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Commonwealth countries showcased at Umana Yana P13

Nationwide coverage from the best news team in Guyana

Issue No. 3861



“Clock is ticking”

$80 vat included


Constitution is supreme Page 3

– British High Commissioner

Civil society to President: Drop "pretext", call elections Page 7

Probe into P2 GECOM’s hiring practices completed – ERC Stabroek Market Wharf

Rehabilitative works yet to commence P9 …current operations unfeasible – vendors

More training needed to reel in tourists to Guyana – P12 Gaskin Case discharged against man P8 accused of pushing girlfriend out of car …mother of dead teen attacks accused

A rank of the 6th Infantry Battalion assists the Civil Defence Commission in the distribution of aid to Venezuelan migrants at Kamwatta, Region One (Barima-Waini) (GDF photos)

Venezuelan GO-Invest claims blackout hits no negative oil exports impact on investments No-confidence resolution

Deaths of 3 children at GPHC

Understaffing a P10 critical component to incorrect administering of drugs

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Page 16

…as citizens scramble for food

…despite Business Minister’s, Private Sector’s adverse effects declaration

PPP calls on ERC to investigate breach of Constitution, national disruptions Page 11

No child left behind policy revoked in P10 2013 but still being used …policy doing more harm than good in schools – GTU General Secretary

2 news

tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

Probe into GECOM’s hiring “Use ICT to broaden your practices completed – ERC horizons” – First Lady


he Ethnic Relations Commission (ERC), which has been probing the hiring practices of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) for several months has completed its investigations. GECOM’s hiring practices were brought under the microscope after the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) GECOM Commissioners Bibi Shadick, Sase Gunraj and Robeson Benn pointed out flaws regarding the ethnic composition of the workforce of the secretariat of the Commission. The commissioners had alleged that a majority of the staff of the Commission were persons of one ethnicity. On Monday, Chairman of the ERC, Reverend John Smith in an invited comment told Guyana Times that the next move for the ERC is to meet with the complainants. Smith told this publication that he could not share the findings from that probe until the Commission meets with the complainants. The Chairman would only say that the ERC is expected to hold its statutory meeting on Thursday, where a date for the meeting with the PPP Commissioners will be discussed. Meanwhile, PPP Commissioner Bibi Shadick

ERC Chairman, Reverend John Smith

told this publication that she was unaware that the probe was completed while complaining that she was not satisfied with the lengthy time it took the Commission to complete the investigation. “These people took their own time. I don’t know that anything should’ve taken so long but apparently that’s the pace,” Shadick said. Shadick, nevertheless, admitted that the commissioners were informed of some challenges the ERC encountered while trying to extract facts from GECOM. The PPP Commissioner further noted that she believes the ERC should have been able to verify the information they provided in a more timely manner. “The report, I think, should have been sent to us

but it wasn’t. I don’t know who they sent it to but we are the ones who made the complaint and I would imagine it should have been sent to us,” she added. Retired Judge, Justice Stanley Moore, in collaboration with former Deputy Commissioner of Police, Lloyd Smith and human resources consultant Jairam Petam were to complete the investigation in three weeks during October last year. However, the time was extended as the probe widened. The investigation was launched after People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) GECOM Commissioners Bibi Shadick, Sase Gunraj and Robeson Benn wrote a letter of complaint to the ERC, contending that there was an ethnic imbalance at GECOM and hiring practices were being manipulated in favour of one group. After these allegations were made, the ERC had scheduled a meeting with Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, where the matters were raised. The ERC also met with President David Granger at that time. At a press conference prior to the probe, GECOM Chairman and retired Justice James Patterson had said that qualifications ultimately trumped race when filling vacancies.

When asked whether deliberate efforts to achieve racial diversity were being made, Patterson had contended that deliberate efforts were being made to get the best people and that he had “no apologies” for that. The ERC is an established constitutional body. It works with persons and agencies to promote harmonious ethnic relations. The Commission also deals with complaints, promotes training in racial harmony, and fosters a sense of security, among all ethnic groups. The PPP/C Commissioners had registered complaints of Chairman Patterson using his post to muzzle them on the issue of hiring practices. Commissioner Benn had highlighted issues regarding the ethnic composition of the workforce of the secretariat of the Commission, having pointed out that the perception was that the vast majority of the staff of the Commission were persons of one ethnicity. However, the Chairman disputed the Commissioner’s claim. The PPP/C Commissioners had said that the Chairman prevented Benn from further defending his position and when challenged, adjourned the meeting for over half an hour.


s women were being celebrated at an International Women’s Day Concert and Expo, First Lady Sandra Granger issued a call for them to use Information and Communications Technology (ICT) to broaden their horizons. “Let our cellphones and the Internet become our tools to build bridges, to share information, to support and mentor our sisters,” the First Lady is quoted by the Department of Public Information as saying. Granger told about 3000 persons present that through Information Technology girls and women could be encouraged to expand their knowledge and push for gender parity in upper-management levels in the office, factory and field. The First Lady called on women to seize the opportunities presented, noting that it was a fact that women and girls drive development. She further highlighted that “their equal access to training and participation in all facets of development translates into progress for all”. In her remarks, Canadian High Commissioner Lilian Chatterjee stated that “Guyana has a tradition for being a leader in the Region when it comes to gender equality and women’s rights”. She highlighted that within the country “women

First Lady Sandra Granger

consistently hold key decision-making portfolios”. The International Women’s Day Concert and Expo was facilitated by the Canadian High Commission, in collaboration with the Social Protection Ministry, and was hosted at the Everest Cricket Ground on Sunday. The event attracted women of all ages, who were provided with information on women and reproductive health, entrepreneurship, academic programmes, and other meaningful information. At dusk, patrons were treated to a concert filled with cultural performances. They were also entertained by various artistes such as renowned Trinidadian Soca singer Nailah Blackman, Calvin Burnett and Guyana’s very own songbird, Poonam Singh.



tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

BRIDGE OPENINGS The Demerara Harbour Bridge will be closed to vehicular traffic on:

Tuesday, March 12 – 05:00h-06:30h and Wednesday, March 13 – 09:00h-10:30h. The Berbice Bridge will be closed to vehicular traffic on:

Tuesday, March 12 – 07:10h-08:40h and Wednesday, March 13 – 07:55h-09:25h.

FERRY SCHEDULE Parika and Supenaam departure times - 05:00h, 11:00h and 16:00h daily

WEATHER TODAY Cloudy skies will prevail with sunny intervals mainly in the afternoon, followed by clear skies in the evening. Overall temperatures will range between 20 degrees Celsius and 30 degrees Celsius. Winds: Easterly to North-easterly between 2.23 metres and 4.49 metres. High Tide: 07:57h and 20:28h reaching maximum heights of 2.56 metres and 2.44 metres respectively. Low Tide: 13:58h reaching a minimum height of 0.65 metre.

SATURday, march 9, 2019


03 08 09 18 20 28 07


Bonus Ball


01 13 15 16 20 LUCKY 3

03 08 08 Afternoon Draw

09 07 09 Evening Draw


06 08

11 12


05 07 08 12 16

17 19 20 SUPER PAY DAY

09 14 17 19 20


“Clock is ticking”

Constitution is supreme – British High Commissioner By Devina Samaroo


ith nine days remaining before the constitutional deadline for holding elections expires, British High Commissioner to Guyana, Gregory Quinn, is reminding Guyana’s leaders that the clock is ticking, even as a civil society group is urging President David Granger to announce a date for the polls. “The Constitution is the supreme law… There is the three-month clock, which is still ticking, it hasn’t been stayed yet…,” the United Kingdom envoy told Guyana Times during an exclusive interview at his Bel Air Gardens residence in Georgetown on Monday. After March 21, 2019, the APNU/AFC Coalition Government effectively becomes illegal. The only way this can change is if the Parliamentary Opposition – People’s Progressive Party votes for an extension of the life of the Government; but Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo says he will do so only if the Head of State announces a date for elections before the expiry of the current voters’ list on April 30, 2019. However, President Granger is not keen on doing so, as he is pushing for house-to-house registration, a process which can conclude in November 2019. The British diplomat, who has been in Guyana since 2015, says the only way to solve the issue is through consensus among the political leaders. “The only other way of getting through that is the political leadership, for both sides to come to an agreement… Given that ticking clock, it is necessary for both sides to come together and come to a solution as to how to resolve that issue, so we don’t get to the question of what happens the day after,” he stated. Guyana has never been in such a situation before, and some experienced political analysts, including distinguished lawyers, have predicted that the country will head into a constitutional crisis. Pressure has been mounting on the coalition administration to adhere to the Constitution of Guyana, and for the President to call a date for elections soon. President Granger has been insisting that he has to await guidance from the Guyana Elections

Evening News Editor Devina Samaroo interviewing British High Commissioner to Guyana, Gregory Quinn, at his Bel Air Gardens, Georgetown residence on Monday

Commission (GECOM) before he executes his presidential responsibility.

No-confidence motion

On December 21, 2018 the no-confidence motion brought by the parliamentary Opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP/C) against the Government succeeded when former AFC Member of Parliament Charrandas Persaud broke rank and made a conscience vote in favour of the motion. With the Government’s defeat, the next steps are spelt out in the Constitution of Guyana. Clause 7 of Article 106 goes on to state that, “Notwithstanding its defeat, the Government shall remain in office and shall hold an election within three months, or such longer period as the National

Assembly shall by resolution supported by not less than two-thirds of the votes of all the elected members of the National Assembly determine, and shall resign after the President takes the oath of office following the election.” President David Granger and Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo had initially committed to following the provisions outlined in the Constitution, facilitat-

ing early elections and engaging in dialogue with the Leader of the Opposition, but have since changed their position. Since the passage of the motion on December 21, 2018 however, persons aligned with the coalition party have sought to question the motion’s validity even as the vote has already been certified. The original proponent of the 34-vote argument is Attorney Nigel Hughes, a former AFC Chairman and the husband of sitting Minister Cathy Hughes, who told State media that half of 65 is 32.5 but when rounded to the nearest whole number, this would be 33 as there is no half member. Following a challenge of this in the High Court, Chief Justice Roxane George ruled that 33 is majority. The Government has since challenged that chief justice’s ruling in the Court of Appeal. That case comes up for hearing today.


tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019

Views Editor: Tusika Martin News Hotline: 231-8063 Editorial: 231-0544, 223-7230, 223-7231, 225-7761 Marketing: 231-8064 Accounts: 225-6707 Mailing address: Queens Atlantic Investment Estate Industrial Site, Ruimveldt, Georgetown Email:,

Respect for Guyana’s Constitution


ritish High Commissioner to Guyana, Gregory Quinn, on Monday, in an exclusive interview with this newspaper, remained the Government that the clock is ticking with respect to the constitutionally due elections. Quinn was the first diplomat to rise his voice and urge respect for Guyana’s Constitution on December 21, 2018 when the no-confidence motion tabled by the Opposition was successfully passed in the National Assembly. Again, on Monday, Quinn called for Guyana’s supreme law to be respected. Guyana’s current political situation is not escaping the glare of the international community. Only a few weeks ago, the United Nations (UN) and the European Union (EU) made public calls for constitutional adherence and free and fair elections. Even before those calls, the Government dug its heels in and resorted to the courts, a move many saw as an attempt to find solace and delay the constitutional directives. As a reminder, the Government, through the Prime Minister and the President, did publicly accept the successful passage of the no-confidence motion, and stated adherence to the Constitution. They flipped following the insertion of a preposterous mathematical theory, and the rest is now history. Government has and continues to expend much effort and tax payers’ money to try and convince some sections of the Guyanese population against what is stated in the Constitution. This is done under the guise of court actions and an appeal of the Chief Justice’s ruling, which reaffirmed the validity of the no-confidence vote and the need for elections to be held within the 90-day period as stipulated in the Constitution. With less than half of the 90-day period left, there is still no sign of the Government indicating a willingness to comply. As a matter of fact, the Attorney General proclaimed the Government will go all the way to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) if necessary. This speaks to a protracted period with no finite time frame. Again, this is contradictory to what the Constitution states. The President has since boldly stated his Government is legitimate and has done nothing outside of the law. Of concern must therefore be the refusal to adhere to the Constitution in the quest to hold on to power. As stated before by this publication, the glaring duplicitousness now is contradictory to what was boasted during the 2015 campaign. Then, in seeking votes, APNU/AFC promised many things, including upholding the Constitution and abiding by the rule of law. From what is currently playing out, it seems those promises were not genuine. In the said context, it appears that the greatest disappointment may not be in coming to grips with some politicians not being believable, but maybe in the public position taken by the President. First, having accepted the impact of the successful passage of the noconfidence motion, he now states that all legal options will be exhausted to possibly disprove it. While everyone, including the Government, has a right to such options, in this case statesmanship is expected to take precedence in the interest of the welfare of the country, especially when two very credible persons, the Speaker and the Chief Justice, representative of constitutional institutions, pronounced on the matter. With a full understanding of the potential impact on the country and its people, a President is expected to act above the fray, even if the decision may not be popular with his/ her following. A leader is made and remembered for hard decisions taken in the best interest of the nation. There is still time for the President to rise above his Party’s grab to stay in power and call the election. He can demonstrate astute leadership and tell the nation that he would uphold the Constitution, as enshrined in the oath of office he took. He can announce that, in the best interest of Guyana and Guyanese, he will not continue to pursue the path through the court, and will consult again with the Leader of the Opposition on related matters. In other words, he must act, since he is not the president of APNU/AFC, but of all of Guyana.

Students of the Leonora Primary School showcasing the country of Sri Lanka and its culture, clothing and cuisine on Monday afternoon at the Umana Yana. The event was organised by the Parliament Office and provided students with the opportunity to explore other Commonwealth countries

With 900M people, India prepared for an election in 3 months

Dear Editor, How can India prepare for an election in 30 days for 900 million people to vote and Guyana cannot prepare for an election with 0.06 per cent of that amount (500,000 people) in 90 days? It defies all logic. All this voting will be handled by the Elections Commission of India, an independent institution that guards and maintains its reputation for efficiency, toughness and rectitude. They have a system of three Commissioners who are all retired public service officers and do not draw a salary from anywhere else but their version of GECOM. By India standards, they are paid a handsome salary averaging around US$3500 per month. If we are to reflect on the current GECOM we have, every one of them is aligned to another salary pool which to some extent makes servants to dual masters. Thus, they can never be efficient and effective at delivering at the task at hand. Let us reflect on some of the Commissioners – Desmond Trotman works out of the Presidency Ministry as a senior officer of the State Assets Recovery Unit (SARA). Vincent Alexander

is an adviser to the Public Service Minister in the Presidency Ministry. Bibi Shaddick serves in several positions on behalf of the Leader of the Opposition. Can any of these people be independent thinkers? Worse yet, the Chairman was unilaterally appointed by Granger, and thus he owes everything to Granger. Can he act independently of Granger? This is the tragedy of GECOM, it can never be like the Elections Commission of India and thus it will never be successful since it was conceived with a corrupt mentality and as a collective, it is an extremely compromised body. That is why it is imperative that one of the main changes to the Constitution must be the reform of GECOM to be manned by persons totally and fully retired from public life. Think of people like Dr Gladstone Mitchell, Prem Persaud, Egbert Carter, Joe Singh, Ret’d Brigadier Mark Phillips and Cecil Kennard. These are the kind of people who are no longer in public life but who should be allowed to serve at GECOM. These people hold no allegiance to any side but the Guyanese side. But why 7? India, a na-

tion of 900 million, voters has 3 Commissioners, while Guyana with half of a million has 7 Commissioners. Do we have money to waste behind these useless people to do a useless job? Because that is all we have been hearing from Bibi Shaddick and Vincent Alexander – useless chatter. These people have no allegiance to the Guyanese people but to themselves and their respective political masters and that makes them uncreditworthy in the eyes of the people. Why does GECOM need seven people to make decisions, why not three as they have in India? Why should the PPP or the PNC or for that matter, any political party sit in the boardroom of GECOM? Do you see where I am going with this? When you have people who do not care who wins and who loses, people who focus on the idea that the Guyanese people get the best elections, then you will never find yourself in a situation where 10 of the top 10 positions in the GECOM’s operational leadership are but an extension of Congress Place. Think carefully as to why Vishnu Persaud, an extremely competent election expert had to be pushed aside to make way

for someone who is still learning the job and continues to illustrate every day how grossly unfit and unsuitable she is for the role. So to the Guyanese people, GECOM today is not on your side, this is an organisation that is but an arm of Congress Place and the PPP when in power should have moved mountains to make GECOM more resilient to political interference. They failed at this task and the people today have to pay for that political oversight on the part of the PPP. History has taught us that the PNC will never play fair because they can never win elections on their own because of their narrow-minded ethnic culture that discriminates against those who are not the kith and kin of their leader. This is Guyana’s cross to bear today, a PNC dominated GECOM, both in the boardroom and in the operation rooms because the PPP, when in power, did nothing to bring greater balance to GECOM. Who feels the pain today knows the pain – the people? Wither Guyana. Sincerely, Lisa Ally

Historical misrepresentation in the Indian Arrival Monument Dear Editor, I believe that the picture shown in the Indian Arrival Monument at Palmyra in Berbice does not give a true reflection of the actual event in sev-

eral aspects including the headwear of the male immigrant. The male immigrant is shown wearing a headdress reminiscent of what India’s first Prime Minister, the

late Jawaharlal Nehru, initiated and popularised as the “Nehru cap”. I do not think that cap existed when the Indian immigrants came to British Guiana from India.

