin the 2022 tournament. Our investigation reveals: • The Philippine Overseas Labour Office (POLO) sheltered more than 600 runaway maids in the first six months of 2013 alone. • Some workers say they have not been paid for months. • Many housemaids do

not get days off. • Some contracts and job descriptions are changed once the workers arrive in Qatar. • Women who report a sexual assault can be charged with illicit relations. The non-payment of wages, confiscation of documents and inability of workers to leave their employer constitute forced labour under UN rules. According to the International Labour Organisation, forced labour is “all work which is exacted from someone under the menace of any penalty and for which the said person has not offered himself voluntarily”. (Excerpt from The Guardian)




Caribbean & Latin America

Repsol agrees US$5B Argentina Angola: Isabel Dos Santos’ diamonds and husband compensation


panish oil company Repsol has agreed a US$5 billion (£3 billion) settlement with Argentina over the seizure of its assets there. Argentina nationalised Repsol’s stake in the country’s biggest oil firm, YPF, in 2012, stripping Repsol of nearly half its annual output. The Spanish firm had been demanding US$10.5 billion in compensation. Although the amount agreed is half that figure, Repsol said it was a positive move as it would end le-

gal uncertainty and give the firm a financial boost. “I think to finally reach a friendly agreement on this contentious issue that has taken two years is extremely positive,” said Antonio Brufau, Repsol’s chairman. “As far as we are concerned, from a financial point of view, we have started a new chapter where we are stronger.” Argentina will pay Repsol using U.S. dollar-denominated government bonds, which the Spanish firm can sell at

any time. The move is also expected to help Argentina attract foreign investment in its shale oil and gas reserves, which are among the world’s largest. YPF produces about a third of Argentina’s oil and a quarter of its gas. The country has been keen to develop the Vaca Muerta shale formation – a key YPF asset – but has so far struggled to attract investors, not least due to the uncertainty over the legal proceedings with Repsol. (BBC News)

North America


sabel dos Santos, the billionaire daughter of the Angolan president, is the main beneficiary of the diamond trade in Angola. This involves simple arrangements in Angola, and more sophisticated ones abroad. Forbes magazine recently published an article in which the author investigates the partnership set up by Isabel dos Santos, through her husband Sindika Dokolo, and the Angolan state for the acquisition of the Swiss jeweller De Grisogono. This brand is known to be the favour-

ite choice of movie stars and fashion celebrities including Sharon Stone and Heidi Klum. Maka Angola expands on this investigation and puts it in context. On February 27, 2012 a Maltese-registered company, Victoria Limited, acquired 72.5 per cent of De Grisogono Holding SA. The shareholding soon increased to 75 per cent. A press statement by De Grisogono founder Fawaz Gruosi at the time when the shares were sold said the deal was worth more than US$100

million. The same day, a company called Victoria Holding Limited acquired 17.2 per cent of Grisogono Holding SA, in exchange for a 20.87 per cent shareholding in its subsidiary, Victoria Limited, granted to Fawaz Gruosi, who at the time was De Grisogono’s major shareholder and president. As part of the deal, Victoria Holding bought the CHF 63 million (Swiss francs) debt with the Swiss banks UBS, Banque Cantonale Vaudoise and Banque Cantonale de Genève. (allAfrica)

Middle East

Target warns data breach could ABB wins US$160M Kuwait contract hurt future profit


arget Corp warned that costs tied to a cyber attack that affected tens of millions of shoppers could hurt its results in the first quarter and beyond, but shares rose as its full-year outlook was better than some investors had feared. The third-largest U.S. retailer reported a 46 per cent drop in net profit in the crucial holiday quarter and reported US$61 million in costs related to the breach. It did not provide an estimate on

future expenses related to the cyber attack, though it said they “may have a material adverse effect” on results of operations through the end of the current year and beyond. Target shares rose 4.8 per cent to US$59.25 in late morning trade as company executives began an analyst conference call. It was the first time the Minneapolisbased retailer had faced Wall Street since the breach, which led to the theft of about

40 million payment card numbers and 70 million other records. “It is going to take some time for this to heal,” said Sean Naughton of Piper Jaffray, who estimates that transactions were down “in the high single digits” in the weeks after the breach was disclosed. The retailer said it sees first-quarter profit of 60 cents to 75 cents, excluding expenses related to the data breach and other items. (Reuters)


wiss industrial conglomerate ABB has won a contract worth US$160 billion from Kuwait’s Ministry of Electricity and Water (MEW) to construct two substations in the northern region of the country. The substations will aid the expansion of oil fields in the northern region of Raudhatain and will support the Gulf state’s long-term vision in raising its crude output, ABB said in a statement.

The company added that the order, which was for turnkey projects, was booked in the fourth quarter of 2013. ABB said that the substations are scheduled to be completed by 2016. Kuwait, whose crude oil reserves account for 10 per cent of global reserves, has been investing significantly in its power infrastructure. The Gulf country is also planning to raise its crude oil production from the current level

of 2.9 million barrels per day (bpd) to four million barrels per day by 2020. But despite such ambitions, Kuwait has been unable to raise its production capacity till date due to out dated technology and periodic power outages. Earlier this year, three oil refineries in the country, with a joint capacity of around 930,000 bpd, were shutdown due to a power failure. (Gulf Business)


NZ dollar little changed on light Ukrainian currency hits 10-year low data flows Europe


kraine’s currency, the hryvnia, has fallen to a new low of 10 to the U.S. dollar. The currency’s decline reflects political upheavals and longer-term persistent economic weakness. But it is also likely to aggravate those underlying problems and adds to Ukraine’s need for international financial assistance. The pressure is on the West and the International

Monetary Fund (IMF) to help, as Russia seems unlikely to. Even before the recent political upheavals, Ukraine’s economic performance was dismal. The economy is still smaller than it was in 1992, in the early days of post-Soviet independence. But the political crisis has aggravated the country’s long standing problems and the falling value of the currency is one of the consequences. And it has been a sharp fall, 18 per

cent so far this month alone. The central bank has been making some efforts to stem the decline, by using its foreign exchange reserves to buy hryvnia. At best, it has slowed the loss of value, but at the expense of running those reserves down to dangerously low levels. One rough and ready rule sometimes used is that a country should have enough reserves to pay for three months of imports. (BBC News)

Market statistics Gold Prices – Guyana Gold Board

Cambio Rates

Fixed as at July 24, 2013 Calculated at 94% purity

Bank of Guyana Cur






















Indicators as on February 25, 2014 Live Spot Gold

USD Per Once










London Gold Fix





1340.00 803.12 975.33

1331.75 799.90 973.64



1332.75 798.53 969.48

1339.00 801.03 973.25

Indicators Crude Oil

Price Silver


US$ per barrel

$109.51 USD per Ounce

$21.22 $1424.00

Change %

-1.03 Change %

-0.68 -12.00


he New Zealand dollar was little changed as a light data week keeps investors wary of testing recent ranges. The kiwi traded at 83.27 U.S. cents at 17:00h in Wellington from 83.32 cents at 08:00h and 83.33 cents on Tuesday. The trade-weighted index was 78.16 from 78.20. Traders remained wary of breaking recent ranges in the middle of a week with little new data, ahead of U.S.

Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen’s testimony before legislators on Friday last and U.S. employment figures next week. An exceptionally harsh winter is weighing on U.S. economic output. Investors are also awaiting the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s policy expected move to start raising interest rates at the March 13 monetary policy statement. “The market is suffering from an acute lack of local

Investors' guide

data after the G20 at the start of the week,” said Stuart Ive, a senior client adviser at OMF in Wellington. “I don’t think the kiwi’s going to significantly go too far either way at the moment.” U.S. new home sales data for January will attract some attention when they are released, though the winter conditions are expected to have dented turnover in the month. (NZ Herald)

Tips for protecting your intellectual property


very great business starts with a “perfect” idea. In the fast moving, dog-eat-dog world of corporate business, however, ideas are stolen, duplicated and imitated as soon as they are conceived. If you have that million dollar idea, how can you go about protecting it while still attracting the attention of prospective investors? Your first step, before presenting your idea to any companies or investors, is to hire a lawyer experienced in patent laws for your industry. Have this lawyer help you patent your idea, if applicable, which is a time consuming and expensive process.

Depending on the complexity of the idea, it can cost you $1000 to $100,000. Patents generally take over two years to clear and last approximately 20 years once in effect. As your patent clears, instruct your lawyer to write a nondisclosure agreement, which forces companies to promise they won’t copy your idea, under penalty of litigation. Penalties should be strict but fair, as to not frighten off investors. Penalties in nondisclosure agreements are usually monetary. Be aware, however, that companies often have their own teams of lawyers whose sole purpose is to circumvent nondisclosure agreements

and patent laws, modifying your design just enough to avoid litigation. In this case, your lawyers can first serve a cease-and-desist letter, followed by a lawsuit, if the company does not cease production. Taking on an alleged copycat in court can be extremely costly and time consuming. In many cases, the court will not rule in your favour unless you can prove monetary damages as a result of the copycat’s actions, which can be difficult if your product’s sales have been rising. This can also be difficult to prove if your idea is still in the nascent phase, and has still yet to turn a profit. (Business Dictionary)

Business concept – Null hypothesis

Last: 16198.41

Changes: +18.75

% Change: +0.12



Low: 16155.86

% YTD: -2.28

52Wk Hi:16174.51

52 Wk Lo: 12471.49

A proposition that undergoes verification to determine if it should be accepted or rejected in favour of an alternative proposition. Often the null hypothesis is expressed as “There is no relationship between two quantities.” For example, in market research, the null hypothesis would be “A 10 per cent increase in price will not adversely affect the sale of this product.” Based on survey results, this hypothesis will be either accepted as correct or rejected as incorrect.



thursday, february 27, 2014|

Woman found murdered in cemetery Young biker killed

in Linden accident



he body of a teenage girl suspected to have been raped and strangled was found in the Paradise Cemetery, East Coast Demerara under a tree on Wednesday evening. The discovery was made about 17:30h. Patricia “Catty” Young, 19, formerly of Plaisance, East Coast Demerara was found with her underwear off; her skirt pulled to her stomach; and the top she was wearing tied around her beck. Her boyfriend whose name was given as “Jamal” was taken into police custody minutes after the gruesome discovery. According to information received, the teenager and her boyfriend have been living together for more than a year, a stone’s throw away from where her body was discovered. She reportedly left home on Sunday just after midday to join her friends in the city to witness the Mashramani Costume


Dead: Patricia 'Catty' Young

ing person’s report and told them about the slipper. The police reportedly accompanied the young man to the area where he found the slipper and after a few minutes of searching the area, the teenager’s body was found. Kwesi Young, the uncle of the dead teen told Guyana Times that the young man went to his home

Detectives at the murder scene

and Float Parade, but did not return home. Her boyfriend, after she did not show up, began inquiring of her friends as to her whereabouts, but no one knew where she was. It was until Wednesday afternoon, he found a slipper belonging to the young woman and went straight to the Vigilance Police Station where he lodged a miss-

on Wednesday and told him that his niece was missing. He said that they assisted in searching for the young woman, but came up empty -handed. The distraught uncle stated that after searching for a while, they decided to use the clue of the slipper and went to the burial ground where the woman's partially decomposed body was discovered in what ap-

The dead woman’s uncle, Kwesi Young, talking to media operatives

peared to be a shallow grave under a tree.

Strong young lady

He is of the opinion that his niece was probably returning home late Sunday evening when the perpetrator(s) carried out the attack. He said that his niece was a strong young lady and felt that it had to be more than one person involved. He admitted that the young woman and the suspect would fight often, but does not believe he is capable of committing the act. “I cannot say if he was a part of it,” the uncle stated. Young added that his niece worked at Kentucky Fried Chicken, but left about a year ago and was employed at Bettencourt at the time of her demise. Patricia’s parents died in 1997 and she lived with her grandmother and relatives in Plaisance before she moved to Paradise with Jamal. Persons in the area claimed that they did not hear any screams on the night the young lady met her death. A co-worker who was at the scene told Guyana Times that she spoke with the teenager about 21:00h on Sunday via social media, WhatsApp. She recalled receiving a text from the young woman inquiring from her if she

was going out, to meet her on Mash night, but she did not take up the offer. She said that Patricia was supposed to work on Monday morning, but she did not turn up and she attempted to contact her, but the phone went to voicemail. The young lady, who asked to remain anonymous, stated that while at the office on Monday, several persons called to find out if Patricia was at work but she did not recognise the voices. However, she knew something was amiss when the teenager’s boyfriend turned up at the business place inquiring about her. The woman said that she questioned him thoroughly and all his answers were sincere. “We tried to call her phone but it was the same thing… we called other friends but they did not see her,” she added. In tears, she added that she was at work when she got the devastating news and rushed to the scene. One resident said that the area is in dire need of street lights and the lack thereof might have contributed to the young woman’s demise. The woman’s body was taken to the Lyken’s Funeral Home and is awaiting a post-mortem examination. The former Plaisance Community High School student leaves to mourn her five siblings.

Canadian intercepted with cocaine in achar


wo weeks after a Guyanese woman and an American man attempted to sneak out cocaine in achar; a 41-yearold Canadian national was intercepted on Wednesday morning at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) trying to smuggle out the illicit substance in a similar manner. The woman was intercepted by members of the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU) as she was checking-in on a Caribbean Airlines Flight, BW 525 destined for Canada about 05:00h. CANU head James Singh confirmed that the woman had seven kilos of cocaine stashed in several packets of achar.

According to information received, while the woman’s suitecase was being scanned, a blackish substance in the achar was noticed, and taking into consideration the last incident, the suitecase was pulled and searched, leading to the discovery of small packets containing the cocaine. Ranks informed the woman of their suspicions and she was escorted to the search area where she was interrogated. She was then taken to CANU headquarters where the cocaine was extracted and when weighed amounted to seven kilograms. Earlier in the month, Winston Blake, 78, who stayed at Meadowbrook, South Ruimveldt,

Georgetown, was intercepted with 9.6kg of cocaine while Guyanese, Sadika Odie, 38, of Kitty, Georgetown was intercepted with 10.45Kg of cocaine extracted from several packets of achar at the CJIA. This publication was told that upon the arrest of the couple, they told CANU ranks that someone had given them the achar to take relatives of friends. However, after closely inspecting the achar that was stored in zip lock bags, it was clear that the perpetrators used brown scotch tape to wrap the cocaine in balls and then place them into the tamarind achar to make them look like seeds. Blake and Odie were outgoing passengers in a

U.S.-bound BW 526 flight to John F Kennedy Airport. While their luggage was being scanned, the illegal substance was spotted and this prompted the ranks of the drug enforcement unit to question the man and woman. During the interrogation, the achar was searched and the drug was found, but the couple denied having any knowledge about the cocaine and claimed that they were given it to drop off to relatives of their friends. A few names have been called and CANU is pursuing them. The duo were subsequently charged and remanded to prison for the offence of possession of narcotics for the purpose of trafficking.

young auto dealer of Linden Wednesday night died when his motorcycle crashed into the back of a truck at Kara Kara, Linden. Dead is Lloyd Smith called Junior Stboi. He was killed when he reportedly lost control of his CBR motorcycle as he tried to avoid colliding with a truck. According to reports the young biker was riding along the Linden Soesdyke Highway in the Kara Kara area at Mackenzie when he reportedly overtook a car and lost control of his motorcycle, slamming into the back of a truck.

