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Guyana to get quality testing lab to boost trade, investments – IDB Nationwide coverage from the best news team in Guyana

Issue No. 4094


THE BEACON OF TRUTH friday, november 1, 2019

Govt has no crimefighting strategy – Opposition Leader



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Corentyne NDC cashstrapped

…owes staff salaries since January P11

…as concerns mount over hike in crime

Mechanic dies after Knife-toting bandits rob Berbice gun accidentally goes off …shot to chest pensioners Page 8

$80 vat included

See story on page 14

Phone thief nabbed by Corentyne residents P8 Lymphatic Filariasis Elimination Campaign launched P10

Man charged for hammering cousin to P10 death

Workers from Blairmont Sugar Estate at a vigil on Thursday evening as they protested Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) over stalled negotiations on salary increases and other benefits

Piracy attack

Surinamese law enforcement assisting local Police …3rd suspect for court today

Wanted: Anonth Boodrage

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Wanted: O’Brian Fraser

Guyana has more to offer than Kaieteur Falls – GTA P10

Knife-wielding bandit robs P7 deliveryman

2 news

friday, november 1, 2019 |

Piracy attack

Surinamese law enforcement assisting local Police …3rd suspect for Court today


he third suspect who confessed that he, along with accomplices, murdered the four fishermen who were on fishing vessel “Sara 1” earlier this month before dumping them overboard, is expected to be hauled before the court of law today. Just Wednesday, two other men who had admitted to the cops that they killed the quartet appeared before Magistrate Peter Hugh at the Number 51 Village Magistrate’s Court, Corentyne, Berbice on four counts of murder. Twenty-two-year-old Suresh Sundat, also called “Buckman” or “Ajai”, of Belvedere Squatting Area and 30-year-old Narine Dhanrajh, also called “ChuChu Bai”, of Belvedere Village, were not required to plea to the indictable

Court on November 7.

Surinamese authorities’ aid

Wanted: Anonth Boodrage

Wanted: O’Brian Fraser

charge. It is alleged that between October 5 and October 13, during the course of piracy, Sundat and Dhanrajh, along with other fishermen, murdered Kawal Kissoon, called “Ajai”, 36, of Letter Kenny, Corentyne; 20-yearold Otto Lamar Petrie of Miss Phoebe Village, Port Mourant; Marvin Tamesar, also called “Buddy” and

“Bin Laden”, 20, of Miss Phoebe Village and Vishnu Seeram, called “Kevin”, 20, of the same village. Police Prosecutor Inspector Orin Joseph told the Court that the Police were not through with their investigations and need a month to complete the file. The two men were remanded to prison and the case will continue at Whim Magistrate’s

Meanwhile, the Police have issued wanted bulletins for two other suspects in connection with the murder of the four fishermen. Wanted are 21-year-old O’Brian Fraser of Lot 66 Eversham Village, Corentyne and 21-yearold Anonth Boodrage of Lot 97 Belvedere Village, Corentyne by the Police for questioning in relation to same. Commander of Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne), Senior Superintendent Calvin Brutus told Guyana Times on Thursday that the Dutch law enforcement officials from neighbouring country, Suriname, are assisting the Guyana Police Force (GPF) in locating the two wanted men. He stated that based on in-

Dead: Otto Lamar Petrie

formation received, the GPF contacted the Surinamese authorities to request their assistance in apprehending the two suspects, who are said to presently be hiding somewhere in the Surinamese territory. According to Commander Brutus, Surinamese cops and local Police are working to ensure that the men are caught and that justice is served. Anyone with information that may lead to the arrest of Fraser and Boodrage is asked to contact the Police

Missing: Vishnu Seeram, also called “Kevin”

on telephone numbers: 3333876, 333-5564, 333-2151 – 3, 337-2411, 335-3014, 2253650, 226-1928, 911 or the nearest Police station.

Missing bodies

The Police Commander also stated that to date, the bodies of the two murdered fishermen, Tamesar and Seeram, have not been sighted or found. He explained that the distance where the self-confessed killers claimed and dumped the men is far from shore. This, coupled with a lot of time having already elapsed since the bodies of Kissoon and Petrie were discovered, it may be too late to hope that the others would be found, he said. Guyana Times had previously reported that the suspects, who were in another

Dead: Kawal called “Ajai”



fishing boat, ventured over to the Sara 1 with the intention of stealing the fish that the now dead men had caught. Although it was a small quantity, the suspects proceeded to demand that the men hand over the fish as they attacked the four fishermen but the victims reportedly fought back but lost the battle. After killing the fishermen on board Sara 1, the suspects threw the men over-

Missing: Marvin Tamesar, also called “Buddy” or “Bin Laden”

board, before snatching their loot and making good their escape. Sara 1 was found on the Foreshore at Wellington Park, Corentyne last Friday afternoon, but none of the crew members were found. The owner was contacted and after the boat was inspected, the Police were called in. On October 11, the body of 36-year-old Kissoon of Letter Kenny, Corentyne was found with his hands bound behind his back and feet bound together. Some 36 hours after Kissoon’s body was found, the body of 20-year-old Petrie of Miss Phoebe Village, Port Mourant, Region Six (East BerbiceCorentyne) was discovered on the Abary Foreshore, Region Five (MahaicaBerbice).



friday, november 1, 2019 |

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

Friday, November 1 – 05:00h – 06:30h and Saturday, November 2 – 08:30h – 10:00h. The Berbice Bridge will be closed to vehicular traffic on: Friday, November 1 – 06:50h – 08:20h and Saturday, November 2 – 07:30h – 09:00h.