As far as I know, the male immigrants wore a piece of cloth which they tied around their heads. Sincerely, Nowrang Persaud

tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019


You can send your letters with pictures to: Guyana Times, Queens Atlantic Investment Estate Industrial Site, Ruimveldt, Georgetown, Guyana or

Open letter to all media practitioners praise of the unprecedented access, via weekly press conferences, to the Leader of the Opposition, which allows unfettered access to Jagdeo without constraint of time or a moderator. The PPP has a long track record of championing freedom of the press, and has fought its own struggles during previous PNC regimes to ensure the public always has access to the media, and that the media is free and fair. While the GPA may indeed see questioning of deductive reasoning capabilities as a threat to many media houses, the biggest dangers to the lives and livelihoods of media practitioners and media houses are not quips and/or testy exchanges at press conferences. The threat comes from the media’s abandonment of the universal journalistic code of ethics. For enlightenment of those who entered the profession without formal training, there are four core principles: Seek

Truth and Report it; Minimize Harm; Act Independently, and Be Accountable and Transparent. An examination of the work of some members of the GPA shows a pattern of fabrication, lack of regard for the public good, bias and partisanship. A few examples presented here should be sufficient evidence of the need of the GPA members to take a more professional approach to their job. On the 24th August 2018, Newsroom reported that the Opposition Leader hoped “that these shelters are just to assist the refugees temporarily, with a vision of having them deported.” However, Mr Jagdeo did not use the word ‘deported’, but said ‘repatriated.’ The article has since been amended.  Newsroom was again

GECOM should be prepared like the Commission in India

Dear Editor, In 1982, at the age of 22, I prosecuted my first case at the DPP’s Chambers as State Counsel. It was a murder case, and I was “thrust into the deep to sink or swim,” as my then supervisors, Manny Ramao, SC, and George Jackman, SC, sympathised. The defence attorney was my very learned friend Bernard De Santos, SC, an advocate I have always admired. It was a baptism of fire for me. He was one of the lawyers most knowledgeable in criminal law, and he was also an adroit cross-examiner. He would confuse and wear the witnesses down, and get them to contradict the evidence from sheer frustration and tiredness when the case was going against him. To see Bernard De Santos at his best – exuding the guile, class and style, and morbid fear in the hearts of the witnesses, (and sometimes juries) – made you stop and admire a legal entertainer who could destroy any case. He was a showman, scholar and advocate all rolled into one. He knew the criminal law would explode into frequent objections and would never back

Dear Editor, The Guyana Press Association’s statement on 11th March 2019 accused the General Secretary of the People’s Progressive Party (PPP), Leader of the Opposition and former President of Guyana, Dr Bharrat Jagdeo, of a direct attack and threat to the lives and livelihoods of members of the Association’s professional journalists and media houses. This grave threat is described by the GPA as, “…he quipped that the question posed by journalist Nazima Raghubir was ‘stupid’.” The use of the word ‘quipped’ to describe an attack or threat is novel. Deliberate misinterpretation of a quip is not, however; so an examination of the press conference on 7th March 2019 is instructive. In relation to the SARA offer to settle the issue of his home at Pradoville, Jagdeo said, “It is a political thing…I will not pay a cent more”. Ms.

Dear Editor, The Election Commission of India (ECI) announced on Sunday, the dates for elections in India. I have been invited to conduct opinion polls in India to determine support for parties. Election polling is restricted from a day before voting till the last hour of voting. Pollsters can release results up to the day before the voting commences and right after the voting ends. The ECI knows it must hold an election and, therefore, started making preparations for it – making sure every adult over 18 was on the list – some 900 million voters. In Guyana, we have just under half a million voters, and the election commission seems to have serious difficulty preparing for an election even though it knew since December 22 that it must be prepared to hold elections by March 19. The ECI Commissioners and staff are professionals and unlike in Guyana, they don’t favour any party. They are true professionals. The Chairman or Chief Election Officer in India is not a stooge of any party. There are some other major differences in how GECOM and ECI function. Unlike in

Raghubir then asked, “You said you rejected it, but on what basis?” Jagdeo replied, “…what kind of stupid question is that? …because you have to use deductive reasoning if it’s a political thing…” Ms Raghubir, President of the GPA, was vociferous in her response, and was at no time cowed in the exchange. She spiritedly replied, “I get impatient with stupid statements”. This was in reply to a former President of Guyana. Having found common ground on this issue, the press conference continued with both parties asking and answering questions in good humour. Ms. Raghubir did not leave the press conference. It is difficult to discern an attack or threat from either tone or posture displayed by the Leader of the Opposition during this exchange, (complete video of which is available via the PPPC Facebook page). The GPA should be in

Guyana with GECOM, the ECI is totally independent of Governmental influence. The India Government cannot direct Government on preparedness or when to call elections. ECI is perennially prepared for elections because when a Government collapses it must hold elections within a month. Elections are held five years from the last elections and the new Government is sworn in just over a week after the counting of ballots and official declaration of results. The new Government in India must be sworn in on June 4 as per the direction of the ECI. Unlike in Guyana, in India, when a Government loses a no-confidence vote, elections are immediately held. Also, unlike in Guyana, voting in India takes place over several days. In this year’s elections, voting will be done over seven days and would last just over a month. India’s elections are generally held over several phases in order to allow for the transfer of poll workers and security. Some 200,000 personnel are involved in the process. Some 100,000 security forces are totally under the control of ECI and follow their directives. Government cannot in-

Enough is enough Dear Editor, Guyanese need to start ratcheting up the pressure on the David Granger APNU/ AFC Government. It is dastardly and diabolical that David Granger refuses to call General Elections after the NoConfidence Motion was passed against the Government. It is not the case that the PPP/C makes a better alternative with Irfaan Ali as the presidential candidate with Bharrat Jagdeo pulling strings behind the scene. The case is that the APNU/

AFC are wannabe dictators and must be resisted. The fact is that David Granger (as President) anointed retired Justice James Patterson as Chairman of GECOM who now votes with the APNU/AFC Government Commissioners on GECOM. Some of us PPP/C supporters gave the APNU/AFC the benefit of the doubt but enough is enough, time to rid ourselves of these wannabe dictators. Yours faithfully, Sean Ori

struct the security forces. The important point of difference between India and Guyana on electoral matters is that unlike in Guyana, the ECI is totally independent, with its own budget and personnel and does not seek to rig elections in favour of a party. The ECI recruits its own staff with “politically minded people” blanked. Staff are permanently employed and must not have any affiliation with any party. Government cannot fix dates for elections although it can make suggestions. The ECI decides on dates for elections. The ECI is extremely powerful; it has its own security forces with the power to confiscate money of candidates or parties if the staff suspects the money would be used improperly like bribing voters. Once a Government loses a no-confidence vote, it cannot hold Cabinet meetings. An election date is fixed within six weeks. And once a date is set for elections, Government is prohibited from engaging in new policies and announcing new programs; new money cannot be spent. The election moral code of conduct comes into play. No party enjoys an advantage. The Government media is shared equally by all contesting forces unlike in Guyana where there is one-sided coverage. The ECI can sanction candidates and parties and can also fine them and confiscate their monies or freeze their bank accounts and discipline State media. With the issues having to do with GECOM’S preparedness for elections following the Government’s defeat in the no-confidence vote, perhaps Guyana can look to India for reforms of its elections commission to make it totally independent of the political forces. Yours truly, Dr Vishnu Bisram

the perpetrator of fake news on two occasions when they claimed, on 4th October 2018, that the PPP/C had “pulled out of Wakenaam local government elections”, and on 8th September 2018, “Jagdeo supports repossession of Providence lands”. The Guyana Chronicle, on any given day, will carry so many fabrications that it has become a futile exercise to keep up. The GPA should work assiduously to self-police its members and curb the manufacture and dissemination of ‘fake news’. At stake is the credibility of the media. For instance, there are unproven accusations that have been repeated ad nauseam: 400 Black youths killed by PPP and $28B stolen by PPP. These have never been the subject of credible, indepen-

dent investigation -- a continuing blemish on the local journalistic fraternity. The GPA Executive as constituted currently is an extension of the Ministry of the Presidency staffers employed at the Guyana Chronicle. This attempt to manufacture a threat from a good-natured exchange is transparent in its motivation and puerile in its execution. I would therefore advise the GPA Executive to spend some time in reflection on the harmful impact of this dishonest action on our country. I suggest they begin with Matthew 7:5, “Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.” Yours truly, Nigel Dharamlall, MP

The legal mettle of Bernard De Santos down from a fight. They don’t make them like Bernard anymore. He belonged right up there with advocates like Doodnauth Singh, SC, Rex McKay, SC, Donald Robinson, SC, Miles Fitzpatrick, SC, Jailall Kissoon, JOF Haynes, QC, Fred Wills, QC, Sir Lionel Luckhoo, Peter Britton, SC, Charles Ramson, SC, and the other worthy legal luminaries Guyana has so proudly produced in criminal law; just as how distinguished colleagues like Sir Fenton Ramsahoye, QC, Honourable Mohamed Shahabuddeen, Sir Sonny Ramphal, Ashton Chase, SC, B O Adams, SC, Lloyd Luckhoo, SC, Clarence Hughes, SC, Miles Fitzpatrick, SC, Ralph Ramkarran, SC, and others have who adorned the civil bar. Soon after that initiation, I tried a case in which Bernard, Doodnauth and Rex were for the 3 accused in a single case. I had the privilege of seeing them up close and seeing how they can dissect a case. It was like facing Michael Holding, Andy Roberts and Malcolm Marshall at the same time. However, I repelled them like Gavaskar. To say I scored a century would be inappropri-

ate, for prosecutors do not win or lose; they only serve justice. Their clients were all convicted. But it was more like facing Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier and Mike Tyson in the same ring. You had to roll with the punches and fight back, however bloodied. Of the 3, Bernard gave the best performance, which is saying a lot. I have also seen many advocates here in the USA and in other parts of the world. They hardly effuse that commanding presence and execute that withering assault on their clients’ cases like Bernard would. Nor do they have his track record of success. Indeed, they pale in comparison. Bernard De Santos was the quintessential advocate for the accused. This short tribute only deals with his skill as a practising lawyer. When you factor in his achievements as Guyana’s AG and a mentor to younger lawyers, his contribution to Guyana is even more remarkable. Sincerely, Albert Baldeo Baldeo Foundation and Justice Centre

Stop wasting our tax dollars Dear Editor, Look at how fast this APNU/AFC Government is becoming Orwellian! Ever since the successful passage of the No-Confidence Motion on December 21, 2018, the Government and its operatives have used and wasted State resources to stifle our democracy! If paying exorbitant fees on Counsel for legal challenges, chartering planes for 19 Ministers to visit and campaign in Region Nine and using Government vehicles as part of the APNU mash parade contingent were not insulting and abusive enough; check out Imran Khan’s commentary of March 10, captioned “The current political situation – why we are here”. This inflammatory political commentary was pro-

duced with State resources and shared publicly on the Department of Information’s Facebook and YouTube channel. Khan has a duty as the Head of the Department of Information to only provide factual information. The DPI’s information dissemination media are for public interests and matters based on facts – not fake news and Imran Khan’s misrepresentation of the facts. Attempting to avoid defamation challenges by not naming persons directly does not excuse Khan’s inciteful behaviour and abuse of State resources. Let me answer Khan’s question – “why are we here?” And let me add – Where is here?   We are “here” because the Government lost a vote of confidence. Where is here?  Here

is 10 days away from a constitutional crisis! Why?  Because the Government refuses to honour and respect the Constitution. It is that simple!  No amount of name calling by Imran Khan (opened eyed an all) will change the fact that this soon to be illegal APNU/ AFC Government is clutching tightly to the reins of power while Guyanese suffer and our country is laughed at!  Every time Imran Khan opens his mouth and eyes, he confirms the widely held view that the APNU/AFC Government is scared, incompetent and power hungry.   Stop wasting our tax dollars! Stop abusing State resources! Stop spreading propaganda! Call elections now. Yours truly, Vickram Bharrat 


tuesday, march 12, 2019




as this ever happened to you? You’re dressing and when you pull on your favourite jeans, you can no longer button them. Or you’re running down the football field when you notice that your legs rub together in a way they never did before. Maybe when you look in the mirror it seems like your pores are taking over your face. If you’ve ever felt out of step with your body, you’re not alone.

Growing up and out (or not)

Most of us are prepared to deal with the obvious physical changes of growing up. Girls expect their breasts to grow and guys expect to become more muscular. But the body often goes through other changes before, during, and after puberty – and sometimes these changes can be very different from the ones we expect to happen. For example, both girls and guys may notice themselves growing in unfamiliar places, such as the butt or belly. Or they may grow taller and skinnier. Some people get a temporary layer of fat to prepare the body for a growth spurt. Others fill out permanently. Some people eat healthy foods and work out, but still gain weight. Others chow down on everything in sight and still stay skinny. Eventually it all balances out and most people adjust to how their “new” body moves and works. But it

can take some getting used to. What happens to people physically during puberty can influence how they feel about their bodies and themselves for a long time to come. Take Nikki, for example. She was an accomplished dancer with her heart set on following her mother’s career in ballet. But at 13, Nikki grew several inches taller and developed the kind of figure most girls long for – unless they’re dancers. Nikki’s friends envied her curves, but Nikki felt heavy and awkward. Now 19,

Nikki says it took her longer to get over the false perception of herself as a fat girl than it did to let go of her dreams of being a dancer.

Adjusting to a new body

We become more aware of looks right around the time our bodies begin changing. This can make physical changes difficult to deal with emotionally. Adjusting to a changing body is about more than just looks, though. Lots of teens base their self-image on how their bodies feel and perform. Until a year ago, Wes,

15, was a lean, fast sprinter who could always be relied on to win the race for his track team. Wes has ADHD, and some days it seemed like running was the only thing he could do well. So when he started developing a stockier, more muscular physique and his sprint times got longer, Wes’ confidence took a serious bruising. Changes in our bodies’ appearance, performance – even such minor details as the way they smell – are all perfectly normal parts of growing up. So what can you do to help yourself adjust physically and emotionally? Here are some ideas. Beware – don’t compare! It’s natural to look at our friends for comparison. But it’s not a good idea. Comparing ourselves with others is problematic because everyone develops differently and at different times. If you go through a growth spurt early, you may feel too tall. Yet your friend may be thinking that he or she is too small. It’s usually hardest for the people who develop first or last. It’s also a bad idea to compare ourselves with celebrities and models. In reality, most people don’t look like the limited body types shown in the media. (Actually, the models often don’t look like that either: Many of those “perfect” bodies got that way through photo editing, not nature.) Ads sell fantasy, not reality. (Excerpt from