Dead: Lloyd Smith

He pitched off of the motorcycle and came crashing on to the roadway. He died on the spot.

Tackling food losses and waste in the Near East and North Africa


educing high food losses and waste will be critical to improving food availability, achieving food security, and reducing stress on natural resources in the fast-growing Near East and North Africa (NENA) region, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said. The region relies on imports to meet over 50 per cent of its food needs, yet it loses up to a third of the food it produces and imports, including about 14-19 per cent of its grains, 26 per cent of all fish and seafood, 13 per cent of its meat, and 45 per cent of all fruits and vegetables. FAO has proposed a Regional Strategic Framework for reducing food losses and waste, which was discussed at the agency’s February 24-28 February Regional Conference for the Near East, taking place in Rome. Governments have made the commitment to reduce food losses and waste in the region by 50 per cent in 10 years. Resource and labour losses in their countries translate into lower economic returns for agri-businesses and farmers and higher food import bills. Eleven per cent of the region’s population suffers from chronic hunger, many of them vulnerable rural families who depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. Research suggests their livelihoods could benefit from support in reducing food losses and waste throughout the food value chain. FAO’s research shows a lack of sufficient and accurate regional information on how food is lost and wasted and why, and the strategic framework recommends data-gathering as one of the priority areas for action. Still, information available on the Near East and North Africa region shows that roughly 44 per cent of food losses and waste occur during handling, processing and distribution of food, while waste at the consumption stage is estimated to be 34 per cent, most of it in ur-

ban areas. The Regional Strategic Framework calls for the full participation and cooperation of a broad range of institutions and stakeholders to reduce food losses and waste all along the food chain in the 19 FAO member countries, as well as a heightened public awareness campaign to stem food waste by consumers. The strategic framework also points to recent experiences and accomplishments in the region, including national and regional consultations; the adoption of national initiatives to reduce food losses and waste in Egypt and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; and, significant measures that have also been taken in some countries of the region, such as Iraq, Iran, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Tunisia.


Long before food reaches the consumer’s home, losses in quantity and quality occur due to poor farming techniques, a lack of cold storage and transport, high exposure to heat and sunlight at open-air markets; non-existent or inappropriate policies; and, regulations and gaps in institutions and coordination. Regional Conference participants have endorsed the Regional Strategic Framework, recommending the following broad areas for action: improving data gathering, analysis and information; raising public awareness and promotion of good practices among farmers, consumers and those who handle food all along the supply chain; developing policies and regulations and strengthening collaboration and coordination among people, institutions and countries; promoting investment and engaging the private sector. The proposal was drawn up in keeping with FAO’s Global Initiative on Food Losses and Waste Reduction, or SAVE FOOD, but is tailored to socioeconomic and other characteristics of the NENA region.





By Bernice Bede Osol

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22Jan. 19) Positive changes lie ahead. Discuss your future and your dreams with your loved ones. Now is an opportune time to seal contracts, close deals and finish up any incomplete assignments.


AQUARIUS (Jan. 20Feb. 19) You will be overwhelmed by the tasks expected of you. Discipline and courage will help you live up to your obligations. Be proud of your accomplishments.


PISCES (Feb. 20-March 20) Don’t let uncertainty stop you from making necessary changes. Personal growth requires you to take one step at a time. Once you consider the pros and cons, you won’t be afraid to move forward.

PEANUTS ARIES (March 21-April 19)


You will become involved in an interesting new relationship. Unusual rewards will come your way as a result of offering your services to a worthy cause or deserving individual.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20) By concentrating on love and the fun things in life, you will feel good about your future. Don’t let negative people drag you down.

CANCER (June 21July 22) You will make substantial progress if you listen to advice given to you. With the relevant information, you will be able to take control of the situation and forge ahead with confidence.

LEO (July 23Aug. 22) Money matters will weigh heavily on your mind. Pay off outstanding debts and remind others of what they owe you. You will be able to relax once you have a clean slate.

VIRGO (Aug. 23Sept. 22) By making some inexpensive and simple changes around the home, you can reduce your stress and calm your nerves. A comfortable and relaxing environment is essential to your health and well-being.

LIBRA (Sept. 23Oct. 23) Don’t feel as if life is passing you by. Find an activity that motivates you to participate. Being active will renew your energy and help you rediscover your passion for living.

SCORPIO (Oct. 24Nov. 22) Someone may be withholding information. Ask direct questions that will reveal hidden secrets. Once that is determined, an answer will be found that will satisfy everyone.

Wednesday's solution GEMINI (May 21June 20) Opportunities are coming your way. Indecisiveness or hesitation will end up being costly. Relentless pursuit of your goals and keen concentration will enable you to achieve the desired results.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 23Dec. 21) Attend meetings or social gatherings conducive to learning valuable information about something you aspire to. An expert will provide you with a practical plan for advancement.

news 19


Hindus observe Maha Shivraatri today

THURSday, february 27, 2014


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he Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha is urging Hindus across the country to observe Maha Shivraatri today in a deep spiritual atmosphere. In a statement, the Sabha said Maha Shivraatri is a deeply spiritual occasion and will be celebrated on Chaturdasi or the 14th day in the Hindu month of Phalgun. “It is a day consecrated for the worship of Bhagwan Shiva,” Sabha President, Dr Vindhya Vasini Persaud said, calling on all Hindus to observe this sacred day by attending mandirs across the country. Devotees typically perform puja to Bhagwan Shiva from 06:00h. Devotees are absorbed during the day of Shiv Raatri in vigorous fasting and meditation. There should be abstinence from all negative influences including alcohol. Shivraatri is not the birthday of anyone; rather it is an opportunity for aspirants to do homage to Shankar Bhagwan in His Sakaar and Nirakaar or Sagun and Nirgun Roop – personal and impersonal; with form or without. Large numbers of devotees worship Shiva through the medium of the Shiva murti and the lingam. Shiva is unchanging consciousness. He is the destructive aspect of the trinity or trimurti. In dissolution, there is automatic re-creation. He is the Supreme reality. He is eternal, formless and omnipresent. He is not limited by time. Shiva is infinite bliss and intelligence. Shiv Raatri emphasises the omniscience of God and the Shiva Lingam or the shapeless stone used in His worship connotes his formlessness. The Lingam unlike other images has nei-

Hindus across the country are urged to observe Maha Shivraatri in a deep spiritual atmosphere

ther head nor limb. This symbol denotes something which has neither beginning nor end. The Lingam is used as an aid to bring together mental comprehension of Shiva, who is the motivating power within. This symbol, like others used in puja is simply the means not the end. It will be recalled that Lord Rama consecrated the lingam and did puja before He crossed to Lanka for combat with Ravan.