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

WEATHER TODAY Sunshine with a short interval of midday thundery showers is predicted. There will be clear skies at night. Temperatures should range between 21 degrees Celsius and 32 degrees Celsius. Winds: North North-Easterly to Southerly between 1.78 metres and 4.91 metres. High Tide: 06:58h and 19:07h reaching maximum heights of 2.49 metres and 2.55 metres. Low Tide: 24:30h and 12:42h reaching minimum heights of 0.53 metre and 0.79 metre.

wednesday, october 30, 2019


10 11 15

16 23 25


20 Bonus Ball


01 03 13 15 21 LUCKY 3





Afternoon Draw



Evening Draw







02 03 04 12 13




01 08 09 10 11


Govt has no crime-fighting strategy – Opposition Leader …as concerns mount over hike in crime


s there continues to be mounting public concern over the increasing spate of crime in Guyana, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo has flagged the David Granger-led administration for failing to address the country’s crime situation. “Whilst crime is ravaging the country, [President Granger] has not outlined any measures to arrest this situation,” Jagdeo said at his weekly press conference on Thursday. He was at the time responding to comments made by the Head of State on crime fighting during a recent interview on the “Inside Sources” podcast. According to the Opposition Leader, President Granger touted the Security Sector Reform Report received from British Consultants and the appointment of four Deputy Commissioners of Police that were not there before. “This is another evidence of him being aloof,” Jagdeo contended. Weeks after getting into office in 2015, President Granger had summoned his top security officials and laid out a five-point action plan that the security sector would use to battle the crime wave, which at that time, had been rising at an alarming rate. The plan, however, was more of a strategic nature than immediate actions to address the crime wave. Since then, despite insisting that the crime rate has reduced, the coalition administration had come under heavy criticism for failing effectively tackle the situation. In fact, when asked during the recent podcast why dealing with crime situation is proving to be difficult when his government is comprised of some former top security officials, including himself being a member of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF), President Granger posited there is not a single crime problem but various facets. “The crime situation is not as bad as people make it out to be… But the one [facet] that catches the public’s attention easily and quickly is interpersonal violence,” he stated, adding that they are aware of the issues and are working on tackling them. However, according to the Head of State, dealing with interpersonal crimes requires different types of tools – something which the Police may not have. He said that while a lot of training of law enforcement officials are conducted – and more needs to be conducted – there is still need to examine the culture of young people, adding too that civil

President David Granger

society, particularly the religious organisations, have to be encouraged to discuss these issues with members. “It is not an ethnic problem, it is not a geographical problem – it is widespread. It occurs at various strata of society because sometimes rich people might pay somebody to kill their wife or husband. (Interpersonal crimes) are not always the result of poverty”. On this note, the President cited unemployment as another deterrent to the fight against crime, something, he says, his administration is hoping to alleviate with better job opportunities and better training through the youth corps and other programmes designed for young people. “So we hope that economic incentives and a stronger economic platform would allow more young people to enter the world of work and not the world of crime,” Granger stated. However, even as the

Head of State talks up crime fighting strategies in an effort to regain the public’s confidence for more time to address the situation, his Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan recently shied away from taking responsibility for crime fighting and instead contended that the public has to secure itself and be more alert. From the Police’s end, Ramjattan noted that they have to beef up patrols. “It requires lots more patrols by our Policemen. It requires members of the public being alert. They have to be far more alert. And take a look at the back

Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan

and find out who’s following them. If they go out, try to go out in groups. That’s what the Police will generally tell you. And that’s what is needed to secure yourself,” he said. The Public Security Minister also made mention

Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo

of the recent Police operation, where touts and members of bicycle gangs were arrested in the vicinity of Stabroek Market. He noted that many of them were arrested either through tips from members of the public or by facial recognition from the Closed Circuit TV (CCTV) cameras set up around the city. “We are going to, in a way, beef up the Police patrols all over the place. We have utilised our video cameras at the command centre at Liliendaal to check on a number of these bicycle and motorcycle guys, for a period of days and then we went in and, having identified them, ensured that we arrested them, and arrests have been made, about 39”. “So we’re getting the information through the video cameras. And persons have been calling in to say who and who, at the Stabroek Market, have been doing their mischief and we have been arresting them,” Ramjattan said.


fridAY, november 1, 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:,

Crime fighting


n a previous editorial, the question of whether fighting crime was a fake campaign promise by the then A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change Opposition, was asked. The question was natural given what was seen as a continual increase in criminal attacks. From then to now, nothing seemed to have changed and for many, it appears to be worse. This has gone seemingly unchecked over the years as mindsets are inundated with fear and the question of “who is next” seems involuntary. The stories that emanate daily are horrific to say the least; some with brutal sexual assaults. Not only are families scared, humiliated, deprived of valuables, communities ravished and left even more vulnerable, but life is brutally snuffed out in some instances. Unfortunately, crime has not only become a fixture in daily news, but a prominent one. There seems no respite despite the much-publicised increase in resources and new recruits. While crime will realistically not be erased, taxpayers expect sustained quick responses and robust approaches in combating this societal scourge. This is not taking away from the brave men and women from law enforcement who risk their lives. The issue, of what can only be described as current failed policy in combating crime, has to be put into a particular context. The previous People’s Progressive Party (PPP) Administration was constantly berated by the then Opposition, which is now the Government, for being weak and incapable of fighting crime. This was used as a major campaign theme to rile sentiments against the PPP Government’s perceived lack of vision and expertise in the security sector. At the same time, the then Opposition spared no effort to boast of its prowess in security. The voting populace probably needed no convincing over security personnel who were part of the APNU/AFC Opposition coalition. The fairly extensive list of former senior Police and Army officials who joined the slate might have instilled a sense of belief in relief from crime even from non-supporters. That seeming prolific gathering of security specialists probably caused crime itself to shudder. None can dispute the esteem offices which they served. That might have tilted the balance of the crime-fighting scale in favour of the coalition since probably there was little or no reason to doubt the capabilities showcased. Regardless of where the ballot was cast, expectation for a vast reduction in crime was real and immediate. Therein lies the profound disappointment. The expectation afterwards was for the promised new approach to effectively combat crime through more robust interventions. Sadly, it did not happen and remains elusive. Families are now reeling in despair and mindsets preoccupied with trying to stay safe whether indoors or outdoors. People are still being trailed from financial institutions and regularly robbed. The unsuspecting on their way home are relieved of possession at gunpoint. Schoolchildren are not spared while overseas-based Guyanese returning for holidays are trailed and robbed with some killed in the process. Innocent women are raped in some instances of home invasions. When the belief that not every detail of a robbery is reported for fear of further humiliation is taken into consideration, a more frightening scenario is revealed. The question is, what has the coalition done since in Government to effectively combat crime? Given the boasts, the expectation would not be farfetched for close to a crime free society by now. The reality is that fear has taken a stranglehold on the nation, depriving people their freedom from that mindset so as to be able to focus on making a living. This brings into the fray the nexus of the current harsh economic policies and a derivative of crime. While there will always be some who will engage in criminal activities regardless of the economic situation, forcing people into poverty will have a frightening effect. Analysts will postulate the nexus of youth in crime as a result of unemployment. Cleary many jobs have been lost under this Administration and this is not an attempt to state that all those who were fired have resorted to crime, for many are forced into humiliation in finding a legal livelihood. After four years and the upward spiral of crime, one may rightfully question polices and interventions, if any, and its effects. With the current circumstance, one can again question the genuineness of this particular influential campaign promise. Many are still trying to accept the pardoning of prisoners in the context of current mindsets. While the intention might have been noble as envisaged, the reported subsequent involvement in crime by a few who benefited would have further damaged psyche making it virtually impossible for acceptance. In such circumstance, people can conclude that their welfare becomes secondary. Also, there seems to be dearth of information on the process regarding deportees with criminal records and their reintegration into society. These add to an already wary psyche sapping motivation and confidence of the citizenry. Other than fear, natural derivatives are; less investments, lower production, forced migration and unemployment; a seemingly continuous cycle into the future if not curbed.