To be continued


aving a shy style isn’t necessarily a problem. It’s perfectly OK to take time to warm up to new people and situations. But shyness blocks some people from being as comfortable or sociable as they’d like to be. Some people want to feel less shy so they can have more fun socialising and being themselves around others. Here are some tips for overcoming shy feelings: Start small with people you know. Practice social behaviours like eye contact, confident body language, introductions, small talk, asking questions, and invitations with the people you feel most comfortable around. Smile. Build your confidence this way. Then branch out to do this with new friends, too. Think of some conversation starters. Often, the hardest part of talking to someone new is getting started. Think of conversation openers, like introducing yourself (“Hi, I’m Chris, we’re in the same English class”), giving a compliment (“That jacket looks great on you”), or asking a question (“Do you know when our report is due?”). Being ready with a conversation starter (or a few) makes it easier to approach someone. Rehearse what to say. When you’re ready to try something you’ve been avoiding because of shyness – like a phone call or a conversation – write down what you want to say beforehand. Rehearse it out loud, maybe even in front of the mirror. Then just do it. Don’t worry if it’s not exactly like you practised

or if it’s not perfect. Few of the things more confident-seeming people do are perfect either. Be proud that you gave it a go. Next time, it’ll be even better because it will be easier. Give yourself a chance. Find group activities where you can be with people who share your interests. Give yourself a chance to practise socialising with these new people, and get to know them slowly. People who are shy often worry about failing or how others will judge them. Worries and feelings like these can keep you from trying. If self-criticism plays a role for you, ask yourself whether you’d be this critical of your best friend. Chances are you’d be much more accepting. So treat yourself like your own best friend. Encourage yourself instead of expecting to fail. Develop your assertiveness. Because shy people can be overly concerned with other peoples’ reactions, they don’t want to rock the boat. That doesn’t mean they’re wimpy or cowardly. But it can mean they are less likely to be assertive. Being assertive means speaking up for yourself when you should, asking for what you want or need, or telling other people when they’re stepping on your toes. Most of all, be yourself. It’s OK to try out different conversational approaches you see others using. But say and do what fits your style. Being the real you – and daring to let yourself be noticed – is what attracts friends. (



tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

Civil society to President: Drop “pretext”, call elections


he Civil Society Forum – an organisation comprising of several non-governmental organisations, including the private sector, trade unions and religious groups – on Monday said that the position adopted by the Head of State, President David Granger on the issue of Guyana Election’s Commission readiness for the constitutional mandated elections is “unacceptable”. In a statement to the media the Group said: “Giving GECOM effective power to determine when elections will be held is a position for which no constitutional support exists.” It said this “manoeuvre” revives the misgivings and insecurities generated by the controversial selection of the current Chair of GECOM, Justice James Patterson, who now has the casting vote on when elections will be held. The civil society organisation made it clear that the Constitution of Guyana mandates GECOM to be ready within 90 days, and there is no provision that allows the President to amend that provision as a pretext for not announcing a date for national elections. It explained that the main preparatory tasks for elections: prepare the voters’ list, arrange polling stations, train staff, print

ballot papers, and administer polling day; are tasks which are all routine. “All of these technical issues are the responsibility of the Chief Elections Officer, rather than resting on the opinions of the Commissioners. Given the not-too-distant local elections, GECOM is more prepared than normal. The only task around which ‘unprepared’ is ever raised is the Voters’ List,” the organisation posited. The David Granger administration has not been moving with much urgency with regard to holding elections before the constitutional deadline of March 21. Instead, their respective GECOM Commissioners, including the Chair, have been advocating for houseto-house registration to sanitise the voters’ list, a process which would go well beyond the constitutional deadline. As such, the civil society group explained that house-to-house registration, while desirable, is not a necessity at this point. The Group contended that neither GECOM nor the President can set aside the Constitution to pursue their desire for house-tohouse registration. Further, the civil society organisation debunked claims by the Head of State that some voters would be disenfranchised without

the process of house-tohouse registration. The organisation explained that unregistered persons can find their way to one of hundreds of GECOM offices around the country to get registered. Opposition-nominated GECOM Commissioners recently submitted a proposal of a work plan for the hosting of elections no later than April 29, but this was shot down by President Granger. Notably, not all members of the Civil Society Forum share these views. The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) – headed by Coretta McDonald – does not subscribe to that position. The members who are mounting pressure on President Granger to call a date for elections are: The Anglican Church of Guyana, the Guyana Human Rights Association, Movement Against Parking Meters, Inter-Religious Organisation, Guyana Presbyterian Church, Roman Catholic Church, Transparency Institute of Guyana Incorporated, Guyana Rastafarian Community, Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union, Private Sector Commission, Red Thread, Aircraft Owners Association of Guyana, and RISE Guyana.

8 news

tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

Case discharged against man accused of pushing girlfriend out of car …mother of dead teen attacks accused


haos arose at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts on Monday morning after the manslaughter charge against Rick Sewcharran was discharged by Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan. Rick Sewcharran was accused of pushing his now dead girlfriend, Sasia Adams, out of a moving vehicle in June 2018 along Lamaha Street, Georgetown. In court on Monday, the Chief Magistrate informed the court that the prosecution has failed to make a prima facie case against Sewcharran. As such, the matter was discharged on the grounds of lack of evidence. Moments after the ruling, the mother of the dead teenager attacked the young man whom she

Rick Sewcharran leaving court on Monday

blamed for her daughter’s death. The young man’s lawyers are likely to file assault charges against her. Adams, originally of the Essequibo Coast, who resided at East Street,

Dead: Sasia Adams

Georgetown, was hospitalised at about 20:00h on June 10 and died on June 12, 2018, after she reportedly jumped out of the moving vehicle that was being driven by Sewcharran. The accused, who was arraigned with a manslaughter charge, held

out that his now dead girlfriend jumped out of the vehicle he was driving along Lamaha Street, Georgetown, following an argument. Adams, while being hospitalized, had told doctors that she fell down. However, relatives and investigators had contended that the teen was pushed out of the moving car, resulting in her sustaining severe head injuries. The post-mortem examination conducted by veteran State Pathologist Dr Nehaul Singh indicated that the teen died as a result of blunt trauma to the head. The late Sasia Adams had been employed as a front desk clerk at the Ramada Georgetown Princess Hotel at Providence, EBD.

Logger remanded for ganja possession


ibert Rodrigues of Aruaima River, Berbice, Region 10, was on Monday refused bail by Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan after he was found with a quantity of ganja in his possession for the purpose of trafficking. Rodrigues, who plies his trade as a logger, denied the charge which stated that on March 2, 2019, at Landsville, Aruaima, had in his possession 2000 grams of cannabis. The Prosecution is contending that on March 2, Police during a sting operation swooped down on the home of the 31-year-old man and conducted a search. The sting operation, according to the Prosecution, was done after police arrested a man with narcotics and he took them to the house where he allegedly brought the illegal drug. Police ranks from the McKenzie Police Station during the search unearthed two plastic bags containing the suspected cannabis in the yard. Rodrigues and his son were arrested but the Prosecution is contending that the defendant, in a caution statement to the police, claimed ownership of the narcotic. In court on Monday Police Prosecutor Gordon Mansfield opposed bail on the grounds of the serious nature of the offence and the penalty it attracts. Magistrate McLennan upheld the Prosecution’s submission and remanded the logger to prison.

Stalling… S

…with false precedence

ome PNC diehards, with their Government having 9 days to go before they’re CONSTITUTIONALLY ILLEGAL, have moved from defending their refusal to follow the dictates of Art 106 (6) and pack their bags to claiming that the PPP “did the same thing” following the 1997 elections!! And that, like the PNC are doing now, the PPP squatted in office till 2001, when new elections were held. Now, if this isn’t a worse nonsense on stilts than claiming 33 isn’t greater than 32, what is??!! Let’s go back to the 1997 elections, shall we? We know the PNC immediately disputed the results of that election, which was certified by a host of international observers – including the Carter Center – who gave it their seal of approval. Sure, there were some hitches – like some PNC elections officers not signing their statements of poll – but nothing to change the elections’ result. The PPP won!!  But after PNC violent street protests, Caricom conducted a FORENSIC Audit of the votes AND AGREED THE ELECTIONS WERE KOSHER!! The PNC still wasn’t satisfied, and their luddites are focusing on the subsequent challenge in the courts brought by one of their proxies, Esther Perreira, that the requirement for voters to show their national ID card in order to vote was in contravention of Art 59 and Art 169, and was “ultra vires”.   Fact is, this requirement for having an ID to vote was contained in legislation (Act 22 of 1997) passed unanimously by the PPP and PNC!! But while the Judge (Claudette Singh) eventually ruled that the requirement was illegal, she explicitly said she was “unable to hold that illegal voting by persons who were not registered and were without voter ID cards would have per se affected the results of the elections.” Later on, she reiterated the point: “I am unable to make a positive finding whether those unlawful acts or omissions per se might have affected the results.”  So it was on a technicality that ID cards weren’t necessary for voting that Justice Singh ruled “the 1997 elections were not conducted in accordance with the provisions of the Representation of the People Act Chapter 1:03 and Articles 59 and 159 of the Constitution of Guyana.” And she ruled that elections be held in three months. Which it was, and which the PPP won once again!! On the claim that the PPP “held on to power illegally”, the court only made its ruling on Jan 15, 2001, and elections were held on 19th March 2001 – which is about when the Herdmanston Accord had already mandated!!  Will the PNC please stop dilly-dallying and face the polls?? Back in 2001, the PPP didn’t even appeal! 


One of David Granger’s vaunted claimed virtues is he’s a “churchman” - one who not only attends church (Anglican), but lives by its precepts. In fact, a spokesperson went into a tizzy after the Opposition Leader suggested the President’s recent ducking of a second letter to GECOM’s Chair was “fraudulent”, and insisted that, as a “Christian”, his leader is incapable of such behaviour. Well, the Anglican Church – along with the Catholic Church and other Civil Society bodies – has just taken a position at complete variance with the President’s on the latter’s sleight of hand to fob off onto GECOM the responsibility for setting a date for elections. After skittling down the President’s excuses one after another, the group declared:  “Deferring the exercise of Presidential responsibility to set the date for elections to such time as GECOM determines its own readiness is unacceptable. The Constitution mandates GECOM to be ready within ninety days, and there is no provision that allows the President to amend that provision as a pretext for not announcing a date for national elections.” Checkmate!!

…the inevitable

A homily for President Granger. King Canute felt so powerful he commanded the ocean waves to roll back as he sat on his chair on the beach in full regalia! The drenched king ruefully conceded he couldn’t disobey the “eternal laws”. Readers are invited to send their comments by email to



tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

Stabroek Market Wharf

Rehabilitative works yet to commence …current operations unfeasible – vendors

Some of the stalls which remained unopened on Monday morning

A burnt section of the Stabroek Market Wharf


econstruction of the Stabroek Market Wharf, which has been in a deplorable state for quite some time is yet to begin. The wharf, which has been in a deplorable state for many years, was cordoned off last year to facilitate rehabilitative works but no work commenced. On November 20, 2018, stall holders who were still operating at the wharf were forced to evacuate as the facility caught fire. When contacted on Monday about the delays of the rehabilitation project, Public Infrastructure Minister, David Patterson in a brief interview with this publication revealed that the project has already been tendered which will see works beginning later this year. “The contract for the design and the redesign of it has been awarded. It’s under the PPP and the UK funding. I can’t recall who won it but the design is being done as we speak. If all goes well I would expect work to begin sometime this year but it has been awarded since last year so sometime this year we will expect work to begin,” he said. Several vendors were moved to tears in September 2018 as they were greeted by City Hall workers barricading the area. The ven-

dors were later relocated to the route 42 Grove/Diamond minibus park where they have been functioning since earlier this year. The Council had decided at a previous statutory meeting that the vendors would have to construct their own stalls as one would cost $400,000. Former Town Clerk, Royston King had told the media that those vendors will have to spend at least two years on the bus park before the rehabilitative works at the wharf are completed.


Meanwhile, scores of vendors who are now plying their trades at the route 42 bus park are calling for the waterfront to be rehabilitated as soon as possible, since sales are plummeting. Speaking with Guyana Times on Monday, one vendor, Yvonne Smith said she was retailing goods at the wharf prior to the move initiated by the Georgetown Mayor and City Council. However, since the completion of the brand-new stalls, there has been a scanty population of persons who have opened their businesses. This is because of the downward spiralling of their livelihoods due to the lack of market for the goods and persons preferring to go else-

where at the market square to purchase items. “They killing we here. I used to sell at the back by the wharf and we used to do good and now people stop coming as much as they used to. We come out here and not only the sales bad, but it get other things that we worried about,” said Smith. Her other worries referred to the state of the surroundings, which is not in keeping with that of a marketplace. Some persons were paying people to remove the garbage but it is being dumped in close proximity to the area. Adding to that, they are cleaning these environs without any water supply. “The condition of the market here is really rough. It is dirty and people sleeping here. They pay people to move the garbage and they bring it right back here. There’s no water around. We don’t have any water to wash around before we start selling so we have to pay people to bring couple buckets with water so that we can make the place look good,” Smith stated. According to Smith, the other vendors and herself were making better profits at the wharf when compared to the new location. She believes it is too clustered and many persons are not willing to enter the area.

“Just a few of us come out here but now we thinking that the wharf was better and they should try to fix it because nothing is doing over there. They tell us we might be here for two year but almost a year up and nothing is being done.” Since June of 2016, it was reported that former Town Clerk Royston King had declared the commencement of works at the wharf. At that time, the budget for the complete refurbishing of the wharf was pegged at some $400 million. Over the years, over 300 merchants were situated at the wharf but this number has been reduced to just over 80.

No-confidence resolution

GO-Invest claims no negative impact on investments …despite Business Minister’s, Private Sector’s adverse effect declaration


he Guyana Office for Investment (GOInvest) has claimed that the political climate in Guyana has had little effect on investments coming to Guyana. This is according to the agency’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Owen Verwey, who told a press conference on Monday that the investment climate in Guyana remained the same. “It has not [had an impact]. If you realised your recent political development was 21st December. So, that would have been too late to affect anything that we would have been doing,” he stated. When pressed to state whether it has had an impact on businesses here, Verwey said it would be difficult to assess that, noting that GO-Invest has not had any negative feedback. “In fact, I think the Guyana environment for oil and gas is so robust that everyone for whatever reason would want to be here,” the CEO told the media. However, Business Minister Dominic Gaskin has admitted to Guyana Times over the weekend that local investment was being affected by the political situation resulting from the no-confidence vote. Gaskin said that the state of affairs is impacting local business investments, but claimed that foreign investors, especially those in the oil and gas sector, are not detoured. “I know that generally, local investors, if they sense that there is any sort of political uncertainty [are impacted], they are not the foreign investors, not the oil and gas sector or anything

raised about the impact the current situation could have on potential investment opportunities.


GO-Invest CEO Owen Verwey

like that, but a lot of our local investors who may be planning a project or something,” Gaskin said. He added, “Some of them will tend to want to wait and see just in case. It’s always – it’s unfortunate – but it’s always been the case where too much emphasis is placed on politics and sometimes when politicians are at war or are battling each other.” According to the Minister, the business community allows itself to be impacted, but he thinks there is no cause for concern or for panic, because Guyana is a mature democracy by now and has proven it is capable of handling these situations without hindrance to the economy. Although Gaskin assured that the ongoing political situation in Guyana would not affect foreign investors, diplomats of the American, British, Canadian and European (ABCE) countries recently met with Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) during which concerns were

In February, the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) said it had conducted a study following the passage of the December 21, 2018 no-confidence motion and has found that the looming political uncertainty has caused some 64 per cent of businesses to register some sort of decline. The Chamber on Monday said it was concerned about the effect of the impact of the associated uncertainty on the business community, adding that it was that level of uncertainty which prompted the survey to gauge the effect of the political environment on business performance. From the results, 64 per cent of respondents (or about two in every three businesses) experienced some form of decline owing to the uncertainty over the state of political affairs in Guyana. For those businesses which registered a decline in activity, approximately 85 per cent experienced a 25 to 50 per cent drop in the level of commercial activity. The remaining 15 per cent experienced 75 to 100 per cent decline in business. The Private Sector body noted that the significant decline in commercial activity was worrying to itself and its membership. According to the Chamber, the continued state of political uncertainty can result in further decline in economic activity. turn to page 13

10 news

tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

No child left behind policy revoked in 2013 but still being used …policy doing more harm than good in schools – GTU General Secretary


he Automatic Promotion Policy (APP) dubbed the “no child left behind policy” has now become an obstruction to delivering quality education to children in the classroom

since they are no longer motivated to excel at their studies. This is according to General Secretary of the Guyana Teachers’ Union (GTU) Coretta McDonald, who told Guyana Times that

this policy is affecting the progress at schools. She explained that while this policy was created with the intention of helping the education system in Guyana, years later, it is having nega-

GTU General Secretary Coretta McDonald

Former Education Minister Priya Manickchand

Education Minister Nicolette Henry

tive effects. “For example, some children no longer attempt to or even want to complete their assignments to hand in to teachers so that they can be graded. They are not pushing themselves to excel or not even studying for exams as they should be. They know that the no child left behind policy equates to no repetition in the year they are in so they are not trying to do as much as they should because automatically, they will be put over to the next level,” the GTU General Secretary stated. McDonald added that such behaviour by some children in the schools is also having an effect on students who actually want to achieve the highest marks at examinations. Their drive for competition in academia can be adversely affected when they observe their classmates not performing well at school but everyone still being promoted, she noted.

According to the GTU General Secretary, the Government needs to either review the Automatic Promotion Policy and revamp it or abolish it from the education system in Guyana. When it was introduced into the school system, the then leading opposition party, the People’s National Congress/Reform (PNC/R) had repeatedly condemned the former Administration for this move and heavily criticised such an initiative. However, although it had been announced by the PPP that the APP was revoked, the APNU/AFC Government is still implementing this policy, the same policy it was objecting to under the PPP Government.

had a poor response to remedial classes. Manickchand at that time said that students who perform poorly in Mathematics and English would not be promoted to the next class. The APP system is only in secondary schools. According to Manickchand, students would be required to achieve close to the overall pass-mark set by the school with at least five CXC subjects with Grades 1 to 3. The decision to revise the Automatic Promotion Policy (APP) followed countrywide consultations at 30 meetings that were held as part of the planned review after two years. “Reports from the consultations revealed that the policy is not popular with any of the critical stakeholders. Parents, teachers and even students themselves believe that the promotion from one grade to another should not be automatic,” the former Education Minister had stated.