Conqueror of anger

The murti represents Bhagwan Shiva in deep contemplation. He sits on a tiger’s skin symbolising that he has conquered anger. The snake around his neck is a reflection of the kundalini shakti (internal power). From the damaru (a small two-headed drum) held in his hand emanated Om (sacred sound) and the Sanskrit language. The three-layered chandan on his forehead reminds us of the trimurti – Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. In the Maha Shiv Puran, the Panch Akshara Mantra is provided for chanting and it is done in the form of

akhand (incessant) Kirtan and thus all the devotees will be absorbed in the chanting of “Om Namaha Shivaya”. Hindus believe in the existence of one God and does not support a multitude of gods. Bramha, Vishnu and Mahesh constitute the trinity – God’s creation, sustenance and dissolution. Bhagwan’s Shiva worship is prolific and worshippers of Shiva Shankar are profoundly committed in puja to the great God on shivraatri. Maha Shivraatri will be observed today and concludes on Friday. The Sabha is also calling on all affiliates and mandirs to organise appropriate satsangh to commemorate the occasion. “The Sabha prays that Bhagwan Shiva showers his infinite blessings on all and our beautiful country.” Satsanghs will be held at Dharmic Rama Krisha Mandir, Barr Street, Kitty at 17:30h and the Shri Krishna Mandir, Campbellville at 19:00h. Puja will be conducted by Pandit Jagmohan Persaud, he will be assisted by Pandit Bramanad Prashad.

GDF to cooperate with Rodney inquiry

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From left to right: Deputy Chief-of-Staff Kemraj Persaud, Hugh Denbow (facilitator), Senior Council Seenauth Jairam, Queen’s Council Jacqueline Samuels-Brown, Sir Richard Cheltenham and Chiefof-Staff, Brigadier Mark Phillips at defence headquarters, Base Camp Ayanganna


he Guyana Defence Force (GDF) has assured the members of the Walter Rodney Commission of Inquiry (CoI) panel that they will cooperate and assist in any way possible during the probe into the assassination of the late historian. The commissioners on Tuesday paid a courtesy call on Chief-of-Staff (CoS), Brigadier Mark Phillips at his office, Defence Headquarters,

Base Camp Ayanganna. Queen’s Counsel, Sir Richard Cheltenham from Barbados is chairing the commission. The other two members of the commission are Senior Counsel Seenauth Jairam from Trinidad and Tobago and Queen’s Counsel Jacqueline Samuels-Brown from Jamaica. Brigadier Phillips congratulated the commissioners on their appointment, citing that the CoI was long awaited by

the Guyanese people. During discussions, Phillips and his team, which included Deputy CoS Colonel Kemraj Persaud and other senior officers, presented a synopsis of the intelligence apparatus of Guyana, and, to this end, assured the members of the commission of the force’s assistance and cooperation. The members of the commission also highlighted their commitment to bringing closure to the matter.


Wednesday, FEBRUARY 26, 2014

Bangladesh v India, Asia Cup, Fatullah…

Kohli century seals another chase T

he Fatullah crowd waited for Virat Kohli to reach his 19th ODI hundred, and started heading for the exit soon after he reached the landmark. India still needed 77 from 12.3 overs in a chase that, if statistics were anything to go by, still had some juice remaining. They had every right to leave, however, as the India captain made 136 and easily brought out a six-wicket win. Bangladesh’s bowling attack hardly put a dent in the record 213-run thirdwicket partnership, barely creating a chance that could keep the spectators on their seats for the entire game. Instead, the ground had almost emptied by the time India completed the win in 49 overs. This, after Bangladesh had posted 279 for 7 with captain Mushfiqur Rahim making 117. This was the just the second time in ODI history that both captains scored hundreds in the same game. While Mushfiqur’s century was about redemption after a series of controversies, Kohli ensured he wasn’t trumped by his opposite number, particularly in a situation which favours him. But the crux of the chase was with Kohli’s regular mastery of the situation. He neither panics, nor takes things too lightly. His batting has the assuredness that every international team craves for, particularly when they have to chase high totals. Kohli has now equaled Brian Lara in the all-time list of hundreds in ODIs. Thirteen of the 19 have come while chasing. Only once has he failed, incidentally his last hundred earlier this year against New Zealand. This one ended on 122 balls, having struck 16 fours and two sixes. Against a team that had thrice previously failed to defend scores in excess of 250 against India, this in-

Virat Kohli savours his 19th ODI hundred

nings and the dominance under the lights was inevitable. Very much like most of Kohli’s one-day centuries these days. From 54 for 2 in the 13th over, Kohli took advantage of every loose ball that came his way, be it deliveries sliding down the leg side or those gone wide. When Bangladesh stopped giving him room or letting him curl his forearms, he unleashed the cover drive time and again. The rasping speed takes it past cover as soon as the fielder gets into position, and by the time the longoff fielder has taken a few steps to his left, the umpire signals four. He reached his fifty off 48 balls in the 25th over, and his hundred off 95 balls in the 38th over. It was that easy. Ajinkya Rahane held it together at the other end, never giving away any advantage as he ensured Kohli was fed as much strike as possible. He made 73 off 83 balls, his fourth ODI fifty. The first two wickets, through Abdur Razzak and Ziaur Rahman, were all Bangladesh could muster when the game was still in their grasp. Left-arm spinner Razzak is Bangladesh’s

most successful bowler in the second innings, but he went for 55 in his 10 overs, not beating Kohli and Rahane regularly enough. Mashrafe was decent without any menace while Sohag Gazi continued his ordinary form, going wicketless in his first six overs,

only picking up Rahane towards the end. His first delivery to Kohli was a rank long-hop, a nightmare which only Varun Aaron could relate to. Mushfiqur’s second ODI century, and his 133run third wicket stand with Anamul Haque gave Bangladesh a competitive total. The pair came together in the 13th over after Shamsur Rahman could not handle Shami’s extra bounce in the sixth over and Mominul Haque had clumsily got himself stumped off an inside edge off R Ashwin. Anamul was more aggressive at the start of the partnership. He was particularly harsh on Aaron, picking up 34 runs off 19 deliveries from the pace bowler. Mushfiqur recovered his scoring rate at the latter end of the stand. Their partnership was the highest by a Bangladeshi pair against India, and the eighth century stand against today’s winners. (Cricinfo)

SCOREBOARD Bangladesh innings (50 overs maximum) Anamul Haque† b Aaron 77 Shamsur Rahman c & b Mohammed Shami 7 Mominul Haque st †Karthik b Ashwin 23 Mushfiqur Rahim* c Sharma b Mohammed Shami 117 Naeem Islam c Ashwin b Mohammed Shami 14 Nasir Hossain c †Karthik b Mohammed Shami 1 Ziaur Rahman c Aaron b Kumar 18 Sohag Gazi not out 3 Mashrafe Mortaza not out 1 Extras: (b-1, lb-3, w-12, nb-2) 18 Total: (7 wickets; 50 overs) 279 Fall of wickets: 1-16 (Shamsur Rahman, 5.1 ov), 2-49 (Mominul Haque, 12.1 ov), 3-182 (Anamul Haque, 36.6 ov), 4-231 (Naeem Islam, 43.6 ov), 5-241 (Nasir Hossain, 45.4 ov), 6-270 (Ziaur Rahman, 48.5 ov), 7-276 (Mushfiqur Rahim, 49.3 ov) Bowling: B Kumar 8-1-41-1,