A woman fills her basket with marigold flowers, as she prepares to sell them to the market for the Tihar festival, also called Diwali, in Kathmandu, Nepal (Reuters)

Volda Lawrence reinforces that PNC only supports some people Dear Editor, Any worthy political party would always provide solidarity and support for any citizen – supporter or not – when that citizen suffers a tragedy. This becomes not a choice nor an option, but an obligation and duty when that political party is in control of the government. The title of Government confers a responsibility to work for, and to support, every citizen, whether that citizen voted for your party or not. A popular business place, a bar, was heavily damaged by a fire two nights ago. Everyone who has suffered a loss, whether because of fire, flood, robbery, or any other means of destruction, deserves our solidarity and support. Even though the particular business was a bar, some called it a rum shop, the owner/owners deserves/deserve our sympathy and any support we could provide. It is in this context we must commend Ms Volda Lawrence, the Chairman of the People’s National Congress (PNC) and a leading member of the APNU/AFC coalition, for showing up with a sizable cheque to help the owner of the Guinness Bar in Georgetown to rebuild. Political parties and their leaders must be quick and ready to lend support to a citizen. Admittedly, it is a little jarring to see the Minister of Public Health -- who just recently appeared at an event promoting healthy lifestyles, including the message for people not to smoke and not to abuse alcohol -- proudly

trying to ensure a bar survives. But was it not just recently that David Granger chastised young people for imbibing alcohol at the Guinness Bar and other bars? These mixed-messages do not help. I suppose Lawrence forgot that message as she sought political support from young people who regularly visit that bar. APNU, AFC, the PNC are clueless, always giving out mixed-messages, blinded by political opportunism. Even more jarring, however, is that this commendable support for a citizen comes amidst major trauma being suffered by other citizens, who have been totally abandoned and not even recognised. Just a few days ago, on the night of Diwali, four families, including pensioners, became homeless on the East Bank Demerara because a fire destroyed their homes. They were not business owners; they were poor people. In fact, at least two of the families were single-parent families. Last week, a poor family with seven children lost their home because of a fire on the Corentyne. These are just the most recent fire victims. In fact, this year alone, dozens of families across Guyana lost their homes because of fire. Some of these people were consoled by families and friends, by neighbours and sometimes NGOs that showed up with some help. For many of those victims, it was encouraging to see political activists and leaders from the Opposition PPP

visiting and offering support. When these poor people are affected, one noticeable common thread is that the Government is missing in action (MIA). For this reason, I often dub this Government an “MIA government”. Watching Lawrence proudly presenting a cheque to a businessman in Georgetown forced me to ask where was Lawrence, the PNC, APNU and AFC when these other poor people suffered because of fire? Is it that these people are seen to be PPP supporters? It was not wrong to provide support for the Guinness Bar, but it highlights the far-too-numerous times that citizens have been abandoned by their government. No one asks that the PNC finds money to help these poor people, but the Government’s resources must be utilised to help any citizen in need. Even as Lawrence posed for a photo-opportunity at the Guinness Bar, to show she and the PNC care, there are hundreds of residents and farmers in Region 5 who continue to suffer from devastating floods resulting largely from the negligence of the Government. The floods of this week are only the latest floods that have battered these poor people, causing damage to their residential properties and farms, with significant losses of crops, including rice and cash crops, and livestock. These floods also caused loss of farmlands, since much of the arable land

used for agriculture in the area cannot be cultivated for at least two years. People’s livelihoods have been affected; they need help, yet not a single Government official has shown up in the past and in this most recent flooding episode. In fact, one of the senior PNC activists and officials in the area denies these floods are real. While the General Secretary and the PPP Presidential Candidate are constantly on the ground offering support and demanding the Government takes responsibility, the Government is MIA. Neither Lawrence nor her leader David Granger even acknowledges that these people are suffering. But Lawrence, in the recent past, did confess their posture in governance is that the PNC (APNU/AFC) is in government not for all Guyanese, but only for “PNC people. She had confessed her only “friends”, her only “people”, are PNC people. Only “her” people, meaning PNC people, will get their attention. Here is another example of Ms. Lawrence and the PNC demonstrating how it works. We must be happy the owner of Guinness Bar got help. We must condemn Ms Lawrence, the PNC and APNU/AFC for not recognising the sufferings of other people simply because they might be PPP people. Sincerely, Dr Leslie Ramsammy

friday, november 1, 2019


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

Criminal negligence by ‘caring’ Govt?

Dear Editor, What started as a minuscule crack in the sea defence structure in February 2019 is now a major disaster covering a large swathe of land from Cottage village in Mahaicony, East Coast Demerara to Belvedere village on the East Coast of Demerara, and in all the villages between them. The farmers who live and work in these villages have had their lives and livelihoods devastated by the flooding of their lands with the salty waters of the Atlantic Ocean. I saw this human and economic disaster firsthand when I accompanied Bharrat Jagdeo there on the 29th September. The Leader of the Opposition cautioned all concerned not to make this issue about politics, and urged that we support all efforts to bring relief to the residents and a solution to the breach in the sea defences. The Government, on October 4th, requisitioned $800 million in emergency

funds to address the breach, and no objection was raised by anyone. I revisited the area on October 27th and, to my astonishment, the affected area had quadrupled. This led to me asking lots of questions, and the answers shook me to the core. The facts are that the Regional Chairman of Region 5, Vickchand Ramphal, during one of his many outreaches in the Region, in February 2019, was alerted to a small breach of the sea defence at Dantzig. He subsequently made this known to the Minister of Public Infrastructure, David Patterson, the Mahaica/ Mahaicony/Abary Agricultural Development Authority (MMA/ADA), and to the Regional Democratic Council (RDC), pleading for emergency works to be conducted to avoid a disaster. Ramphal’s calls were ignored. However, Regional Executive Officer (REO) of Region 5, Ovid Morrison, who is the Government’s

representative in that region, held a press conference and informed the public that they should not pay attention to the Regional Chairman, because he is blatantly lying to the public and is engaged in fear-mongering. As a result of this negligence, the two recent events of flooding in the communities from Dantzig to Fairfield are the result of this political ignorance. Further, residents informed us that a contractor who is a close friend of the APNU/AFC Coalition Government obtained a contract to conduct remedial works along with ‘the sea defence’ people. However, the contractor, according to reports, had never undertaken such works before, and caused more harm than good. The residents also informed us that some Government officials who visited the first time the flooding occurred some 4 weeks ago stated that the