Revocation In July 2013, the then Education Minister Priya Manickchand announced that the Education Ministry revoked the policy since it had been rejected by parents and

Deaths of 3 children at GPHC

Understaffing a critical component to incorrect administering of drugs


he medical practitioners who incorrectly administered injections to the three leukaemia juvenile patients leading to their deaths at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) in January, treated those patients without the supervision of a senior doctor at some point during treatments. This is according to the Deputy Chief Medical Officer (DCMO) of Guyana, Dr Karen Gordon-Campbell, who recently told the media that the scenario put together from the investigations revealed that the lack of staffing at the hospital resulted in their actions. “The few persons that were available [were] stretching themselves between clinic, Accident and Emergency, ward rounds. Administration of the chemotherapy lead to the administration of the chemotherapy being done without the senior person being present at all times. And that I think, was part of the problem, lack of staff at the time.” Dr Gordon-Campbell explained that in understanding that persons were being

Dr Karen Gordon Campbell

Dr Fawcett Jeffrey

pulled “here, there and everywhere,” the three medical practitioners in question, wrote their treatment without checking on the standard operating procedures. “A doctor administered it…but not the senior doctor. Ideally, you’d want to have a senior person at least in the room observing, ideally, or at least assure that the person that was administering was doing what they should do,” she said. Meanwhile, GPHC’s Director of Medical and Professional Services, Dr Fawcett Jeffrey, stated when any doctor is about to treat a patient there are protocols in place that need to and must

be followed. “There are roadmaps that you need to follow when you are going to administer any form of medical attention to a patient. What happened that these roadmaps and protocols were not followed exactly as they should be. That is the reason why we ended up [with] the complications.”

Lessons learnt

Dr Jeffrey noted that while it is unfortunate that there had to be incidents such as these where the three children lost their lives, the GPHC has learnt that supervision of junior staff is critical in all departments. turn to page 13



tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

PPP calls on ERC to investigate Elderly women charged for breach of Constitution, national assaulting each other disruptions

PPP’s Executive Secretary, Zulfikar Mustapha


he People’s Progressive Party (PPP) has written to the Ethnic Relations Commission (ERC) requesting that it launches an investigation to the breaches by the David Granger led Coalition Government, which could have grave consequences for Guyana, its people and national harmony

According Article 212 D of the Constitution of Guyana states the functions of the Ethnic Relations Commission include taking steps to “…monitor and review all legislation and all administrative acts or omissions relating to or having implications for ethnic relations...” PPP’s Member of Parliament and Executive Secretary, Zulfikar

Mustapha, in his letter to the ERC stated that in line with the Commission’s mandate, “I request that the Commission investigate the Coalition Government’s breach of Article 106 of the Constitution of Guyana, which would result in an illegal government after March 21, 2019 (the deadline for General for Regional Elections). This coupled with Coalition Government officials’ actions, which polarize our people via the circulation of racially inciteful material on social media and via other platforms, will lead to an intensification of uncertainty and ethnic disharmony.” He requested that the probe be treated expeditiously by the Commission and appropriate sanctions implemented to avert the perils of this dangerous path that the Coalition Government seems bent on leading Guyana down.


wo elderly women were on Monday hauled before the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts after they were charged for assaulting each other. Sixty-one-year-old Juel David, of B Field Sophia, Greater Georgetown, pleaded guilty with an explanation to the charge which stated that on February 22,


Garbage being dumped at the main access road to Lake Mainstay Resort

area. Speaking with this publication on Monday, Mayor of the Township of Anna Regina, Rajendra Prabhulall said that the municipality will have to get tough on those persons who are

dumping garbage indiscriminately. He said that the Public Health officers and Overseer visited the area and are presently working on a long-term plan to clean up the entire area and to prevent residents from fur-

her by Senior Magistrate Sherdel Isaacs-Marcus on Monday. While no facts were presented on the matter, the prosecution made no objections to bail being granted to the duo. As such, the women were placed on $10,000 bail each and ordered to return to the court on March 25, 2019.

Constitution is... The members who are mounting pressure on President Granger to call a date for elections are: The Anglican Church of Guyana, the Guyana Human Rights Association, Movement Against Parking Meters, Inter-Religious Organisation, Guyana Presbyterian Church, Roman Catholic Church, Transparency Institute of Guyana Incorporated, Guyana Rastafarian

Region 2 admin to get tough on littering

espite several cleanup campaigns, the Essequibo Coast Tourism Association and other Non-Governmental Organisations and sensitisation programmes being conducted in Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam) to educate residents and to make the region clean, persons are still in the old habit of littering. In the Township of Anna Regina, residents including businesses are dumping their garbage by nights on the shoulders of the road leading to the region’s main tourist attraction –Lake Mainstay Resort. Thousands use this roadway to access the resort or the other lakes in the area but are greeted with the unsightly dumping

2019 at Alexander Street, Georgetown, she unlawfully assaulted Cheryl Nickson with intent to cause actual bodily harm. However, a not-guilty plea was entered on her behalf as she explained to the court that she did not assault Nickson. On the other hand, Nickson, 52, denied the charge when it was read to

ther dumping their garbage there. A meeting is planned for Thursday of this week with the Essequibo Coast Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Mayor and Councillors of the Town of Anna Regina whereby the issue of garbage disposal will be the main topic on the agenda. The Mayor said that residents are encouraged to use the garbage disposal system that is presently in place in the region. Pooran Brothers Inc is presently contracted to remove all garbage in the region.

Community, Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union, Private Sector Commission, Red Thread, Aircraft Owners Association of Guyana, and RISE Guyana.

No confidence motion

On December 21, 2018 the no-confidence motion brought by the parliamentary Opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP/C) against the Government succeeded when former AFC Member of Parliament Charrandas Persaud broke rank and made a conscience vote in favour of the motion. With the Government’s defeat, the next steps are spelt out in the Constitution of Guyana. Clause 7 of Article 106 goes on to state that, “Notwithstanding its defeat, the Government shall remain in office and shall hold an election within three months, or such longer period as the National Assembly shall by resolution supported by not less than two-thirds of the votes of all the elected members of the National Assembly determine, and shall resign after the President takes the oath of office following the

From page 3

election.” President David Granger and Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo had initially committed to following the provisions outlined in the Constitution, facilitating early elections and engaging in dialogue with the Leader of the Opposition, but have since changed their position. Since the passage of the motion on December 21, 2018 however, persons aligned with the coalition party have sought to question the motion’s validity even as the vote has already been certified. The original proponent of the 34-vote argument is Attorney Nigel Hughes, a former AFC Chairman and the husband of sitting Minister Cathy Hughes, who told State media that half of 65 is 32.5 but when rounded to the nearest whole number, this would be 33 as there is no half member. Following a challenge of this in the High Court, Chief Justice Roxane George ruled that 33 is majority. The Government has since challenged that chief justice’s ruling in the Court of Appeal. That case comes up for hearing today.

12 news

tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

Go-Invest notes shortfall in services sector during 2018


here has been a shortfall in the services sector in Guyana and sloth in the due diligence the application process for investors in Guyana, which has led to loses in 2018. This is according Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest), Owen Verwey. Addressing a press conference at Duke Lodge on Monday, Verwey noted that despite successes for the agency in 2018, there were certain “shortfalls”, particularly in the services sector. “We have seen some shortfall there especially in the services sector, where we expected earlier activities as to relates to that. I think we are now seeing that level of activity picking up significantly to develop the first oil part of it,” he stated. He said too that there was some sloth in the due diligence process that has resulted in these shortfalls but that will be addressed. As such, the agency has put in place a process to look at realistic applications in ensuring that they are validated. According to Verwey, in 2018 Go Invest generated invest-

ments totalling $89.4 billion in facilitated investments and $52.2 billion from 56 executed investments across all platforms and sectors of local Guyanese economy. He revealed that based on the investor figures, these investments are expected to create 1644 jobs when the projects are fully operational. These new jobs and associated training opportunities will increase Guyana’s human resource capabilities in agriculture, light manufacturing, tourism, services, forestry and energy. Addressing a press conference at Duke Lodge on Monday, Verwey noted that for the 56 executed investments, 38 were local, 15 were Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) and three were joint ventures. The FDI agreements were mainly within the agriculture, services and manufacturing sectors, along with one in Information and Communication Technology. “GO-Invest also made substantial progress in promoting Guyana’s exports in international markets in 2018. The agency matched 56 local businesses with overseas clients. These were in-

The Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest)

volved in the supply of gold, diamonds, coffee, coconut oil, heart of palm, pepper, fruit pulp, dressed lumber, noodles, beverages, and clay brick among other products,” he explained. To complement these activities, Verwey said GO-Invest completed a robust programme of inward and outward missions that year to explore mutually beneficial invest-

ment opportunities and implement trade-related activities aimed at obtaining new markets and increasing exports. This resulted in 36 Guyanese entrepreneurs in the agro-processing, mining and tourism sectors attaining direct access to selected export markets offering the best sale opportunities for their products and services. The missions re-

sulted in significant gains for both large and small enterprises with new markets secured for ventures of all sizes. “Overall, the agency facilitated the improvement of local exporters’ marketing, networking, and monitoring tools and capabilities. This involved the creation of synergistic business links, allowing local exporters to collaborate easily and securely with their international clients and build capacity in vital aspects of business, such as improving product design and quality and enhancing productivity,” he added. At present, GO-Invest is preparing for several major events including GIPEX 2019. It is also involved in the ongoing training of exporters in order to get them ready for international trading along with translation and distribution of brochures about investments and exports. The agency is engaged in hiring consultants for the Trade and Investment Framework and the Investment Review and Export Strategy under the National Quality Infrastructure Project.

More training needed to reel in tourists to Guyana – Gaskin


usiness Minister Dominic Gaskin, who is tasked with responsibility for tourism, has admitted that there was a grave need for more training in the hospitality sector in order to bring more tourists to the country. Gaskin told Guyana Times during a recent interview that although efforts were being made to increase the number of airlines serving the country, persons who

make direct contact with visitors should be properly trained. The Minister made specific reference to hotel receptionists as well as minibus and taxi drivers. “We need more airlifts, but that is being attended to and we are getting people coming. Our visitor arrival is increasing, but I think what we need though is a lot more training in some of the hospitality sectors as well as

Business Minister Dominic Gaskin

the transportation sector so that the visitor experience is one that they would want to recommend,” he said. Gaskin added, “I think a lot of work has to be done in the services sector whether it is restaurant, hotels, minibus, taxis, even retail, because we want to give them an experience that reflects our seriousness about tourism and if you don’t have good service, you not gonna get return visitors”. According to him, the Ministry has been conduct-

ing training for some hotel personnel while the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) is working on a new programme which will ensure more persons are trained in this regard. “I think what we are focusing on now is … a particular training programme that involves certification and we are trying to get the GTA trainers trained so that they can actually do the training themselves and certification,” he noted. Moreover, Gaskin ex-

plained that the new programme would allow the Ministry to train and certify persons to an internationally recognised standard. The Minister was keen to note that although he hoped for this programme to be operational before year end, it does not mean that other training sessions would discontinue. Guyana was recently named the number one “Best of Ecotourism” destination in the world. The award was presented to Guyana at the Internationale Tourismus-Börse (ITB) global travel trade fair in Berlin, Germany – the world’s largest tourism trade fair. The second annual “Best of Top 100” Awards is a selection of the finest top 100 destinations selected by a panel of experts, who reviewed sustainability success stories submitted by destinations worldwide. The newly-created “Best of Ecotourism” category was added in 2019 and puts Guyana up against very well-known and

long-established ecotourism destinations, such as Sierra Gorda in Mexico, Tmatboey in Cambodia, and the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador. Back in December last year during budgetary debates, Gaskin boasted of a 17 per cent increase in visitor arrivals up to September, when compared with figures for the same period last year. The Minister pointed out that apart from the two major agricultural products which are rice and sugar, tourism brings in the highest amount of foreign earnings while also providing opportunities for young Guyanese. Recognising the importance of the sector, Gaskin said the Ministry increased the budget allocation to the GTA from $123 million in 2014 to over $300 million in 2019. He explained that the GTA and the Department of Tourism would receive budgetary allocations of $305 million and $93 million respectively.



tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

Commonwealth countries showcased at Umana Yana exhibit

The Anna Regina Secondary dressed in coconut-branch attire


n celebration of Commonwealth Day 2019, schools across Guyana were tasked with showcasing the diverse cultures of other countries with a colourful display at the Umana Yana on Monday afternoon. The exhibit, hosted by the Parliament Office of Guyana, featured projects depicting the culture, cuisine and national symbols of other Commonwealth nations and the ways resources are used to produce unique creations. Each school was tasked with presenting on one of the 53 Commonwealth countries which exist, and Guyana Times visited some of these exhibits with Guyana notably represented as well. Diagrams, models and elaborate outfits were part of the spectacle as the students were wellversed in providing information on their respective country. The St Joseph High School did a presentation on Singapore, with Teshanna Ramnarine who represented the school naming it as one of the most peaceful countries in the world despite the fact that it is not that large. “They have this unique culture and diversity whereby everyone lives in perfect harmony. It is something like Guyana, but very different based on the fact that it is a fully-developed country with a huge tourism sector. It is also wealthy in the stock market.”

Students at the primary level representing Mozambique

From Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), the Bartica Secondary School focused on Cyprus, which is the third largest and third most populous island in the Mediterranean. According to geography teacher Rosalie Pereira, the country is also famous for its pizza and wine. “They’re known for Mediterranean pizza and wine production. They’re also a good destination for ecotourism and agro-tourism. I think it’s a good idea to showcase the different countries because it’s a good opportunity for the teachers to be acquainted with the culture and the way of living and compare it to ours,” Pereira added. Meanwhile, the North West Secondary School featured Canada, which is populated with French and English-speaking citizens primarily. On display were some distinct dishes that are associated with the First World country.

GO-Invest claims..

GCCI’s membership numbers over 240 business organisations from micro to enterprise level, located throughout the country and in Caricom. The passage of the December 21, 2018 no-confidence motion saw the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) Government being toppled. The motion was moved by Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo and carried by a 3332 vote, with AFC Member of Parliament Charrandas Persaud defecting in a vote of conscience in favour of the motion.

Traditional Malaysian culture shown by the Zeeburg Secondary School

from page 9

No move has been made by the Government to have elections held within the constitutionally mandated 90 days. A recent meeting between President David Granger and Opposition Leader Jagdeo ended in stalemate, as the two have still not come to a compromise. Additionally, GECOM has since indicated that it will require at least five months to prepare. This move has been condemned by many, with observers accusing GECOM of ignoring its constitutional mandate to buy time for the Government.

Akeisha George was decked out in a contempo-

rary outfit as she explained, “We’re portraying some of the traditional foods like poutine, split peas soup while in a modern day, you will find items such as macaroni and cheese and pancakes. There are aspects of their sports that we’re showcasing as well.” Amlica Persaud of the Anna Regina Secondary School in Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam) related that her group was not expecting Kiribati, an island republic in the Central Pacific. However, learning about this nation was stra-

tegic in gaining knowledge about countries in that region. “Kiribati is not even pronounced as it is spelt which was the first thing we noticed. It is very indigenous and basically everything is based on coconuts. The clothing is made from coconut and they make their clothing with the plant as well. Another thing is that they use a lot of seafood. Now I know more about this country, a country that I had never heard of,” Persaud noted. At the primary level, the

Leonora Primary School presented on Sri Lanka while Amelia’s Ward Primary highlighted Solomon Island. Malaysia, Trinidad and Tobago, South Africa, and India were presented on by other schools. Empire Day was replaced with Commonwealth Day and is observed every year on the second Monday of March. The theme this year reads, “A Connected Commonwealth”, which denotes the good relations among these countries and places emphasis on the need for more cooperation.

Understaffing a critical component ...

from page 10

“It is very important for our staff to be better supervised, juniors by seniors, and that they stick to standard protocols for the management of all pathology within the institution. Not only the management or the use of chemotherapeutic drugs, but any protocol, even if you are going to do a surgical procedure, if you are going to do any form of management, protocols are there and they are there to be followed. It was unfortunate in this case; the protocols were not followed.”