Mohammed Shami 10-1-504, VR Aaron 7.5-0-74-1 (2-nb, 3-w), R Ashwin 10-1-50-1 (5-w), RA Jadeja 10-0-37-0, AT Rayudu 3-0-17-0, V Kohli 1.1-0-6-0 India innings (target: 280 runs from 50 overs) RG Sharma b Ziaur Rahman 21 S Dhawan lbw b Abdur Razzak 28 V Kohli* b Rubel Hossain 136 AM Rahane c sub (Imrul Kayes) b Sohag Gazi 73 AT Rayudu not out 9 KD Karthik† not out 2 Extras: (lb-1, w-9, nb-1) 11 Total: (4 wickets; 49 overs) 280 Fall of wickets: 1-50 (Dhawan, 11.2 ov), 2-54 (Sharma, 12.5 ov), 3-267 (Kohli, 45.4 ov), 4-272 (Rahane, 47.3 ov) Bowling: Mashrafe Mortaza 9-1-44-0, Rubel Hossain 10-163-1 (1-nb, 1-w), Abdur Razzak 10-0-55-1, Ziaur Rahman 5-020-1, Sohag Gazi 8-0-49-1 (4w), Mominul Haque 2-0-13-0, Naeem Islam 1-0-15-0 (3-w), Nasir Hossain 4-0-20-0 (1-w)

Chelsea held to draw at Galatasaray

Didier Drogba struggled to make an impact against his former Chelsea team-mates


helsea blew a golden opportunity to earn a precious first-leg lead in their Champions League last-16 tie against Didier Drogba's Galatasaray. The Premier League leaders were firmly in command after Fernando Torres's early tap-in gave them a deserved lead. Torres spurned an early second-half chance to double the advantage, before home skipper Selcuk Inan hit the post. But the Blues then conceded a sloppy equaliser as Aurelien Chedjou converted unmarked from close range. Chelsea were aiming to provide a much-needed boost for English clubs following a miserable fortnight which had already seen Arsenal, Manchester City and Manchester United suffer 2-0 losses in their Champions League ties. The Blues avoided an unwanted quadruple by scoring and avoiding defeat, but will feel they should be heading into next month's return leg with a healthy lead. Galatasaray boss Roberto Mancini is the more likely to be content with a draw after his team recovered from a shaky opening half-hour during which the visitors threatened to take control of the tie. The Turkish champions went into the match on the back of a 16-game unbeaten run at the Turk Telecom

Arena and ex-Manchester City boss Mancini set up his team to make the most of their home advantage. But they repeatedly surrendered possession cheaply in the opening stages, while maintaining a dangerous high defensive line that Chelsea's pacy attackers looked to exploit on the break. A trip to Istanbul is still regarded as one of the most uncomfortable in European football, but the home fans were silenced inside the opening 10 minutes by Spain striker Torres. Galatasaray committed several men forward in attack and, after ex-Arsenal right-back Emmanuel Eboue lost the ball, the visitors countered swiftly down the left, Cesar Azpilicueta squaring for Torres to tap into an unguarded net. Chelsea continued to put numbers behind the ball after the opener, while still breaking quickly through attacking trio Eden Hazard, Willian and Andre Schurrle. Brazil midfielder Willian shot straight at home keeper Fernando Muslera, before Torres had another shot blocked by a last-ditch challenge. But the game turned on a tactical substitution midway through the first half by Mancini, pitting his wits against Mourinho, the man who succeeded him at Inter Milan in 2008. (BBC Sport)

Trott set for Warwickshire comeback in April


onathan Trott is set to make his comeback for Warwickshire in April and is determined to force his way back into the England team. The batsman, 32, left England’s Ashes tour with a stress-related illness. But Dennis Amiss, chairman of Trott’s Warwickshire benefit committee, said the player will face Gloucestershire in a friendly and is “raring to go”. “He’s still very hungry,” said Amiss. “He wants to continue succeeding both for Warwickshire and for England.” Trott, who has scored

3,763 runs in 49 Tests for England at an average of 46.95, has been granted time for a family holiday while Warwickshire are on their pre-season tour in Barbados. But he will join up with the squad on their return and has been earmarked to play against Gloucestershire at Edgbaston on April 1 and 2, in the first-class match against Oxford University from April 7 and the Bears’ County Championship opener against Sussex from April 13. Former England batsman Amiss, who was Warwickshire chief execu-

Jonathan Trott

tive when Trott joined the county from South Africa in

2002, has spent time with the player recently and is

encouraged by his state of mind. “He’s doing very well,” Amiss added. “He’s had a great rest, which is very important, and he is raring to go again. “Cricket is his passion and I believe he has qualities, as we’ve seen, to be able to score a mass of runs for Warwickshire to get himself back into the England side and regain his position.” Trott, who scored a century on his England debut in the 2009 Ashes against Australia, has not spoken publically since he left England’s disastrous Ashes tour on November 25, stat-

ing: “I don’t think it is right that I’m playing knowing that I’m not 100 per cent.” Amiss added: “I think it was essentially burnout. The England & Wales Cricket Board has helped him while he has been back. Everybody has given him a lot of help. Rest has been the most important thing.” Trott, who has a oneday average of 51.25 from 68 matches, is understood to have held talks with England & Wales Cricket Board managing director Paul Downton. England’s first home fixture of the summer is a one-day match against Sri Lanka on May 20. (BBC Sport)

thursday, FEBRUARY 27, 2014


Invitational tennis One Dhaka Gladiators owner Assuria tourney starts Friday found guilty of corruption


ne of the owners of Dhaka Gladiators, Shihab Jishan Chowdury, has been found guilty of “being party to an effort to fix” a match in the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) 2013. Six others, including Kent all-rounder Darren Stevens, have been discharged as not guilty by the tribunal investigating alleged corruption in the BPL. Mahbubul Alam and Mosharraf Hossain were also found not guilty by the tribunal, as were Salim Chowdhury, the Dhaka Gladiators owner, Gaurav Rawat, CEO of the Gladiators franchise, and Mohammad Rafique, the bowling coach. Bangladesh batsman Mohammad Ashraful had earlier confessed to being involved in corruption in the BPL, as did one other player, who is yet to be named. The quantum of punishment for Shihab, Ashraful and the other player will be pronounced at a later date. The incident of alleged match and spot-fixing came to light in May 2013 when BCB president Nazmul Hassan confirmed that a Bangladesh player had been questioned by the ICC. Ashraful was the first player to admit to being involved in corruption, after which formal charges were laid against nine individuals, including six players from the Dhaka Gladiators franchise. The BCB decided “not to involve” Ashraful in any kind of cricket until investigations into the matter were complete, and appointed a disciplinary panel, from which an anti-corruption tribunal was formed to probe the issue. The tribunal held a preliminary hearing in November last year and the full hearing of the tribunal