Government does not have the necessary funds to undertake a comprehensive repair of the sea defence structure. Editor, there is no shortage of contingency funds for works such as this. The Granger administration has been drawing down on those funds all year ostensibly to fix this breach. As recently as August, $460 million was allocated to these works. The question has to be asked whether this completely avoidable disaster has become a ‘cash cow’ for corrupt Government officials and their cronies. It would seem that the Granger administration sees profit even in human and economic disaster. Not one bottle of water has been offered in relief to the farmers in the affected areas. This rises to the level of criminal negligence by the ‘caring’ Government. Respectfully,   Robin Singh

GECOM’sChairwoman’s illegal, confusing directives Dear Editor, The Chairman of GECOM is again in the limelight for all the wrong reasons. She is once again in an illegal mode and that is in connection with the removal of over 21,000 names from the OLE. This entire debacle stems from a proposal made by PNC Commissioners at the elections commission. They are of the view since these persons have not uplifted their ID Cards since 2008, then, there is no proof of their existence hence their names should be removed from the list. This in essence means that they have forfeited their rights to vote. Again this is advice coming from the PNC Commissioners at the secretariat, persons to whom the chairwoman is closely associated and persons from whom all her advice flows. Very interesting indeed for a former judge, who instead of looking at the legal basis on which to make her decisions are wholly dependent on the whims and fancies of the Government, party controlled commissioners. In this regard, this latest decision of hers is politically motivated and has all the hallmarks of partisanship. Now, the chairwoman could be ever so wrong because there is no connection between one’s inability to uplift an ID Card and the right to vote. There is no legal basis on which she can substantiate that decision, because having an ID Card and the right to vote is a non-issue, people vote with their passports which is a known fact so what’s the problem? Is she deliberately creating a problem where

there is none? Justice Singh fully well knows how sacred and how important Guyanese value their passports and as such an important event as a general election most people take pride of place, would see many turning up with their passports to vote this coming general election. This general election is a major issue on our calendar of events. The problem with the PNC Commissioners is that they would like to see who those 21,000 persons are and why they did not uplift their ID Cards. Clearly, this is not GECOM’s work, and represents another manifestation of an illegal act, hence must be condemned for all its worth. GECOM has no legal right to track down and harass a registrant, that is not their role, that is not their mandate.  They are totally out of place on this one.  Secondly, that order for those potential voters to visit the elections commission stations to verify their status, that in itself is another illegal act on their part. What that coercive edict seeks to satisfy or fulfill is to further filter back personal and sensitive information to the PNC Commissioners which would aid them in their manipulation of the data base and perfect their rigging machinery. That’s their aim, that’s their motive, and that illegality must stop now! The abuse of a statutory process wherein a person is denied the legal right to vote must not be tampered with and this is the ongoing fight we have with the PNC controlled side and the chairwoman

of the elections commission. She somehow seems not to understand what the real motive of these government appointees. Retired, Justice Claudette Singh who is supposed to be a legal person seems to be bowing to pressure and

is partisan in her approach to these decisions. This is unacceptable behaviour and we are not going to sit idly by and accept it. Respectfully, Neil  Adams

GECOM’s responsibility, Commissioners actions Dear Editor, The Guyana Elections Commission, and particularly the APNU commissioners, must understand that they have a responsibility to provide free and fair elections to the people of Guyana. Furthermore, this process is embodied in “trust and “credibility”. It seems, though, that actors on the APNU side within this commission are displaying syndromes associated with a child who wants its own way and at any cost to the people of Guyana. Their syndromes are that they are crying loud, changing their clothes and banging their heads to get their own way. However, our Guyanese people are much more informed and mature, and are banishing misinformation by these APNU commissioners. From December 2018 to date, information emanating from GECOM is continuing to create lack of trust, and is eroding credibility at a national level; and this has the potential to influence the ‘outcome and behavioural approach’ by our people.

Just think of a scenario wherein GECOM announces the elections’ results for 2020 after all these baby syndromes by the APNU commissioners. Can we contextualise the extent of distrust that is now embedded in our voting populace? Can a reasonable citizen agree with GECOM? The APNU commissioners need to stop been myopic, as actions now have significant impact on the future of an emerging Guyana. We, as Guyanese, should hold these actors accountable, as this is evolving into a national disaster. Let us protect the values embedded in our Constitution. Let’s learn from, and mitigate from, events unfolding around the world in countries such as Bolivia, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Venezuela, and even in Hong Kong. Do we in Guyana see an emerging similarity of Government’s credibility being under scrutiny? We, as Guyanese, have the voice to speak up now! Sincerely, Name withheld


friday, november 1, 2019



Sports and exercise safety D

id you know that playing tennis with a badly strung racquet while wearing worn-out shoes can increase your risk of injury? Using the wrong – or not properly fitted – equipment is a major cause of injuries.