The family of Sharezer Mendonca, 6, who is one of three children that died after receiving pre-chemotherapy treatment at the hospital in January, plans to sue the institution for wrongful death. Guyana Times spoke with the aunt of Sharezer, Sherry Ann Mendonca, on Sunday who related that they are going ahead to file legal action since they are of the view that her untimely death could have been avoided had the doctors and nurses paid careful attention to what they were doing. Mendonca said that her family plans to push for the licences of those directly involved in her niece’s death to be revoked so that they do not practice medicine again. She said it could happen to anyone and this is the best way of ensuring that it does not happen to anyone else. On Friday, Chairperson of the Board of Directors

at the GPHC, Kesaundra Alves told the media that an internal investigation by the hospital’s administration into the circumstances surrounding the deaths of the three children has revealed that human deficiencies and systemic challenges contributed to the demise of those three children. She stated that an independent investigation by the Public Health Ministry was also launched and findings were similar to those of the GPHC’s; non-adherence to the hospital’s protocols led to the three young children succumbing at the GPHC. The first child who died was seven-year-old Curwayne Edwards on January 14, followed by three-year-old Roshini

Seegobin of Enmore, East Coast Demerara (ECD) on January 18. The third child, six-year-old Sharezer Mendonca of Queenstown, Essequibo Coast, died on

January 24. Mendonca’s body was given to the wrong family for burial in what was alleged to have been an attempt to cover up her true cause of death.

14 news

tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

Guyana will witness spike in nature Concession granted to American travellers – Tourism Director General Airlines nothing unusual – Govt


(From left to right) Amerindian Peoples’ Affairs Minister Sydney Allicock with GTA Director Brian Mullis; Director General of Tourism, Donald Sinclair; and Business Minister Dominic Gaskin


ith Guyana being placed on top of the list of tourism destinations at the recent ITB travel fair, where it was the country voted as “Best in Ecotourism”, the country will soon see many adventurers seeking to explore its pristine waterways and exotic rainforest. This was the position shared by the DirectorGeneral of Tourism, Donald Sinclair, on Monday evening during a celebrative ceremony to highlight the country’s achievements at the recent travel fair in Berlin, Germany. Having competed against countries such as Mexico, Cambodia and Ecuador, which are leading the way in the tourism sector, Guyana won the newly introduced category by featuring the Surama and Rewa eco-lodges and other local attractions. Sinclair said that being

in this position indicates that there must be careful actions in the future to ensure that there are no breaches in the best practices while ensuring that the expectations of tourists are fulfilled. “Our award as number one ecotourism destination will generate a spike in nature travel to Guyana. Many committed eco-travellers, (upon) learning that the number one eco-tourism destination is on the north-eastern shoulder of South America, will be moving to our websites, [and] some will be making bookings to travel. It is not in our interest to disappoint them,” Sinclair cautioned. He added, “We must view this award not only as a prize and accolade, but also as a call to action. There must be sustained action to ensure that we do not find ourselves in breach of ecotourism principles and best

practices.” Meanwhile, Director of the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA), Brian Mullis, was inclined to the booming oil and gas industry, noting that the country should adapt to changes by modernising its economy. “Guyana has a legacy of support for its rich biodiversity through environmental policy, sustainable forestry, and establishment of a national system for protected areas. With the recent discovery of our vast oil and gas reserves, we are now at that critical point in our history. We have an opportunity to shift our development path, modernise our economy, and positively transform the lives of all Guyanese,” he declared. He also said there is room for improvement, and mentioned a few challenges with which the country is faced, primarily in the areas of energy efficiency, sustainable mining, and waste management. The GTA Director mentioned, “We have to continue to market and advance our efforts to remain one of the best. We have recognised that there is room for improvement in areas like renewable energy and energy efficiency in our lodging sector, waste management across the country, managing the wildlife trade, and adopting alternative mining practices.” Business Minister Dominic Gaskin has insisted that Guyana needs to build on these achievements by promoting and protecting the natural resources. Guyana has also recently become the first country to adopt the Adventure Travel Trade Association’s International Adventure Travel Guide Qualification and Performance Standards. President of the Green Destinations Foundation, Albert Salman, said Guyana was placed as the best ecotourism destination because of its low-carbon resilient programme, economic opportunities, individual equality, justice, and political empowerment.

n light of calls for the release of an agreement signed between Government and United States air carrier American Airlines to operate out of the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson said there is nothing to fear. Opposition Member of Parliament (MP) Juan Edghill has called for Government to disclose in its entirety, the agreement it signed with American Airlines to operate here, based on reports that Government may have waived a significant portion of the landing and air navigation fees for it. But Patterson declared Monday that almost all new airlines that come to Guyana and even chartered ones are all given a concessional period in which a “startup incentive” is given to it. “Every single airline including Copa, Dynamic has received this,” he explained. According to media reports, American Airlines gets a 90 per cent concession on the landing fees. But Edghill, who shadows the public infrastructure portfolio in the National Assembly, said Government needed to say how that agreement would benefit Guyana. “Is this compatible with any concession that has been granted to any other

airline that has operated in Guyana in the past or is operating currently?” he questioned. According to the Minister, these concessions do not last forever. “So this happens for a period and not all the time. Most of them last one year to help them with their establishment and after then they would have to pay their full share. There is nothing to worry about,” Patterson said. Edghill had also demanded that Government explain how this move will impact the lowering of airfares to Guyana, stating that since the airline entered the market, airfares have not reduced. But again, Patterson believes that this concession does not create room for any unfair competition because at one point or the other airlines currently operating out of CJIA, including Caribbean Airlines, COPA Airlines and the rest have benefited from the same arrangement. On the issue regarding the US-owned airline allegedly targeting high-end passengers who are coming to conduct oil business in Guyana, Patterson also denied this. Edghill had said while the Opposition is not against concessions, they believe that concessions must be granted with the aim of bringing value to Guyana. “It must be equitable,

non-discriminatory and it must not be putting another airline out of business, because they have to pay more. It must be a competitive arrangement,” he explained. The MP said without having all the information; the Opposition was very concerned about it and is asking for transparency and full disclosure on this matter. Activist and commentator Christopher Ram has said that Guyana should not allow oil companies and any of their subcontractors to continue using American Airlines given the exorbitant travelling rates. American Airlines started operations here in the latter part of 2018. It has an average of nearly 6700 flights per day to approximately 350 destinations in more than 50 countries. The airline uses an Airbus 319 with capacity for 120 passengers to fly to Guyana from Miami four times per week, departing from Miami at 18:00h and arriving in Georgetown at 22:40h. The return flight usually departs at 01:15h and arrives at 04:55h. However, the airline had the highest ticket prices for travel between Guyana and Miami. In some cases, the cost of a one-way ticket is as much as seven times higher than the cost of tickets to the same destination on other air carriers.

Porter in Linden accident died from multiple injuries – PME

The container truck which ran over the porter


post-mortem examination conducted on the body of 25-year-old Jovon Jommol Anthony, the porter who was crushed to death by a container truck in Linden on Saturday has given the cause of death as multiple crushing injuries. The examination was performed by Government Pathologist, Dr Nehaul Singh at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) mortuary on Monday. Anthony, of 44 Prince Williams Street, Plaisance, East Coast Demerara (ECD), died after he was pinned under the truck on

which he was working, in the vicinity of the Karakara toll booth and the Guyana Forestry Commission at Mackenzie, Linden. The incident occurred at about 13:00h. Inquiries disclosed that the motor lorry, driven by 28-year-old Floyd Rodney of 121 Ogle Street, Triumph, ECD, was at the time proceeding along the Karakara public road with Anthony on board. The motor lorry, GSS 1407, along with trailer TMM 2242 was proceeding east along the northern side of the road when the deceased disembarked to pay the toll. After doing so, Anthony report-

edly jumped back onto the lorry’s gas tank situated on the left side front section while it was still in motion. Anthony, according to reports, lost his grip and fell onto the roadway between the lorry and trailer and was run over by the trailer as a result. He was later pronounced dead on the spot by a doctor attached to the Linden Hospital Complex. Police who were summoned to the scene have since launched an investigation into the incident. The driver of the lorry remains in custody where he is said to be assisting with the investigation.



tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019 |

US condemns Cuba, Russia for T&T Police Officers to be backing Venezuela’s Maduro randomly tested for drugs



op US diplomat Mike Pompeo took aim at Cuba and Russia on Monday for their support of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, who Washington wants to remove from power. The secretary of state rejected Maduro’s assertion that the US was responsible for a widespread blackout, instead pointing the finger at the socialist nature of the Venezuelan leader’s government. “Nicolás Maduro promised Venezuelans a better life and a socialist paradise. He delivered on the socialism part, which has proved, time and time again, is a recipe for economic ruin,” Pompeo told journalists. “The paradise part? Not so much.” While he did not announce new measures against Maduro or in support of opposition leader Juan Guaido, who has been recognized as interim president by some 50 countries, Pompeo did take aim at the “central role Cuba and Russia have played and continue to play in undermin-

he Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) Monday said it would begin conducting random drug testing on police officers and that Police Commissioner Gary Griffith will be the first to be tested. In a statement, the TTPS said that the drug testing, which will begin in two months’ time and continue “indefinitely,” is a “proactive

Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro

ing the democratic dreams of the Venezuelan people and their welfare.” “Cuba is the true imperialist power in Venezuela,” Pompeo said, denouncing the “physical protection and other critical material and political support to Maduro and to those around him.” “When there is no electricity, thank the marvels of modern Cuban-led engineering,” he said. “When there is no water, thank the excellent hydrologists from Cuba. Download the Microsoft News App to keep a track of

all the latest updates “When there is no food, thank the Cuban communist overlords.” Pompeo also took aim at Moscow, saying that “Russia too has created this crisis,” including by supplying arms to Venezuela. He acknowledged that “we always wish things could go faster” in Venezuela, but said that he is “very confident the tide is moving in the direction of the Venezuelan people and will continue to do so.” (AFP)

Men wait for the water level to drop in a flooded street after heavy rains in Vila Prudente neighbourhood in Sao Paulo, Brazil March 11, 2019. (Reuters/Amanda Perobelli)


ntense floods in Latin America’s business hub Sao Paulo killed at least

11 people, turned roads into rivers and tossed cars atop buildings and into trees,

Oil prices rise amid broad market rally, OPEC supply cuts


il prices rose on Tuesday, lifted by healthy demand and output cuts led by producer group OPEC. A rally in broader financial markets also supported crude futures, although analysts still warned of risks to the global economy. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures were at $56.97 per barrel at 0054 GMT, up 18 cents, or 0.3 percent, from their last settlement. Brent crude futures were at $66.75 per barrel, up 17 cents, or 0.3 percent. “(Despite economic headwinds), we still see Brent prices averaging $70 per barrel this year and expect WTI to lag, averaging $59 per barrel in 2019,” said Bank of America Merrill Lynch. It said that was partly due to demand for marine diesel expected from next year as part of new fuel rules from the International Maritime Organization. “With diesel yields already maxed out, refiners may need to lift runs in 2H19 to meet rising demand for marine distillates,” it said.

Oil prices have been receiving broad support this year from supply cuts by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-affiliated allies like Russia aimed at tightening markets. Traders also pointed to the political and economic crisis in OPEC-member Venezuela as a driver for oil prices. Venezuela’s opposition-run congress on Monday declared a “state of alarm” over a five-day power blackout that has crippled the country’s oil exports and left millions of citizens scrambling to find food and water. (Reuters)

lygraphed and drug tested,” the statement said. It warned that police officers found to be under the influence of any dangerous drugs whilst on duty “will be disciplined”. The statement said that the drug testing will be conducted on both regular and Special Reserve Police (SRP) officers. (CMC)

CAL stands by safety record after deadly Ethiopian Airlines crash


he Trinidad-based Caribbean Airlines (CAL) Monday extended condolences to the families of those killed on the ill-fated Ethiopian Airlines flight on Sunday and said that while it currently uses Boeing 737-800 Next Generation aircraft it “stands by its commitment to put the safety of its passengers, crew and operations first”. The Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed minutes after take-off killing all 149

11 dead as Brazil’s largest city flooded with authorities bracing for more rain Monday evening. Five people drowned. The others, including at least one infant, were buried alive in mudslides, according to the Sao Paulo state security secretariat. Nearly 110 millimeters - over 4 inches - of rain fell from Sunday afternoon to Monday afternoon, 70 percent of the amount expected for the entire month of March, authorities said. That caused chaos in Sao Paulo’s already clogged traffic, as commuter trains were partially shut down, and buses and cars were stuck in gridlocked streets. Rain is forecast for at

approach aimed at minimising the possibility of police officers being addicted to illegal drugs”. It said it is also aimed at ensuring that ‘officers do not commit actions which will cause them to be involved in any type of criminal activity. “In a similar manner to the polygraph test…the COP has requested that he be the first person to be po-

least another two days. The Mercedes Benz truck and bus factory in Sao Bernardo do Campo was flooded and activity partially suspended, according to the local metalworkers’ union. The German automaker is the largest manufacturer of trucks and buses in Brazil, having sold 21,153 vehicles last year. Mercedes Benz did not reply to requests for comment. (Reuters)

passengers and eight member crew. The digital flight data recorder from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to Nairobi, Kenya has since been located. In a statement, CAL said that in understands that “investigations by the relevant authorities are in progress and the cause of this accident remains undetermined at this time. “The airline industry is one of the most highly regulated industries in the world and there are rigorous processes and regulatory procedures to follow before any aircraft is brought into service. “Caribbean Airlines will

incorporate the procedural and training elements necessary to comply with all regulations and instructions before any new aircraft is introduced to its fleet,” the airline said in the statement. It said that CAL “currently uses Boeing 737-800 Next Generation aircraft and stands by its commitment to put the safety of its passengers, crew and operations first”. Cayman Airways has since announced it was suspending the use of its new Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft, following Sunday’s deadly crash. (CMC)


tuesday, march 12, 2019


Sandra" slams Venezuelan blackout hits oil exports "Singing fat-shaming Fuad

…as citizens scramble for food


uch of Venezuela, including parts of the capital Caracas, remained without power on Monday for a fifth day, crimping vital oil exports and leaving people struggling to obtain water and food. President Nicolás Maduro, who has blamed the unprecedented blackout on sabotage by the United States at Venezuela’s Guri hydroelectric dam, ordered the suspension of classes and the working day, as he had on Friday. Sources in the oil sector, Venezuela’s main source of foreign earnings and a vital generator of revenue for Maduro’s Government, said that exports from the primary port of Jose had been halted by the blackouts. The Oppositioncontrolled Congress called

People collect water released through a sewage drain that feeds into the Guaire River, which carries most of the city's wastewater, in Caracas, Venezuela, March 11, 2019

an emergency session to discuss the power cuts, blaming negligence by Maduro’s socialist Government. Maduro’s rule is being challenged by congress leader Juan Guaidó, who

in January invoked the Constitution to declare himself interim President after declaring Maduro’s 2018 re-election a fraud. Guaidó has been recognised as Venezuela’s legitimate lead-

er by the United States and most Western countries, but Maduro retains control of the armed forces and State institutions. The blackout, which began Thursday afternoon, has heightened frustration among Venezuelans already suffering widespread food and medicine shortages, as the once-prosperous nation’s economy suffers a hyperinflationary collapse. Food has rotted in refrigerators, hospitals have struggled to keep equipment operating, and people have clustered on the streets of Caracas to pick up patchy telephone signals to reach relatives abroad. On Monday, people formed lines to fill containers with water from the streams cascading down the mountain overlooking Caracas. (Excerpt from


Arthur Williams appointed J'can High Commissioner to T&T


ell-known politician and Attorney-at-Law Arthur Williams has been appointed as Jamaica's new High Commissionerdesignate to the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. He is expected to assume his duties in April 2019. Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Minister, Senator Kamina Johnson Smith made the announcement a short while ago. Williams, who recently concluded his assignment as Jamaica's representative to the Inter-American Development Bank, will succeed David Prendergast, whose tour of duty ended in January. Williams has over 35 years of professional experience and a political career which spans over a decade. In 2011, he was appointed to Cabinet as Minister without portfolio with responsibility for the public ser-

Arthur Williams

vice and information in the Office of the Prime Minister.

He was also State Minister in the Ministry of National Security in 2007 and the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service in 2009. Prior to his tenure at the OPM, he served in the capacity of Government and Opposition Senator from 20072011 and 2002-2007 respectively. In congratulating Williams on his new appointment, Johnson Smith remarked: “I welcome Mr Williams as the newest member of the Jamaican Foreign Service. Mr Williams has over the years demonstrated true commitment to the service of his country and has made a sterling contribution to the public service. I am confident that with his versatility of experience and leadership, we can look forward to further strengthening the bonds of friendship and cooperation between Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago.” (Excerpt from Jamaica Observer)

Missing Catherine Shaw: Body found in Guatemala


body has been found in the search for a 23-year-old British woman who went missing in Guatemala, the country's Police Force has said. Catherine Shaw, from Witney, was reported missing after she left Hotel Mayachik near Lake Atitlan on March 5. Guatemalan Police said

search teams have located a body at San Juan La Laguna. Formal identification has not taken place, but Shaw's family have been informed of the find. In a statement The Lucie Blackman Trust, which has been helping Shaw's family, said it is "saddened to announce that a body has

been found in the search for Catherine Shaw. It added: "Formal identification has not taken place but the body is believed to be Catherine." The body was discovered shortly after a jacket believed to be Ms Shaw's was found nearby. Shaw set out travelling in September 2018.