Anthony Downes


Kent all-rounder Darren Stevens is among six people cleared by the BCB tribunal

began in January. The charges against the players were drawn up following an investigation carried out by the ICC’s AntiCorruption and Security Unit. Stevens had been charged for failing to report a corrupt approach during the tournament. Bangladesh cricketers, Mosharraf and Mahbubul had pleaded not guilty against charges of fixing during a preliminary tribunal hearing. Following the tribunal’s ruling, Mosharraf said: “I am absolutely delighted by the verdict. There was a lot of pressure on me, but I feel relieved. Now I will start playing domestic cricket again, try to get a place in the national team. I was never involved in these sort of things, never talked to anyone about this. I just got embroiled. But thanks to the judges, now I can play again.” Stevens said in a statement: “I can assure all of the fans of the Dhaka Gladiators, the people of

Bangladesh and all cricket followers, that I have always played the game of cricket honestly, with integrity and to the best of my ability. I have loved playing cricket in Bangladesh, as well as everywhere else in the world and I hope that I will be allowed to continue to play cricket globally.” The ICC, however, said it was “disappointed” with the outcome of the probe. In a statement issued with the BCB, it said: “The ICC and the BCB have received the determination and are surprised and obviously disappointed with the outcome. Both organisations await the tribunal’s detailed written determination setting out the reasons for the outcome, which will be provided shortly, and will consider it carefully before determining the next steps, including whether to appeal any aspect(s) of the judgment. In the meantime, no further comment will be made by either the ICC or the BCB.” (Cricinfo)

he Guyana Tennis Association (GTA) will serve off its 2014 season with the second annual Assuria Insurance Invitational Classic. The competition, which was created in 2013, is the brainchild of the Surinamese Insurance Company under the management of Dick Wesenhagen, who, being an avid tennis player, made a commitment to sponsor the tournament on an annual basis. It will feature the top four players in each of the main singles categoriesMen’s Singles, Women’s Singles and Men’s Over-35 Singles. The format of the tournament for each category is round-robin. The tournament will be played at the Le Ressouvenir Tennis Club over three weekends- Thursdays to Sundays. It will serve off on Friday and end on March 16. In Ladies Open Singles, the top players are Carol Humphrey, Nicola Ramdyhan, Afruica Gentle and Jamaali Homer. In Mens Open Singles, Anthony Downes, Leyland Leacock, Gavin Lewis and Daniel Lopes will battle for top honour. The Men’s Over-35 will be four-way battle among Godfrey Lowden, Carlos Adams, Harry Panday and Rudy Grant.

Carlos Adams

Carol Humphrey

According to a release from the GTA, Assuria Insurance, under the guidance of new General Manager Clyde Muntslag, has committed to ensuring that the annual tournament is again successful and that it brings out the best in the players. “The tennis fraternity continues to be grateful for sponsorship of a tournament of such high calibre,”

the GTA said. A grand opening ceremony will be held at the Le Ressouvenir Tennis Club at 17:30 hours on Friday February 28. The GTA added, “All players are asked to be present and tennis supporters around the country are asked to come out and support their favourite players and support the development of the sport.”

Rory McIlroy looking forward Preparations in advanced stage to Honda Classic return for RSTC/Shariff horse race meet


ory McIlroy is looking forward to returning to the Honda Classic one year after his controversial withdrawal from the tournament. The Northern Ireland golfer walked off the course midway through the second round last year citing toothache as the cause of his early exit. McIlroy, 24, has described the event as one of his favourites of the year. “Last year I had a tough, forgettable week, but I really can’t wait to get back to the Honda,” he said. McIlroy was defending champion last year when he withdrew from the tournament, initially telling reporters he was in a “bad place mentally” before complaining of toothache. He subsequently apologised for the incident and

admitted he should have battled through the bad form which blighted most of 2013 following his multimillion pound switch to Nike. It took McIlroy until December to register his only win of the season, but he has shown glimpses of his best form already this year - despite a secondround exit from the WGCAccenture Match Play last week - and can also enjoy some home comforts. “It is one of my favourite events of the year and winning in 2012 was an important landmark in my career,” he said. “Having a place in Palm Beach now also gives the tournament a kind of special feeling - nearly like a home event. “Last year, I guess I let frustrations get the better

of me and perhaps should have adopted a more mature approach.” Seven of the world’s top 10 are in the field at PGA National, with Tiger Woods, Adam Scott and Phil Mickelson returning to action after opting to miss last week’s match play event in Arizona. Jason Day, Justin Rose and Dustin Johnson are the players to miss out, with Day taking a break after his WGC-Accenture victory which lifted him to a careerhigh fourth in the rankings, while Rose is again struggling with a shoulder injury. McIlroy has been paired with Masters champion Adam Scott and Billy Horschel, while Graeme McDowell will play alongside Open champion Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler. (BBC Sport)


ith entries topping 50-horse mark, the principals of the Rising Sun Turf Club (RSTC) have already put most systems in place for the club’s traditional Mashramani horse race meet, scheduled for March 9 at Arima Park, West Coast Berbice. Organisers have put together an impressive sevenrace programme with all the big names set to be on show. Organisers have also added a substantial amount of cash and other attractions to the day’s activities that total over $8.5 million in cash awards and trophies. The feature race is classified for horses in the C class category. That event has close to $2 million in prize monies, with the winner set

to cart off with $1 million and a trophy, compliments of Banks DIH Limited over 1400 meters. The other events listed on the day’s card are the Four-year-old race for West Indies maiden and Guyana bred horses, for $400,000 first prize. The F Class event has a similar winner’s prize of $400,000, while the Threeyear-old race is for West Indies and Guyana bred and born horses and the G3 and Lower race, both with a winning prize set at $300,000. There is a race for I Class horses, with the pole position takings set at $250,000. The other event on the programme is for horses classified J and Lower and will see the winner receiving $180,000. Meanwhile, Club

President Fazal Habibulla told Guyana Times Sport on Wednesday via telephone that preparations for the event are in the advanced stages. Race time is 12:30h and admission to the venue is $1,000. Persons  interested in being a part of the day’s action can make contact with Fazal Habibulla at Chester Fry, Bush Lot, West Coast Berbice on telephone numbers 232-0232, 648-6522 or 6577010; Inshanally Habibulla on 623-4495, 6235453 or 232-3295, Donald or Zaleena Lawrie on 225-4530 or 225-4565, or Mohammed ‘Nankoo’ Shariff on 6110684. The race meet is held in collaboration with the Shariff Business Enterprise and Racing Stable. (Rajiv Bisnauth)


thursday, FEBRUARY 26, 2014

Albion, Rose Hall share Telenec U-15 title after washout

Asafa Powell’s drug verdict due in April

Asafa Powell


The two captains pose with the trophy

Man-of-the-Match Bhashkar Yadram receives his trophy from BCB’s Chairman of Selectors Leslie Solomon

lbion Community Centre and Rose Hall Town Farfan and Mendes were declared joint champions of the 2013 Tenelec Inc. Under-15 cricket competition in Berbice after rain caused 190 minutes play to be lost in the two-day final, resulting in the match ending without a first innings decision last weekend. It was nevertheless enthralling cricket from both sides. In the match, which was played at Albion, play was scheduled to commence at 10:00 hours on Saturday, but because of overnight and morning rain, as well as seepage, play could only get underway at 15:00 hours. Rose Hall Town Farfan and Mendes lost three early wickets, all to off-spinner Asif Ally to be 22-3, but the captain, Berbice Under-15