Helmets are key The equipment you wear while participating in sports and other activities is key to preventing injuries. Start with helmets: They’re important for sports such as hockey, baseball, softball, biking, skateboarding, inline skating, skiing, and snowboarding – to name just a few. Always wear a helmet made for the sport you’re playing. When choosing a bike helmet, look for a sticker that says the helmet meets the safety standard set by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), a federal regulatory agency that creates safety standards for bike helmets and other safety equipment. If you use a multi-sport helmet for inline skating and skateboarding, it is not considered safe for bicycle riding unless it has the CPSC sticker. Any helmet should fit snugly but comfortably on your head and shouldn’t tilt backward or forward. Eye protection Eye protection also is a must for many sports: The most protective eye gear is made from a plastic called polycarbonate and has been tested especially for sports use. Facemasks or polycarbonate guards or shields that attach to a helmet are worn in sports such as football, ice hockey, and softball and baseball when batting. Goggles are often worn for soccer, basketball, racquet sports, snowboarding, street hockey, and baseball and softball when fielding. If you wear glasses, you’ll probably need prescription polycarbonate goggles – don’t just wear your regular glasses when you’re on the court or field. All eye protection should fit securely and have cushions above your eyebrows and over your nose. More essential equipment Mouthguards can protect your mouth, teeth, and tongue: You should wear a mouthguard if you play a contact sport or other sport where head injury is a risk, such as basketball, hockey, volleyball, martial arts, boxing, or wrestling. Mouthguards can be fitted for your mouth by a dentist or purchased at sports stores. If you wear a retainer, always take it out before you start to exercise, practice, or play. Wrist, knee, and elbow guards are important gear, too: If you inline skate, skateboard, or ride a scooter, you should wear guards.

Elbow and wrist guards can prevent arm and wrist fractures, and knee guards can shield your knees from cuts and breaks. If you play certain sports, especially contact sports, pads are essential: All kinds of sports, from hockey to inline skating, use pads. There are shin, knee, elbow, wrist, chest, shoulder, hip, and thigh pads. Check with your coach or doctor to find out what kinds of pads you might need for your sport. Some guys may also need to wear a protective cup (to protect the testicles): Guys who play hockey, football, basketball, baseball, soccer, and other contact sports should use a cup. For noncontact sports that involve running, guys should wear an athletic supporter. If you’re unsure, ask your coach, athletic trainer, or parent if you need a cup for your sport. And last but not least, the right footwear can keep you from tripping and falling: You know that sports like football, baseball, softball, and soccer require cleats. But you may not realise that sports like skateboarding and biking need special types of shoes, too. Ask your coach or doctor what shoes are best for your sport. Replace shoes and cleats that have worn out or are no longer supportive. Not only is the right kind of equipment important, so is the right fit. If you don’t know if your equipment fits properly, check with a coach, gym teacher, athletic trainer, or parent to make sure you have the right size and that you’re wearing it correctly. Many sporting goods stores can also help you find the right fit. The bottom line: Wearing the right equipment with the right fit greatly lowers your risk of getting hurt. Warm up to keep your game up Don’t rush into any sport or exercise without warming up first – muscles that haven’t been properly prepared tend to be injured more easily. Start out with some light cardiovascular activities, such as easy jogging, jumping jacks, or brisk walking, just to get your muscles going. Follow your brief warm-up with some stretches. (Stretching works best after a warm-up because your tissues are more elastic [flexible] due to the increase in heat and blood flow to the muscles.)

In addition to warm-ups and stretches, practice sessions are also excellent preparation for most sports or activities. If you belong to a team, attend as many team practices and games as possible. This will put you in top physical condition and help you and your teammates work together – and knowing how your teammates play will help prevent injuries. Even if you don’t belong to a team, you can use regular workouts and practices to enhance your performance and lessen the chance of injuries. Remember, if a tool isn’t used, it gets rusty, so keep yourself in top shape with regular practice. For instance, try doing tennis drills or practising your serve before starting a set. Shoot some baskets or play a quick game of one-on-one with a friend. Practice gets your brain and body to work together while improving your performance. Although you should practice regularly, don’t overdo it. Sudden increases in training frequency, duration, or intensity might produce better performance at first but can lead to overuse injuries later. Your doctor or coach can help you develop a training and conditioning programme that’s appropriate for your age and level of development. (Excerpt from

Safety Tips:


hether it’s as part of a high school track programme or a way to get in shape, running is a wonderful sport. It’s great exercise, almost anyone can do it, and all you really need to get started is a good pair of sneakers. These tips can help you run safely.

Safe running gear

Shoes It’s best to get fitted for running shoes by a trained professional. They can help runners get shoes that: fit well have good support with a thick, shock absorbing-sole Minimalist shoes are becoming popular, but there’s no evidence that they’re better than regular running shoes. Socks Running socks come in a variety of materials, thicknesses, and sizes. Avoid socks made from 100% cotton. When cotton gets wet, it stays wet, leading to blisters in the summer and cold feet in the winter. Instead, buy socks made from wool or synthetic materials such as polyester and acrylic. Safe training and running To prevent injuries while training or running: Get a sports physical before starting running. Train sensibly, by increasing distances and speed slowly. Warm up and stretch before running. Dynamic stretching is the best kind of stretching before a run or workout. Stop running if you get hurt or feel pain. Get checked by an

athletic trainer, coach, doctor, or nurse before going back to running. Safety while running outdoors It’s important to stay alert while running outdoors. Don’t wear headphones or earbuds or anything else that might make you less aware of your surroundings. Staying safe while running involves the same common sense used to stay safe anywhere else, like avoiding parked cars and dark areas, and taking note of who is behind you and ahead of you. Runners should carry a few essentials, such as: a form of identification a cellphone a whistle to blow to attract attention if you’re hurt or in a situation where you don’t feel safe Other safety tips: Run during daylight hours, if possible. For nighttime running, avoid dimly lit areas and wear bright and/or reflective clothes. Stay on the sidewalk or shoulder of a road, if possible. Run facing oncoming cars. Always yield to vehicles at intersections. Don’t assume that cars will stop for you. Obey all traffic rules and signals. Only run through neighbourhoods and parks and on trails known to be safe. It’s always best to run with a friend, if possible. Dress for the weather. In cold weather, wear layers of sweat-wicking fabric, a hat, and gloves. On hot days, bring extra water and wear lightcoloured clothing and a hat. Stop running if you feel faint or sick in any way. (



friday, november 1, 2019 |

to spend 14 days Knife-wielding bandit Woman in jail for assaulting cop …also fined $50,000 robs deliveryman


delivery man is now counting his losses after being attacked by a lone knife-wielding bandit and relieved of his cash and cellular phone in Grove Village, East Bank Demerara (EBD). Reports are that the victim is employed at the Sterling Products Limited company at Providence, EBD, and was in the vicinity of Samatta Point, Grove on Wednesday afternoon when he was robbed. According to a Police source, the delivery man was making his way through that section of the village when the bandit he whipped out a knife from the waist of his pants and pointed the knife towards

the deliveryman’s chest, threatening him. A Police source close to the investigation said that the delivery man emptied his pockets and handed the knife-wielding bandit $13,000. However, the suspect was not satisfied with the cash and demanded that the deliveryman give him his cellular phone. He complied and the suspect made good his escape on foot into the nearby street. Publicspirited persons assisted the deliveryman and took him to the Police Station, where he filed a report and gave a detailed description of the bandit. Investigations into the robbery are ongoing as

Police are on the hunt for the suspect who is said to hail from the Kaneville section of the Grove village. Over the past few months, residents in those villages, particularly Grove, have been complaining about the presence of males loitering in their streets during late nights and early morning hours. Some of those individuals are said to be indulging in the use of illicit substances and are feared to be bandits who hail from the Kaneville area, Grove, EBD. For several years, Kaneville has been deemed a “hotspot” for persons who conduct criminal activities.