She had been with a friend in Guatemala for two weeks having previously visited Mexico and California. People searching for Shaw said she left Hotel Mayachik twice; first at 01:37 local time, returned, then left again at 05:23 heading in the direction of Lake Atitlan. (Excerpt from BBC


Jamaica meets all targets under 5th IMF review


amaica has met all targets under the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Precautionary Stand-By Arrangement (PSBA) for the period ending December 2018. This is according to Finance and Public Service Minister Dr Nigel Clarke, who indicated the Government’s concurrence with the IMF that Jamaica’s Economic Reform Programme remains strong,

consequent on consistent policy implementation. “The Government has met all 22 structural benchmarks under the Stand-By Arrangement to date, including eight macro-fiscal structural benchmarks and 14 structural benchmarks for the Public Sector reform programme,” Dr Clarke informed. He was speaking at the joint Government of Jamaica/ IMF press conference for the

5th PSBA Review. Minister Clarke assured that the Government remains fully committed to the reform agenda and is escalating efforts to increase domestic investment and growth, boost job creation, and bolster economic resilience while maintaining fiscal prudence. “Public Sector reform remains a key policy focus with emphasis [being] placed on the acceleration of pub-

lic bodies and the reintegration of bodies in parent Ministries,” he added. In her remarks, IMF Mission Chief for Jamaica, Dr Uma Ramakrishnan, lauded the Government on its performance over the review period, noting that “strong implementation of the reform programme continues with the sustained commitment yielding tangible dividends for the people of Jamaica”. (Excerpt from Caribbean360)


eteran calypsonian Sandra “Singing Sandra” Des VignesMillington has added her voice to the chorus of citizens calling for former Health Minister Dr Fuad Khan to apologise for his “fat-shaming” statements against plus-sized masquerader Candice Santana. In a 15-minute expletive-laden clip shared on social media on Sunday, an emotional Des VignesMillington repeatedly chastised Khan for his criticism of Santana. “Nobody said obesity is healthy, but that is the only contribution you could make brother? In a society that has so much ills right now, that is your only contribution?” Des Vignes-Millington asked. Describing herself as “pleasingly plump”, Des Vignes-Millington accused Khan of discriminating against citizens based on how they look.

“This burning me because he put the woman and fat people down in a kinda way. You can’t put me down brother because this fat lady is an achiever. This fat lady came a long way and I still going strong,” she said, as she repeatedly described Khan as a “dog” and “stinker”. Stating that she wished to meet Khan in person or get his cellphone number to contact him directly to express how she felt by his statements, Des VignesMillington had to compose herself several times to avoid having to using obscene language. “If I spend one more minute I would cuss stink. You go see me bring out the ghetto in me,” she said. Des Vignes-Millington called on citizens living in Khan’s Barataria/San Juan constituency to think twice before supporting him in another election. (Excerpt from Trinidad


Antigua and Barbuda PM wants CDB-funded study on LIAT implemented immediately


Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne

ntigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne says the regional airline, LIAT, is now at the cross roads and the plans to restructure the airline must be carried out as “an absolute imperative”. Speaking on radio following the meeting in St Vincent and the Grenadines on Saturday that was attended by Heads of Government from five Caribbean countries, as well as LIAT’s executive managers, Browne said all stakeholders must be prepared to make sacrifices for the future of the cash-strapped airline. He said one of the areas would be in the remuneration paid to pilots and management, and that the restructuring plan calls for shared benefits and shared burdens. “In fact, LIAT cannot survive without the efficacious implementation of this plan, and let me make it abundantly clear, there is

no if or maybe, it has to be done,” Browne told radio listeners. The major shareholders of the airline are the Governments of Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Dominica, and efforts are being made to get some other Caribbean Governments to either purchase shares or make financial contributions to the airline that operates 491 flights weekly across its network of 15 destinations. Browne said that the Barbados-based Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) did a study some time last year in which it concluded that the most expensive option to pursue is to allow LIAT to collapse “because we would have to form a new entity”. “That is just more expensive than having a restructuring of LIAT,” Browne said. (Excerpt from Barbados Nation)

tuesday, march 12, 2019


Around the World

Airlines fly Boeing 737 MAX 8 after Algeria’s Bouteflika will not crash despite China grounding seek 5th term, delays elections A A lgeria’s President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has said he will not seek a fifth term and announced the delay of the country’s presidential polls amid mass protests against his reelection bid. In a message carried by the official APS news agency on Monday, the 82-year-old also said the elections would follow a national conference on political and constitutional reform to be carried out by the end of 2019.   The ailing leader, who has been confined to a wheelchair since suffering a stroke in 2013, said a Government reshuffle would also take place soon. According to APS, Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia

President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has been confined to a wheelchair since suffering a stroke in 2013

resigned on Monday and was replaced by Interior Minister Noureddine Bedoui. Ramtane Lamamra was named Deputy Prime

Minister - a position that did not exist before. The dramatic developments followed weeks of mass demonstrations

against Bouteflika’s plan to extend his 20-year rule. A veteran of the country’s war of independence against colonial France, Bouteflika has seen his popularity wane in recent years as a result of his deteriorating health.  Bouteflika tried to appease protesters by offering to hold a national dialogue conference, changing the Constitution and holding an anticipated vote within a year of his reelection in which he promised not to take part.  The promises, however, failed to quell public anger, galvanising discontent among different sectors, particularly students and other young people. (Excerpt from Al Jazeera)

irlines from North America to the Middle East kept flying the 737 MAX 8 on Monday after Boeing said it was safe, in stark contrast with a slide in the planemaker’s shares on worries over Sunday’s Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed all 157 on board. It was the second such incident involving the latest model of the plane since October, when all 189 people on board a Lion Air 737 MAX 8 died in Indonesia, putting the jet under the safety spotlight and prompting questions from passengers. Low-cost giants including Southwest of the United States and Gulf airline flydubai, which rely on short trips and fast turnarounds, said they would continue to fly 737s. The support came despite China ordering its own airlines to ground the jet,

the latest version of the industry’s most-sold model, a move followed promptly by Indonesia and Ethiopia. Most others said they had no plans to ground the aircraft, which analysts said would be costly and disruptive for carriers that rely on them to fly directly to specific destinations or to feed customers to hubs for profitable long-haul flights. Boeing, which had up to US$25 billion wiped off its share price on Monday, said that it so far had no basis to issue new guidance to operators. Analysts said this also implied airlines would be unable to recoup any losses from grounding the jet. American Airlines also backed the jet, which sells for US$112 million at list prices or a net value of about US$50 million after typical discounts, according to industry sources. (Excerpt from Reuters)

Theresa May rushes to Strasbourg to find a deal as Brexit crunch looms Egypt Army says 46 fighters and 3 soldiers killed in Sinai B ritish Prime Minister Theresa May rushed to Strasbourg on Monday to seek concessions from the European Union in a last-ditch attempt to avoid another humiliating defeat in Parliament of her deal to exit the bloc. In a day of frenetic diplomacy ahead of today’s parliamentary vote on her deal, May spoke to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in an effort to find a way through the Brexit maze. May, who rejected a Brexit compromise hashed out in Brussels on Saturday, left for Strasbourg on Monday. European officials ex-

Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May is seen outside Downing Street in London, Britain

pressed frustration with May’s attempts to secure concessions with so little time left before Britain is due to leave on March 29.

The British Parliament voted to reject May’s deal in January by 230 votes, the biggest margin of defeat in modern British histo-

ry. She has promised a new vote today, hoping to deliver last-minute changes that would win over lawmakers. If she loses that vote, she has promised to allow lawmakers further votes on whether to leave with no deal at all, or whether to ask for a delay in the deadline. EU ambassadors were told by the bloc’s Brexit negotiators that a possible compromise was on the table but May was unable to convince her Ministers so she turned it down. The ultimate outcome remains unclear, though Brexit will define the United Kingdom’s prosperity for generations to come. (Excerpt from


Trump 2020 budget request includes US$1B childcare fund


S President Donald Trump has filed a record budget request that includes a US$1 billion (£765 million) childcare fund, championed by his daughter and adviser, Ivanka. Trump’s US$4.75 trillion spending plan is unlikely to pass the Democraticcontrolled House of Representatives. The policy wish list includes a significant boost to Pentagon spending, and steep cuts to safety net programmes. The Republican President also seeks US$8.6 billion for a US-Mexico border wall. The US$1 billion childcare plan is a one-off allocation that would seek to improve access to care for underserved populations. Ivanka Trump, who has made women’s economic issues her main focus, also lobbied for the childcare tax credit that found its way into the 2017 Republican tax reform bill. Annual full-time childcare in the US can cost up to US$22,600 on average, according to the Economic Policy Institute. Affordable childcare is set to become a campaign issue next year as


he Egyptian military says three troops and dozens of people  suspected of belonging to armed groups  have been killed in recent days during shootouts in the Sinai Peninsula. In a video recording on Monday, the armed forces said a campaign “over the last period” had resulted in “the elimination of 46 very dangerous members of terrorist elements during exchanges of fire in north and central Sinai”. The statement did not specify the dates or locations of the security operations. About 100 suspects were arrested and more than 30 cars and scooters confiscated or destroyed, it said, adding that the forces destroyed 10 tunnels on the border with the besieged Gaza Strip.

Democrats seek to thwart President Trump’s bid for re-election. Democratic presidential contender Elizabeth Warren has already touted her plan for affordable childcare, which would be paid for with a new tax on multimillionaires. Trump’s blueprint proposes acrossthe-board cuts, with the exception of the military, whose budget Trump

wants to increase from US$716 billion to US$750 billion. The spending plan includes over US$1 trillion in cuts to the Medicaid health programme for the poor and disabled. It also seeks to slash US$327 billion from food and housing assistance services, and to reduce funding for environmental protections and foreign aid programmes. (Excerpt from BBC News)

from Al Jazeera)

Islamic State enclave pounded in US-backed assault

I President Donald Trump and Senior Adviser Ivanka Trump held the first meeting of the American Workforce Policy Advisory Board this month

The military also said Egyptian forces had destroyed 15 hideouts and dismantled 204 explosive devices during the operations. The statement did not give the identity or affiliation of the suspects it faced in Sinai, the Western Desert and southern Egypt. The armed forces said several hundred fighters have been killed since it launched a major campaign in February 2018 aimed at vanquishing the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and related groups in Sinai. Human rights organisations have accused Egypt of carrying out extrajudicial executions and of trying civilians in military courts as part of the crackdown. (Excerpt

slamic State’s final enclave in eastern Syria was pounded with air strikes and artillery on Monday in a US-backed assault aimed at wiping out the last shred of its territorial rule that once spanned a third of Syria and Iraq. The SDF said earlier its fighters advanced slowly to avoid losses and were encountering sniper fire and landmines. The most hardened IS foreign fighters are still holed up inside the area, the SDF has said. The defeat of Islamic State at Baghouz will mark a milestone in the campaign against the jihadist group, ending its control of populated territory in the area straddling Iraq and Syria where it suddenly expanded in 2014 and de-

clared a caliphate. However, the group still operates in remote territory elsewhere and has shown it will continue to mount a potent security threat, with a string of insurgent attacks in both countries. The SDF has made “modest advances” since resuming its assault on Sunday night, killing and wounding many jihadist fighters said SDF Commander Adnan Afrin. The SDF has held off from a full assault for most of the past few weeks as many thousands of people poured from the enclave, including surrendering fighters, Islamic State supporters, other civilians and some of the group’s captives. (Reuters)


tuesday, March 12, 2019


ARIES (March 21April 19)


TAURUS (April 20May 20)

Take the helm and make things happen. Show your tenacity and ability to get things done to win points and support from influential people.

GEMINI (May 21June 20)

Pay attention to your health and well-being. Look at what’s being offered and consider whether it’s in your best interest to get involved before you make a commitment.


Keep the peace, regardless of what others do. A partnership that offers equality, trust and teamwork will encourage you to revisit a project that hit a dead end. Be willing to accept help.

(June 21July 22)


LEO (July 23Aug. 22)

Calvin and Hobbes

VIRGO (Aug. 23Sept. 22)

LIBRA (Sept. 23Oct. 23)


Formulate everything in your head and go over every detail before you decide to share your plans. Preparation will be a key element to reaching your goals.

Refuse to give in to negativity. If you let others’ actions stifle your ability to get things done, you will lose. Let your achievement be your rebuttal. Take a step toward a better life. Size up your situation and make adjustments that encourage good health, financial prosperity and enhanced skills. Initiate worthwhile connections and strive for perfection. Learn more and say less. Observe the people you are dealing with to find a solution that will put an end to you or a loved one being bullied or taken for granted.

SCORPIO (Oct. 24Nov. 22)

The people you encounter will offer suggestions. What you discover about yourself and your goals will result in greater determination to reach for the stars.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 23Dec. 21)

Share emotions instead of stewing about something and letting it consume you. Once you clear the air, it will be easier to move forward and make positive adjustments.


CAPRICORN (Dec. 22Jan. 19)

solution for LAST PUBLISHED puzzle AQUARIUS (Jan. 20Feb. 19)

PISCES (Feb. 20March 20)

The changes you make will ease stress and comfort you. Consider with whom you enjoy spending time and make plans that will give you something to look forward to. Do things right the first time. You’ll face complaints from someone critical if you take shortcuts. Make sure you understand what’s expected of you before you start something new. Only offer help if it’s feasible to do so. If someone is asking for too much or is not being reasonable, put your energy into projects and concrete endeavors.

tuesday, march 12, 2019


Zidane returns as Real Madrid Manager after Solari’s sacking


inedine Zidane has returned as coach of Real Madrid, just 284 days after walking away from the club. The Frenchman, who won three consecutive Champions Leagues in two-and-a-half years at the Santiago Bernabéu, has been convinced to take over again – signing a new contract until June 2022 – following a week in which Madrid were defeated three times in a row at home. Zidane replaces Santi Solari with immediate effect and will be in charge for the remaining 11 games in the season. Solari had become increasingly desperate as manager following a torrid week that included a 3-0 home defeat to Barcelona in the Copa del Rey, another home loss to the Catalan side to effectively end their La Liga ambitions and a shock exit from the Champions League after a 4-1 humbling by Ajax at the Bernabéu. Despite Solari stepping aside, the Argentinian will retain a role at the club and the President Florentino Pérez faced the media at 7pm GMT (8pm in Madrid) on Monday, alongside Zidane, for an official statement. “The Real Madrid board of directors, which met today, Monday 11 March 2019, has decided to terminate Santiago Solari’s contract as first-team coach, whilst Real Madrid have offered him the opportunity to remain at the club,” read a club statement. “Real Madrid wish to thank Solari for his work, commitment and the loyalty that he has always displayed towards this club, which is his home.”