etkeeper/batsman Adrian Sukhwa and Asif Ally after which Sukhwa was run out for 24 and Ally bowled by left-arm spinner Keith Simpson for 12 in quick succession to drop to 41-2. Guyana Under-15 batsman Matthew Hardyal (15) and Joshua Harrichand (11) then put on 20 for the third wicket before Simpson removed both of them. Simpson then had Karran Arjpaul caught for 10 to pick up his fourth consecutive wicket. At 81-5, the Albion lads were under pressure to avoid a first innings loss, but resolute and sensible batting from Vivkanand Gagjit (19), Ramesh Kasinauth (10) and Rajiv Sookram (14*), together with some delaying tactics in the last hour, the match ended up in a tense no-result affair with


all-rounder Veremootoo Senwasone was joined by Guyana Under-15 middleorder batsman Bhashkar Yadram and together the two of them put on 47 from the fourth wicket before Senwasone went for 21 at 69-4. Yadram then put on 25 for the fifth wicket with S Bachaus (05) after which he added another 34 for the sixth wicket with Kevin Anderson (04) before he fell to pacer Joshua Harrichand for 64 at 128-6. Harrichand then proceeded to pick up the last four wickets to see Rose Hall being bowled out for 162 in their first innings. Harrichand ended with 5-29, while Ally took 3-57. When Albion began their response they were given a good start of 39 runs by Guyana Under-15 wick-

Albion ending on 135-8. Simpson ended with 4-18 and off-spinner Yadram 2-55. Yadram was adjudged Man-of-the-Match. At the presentation ceremony, president of the Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) Keith Foster praised the two teams for reaching the final and for putting on good performances over the two days. He disclosed that the 2014 competition is scheduled to get started very soon and urged both teams, as well as the other clubs, to start preparation immediately, especially since the Inter-county competition is scheduled for late March. Both teams were presented with the winning trophy, as well as $25,000 each, while Yadram received a trophy for being Man-of-the-Match.

ormer 100m world record holder Asafa Powell will not find out until 10 April what ban, if any, he is to serve for a failed drugs test last year. The Jamaican, 31, tested positive for banned stimulant oxilofrine in June 2013 and faces up to a two year ban. In final submissions in Kingston on Wednesday, his legal team appealed for leniency for what is a first offence. Sherone Simpson, who failed a test at the same event, will receive her verdict on 8 April. Both Powell and Simpson, who were provisionally suspended in July, argued for the minimum suspension, on the grounds of minimal fault. However, Jamaica’s Anti-Doping Commission lawyer argued that they were negligent and had blindly trusted the physical trainer whom both blame for their positive tests. The trainer - Chris

Bale and Ronaldo score in big Real win

GTA to observe World T Tennis Day on Sunday T he second World Tennis Day will once again be celebrated in Guyana on Sunday, according to information emanating from the Guyana Tennis Association (GTA). The GTA successfully celebrated the event last year at the National Racquet Centre at Camp and Woolford Avenue with over 50 young children participating in fun tennis related activities. There were clinics for beginners, intermediate and advanced players and great exhibition matches were also played by Guyana’s top juniors, which were witnessed by an excited crowd

of spectators. The young players also received a pep talk from GTA’s president, Ramesh Seebarran. This year, the GTA will join with 60 International Tennis Federation (ITF) member nations to replicate this event with the expectation that more children will participate from at least 10 primary schools that were invited. The children’s activities are scheduled for 09:00 hours to 11:30 hours and they will include activities on and off court for children ages five to 14 years old.  The GTA will also open the doors to the adult public to play during the afternoon

session in a bid to encourage more adults to adopt the sport as a form of exercise. The adult session will start at 13:00 hours and end at 16:00 hours and it will include cardio tennis drills. These drills combine the best features of the sport of tennis with cardiovascular exercise as a high energy exercise regime that is useful for persons wishing to lose weight and improve their health and wellbeing. The GTA in a press release said, “In an effort to grow and promote the game of tennis around the world, the International Tennis Federation launched this annual event in 2013 in part-

nership with StarGames, a multi-national tennis partner who once again this year organised the three exhibition match showdowns which will be held in New York, Hong Kong and London on March 3 with a line-up of top ranked players that is sure to thrill the international tennis fraternity.” The GTA is inviting the general public to participate in the event and the organisation will also use the opportunity to provide information on coaches and their club programmes for interested persons, who wish to start playing tennis in Guyana.

Xuereb - denies supplying a supplement known as Epiphany D1, which contains the banned substance. During an earlier hearing in January - adjourned until this month after it overran - the court heard that Xuereb was also administering Powell’s anti-inflammatory injections and Vitamin B12, despite not being certified as a doctor, massage therapist, chiropractor or physiotherapist. Along with Simpson - a silver medallist in the 4 x 100m relay at the London 2012 Olympics - Powell was among five Jamaicans to test positive at the Jamaican National Championships in June of last year. At the time, he said checks done by his team “told us the supplements were fit for consumption by professional athletes”. Powell set a world record of 9.74 seconds in 2007 and won gold in the men’s 4 x 100m relay at the Beijing Olympics in 2008. (BBC Sports)

he Welshman netted his side's second after a mazy dribble and added a cool finish for Real's fifth. Cristiano Ronaldo beat Joel Matip with a flurry of stepovers for a superb third as he and Karim Benzema also scored twice in a thrilling display. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar's spectacular injury-time volley pulled a goal back, but the tie seems over as a contest. Madrid’s pursuit of a 10th European Cup has become a growing obsession since their last victory in the competition in 2002 and the slick way their expensively assembled attack combined will have their supporters dreaming that their wait could soon be over. Schalke have enjoyed a recent resurgence in the Bundesliga but that form proved meaningless against Real Madrid’s speed and skill

as the Spanish giants scored for a record 32nd successive Champions League game. Home manager Jens Keller had presciently claimed in the build-up that his side would need “a small miracle” to advance and his side began in correspondingly cautious fashion. The initial signs were promising with Benedikt Howedes heading just wide and the visitors were held comfortably at bay in the early stages. But the Germans crumbled in the face of Real’s first purposeful attack. Bale, cutting in off the flank, left Sead Kolasinac reeling with a change of pace and direction before feeding Ronaldo. The Portuguese’s attempt to flick a pass back into the path of Bale was partially cut out by Felipe Santana but Benzema was on hand to sweep home the loose ball. (BBC


thursday, FEBRUARY 27, 2014


ECCCC’s winning streak halted by Bush Lot By Avenash Ramzan


fter winning an amazing 12 matches on the trot, the Enmore Community Centre Cricket Club (ECCCC) tasted defeat for the first time on Monday, losing by 31 runs to a rampant Bush Lot United Sports Club (BLUSC) during a feature 35-over game at the Bush Lot ground, West Berbice. Initially, the ECCCC, BLUSC and Dundee Sports Club were slated to contest a three-team 20/20 friendly series, but after Dundee Sports Club failed to turn up, the other two teams decided to play a 35-over game in front of what turned out to be a fair-sized crowd. Winning the toss and electing to bat, the BLUSC players were given a rousing start by openers Brentnol Woolford and Kord Griffith, who cruised to a 110-run opening stand in just 17 overs, as the ECCCC bowlers were not as penetrative as they would have liked during the initial exchanges. The visitors also created a few blunders in the field, dropping two catches during the partner-

ship. The left-handed Griffith was the aggressor from the on-set, hitting a run-a-ball 59 that included three towering sixes and a solitary boundary. Woolford, the diminutive right-hander, was content on playing the sheet anchor role, rotating the strike with ease as Griffith went after the bowling. However, the introduction of talented offspinner Satesh Jainarine brought ECCCC back into the game, as the BLUSC suffered a middle-order collapse after the fall of Griffith. As Jainarine ran through the middle-order, Woolford remained firm, hitting six fours and two sixes in a solid 86 from 89 balls. With Jainarine and company keeping a tight rein on the scoring, and the overs running out, skipper Javed Saywack (22) hit a few lusty blows in the dying stages of the innings to propel the hosts to 202-8. Jainarine finished with splendid figures of 4-19 from seven testing overs, while left-arm seamer Gavin Moriah had 3-23 from six overs