20-year-old woman, who was slapped with several charges of assault and disorderly behaviour in May, was on Thursday jailed for 14 days and fined $50,000. Keisha Burke, of Meadowbrook Gardens, Georgetown, stood before Magistrate Faith McGusty and changed her not guilty plea to guilty at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts. The prosecution contended that on May 13, 2019 at East La Penitence, Georgetown, she assaulted and unlawfully wounded Police Sergeant Odecia Johnson, who was acting in the execution of her duties. According to the prosecution’s case, while at the East La Penitence Police Station, Burke also unlawfully assault-

Keisha Burke

ed Johnson. Another charge stated that on the same day and location, Burke behaved in a disorderly manner. The prosecution is also contending that on the same day and at the same location, she used indecent language. It is also

alleged Burke resisted arrest from Sergeant Johnson, during which time she unlawfully assaulted her causing actual bodily harm. She was also accused of damaging spectacles belonging to Johnson valued $40,000. Reports are, on May 13, Johnson was carrying out her duties at East La Penitence Police Station when she noticed a female standing in the building. Johnson then called a male officer, who was sent to enquire why the woman was standing inside the station. Burke then began to use indecent language while leaving the station. Johnson, after seeing the commotion, attempted to arrest Burke but she dealt the officer several punches to her face and also broke her spectacles.

2 years jail for labourer caught with illegal firearm


30-year-old labourer will spend the next two years in prison for possession of an illegal firearm. Sherwin Glenn of Lot 404 Skull City Patentia, West Bank Demerara (WBD), made his first Court appearance before Magistrate Zamilla Ally-Seepaul at the Wales Magistrate’s Court where he admitted to the charge. Reports are on Tuesday at about 09:00h, Police Officers, who were acting on information received, visited Glenn’s home. When the ranks arrived at his gate, Glenn, who was his yard, ran into his house and secured himself by bolting the doors and placing barricades against the entrance/exit points. He then began to behave

Cannabis in transparent plastic bags that was discovered in the labourer’s yard

Sherwin Glenn

in a disorderly manner, insulting the officers and using indecent language, while Glenn threatened that if any Policeman entered his yard

he would shoot him. In light of his non-cooperation and the manner in which he behaved, the ranks entered his yard and forced

their way into his house where they managed to subdue him. A search was then carried out in the house in Glenn’s presence and one .45 Kimber Yonkers gun without a magazine was found hidden in a pillowcase inside the labourer’s bedroom, which is at the lower flat of his house. According to a Police

source, the man was then questioned about the firearm and when asked if he had a magazine for the weapon in his possession, he directed the ranks to an area next to a trench some 30 feet away from his house. Another search was conducted and a transparent plastic bag with a quantity of zip lock plastic bags were

The gun was found hidden in a pillowcase

discovered. Inside of these bags, there were a quantity of leaves, seeds, and stems, suspected to be cannabis. Glenn was then escorted to the Wales Police Station, WBD, where he remained in Police custody until his Court hearing on Thursday. The firearm and suspected cannabis were lodged at the Police station since Tuesday.


friday, november 1, 2019 |

Mechanic dies after gun accidentally goes off


46-year-old mechanic, who was employed with the ANGCAM Mining Company, located at Goat Creek, Essequibo River, is now dead after he allegedly shot himself to the chest with a gun that he had taken from his employer’s office without permission. Dead is Joseph Mahadeo, called “Terry”, of Parika Backdam, East Bank Essequibo (EBE). Reports are that on Wednesday about 17:00h, Mahadeo along with a driver attached to the same company and a painter from Grove, East Bank Demerara (EBD) were travelling on a motor tractor when the vehicle began experiencing mechanical problems some four miles away from their campsite. The driver then sent Mahadeo to their camp to contact the company’s

General Manager, so that he could send the equipment necessary to repair the tractor. <<<Guyana Times>>> was told that upon hearing about the situation, the General Manager gave Mahadeo the key to his office so that he could retrieve the item needed to repair the tractor. According to Police, the General Manager usually kept his licensed firearm – a single-barrel 12-gauge shotgun – in his office. However, Mahadeo allegedly removed the weapon along with shotgun cartridges. He then left the key to the office on a nearby table, left the campsite, and went back to the location where the tractor was parked. The tractor was subsequently repaired and the trio continued their journey back to their camp. According to Police, the

painter was sitting on the left fender of the tractor while Mahadeo was sitting towards the front of the tractor on two pails and had the gun positioned between his legs. The Police were told that the butt of the gun was resting on the floor of the tractor while they were travelling. However, about 20:00h, when the trio were about one mile away from their destination, a loud explosion was heard, and the driver and the painter saw Mahadeo leaning towards the right side. According to the driver, he immediately stopped the tractor and checked on Mahadeo who was bleeding from the left side of his chest. Police ranks were summoned to the scene. When the officers arrived at the area, Mahadeo was seen motionless at the front of the tractor, with a visible

injury to the left chest area. Mahadeo was clad in a black jersey, black long pants, and a pair of long boots. In his right pocket, three live shotgun cartridges were found. The shotgun was seen lying on the trail some 10 feet behind the tractor. The weapon had one 12-gauge shell in the chamber. Mahadeo’s body was transported to the Leonora Cottage Hospital, West Coast Demerara (WCD), where he was pronounced dead on arrival. His body is presently at the Ezekiel Funeral Parlour awaiting a post-mortem examination. Meanwhile, the firearm, three live 12-gauge cartridges and the 12-gauge shell have been lodged at the Police Station. The dead man’s co-workers are in custody as Police continue their investigation.