Santi Solari (left) has been replaced by Zinedine Zidane as manager of the Real Madrid first team but will retain a role at the club

Although Madrid have little to play for, Pérez had come under increasing pressure and the board were keen to prevent the crisis deepening over the next three months. Zidane’s return is likely to be bad news for Gareth Bale, who had been left out by the Frenchman in the build-up to last year’s Champions League final. The pair did not have

Doping: IAAF maintains ban on Russian athletics over doping scandal

IAAF President Sebastian Coe would not speculate on when the ban could be resolved.


orld athletics governing body IAAF has decided not to lift a ban on Russia’s athletics federation over doping, saying on Monday it was still waiting to receive data collected from Moscow and financial compensation for its investigations. Russia’s athletics federation (RUSAF) has been suspended since 2015 following a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) report that found evidence of widespread doping in the sport. The IAAF’s governing council discussed the possibility of lifting the ban at a meeting in Doha on Sunday and Monday. But Rune Andersen, chair of the IAAF’s Russia Taskforce, said Moscow had yet to meet two conditions. “Logistical” issues had held up financial compensation, including for the taskforce’s costs and legal costs in cases Russia had brought to the courts, he said, adding that the IAAF had also not yet received analytical data and samples from a Moscow lab, which are still being assessed by WADA. “Those (issues) need to be resolved. As soon as we have everything we need... we will seriously reconsider and recommend to the IAAF council for reinstatement (of Russia),” Andersen said. Should it fail to meet IAAF conditions, Russia could risk sending a team to September’s world athletics championships in Doha, Qatar. Individual Russian athletes would be allowed to compete as neutrals as they have since 2015 provided they meet certain criteria that showed they had operated in a dope-free environment. (Reuters)

Russian officials and IAAF president Sebastian Coe said Russia owes the governing body about $3 million and discussions were continuing. “Of course, we have worked and are working to finding sources of funding to pay the debt,” Dmitry Shlyakhtin, president of Russia’s athletics federation, said in a statement. Russia’s sports ministry did not immediately reply to a Reuters request for comment. Russian authorities have denied their doping program was state-sponsored but have accepted that senior officials were involved in providing banned substances to athletes, interfering with anti-doping procedures or covering up positive tests. The IAAF also said the Taskforce had noted comments made to German television network ARD over the weekend that some coaches, with links to the doping affair, were involved again with coaching Russian national team athletes. Coe said he believed progress had been made in Russia, “but I think it was sensible to maintain the suspension”. Russia’s reinstatement has been rejected several times by the IAAF over the past three years. The athletics body is the only other major sports organization to keep Russia banned for at least the coming months. Both WADA and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have revoked their suspensions of Russia while the International Paralympic Committee has said it will reinstate Russia by March 15. Coe said there had been no inquiries from either the IAAF or WADA about reinstating the Russian federation. (Reuters)

a close relationship and after the final whistle in Kiev, Bale admitted that he was considering leaving. Five days later, it was Zidane who departed, saying that he and the club needed a change and admitting that he was not sure that they could continue winning together. Cristiano Ronaldo left for Juventus soon after, citing a deteriorating relationship with Pérez as the main reason. Zidane had initially been reluctant to come back but the club’s crisis puts him in a strong position and he was eventually convinced to accept the proposal. Zidane will take training this morning and will take charge of the team for their meeting with Celta de Vigo at the weekend. Zidane is the third manager that Real Madrid have had this season. The then Spain coach Julen Lopetegui had been signed to replace the Frenchman after he announced his resignation on 31 May 2018. Lopetegui, whose signing was announced just two days before the World Cup started and led to him being sacked by the national team, lasted just 138 days at Real before again losing his job following a 5-1 defeat to Barcelona in October. Madrid approached Zidane then too but were not encouraged to continue their pursuit and eventually settled for the reserve team manager Solari as “temporary manager”. They were forced by Spanish federation rules to make Solari a permanent appointment two weeks later but in total he lasted only 119 days. (The Guardian)

DRS ‘is not consistent at all’ - Virat Kohli Q uestion marks on the accuracy of the Decision Review System (DRS) have now come up in two successive matches in the ongoing India-Australia series, with Virat Kohli making his displeasure public, saying “it’s just not consistent at all” following an overturned review for caughtbehind of Ashton Turner during a crucial passage of play in the fourth ODI in Mohali on Sunday. The incident took place in the 44th over of Australia’s pursuit of India’s 358 for 9, when Turner tried to slash a slow, wide legbreak from Yuzvendra Chahal. Turner lunged to cut a ball from inside the crease to one that spun way. The ball seemed to have connected with the toe-end of Turner’s bat. Having collected the ball, Rishabh Pant whipped off the bails and appealed for what initially felt like a stumping. However, he then urged Kohli to take the review even as umpire Anil Chaudhary called it not out, and the decision was referred to third umpire Joel Wilson. Ultra Edge picked some murmurs even before the ball had passed the bat and once again flickered just after the ball went passed the swinging blade. Wilson duly turned down India’s review, something Kohli disagreed with, displaying his displeasure by shaking his head and saying a few words. At that point, Turner was on 41 with Australia needing a further 66 from 39 balls with five wickets in hand. He went on to hurt India by helping Australia to their highest chase in ODIs, Kohli describing his innings as the “ g a m e Virat Kohli changer”.

Without any prompting at the post-match presentation ceremony, Kohli called the DRS decision contentious, saying it “was a bit of a surprise”. “It’s becoming more of a talking point every game. It’s just not consistent at all, and that was a game-changer moment as well,” he said. “But yeah, that’s more of an uncontrollable, but the controllable we had to do right, and we didn’t do it right, and the opportunity slipped away,” he added, pointing to the many chances the Indians missed on the field. Kohli’s mention of DRS becoming ‘a talking point’ was likely a reference to the third ODI in Ranchi, where a glaring error in balltracking projection came into the spotlight when Australian captain Aaron Finch was given out lbw off left-arm wristspinner Kuldeep Yadav. Kuldeep got a stock ball to straighten and rap the Australia captain on the back pad in the 32nd over, and C Shamshuddin, the onfield umpire, ruled the batsman out lbw. Finch asked for a review, and replays showed the ball pitching on leg stump, when it had actually bounced on middle stump. While the ball might have still gone on to hit the stumps even if it had pitched on leg stump, it was a noticeable mistake on the part of the ball-tracking technology in use. ESPNcricinfo understands that the technology might have suffered a technical glitch during the Ranchi game, which resulted in it missing the line. Australia’s management has not lodged any official complaint with the m a t c h officials fo l l o w i n g the incident. (ESPN cricinfo)



tuesday, march 12, 2019

Dr Cheddi Jagan Windball Tournament…

The battle for supremacy intensifies


fter 4 days of exhilarating windball action at the National Gymnasium on Mandela Avenue, the curtains came down on the annual Cheddi Jagan Windball Tournament which was hosted in honour of the late President and politician. More than 15 schools competed for a chance at supremacy, but as competitions go, some were knocked out early, and only a handful of teams were able to play on the final day. As stated by Director of Sport Christopher Jones, the National Sports Commission was responsible for hosting this tournament, competition being seen as just one way to honour the work of past presidents. “Every year, the National Sport Commission runs off this tournament to give recognition to our past President; because, as you would know, all of our past Presidents made their contribution to the development of this country; and as such, we at the NSC consider it fitting to pay tribute to them,” Jones said. In the female category on Sunday, Annandale Secondary was the first to taste victory after posting a whopping 118-1. Dellic Chandrashelhar’s 60, and Avril Preshad’s 26 were the top scores for the East Coast team. In reply, Camille’s Institute failed to hit their target, posting just 100-2. Anessa Barker was the highest scorer, with 28. The second game saw Queenstown Secondary romping to 90 without loss, as Keisha Rawlins, 46 and Aaliyah Peters, 38, were the

Part of the action in the annual schools tournament

sole custodians at the crease. But Covent Garden Secondary made light work of the total, replying with 95-2 for the win. Tehia Suegrim’s 38 and T Duncan’s 26 were the highest scores for Covent Garden. Soesdyke Secondary later romped to 103-2 in their allotted overs, with Tenisha Hunte bagging a half century whilst Shenika Rodney contributed 32. On the other hand, their challengers, Vreed-en-Hoop Secondary, failed to reach their goal and could muster only 96-1. Tricia Singh, 38 and Faatimah Wilson, 36 acquired the most runs for the losing side. Goed Fortuin Secondary were hopeful that their 83-5 would be enough to grant them a victory, as Celine Liverpool, with 32, held her team’s innings together. Indera Amardeo, with 3-25, and Shania De Freitas, with 2-23, were responsible for the excellent bowling performance on the part of Carmel Secondary. Later on, Amardeo, with 56 and Siana Abrams with 29 cruised to their target of 86 for the

Pakistan protest to ICC over India’s military caps in Australia ODI


he Pakistan Cricket Board has written to the International Cricket Council calling for action to be taken after India’s players wore military-style camouflage caps in Friday’s third one-day international against Australia in Ranchi. India say they wore the caps in tribute to the country’s armed forces in the wake of the killing of at least 40 paramilitaries in Indian-administered Kashmir on 14 February, in a suicide attack which has been claimed by Pakistan-based terrorist group Jaish-e-Mohammad. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) approached the ICC before the game about the use of the military caps, and the ICC confirmed that permission had been granted as it was part of a charity fundraising effort. An ICC spokesperson said: “The BCCI sought permission from the ICC to wear the caps as part of a fundraising drive and in memory of soldiers who have died, which was granted.” The India players also donated their match fees for the game - which Australia won by 32 runs - to the families of those killed. But PCB chairman Essan Mani said he has written to the ICC to protest against the caps, saying India had “tried to use cricket for politics”. Another letter was expected to be sent within hours, Mani said.

“We have made our point very strongly to the ICC which now has no doubts or confusion about our intention or stance now on this matter,” he told reporters. “Their [India] credibility in the cricketing world has gone down very badly,” he added. Former captain MS Dhoni - an honorary lieutenant colonel in the Indian army - distributed the caps Last month, the BCCI asked the ICC to “sever ties with countries from which terrorism emanates” in the wake of the attack in Kashmir. But Mani pointed out two recent examples of players who had been disciplined by the ICC for political statements - England all-rounder Moeen Ali, who wore wristbands with the slogans “Save Gaza” and “Free Palestine” during a Test against India in 2014, and South Africa spinner Imran Tahir, who displayed a T-shirt of religious preacher Junaid Jamshed after taking a wicket against Sri Lanka in 2017. “You have two examples from the past already, where both Imran Tahir and Moeen Ali were sanctioned for something similar,” Mani said. “The ICC had taken strong action against them and we have sought similar action against India. The permission they took was for a different purpose but they acted differently.” (BBC Sport)

India wore the caps against Australia in their third ODI, a game they lost

win. In the male division, Goed Fortuin Secondary posted 81-2 in their allotted overs. Satesh Persaud had the only respectable figures, with 34. Enkosi Morris, with 2-26, was the one to do it with the ball for Carmel Secondary, while his teammate John Pillay, with 49, did the work with the bat to get Carmel over the line. The second game saw Soesdyke registering 73-2, with Kobe Robertson top scoring with 28. However, it was not enough to keep Beterverwagting at bay, as they cruised to 75 without loss. Vreed-en-Hoop became the last male team to secure a win after chasing down Queenstown’s 78-5. In reply, Ajat Khan with 20, and S Ali with 27 maintained a partnership long enough to get Vreed-en-Hoop to secure 80. Ladies action returned later in the day with a few low-scoring encounters. Queenstown could muster only 56-1 in their allotted overs. Ashley Yard, however, put up a strong fight in the chase to get Goed Fortuin to 58-1 for the win. Another low-scoring game saw Annandale slumping to 64-3. Shamika Edwards, with 30, was the only player to stand up to Alicia Henry’s bowling. She ended with figures of 2-0. In reply, Soesdyke breezed their way to 65-1. The final game saw Covent Garden batting up a storm to reach a mountainous total of 106 without loss. Nikhaila Agrippa, 56, Tehira Suegrim, 38, maintained the lone partnership in the innings. Vreeden-Hoop were unable to reach their target, slumping to 48-0.

Birmingham City fan jailed for pitch attack

Jack Grealish recovers after being punched by a fan as players and ground staff attempt to restrain the culprit


Birmingham City fan has been jailed for 14 weeks for attacking Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish during the second city derby. Paul Mitchell, of Rubery, Worcestershire, ran on to the pitch and hit Grealish from behind about 10 minutes into Sunday’s game. Mitchell, 27, admitted assault and encroachment on to the pitch at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court earlier. He “cannot explain what came over him yesterday morning”, his solicitor said. “His initial foolish intention was to just go on to the pitch and whip up the crowd,” said Vaughn Whistance, defending. Mitchell, of Cock Hill Lane, was also ordered to pay £350 in fines and costs and has been banned from attending any football matches in the UK for 10 years. The £350 includes £100 in compensation for Grealish’s “pain, discomfort and shock”. The Villa midfielder was able to continue with the game at St Andrew’s and went on to score the winning goal in the 67th minute. Mitchell, a pub worker, claimed he was not drunk when he invaded the pitch and punched Grealish in the jaw. “I cannot help but feel how lucky I was in this incident,” the player said. “It could have been so much worse had the supporter had some sort of weapon.”

Birmingham City apologised to both Grealish and Villa immediately after the game and said Mitchell had been banned from St Andrew’s for life. He has also been banned from away games. The club said there were “no excuses” for his behaviour, which “has no place in football”. West Midlands Police said it was also investigating “offensive social media posts” that appeared after the goal referencing Grealish’s younger brother, who died when the midfielder was four. Birmingham City said it had banned another supporter for life over the “vile and malicious” tweets. Mitchell, who has been a season ticket holder for 20 years, was said to be “very remorseful” after realising he had “brought shame” on his club. His defence asked for community service or a suspended prison sentence but magistrates ruled that a “message had to be sent out to fans”. The father-of-one’s prison sentence “should be a deterrent”, magistrates added. During the court hearing, Whistance said online threats had been made to Mitchell. Whistance said his family had left the area “through fear that they would suffer serious harm or even death”. (BBCSport)

tuesday, MARCH 12, 2019

Gonsalves happy with progress of CWI restructure after ICC meeting


t Vincent and the Granedines Prime Minister and Chairman of the CARICOM sub-committee on cricket, Ralph Gonsalves, is happy with the progress his organisation is making with regard to restructuring Cricket West Indies (CWI). Caricom and the International Cricket Council (ICC) met officially to address the governance of West Indies cricket recently and, according to Gonsalves, cricket’s governing body is appreciative of the stance of his organisation. The two entities, one represented by Gonsalves, the other by CEO Dave Richardson, met in Dubai before the just-concluded ICC board meeting. In April of last year, the ICC had turned down Caricom’s request to meet, saying the CWI would have to be represented at such a meeting. An alternative of meeting during the Women’s World T20 last November also didn’t happen. “I spoke to Dave Richardson (Head of Secretariat, ICC) and I outlined to him our position, that is to say that, cricket is a public good and it ought properly to be regulated and ought not to be operated by a private-sector entity,” said Gonsalves, adding that he also pointed out Caricom’s proposal to change that situation. “That we want to pass appropriate legislation

so that we can … the State will not be involved, the governments will not be involved in the management but we will have the structure of this public good reflecting constituencies other than the current one to ensure that it is more transparent, that the organisation is more transparent and more accountable to the region, reflecting this public good,” he said. Gonsalves also made sure to point out that Caricom had no intention of running roughshod over long-held ICC statutes regarding government involvement in the running of the sport. “We intend to abide by all ICC statutes, we would incorporate best practices, and that’s basically the message, it’s the same we have been preaching all the time. It is not an anti-Cameron message, it is a pro-West Indies cricket message. The people in the region will have an opportunity to discuss the briefing that we will prepare for the legal draftsperson and then we will discuss this bill among the people of the region and then take it to our respective Parliaments,” he said. Caricom had suggested in a 2015 report the board be dissolved. All six territorial boards signed a letter rejecting this idea, which led to suggestions by some that CARICOM wanted to take cricket out of the hands of Cameron and the traditional board to replace it with a board of its


own. With an Indian court recently advising the Board of Control for Cricket in India that it could no longer operate as a private entity, Caricom changed St Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister and Chairman of the tack and began looking Caricom sub-committee on cricket, Ralph Gonsalves at restructuring the CWI, “The ICC appreciated that I came to talk to rather than dissolving it. “But the question is: Cricket is a public good. them. They agree also that you can’t have a board Can a private entity run the public good? And being in a hostile relationship with governments that question has been determined in another or several of the governments. That doesn’t jurisdiction in India, so that’s a separate question. make any sense and that is not good for cricket I’m not interested in the dissolution of the West generally. He was appreciative of what we are Indies Cricket Board,” Gonsalves had said back in trying to do and appreciative of the fact that we are not going to undermine the ICC statutes 2017. As far as that process is going, July could mark about the independence of management from the first time that CARICOM members will get a any political direction or control.” Just as pleasing to Gonsalves, is Caricom’s look at what the instructions that will go to a view on the progress it has made in the name draftsperson will look like. “Hopefully we can get something to the of putting West Indies Cricket back on a path of heads of government in time for the July meeting success. “Caricom is happy that I saw the ICC and with for them to approve of the instructions to go to the report that I gave to the ICC. So I think we are the draftspersons,” said Gonsalves. Gonsalves is buoyed by the response of on target. Every stage of the process thus far has the ICC to Caricom’s plans, saying its CEO was been good,” said the Prime Minister. (Sportsmax) ‘appreciative’.

Federer wins Indian Wells opener, Nishikori survives 3-setter R oger Federer began his campaign for a record sixth Indian Wells title by defeating German Peter Gojowczyk 6-1 7-5 in the BNP Paribas Open in California on Sunday. Fresh from earning his 100th ATP singles title a week ago in Dubai, the Swiss fourth seed repelled a tough second set challenge from the world No. 85 to book his third-round place. World number two Rafa Nadal brushed aside American Jared Donaldson 6-1 6-1 and will next face Diego Schwartzman after the Argentine

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beat Roberto Carballes 6-3 6-1. Earlier in the day, Japan’s Kei Nishikori narrowly avoided a second round defeat to Frenchman Adrian Mannarino before battling through 6-4 4-6 7-6(4). Federer said he was happy to get into his stride early in the tournament. “For the first round I actually felt really good,” he told reporters. “If I maybe would have served a little bit better, I think things would have gone faster.