The BLUSC (blue uniform) and ECCCC players strike a pose after the game

and fast bowler Chetram Ramlall 1-23 from seven overs. In reply, the ECCCC batsmen found the going tough, losing the inform skipper Bheemraj Ramkellawan early in the chase. That clearly dampened the spirit of the ECCCC supporters, who minutes later vented their frustration when number three batsman Vishwanauth Ramlakhan was given out leg before to a delivery that was

clearly heading down legside and had struck him way up the thigh. After the ECCCC camp and supporters continue to openly express their disappointment at the ruling, a decision was made to reinstate teenager Ramlakhan after it was agreed that the standing umpire, a BLUSC member, had indeed erred. Ramlakhan and former national wicketkeeper/batsman Sheik Mohamed then tried to

Ravindranauth Saywack, President of the BLUSC, addressing the two teams prior to the start of the game

Brentnol Woolford (right) and Kord Griffith put BLUSC on course for victory with a century opening partnership

rebuild the innings and up the scoring rate, but once the latter fell for 21, the run-chase got tougher for the East Coast Demerara side. ECCCC eventually made 171 all out in 33.1 overs with the righthander Ramlakhan hitting 43 (4x4s). Like Saywack for BLUSC, allrounder Ranjeet Hiralall (28) played a little cameo towards the end of the innings, but his efforts could not take the ECCCC over the line. Bowling for BLUSC, D. Joseph took 4-30 from seven overs and B. Singh 2-22 from four overs. At the presentation ceremony, which followed the game, the BLUSC

players received the winner’s trophy, while Jainarine was named Man-of-the-Match and Woolford was given the best batsman trophy. Ravindranauth Saywack, president of the BLUSC, congratulated the two teams for playing an entertaining game, noting that the only blemish was the umpiring decision, which was regrettable. Manager of the ECCCC team, Anil Persaud, congratulated the BLUSC players on their victory, but also encouraged the club to have certified umpires officiate even in friendly games in order to avoid a repeat of Monday’s incident.

Sports is no longer our game, it’s our business

thursday, FEBRUARY 27, 2014


Limacol CPL provided US$105.6 million boost to region in 2013

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Everest Cricket Club congratulates Khan

ECB cricket hostel T in run-down state – several years after being built

Amir Khan

By Rajiv Bisnauth


uyana’s first indoor cricket facility and cricket hostel located at Anna Regina, on the Essequibo Coast is still without the mandatory amenities several years after the physical infrastructure works were completed. The construction of the hostel, which is situated close to the cricket ground at Anna

Gutters of the hostel taken over by weeds

Anand Sanasie

Regina, began in 2008 and was completed in February 2010 at a cost of some $35 million. The building, which was constructed after Guyana won the inaugural Stanford Twenty20 tournament in 2006, was built by a grant from the now imprisoned former Texan billionaire Allen Stanford.  However, an indoor practice area, equipped with two artificial pitches, lights and a bowling machine, is still to be completed.  Persons close to the

Essequibo Cricket Board (ECB) in the Cinderella County told this newspaper on Wednesday that the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) is solely responsible for the completion of the cricket hostel. The sources further indicated that installation of the indoor facilities were part of the contract between the GCB and a Region Two contractor, which was signed on May 19, 2008.  “If the necessary indoor facilities were part of the contract, then it should have been installed,” one source said. The hostel was expected to be of tremendous help to the development of cricket in Essequibo and Guyana, since the facility will give the GCB a chance to further decentralise local cricket. The facility was expected to save the ECB hundreds of thousands of dollars annually in hotel costs and allow more competitions on the Essequibo Coast.  Meanwhile, this newspaper visited the facility re-

cently and observed that the gate was open while the locks on several doors appeared to have been broken. The fence was taken over with bushes, and a resident nearby said bats have already taken up residence in the roof of the building. Further, it was observed

said, continues to be underutilised. On the other hand, Guyana Times Sport tried to obtain further details on the ECB hostel, but to no avail. This reporter’s phone calls to GCB Secretary Anand Sanasie’s cell number continue to go unanswered.

The area built for the indoor facilities is slowly being taken over by weeds

that the building has no security. While this newspaper was unable to view the interior of the building, a source at the cricket board said the building has started to deteriorate. The facility, the source

In addition, two of Guyana Times Sport reporters continue to be excluded from the media mailing list of the GCB, despite several requests to the board’s office to have them included.

he Everest Cricket Club has extended congratulations to leg-spinner Amir Khan, who was drafted in to the Guyana team for the Regional Fourday competition starting Friday. Khan replaced skipper Leon Johnson, who was forced out of the first round with an injury. The Guyanese will take on Jamaica in the opening round. Below is the full text of a message issued by the club on Wednesday. “The Everest Cricket Club congratulates Amir Khan for his call up to the Guyana Regional Four-day side as replacement for the injured Leon Johnson. Amir Khan, who plays for Everest first division team has grown and matured from the

junior level, having represented Demerara Under-15, Guyana Under-15, West Indies Under-15, Demerara Under-19, Guyana Under-19, West Indies Under-19, West Indies Under-19 World Cup, Guyana (2010/2011), Guyana Cricket Board’s President’s X1 (2011) and now Guyana Regional Fourday. Amir won the cricketerof-the-year at the Everest 2012 year-end awards ceremony; he is also among the selectees for the 2013 awards to he held on Friday. The club is celebrating its 100th anniversary and has a rich history of producing great cricketers overs the years and hopes that he continues in this same tradition and make us proud.”

Mangal wins Heineken golf tournament M ike Mangal took top honours on Saturday in the Heineken golf tournament at the Lusignan Golf Course.  His 77 gross score and net 68 made it back-to-back wins for the former Guyana Open champion. Second place went to Ravi Persaud with a 96 gross and net 68; third place went to Shonel Webster with gross 103 and net 69 and fourth to George Bulkan with gross 83 and net 69. Nearest-to-the-pin was won by William Walker with Avinash Persaud copping the longest drive.  In comments after the game Public Relations Officer of the club, Walker, thanked Ansa McAl Trading for their generous sponsorship of the tournament,

which included prizes for the top players, some snacks and free refreshments. Heineken also set up a small putting green and chipping target and gave away prizes for successful shots. He also noted the contributions to the club of Troy Cadogan, Ansa McAl Trading’s Marketing Manager and an enthusiastic golfer. Ansa McAl’s Public Relations Officer, Darshanie Yussuf, said the company was excited to be a part of golf in Guyana and assured members that they would continue their support of the game. The golfers will be in action again on Saturday from noon when the ECI Engineering Services sponsored tournament tees off.

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