Phone thief nabbed by Corentyne residents


17-year-old girl is still traumatised after being dealt several cuffs about her body by a young man who stole her cellular phone while she was en route to her home. However, while making his escape from the crime

scene, the suspect was apprehended by villagers along with Police Officers who were in the area at the time of the robbery. Twenty-year-old Kevin Abrams of Prashad Nagar, Georgetown, appeared before Magistrate Peter Hugh at the Number 51

Magistrate’s Court on Thursday. He was placed on $25,000 bail. Reports are that on Monday afternoon, the Virtual Complainant (VC) was walking along a track that led to her street in the Number 55 Village, Corentyne, Berbice, when

Abrams approached her from behind and punched her to her back twice, which resulted in her falling face down to the ground. This newspaper was told that Abrams grabbed the teen’s cellular phone and as she attempted to fight back, he dealt several cuffs to her face and stomach. He then made a dash through the track as the teen screamed for help. Villagers heard her cries and rushed towards her when they saw Abrams running away. As such, residents began chasing him. Realising that he was outnumbered and on the verge of being caught, he jumped into a trench as his final bid to escape but several residents jumped into the trench as well. They managed to subdue him and handed him over to the Police Officers. The teen’s cellular phone was also recovered. When questioned by the Police, the young man claimed that he was in Region Six (East BerbiceCorentyne) in search of a job.



…Ramjattan s a punishment for disobeying the gods, the Greek king Tantalus was condemned by Zeus to stand eternally in a pool of water under a fruit-laden branch of a tree. “Some punishment!” you exclaim, dear reader?? Well, as soon as Tantalus tried to get a drink, the water receded, and when he reached for a fruit, it eluded his grasp! And now you’ll understand the meaning (and the agony) of being “tantalised”!! You’ll also better appreciate the mental state of Khemraj Ramjattan, leader of the AFC – the party which insists he should be Granger’s running mate, and be named Prime Minister should the PNC/AFC coalition win the next elections. Now, you may also say that’s a pipe dream, since they stand less a chance of winning than a snowball has of surviving in hell. But then, being joined at the hip with them for the last five years, the AFC might have the inside scoop about the PNC’s plans for rigging!! But what else could Granger be doing to Ramjattan than tantalising him when he just swore in the latter to act as Prime Minister, after Nagamootoo jetted off for some R&R before his boozing during the coming Christmas season?! He knew very well that Ramjattan had been lusting for the position ever since he saw the sybaritic lifestyle enjoyed by PM Nagamootoo since 2015 – which could continue till ‘the end of never’ with the massive pension he’d be receiving. And what made it worse is that it was through his (Ramjattan’s) invitation that Nagamootoo had entered the AFC, after he (Ramjattan) had done all the heavy lifting to hitch up with Granger. Ramjattan therefore didn’t think it unreasonable that, in the coming elections, Nagamootoo – being now in his dotage – would step aside for him. But Nagamootoo, being Nagamootoo (his name means “snake”!), had other ideas: he’d been assiduously ingratiating himself with Granger as the latter’s doormat.  Ramjattan had become livid at Nagamootoo’s treachery, and had arranged (rigged?!), at the last AFC Conference, their endorsement of him as their nominee for the PM’s slot during the renegotiation of their Cummingsburg Accord. But, as we know, Granger pulled the rug out from under both Ramjattan and Nagamootoo when he insisted that he’d be violating the Constitution to have others pre-select the PM candidate!! It was HIS prerogative!! This was quite rich for a man who’s been wiping his feet on the Constitution since Dec 21, 2018!! But he had his eye on fresh meat!!  But Granger has obviously picked up that streak of meanness that his idol Burnham was noted for: he’s giving Ramjattan a taste of what could’ve been!! But the liquor will always be receding and the cutters always eluding his grasp!! Ouch!!   …and baiting Granger isn’t just tantalising Ramjattan: no, he has bigger fish to fry. Having called the AFC’s bluff at the last LGE and seen them exposed in all their nakedness – they couldn’t even win a single constituency!! – he knows the AFC needs the PNC waaaay more than the PNC needs them!! So he’s also baiting the AFC to make their demands – which the entire PNC had always been convinced was outrageous – and then dare them to leave.  He also knows that more than half of the urban members of the AFC’s Executive – with Trotman of Nassau’s fame leading - will cleave to the PNC in any showdown. Why else do you think he’s been invoking Charrandas at the drop of a hat? He’s reminding that constituency that Ramjattan’s of the same ilk as the “Judas” Charrandas. Why should they go down with a rotten rope?? The only need Granger has of the AFC is to show the world he has “multiracial” credentials. And Nagamootoo will provide this even if he’s just made dogcatcher!! …oil  The PNC just got their wish: Hess Corporation, part of the Exxon combie – just announced we’ll be having first oil for Christmas!! The PNC’s gonna dangle “oil revenues” in front of the electorate before the elections. Never mind it’ll always be outside ordinary folks’ grasp!! Readers are invited to send their comments by email to

9 Guyana to get quality testing lab to boost trade, investments – IDB news

friday, november 1, 2019 |


s Guyana embarks on steps to enhance exports and target investments, efforts are underway to construct a quality testing laboratory to ensure that local products are on par with international standards. This was revealed by Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Country Representative Sophie Makonnen on Thursday at the launching of two consultancy programmes being undertaken by the Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest). The two consultancy programmes are: the review and redesign of the Trade and Investment Framework for GO-Invest, and the design of an Export and Investment Strategy. This project falls under the “Enhancing the National Quality Infrastructure (NQI) for Economic Diversification and Trade Promotion”, which is funded by a US$9 million IDB loan. According to Makonnen, the project intends to strengthen the institutional framework governing production quality standards to support the Private Sector enterprises engaging in international trade while spearheading compliance with quality and environmental regulations. “The project includes the construction of a laboratory, the purchase of equipment for meteorology testing and chemistry which are expected to address the needs of local exporters and produce for developing new areas of

growth, such as non-traditional agriculture in fruits and vegetables, forestry, seafood, aquaculture, and potentially other areas such as mining and manufacturing,” she stated. The IDB Country Representative further stressed the importance of the consultancy programmes as she lauded efforts to diversify the local economy. “Many economies around the world have shown that a strong and diversified Private Sector is one of the main pillars to growth and development … As we know the future of Guyana will have a significant increase in its revenues. So the possibilities of diversification and the importance of diversification is key. So, the consultancy in the programme comes at a very critical mo-

ment,” Makonnen noted. Meanwhile, Business Minister Haimraj Rajkumar posited that the project sought to create an enabling environment where local businesses could participate in regional and global value chains supported by a network of accredited testing facilities, where they could access reliable tests at not only lower cost but also in less time than it would take to send samples overseas. He went on to note that while Guyana was excited about the global buzz surrounding its emergent oil and gas sector, emphasis much be placed on the need to strengthen other economic sectors. Contending that Guyana is already embarking on a diversification path, the Business Minister said they