“But at the end it was a tough second set, and it’s maybe exactly what I needed.” Federer, who won the last of his Indian Wells titles two years ago but lost in the 2018 final, used his backhand slice to keep Gojowczk from gaining any rhythm in the first set. Yet the second proved more of a challenge as the German saved four break points in his first service game, then used his momentum to break for a 3-1 lead. Federer immediately broke back before later benefiting from an untimely double fault for another break and serving out for victory in just over an hour and a quarter. Eighth seeded American John Isner swept past Australian Alexei Popyrin 6-0 6-2, 10th seeded Croatian Marin Cilic beat Dusan Lajovic of Serbia 6-3 6-4, while R u s s i a ’s 1 4 t h seed

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D a n i l l Medvedev b e a t American

Simona Halep

reached the fourth round at Indian Wells for the first time after a 7-6(10) 6-4 win over Briton Johanna Konta. (Reuters)

Nike launches 14 national kits in Women’s World Cup push

Mackenzie McDonald 7-5 6-0. Halep advances, Serena retires ill World number two Simona Halep survived a tough challenge from Ukrainian qualifier Kateryna Kozlova to win their third round match 7-6(3) 7-5 at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California, on Sunday. The Romanian finally put away the 114th ranked Kozlova with eight consecutive points in the second set, a backhand winner proving the decider just as it had in the first set. The tournament lost 23-times Grand Slam winner Serena Williams, who retired against Garbine Muguruza with what organisers described as a viral illness. The Spaniard was ahead 6-3 1-0 at the time. Halep said her opponent had been tough to put away. The victory advanced the French Open champion, who won Indian Wells in 2015, to the fourth round for the fifth time in six years. F o r m e r Wimbledon and French Open champion

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said. “I’m going to take the positive side of that.” Sixth seed Elina Svitolina, looking for her first title of the year, beat Daria Gavrilova 7-5 6-4 to advance while world number seven Kiki Bertens

Muguruza was happy with the way she had been playing against Williams before the American’s retirement. “I think I played well,” she

Top players unveil the new Nike kits for 14 national teams in Paris ahead of the Women’s World Cup, in this undated handout photo


ike Inc launched soccer strips on Monday for 14 national teams ahead of this year’s Women’s World Cup in France and said it had signed a three-year promotion deal with UEFA Women’s Football, part of its growing focus on women’s sport. The United States, Canada, France, England and Australia were among the teams whose kits were released at an event in Paris, graced by 28 of the world’s top women footballers. Olympic gymnast Simone Biles, champion fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad and two-time Grand Slam winner Li Na also attended. “We’re seeing incredible momentum in women’s sports right now,” Nike official Amy Montagne told Reuters ahead of the launch. “We see this as the next chapter to support, celebrate and elevate female athletes.” The company declined to give any details of the financial terms of the deal with European governing body UEFA, or the value of the individual national kit sponsorship deals. Both, however, are the latest sign of the growing financial power of women’s sport for sports goods makers like Nike, Adidas and Under Armour. In the second quarter of the 2019 financial year, women’s footwear and apparel alone counted for nearly a quarter of Nike’s total

revenue and it has said the women’s footwear and apparel market is now 1.5 times bigger than that for men. Wall Street brokerage Bernstein calculates women’s sporting gear pulled in $7 billion for Nike last year. Nike’s announcement of a partnership with UEFA comes three months after Visa signed a seven-year deal with European soccer’s governing body to sponsor the women’s game at all levels. It also comes at a time when UEFA plans to increase its funding for women’s soccer development projects across Europe by 50 percent from 2020. Global governing body FIFA, which has made women’s football a top priority, last year said it would look to double the number of female players to 60 million by 2026. It also said it would raise the prize money for this year’s World Cup from $15 million to $30 million. Nike said it would also invest at the grassroots level to encourage more female athletes. “We believe this summer can be another turning point for the growth of women’s football,” Nike’s chief executive Mark Parker said in a statement. (Reuters)


tuesday, march 12, 2019


St Mary’s, Bishops’ bag wins in Milo U-18 tourney

St. Mary’s goal-scorers

tournament continued. Queen’s College and the Bishops’ High, often regarded as academic rivals, set their books aside on Sunday and battled it out on the football field. With both teams eyeing a win, the nation’s top secondary institutions opted for an aggressive style of play as they pursued the goal. Quite a number of attempts were made, but the result was often a missed opportunity of good work on the goalkeeper’s part, which made for a nil-all score line at The Bishops’ High School in action half time. The frustration heights the competition approaches the knockout stagened in the second half, but Bishops’ were the only team to es, St Mary’s Secondary registered a critical win, as capitalise, after they were awarded a penalty in the 43rd. Queen’s College and The Bishops’ High School settled their differences on Sunday, when the Milo Schools Football Makayah Smith sank the ball deep into the goal to put the


score at 1-0; and seven minutes, he extended the lead to 2-0. Queen’s College went down without a reply, handing Bishops’ the win. The second game scheduled for the day went uncontested, as North Ruimveldt Secondary failed to show. As such, Saints Stanislaus were awarded a walkover. A worried but determined St. Mary’s Secondary put on an impressive team performance to shatter Marian Academy’s hopes. With both teams languishing at the bottom of Group E, the win was critical for either side. Michael Ole opened the scoring for St. Mary’s with a well-placed ball in the 15th minute of play. Four minutes after, Jerimiah Softly-Springer extended his team’s lead, and later Joshua Samuels capitalised on a penalty opportunity to propel the score to 3-0, frustrating the Marian side. Samuels returned in the other half to net his second goal, but was closely followed by Marian’s Ricardo Percival, who found the back of the net for Marian’s consolation goal. Daniel Webster had the last say in the match, resulting in St. Mary’s 5-1 win. The Petra-organised Milo Under-18 tournament will continue this weekend at the Ministry of Education Ground on Carifesta Avenue.

F1 to award point to driver who sets Independence defeat Mc Gill to claim WDCA fastest lap in a grand prix


Grand Prix, 15-17 March. ormula 1 has confirmed it will It will be the first time a point change its scoring system this has been awarded for the fastest year by giving a point to the lap since the first 10 years of the F1 driver who sets the fastest lap in a world championship in 1950-59. grand prix. The feeling among senior The move is part of an attempt figures in F1 is that the change may to make the sport more appealing add extra interest towards the end and so grow audiences. of a race, when the action can tend Drivers will only receive the to die down following the end of all extra point if they also finish in the the pit stops. top 10 in the race. Bosses accept there could be It was formally confirmed negatives to the idea - such as on Monday after the FIA’s world a championship being decided motor sport council (WMSC) approved it last week. Lewis Hamilton (left) and Sebastian Vettel are again expected to by a fastest-lap point, or a title F1 managing director Ross be two of the main protagonists in the battle for the F1 drivers’ contender’s team-mate - who is not in championship contention Brawn said the idea could “improve title setting a fastest lap to disadvantage the show while maintaining the integrity of the sport”. a rival from another team. But the feeling was that all teams and drivers would be aware of Brawn, the former Mercedes team boss and Ferrari technical director, said: “We have been considering this solution - which this issue and any of them could choose to take action. represents a response to detailed research carried out with thousands The idea was one of many that were put to fans in surveys conducted by F1 last year. of our fans around the world - for a number of months. The feedback was that it was an idea worth discussing, and F1’s “How many times have we heard the drivers on the radio ask the senior stakeholders at the strategy group of six leading teams, FIA and team about who holds the fastest lap? “Now it will no longer be only a matter of record and prestige, but F1 concluded it should be adopted. After the world council voted it through last week, an e-vote there will be a concrete motivation that will make the final part of the race even more interesting. Sometimes it is useful to remind ourselves of the strategy group and F1 Commission, a body that includes representatives of the FIA, F1, Ferrari, sponsors and circuits gave of the heritage of our sport to move forward. “ The rule will be in place for the start of this season at the Australian unanimous approval on Monday, according to the FIA. (BBC Sport)

Gopaul’s grip slackens on National Junior title


ut of a pool of 29 prospective champions, 7 players advanced to the 6th round of the National Junior Championships held on Sunday last at the National Aquatic Centre at Liliendaal, East Coast Demerara. Defending National Junior Chess Champion Joshua Gopaul set out to defend his title, but didn’t have the best of starts, losing his first two games. However, he still remains in contention to retain the title, but must be flawless in the rounds to come. In the first round, he played the talented Ethan Lee, Marian Academy’s top chess player, to whom he lost. In the second round, Gopaul played the number one contender for the championships, Andre Jagnandan, and found himself on the losing side again. Other highlights in round two saw a fine start by the young and ruthless lone female in the tournament, Chelsea Juma, who battled to a stalemate against Lee. After 2 rounds, only 3 persons were left standing on two points. They were Jagnandan, Ghansham Allijohn and Rajiv Lee, who topped the qualifiers. The competition will continue this Sunday as 5 more rounds remain.

Part of the action last Sunday


T20 title

he action in the West Demerara Cricket Association (WDCA) T20 Knockout Competition continued over the weekend with Mc Gill Superstars losing the title match and going down to Independence Sports Club by a mere 2 wickets. With the action being held at the popular Joe Vieira Park, Independence won the toss and opted to bowl first on their home turf. Mc Gill posted 140-8 in their allotted 20 overs, as Prahalad Singh top scored with an unbeaten 55* (3×4, 6×6), Keshram Seyhodan made a quick-fire 25, and Sudesh Persaud chipped in Prahalad Singh’s unbeaten 55 was not enough to save Mc Gill with 14 (3×4). Leading the Superstars bowling for Independence were Reaz Esau with 3-17, Ricky Sergeant with 2-16, and Ewart Samuels with 2-19. Needing 141 runs to win at just over 7 runs per over, Independence wasted no time in displaying their hunger for the title by picking the gaps with ease and precision. The Mc Gill players were frustrated, as things did not go their way. A series of unfortunate events gradually unfolded and resulted in their losing the game. Their main bowler sprained his ankle in attempting to field a ball; then one of their fielders was struck by a ball to the abdomen; and because of the uneven bounce of the pitch, the team’s left-arm spinner injured his finger. However, the McGill side employed their best efforts as they fought to the very end despite having a depleted side. Independence attained 141-8 to secure victory in 19.2 overs. Top scoring for Independence were Vivian Beckles with 53 (8×4, 3×6), Mahendra Dhanpaul with 31 (3×4, 2×6), and Ewart Samuels with 16*. Leading the bowling for the losing side were Keshram Seyhodan with 2-20, Abdul Razack with 2-22, Daniel Basdeo with 2-33 and Travis Persaud with 1-8.



tuesday, march 12, 2019

2018-2019 CWI Regional 4-Day Tournament…

Mission accomplished: Super Shepherd has 37 wickets – confident of playing international cricket in near future By Brandon Corlette


n an article written in Guyana Times Sport on January 17, 2019, Guyana Jaguars premier fast bowler of the season, Romario Shepherd, told this reporter that he has his sights set on capturing “30+ wickets” at the end of the season. At the end of Shepherd’s successful season, he finished with 37 wickets in the 10 matches he played. Throughout this season, the Berbician bowled lethal spells and picked up wickets regularly for the Jaguars. After his “player of the match” performance in the tenth and final round of the Jaguars’ campaign, he reflected on his dream season. “Firstly, I must thank God for keeping me healthy. Playing 10 games is not easy, and bowling the amount of overs I did and putting up such performance, I am really thankful”, Shepherd explained. The wellbuilt Berbician hailed Jaguars’ physiotherapist/physical trainer Neil Barry Jr. for the

intense training that kept him fit all season. “Game after game he has been working w i t h us. The gym work also kept me going,” the 24-year-old Shepherd revealed. In addition to Shepherd’s 37 wickets this season, he scored 315 runs with the bat down the order, recording two half-centuries, with a high score of 72. This season, Shepherd bowled 257.3 overs with a strike rate of 41.7, picking up his career best figures of 5-24. He had a match haul of 8-76 bowling Romario Shepherd with a solid av-

erage of 20.13. “This season my role has been picking up wickets, getting the early breakthrough, and being that dependable guy in the lower order to score runs with the bat”, Shepherd disclosed. He added that this season has been one of the toughest in terms of bowling with great effort and returning with the bat to save Jaguars from precarious situations. “It was a mental challenge for me as a player, but overcoming these situations makes you a stronger individual in life,” Shepherd said. Having been involved in West Indies ‘A’ duties in the past, Shepherd said this inspirational performance has boosted his confidence to take his cricketing career to further heights. It has been a tough season for the Jaguars, since they required consisten-

Shepherd scored two halfcenturies this season

cy after suffering back-to-back defeats. Shepherd said the players maintained self-belief and stuck together in critical moments this season. Shepherd, who represents Tucber Park Cricket Club in New Amsterdam, has 21 first-class matches beneath his belt, with 67 wickets to his name. In his first-class curriculum vitae, the lethal fast bowler has two five-wicket hauls at a respectable bowling average of 23.50. This clean striker of the cricket ball has 526 runs in his blooming career, averaging 21.04 batting in the lower-order. He has recorded three half-centuries in his career thus far. With Shepherd’s all-round performance this season, he doubtlessly deserves being considered “player of the season” for the Guyana Jaguars.

2018-2019 CWI Regional 4-Day T ournament…

Smith still supreme with most runs, Cornwall breaks into 50+ wickets


n the 20182019 CWI R e g i o n a l 4-Day Tournament, four teams have, to date, each played nine matches, These four teams are: Leeward Islands Hurricanes, Barbados Pride, Trinidad and Tobago Red Force, and Jamaica Scorpions. They will play their final round match from Thursday, March 14, 2019. As of now, the official points’ standings show the Jaguars maintaining their supremacy, having played 10 matches, in which they registered seven wins, suffered three defeats, and have accrued 154.2 points. In second position are the Hurricanes, with six wins, two defeats and one draw from nine matches. T h e y have registered

131.2 points, trailing the Jaguars by 23 points. Barbados Pride are in

third position with 116.2 points. Windward Islands

Volcanoes, having played

their quota of 10 matches, are in fourth position with 92 points, while the Trinidad & Tobago Red Force have registered 90.6 points. The Jamaica Scorpions continue to struggle at the bottom with 88.6 points. Veteran Devon Smith ended another season among the runs, having scored 745 runs in nine matches, averaging 43.82. The leading run scorer in the 2018-2019 Regional Super 50 has one more match to play. Jonathan Carter, who scored 677 runs, is second to Devon Smith. Devon Thomas who made a great leap on the runs chart, is in t h i r d position with 653 runs in eight matches,

averaging 43.53. He scored one century and six half-centuries. Montcin Hodge has 647 runs, while Anthony Bramble has 580, Tagenarine Chanderpaul has 542, and Keacy Carty has 515 runs. Those are the batters with 500+ runs. Still unable to earn selection for Windies’ duty, Rahkeem Cornwall has snared 51 wickets

in eight matches this season. He leads the bowling charts, having grabbed three five-wicket hauls, with a best bowling figure of 6-57. Veerasammy Permaul has 42 wickets, while Nikita Miller who played five matches has 41 wickets. Imran Khan has 38 wickets this season, with one match to play; while Romario Shepherd,

the only fast bowler with 30+ wickets this season, is ranked fifth on the bowling charts with his 37 scalps. Left-arm spinner Kaveem Hodge has 30 wickets this season. Anthony Bramble has 43 dismissals in his 10 matches while Barbados’ Tevyn Walcott has 31 dismissals with the gloves. (Brandon Corlette)

Bartica FA Leagues: Rising Stars, Potaro Strikers win on opening day

Devon Smith

President of the GFF, Wayne Forde, addressing the teams at the beginning of the tournament


he Bartica Football League on Saturday last boldly launched its 2019 season with three leagues in different age categories at the Bartica Secondary School ground.

In attendance at the opening ceremony, president of the Guyana Football Federation (GFF), Wayne Forde, gave the assurance of his full support for the development of the game at Bartica. He lauded the association’s efforts at putting the leagues together and setting the stage for capacity development among its clubs. Bartica Mayor, Gifford Marshall, also delivered a message aimed at continuing the partnership with football stakeholders in the interest of youth and community development. The launching marked the start of the GFF-BFA Senior League, the GFF-NAMILCO Under-17 League and the GFF-Pele Alumni “Frank Watson” Under-15 League. One female exhibition game was also played. On the opening day, the female category got the ball rolling as Black Panthers duked it out with Falmouth. However, the match was a one-sided affair that ended 3-1 in favour of the Panthers. In the under-15 category, the mighty Potaro Strikers wasted no time in asserting their dominance, as they defeated Beacons 3-1. In the following match in the under-17 category, Lazio and Mil Ballers played to a stalemate that ended 1-1. In the seniors’ category, Rivers View managed to cause an upset by defeating Rising Stars by one goal, winning the match 2-1. Sixteen-year-old Cleavon Murray of Rising Stars FC scored the first goal of the Senior League 2019.

tuesday, march 12, 2019

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

St Mary’s, Bishops’ bag wins in Milo U-18 tourney Page 22

The Bishops’ High School in action

Page 23

Part of the action last Sunday

2018-2019 CWI Regional 4-Day Tournament…

Mission accomplished: Super Shepherd has 37 wickets – confident of playing international cricket in near future

Page 22

Gopaul’s grip slackens on National Junior title

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