IDB Country Representative Sophie Makonnen

want to be able to channel investors’ interest to specific priority sectors that would give a desired outcome of a diversified economy. Also speaking at the launch of the two consultan-

cy programmes, which was held at the Marriott Hotel, GO-Invest Chief Executive Officer Owen Verwey disclosed that the consultancies would run concurrently for the next nine months during which they would fi-

nalise a strategy and look at the framework that best suited the agency and the evolving environment in which it operated. “The work from the consultancies will help GOInvest specifically to create a focus, identify specific subsectors to focus on, look at the framework in which we operate and how we can be far more effective above and beyond where we are today. But it happens within that eco-system of the environment which supports trade or exports primarily, hence the NQI improvement … Altogether, they will work in that eco-system to help us improve the exports in Guyana, target investments that will result in exports, and foster the development of those specific sub-sectors,” Verwey stated.


friday, november 1, 2019 |

Guyana has more to offer Electrician charged than Kaieteur Falls – GTA for hammering cousin to death G uyana has more to offer than Kaieteur Falls as a tourism product. This is according to General Director of the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA), Donald Sinclair, who was at the time speaking at the launching of Tourism Awareness Month at Cara Lodge, Georgetown. Sinclair told the gathering that Guyana does not only have a single attraction but there are attractions in many different areas in the country. “More and more I think we are finding ourselves in what we call a post-Kaieteur visitor, meaning a person who, yes, have been to Kaieteur already and what next kind of thing. No one is saying that Kaieteur must not be visited; it must be visited again and again…. but we have to bear in mind that Guyana, as a country, has much more to offer than a single attraction,” he said. Meanwhile, Director of GTA, Brian Mullis stated


Director of GTA, Brian Mullis

that the village of Chenapou in Region Eight (PotaroSiparuni) has a great lot to offer our tourists. The village that is located just about 45 kilometres upstream has many activities that should be able to grasp the interests of our visitors. “Very soon we will be bringing some tour operators from Guyana to visit the community. They have mountain hikes, spectacular waterfalls there… there are also iconic species,” he explained. The Director further said that the Chenapou commu-

Kaieteur Falls, Region Eight, (Potaro-Siparuni)

nity is the only community that is within proximity of Kaieteur, and with the new lodge, there is a lot of potential for this community to benefit significantly. Additionally, Director of the Tourism Hospitality Association of Guyana (THAG), Mitra Ramkumar said that the historical city of Georgetown has many attractions that would appeal to tourists. “Georgetown could become a place that people look

forward to visit…… we really need to make it shine, it will take resources to get it done and it will take political will”. As Tourism Awareness Month 2019 unveils with the theme “Tourism is a force for good in Guyana”, there will be several activities, including the agro-tourism expo starting this weekend, Guyana Restaurant Week, Industry training, and Tourism sector awards, among others.

28-year-old electrician of Unity Village, East Coast Demerara (ECD), who allegedly beat his cousin to death with a hammer, was on Thursday slapped with a murder charge and taken to court. Doma “Mario” Nandalall appeared before Magistrate Marissa Mittelholzer at the Mahaica Magistrate’s Court. The charge stated that on October 22, 2019 at Mahaica, East Coast Demerara, he murdered Arvin Krishna Dipchand. Nandalall was remanded to prison and the case will continue on November 21. Reports are that the men, who are cousins, had several misunderstandings, stemming from the electrician allegedly stealing from the businessman on several occasions. On October 22 at about 18:30h, Nandalall was reportedly under the influence of alcohol when he pelted a hammer towards his cousin. The hammer struck the businessman to his head, causing him to fall to the ground.

Dead: Arvin Krishna Dipchand

The suspect then began to punch his cousin. He then reportedly pulled out a wooden stave from a fence and dealt the businessman a lash to his head. The businessman managed to free himself and jumped into his car. However, he was only able to drive a short distance down the street before he collapsed. The man was escorted by Community Policing Group (CPG) members to the Mahaicony Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

Essequibo Coast man slapped with causing death charge


he Essequibo Coast, Region Two (PomeroonSupenaam) driver who allegedly struck down and killed a pedal cyclist was slapped with a causing-death-by-dangerous-driving charge. Jason Persaud appeared before Magistrate Esther Sam at the Leguan Magistrate’s Court after he was slapped with four charges. It is alleged that on October 28, 2019, while driving in a dangerous manner, he struck down pedal cyclist Govindra Prashad, at Evergreen Public Road, Essequibo Coast, causing his death. The second charge stated that on the same day at the same location, he failed to stop and render assistance to Prashad. Persaud was also charged for driving under the influence of alcohol. He was released on $325,000 bail, and the case was scheduled to continue on November 25, 2019 at the Charity Magistrate’s Court. According to reports, Prashad was heading home on his bicycle about 19:00h when motor car PXX 6207, which was driven by Persaud and heading west along the public road, collided with the rear wheel of

Dead: Govindra Prashad

Prashad’s cycle as the driver lost control. The young man was reportedly dragged under the motor car. Prashad was then picked up in an unconscious state and rushed to the Oscar Joseph Hospital in Charity, before being transferred to the Suddie Public Hospital. However, when Prashad was on his way to the Suddie Public Hospital, he succumbed to his injuries. Persaud fled the scene after the accident. He was later arrested and a breathalyser test was carried out on him.



friday, november 1, 2019 |

Corentyne NDC Man on bail re-arrested cash-strapped for failing to attend court …owes staff salary since January


he country’s largest Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) has said it is cashstrapped but the NDC Chairman says that is not true. The 52-74 NDC has sent a letter to Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan stating that it is cash-strapped and is unable to pay workers the minimum wage. The letter, which is signed by the NDC Overseer Ravindra Dass and dated October 29, 2019, states the sum of $377,904 is needed to pay workers. However, the NDC Chairman, Anil Ramgahan, is claiming that the NDC has money to pay its workers. When contacted by this publication, Ramgahan said he was unaware of the letter. According to him, the NDC has about $600,000 in an account to pay. “I told the Council that if we have to, we can use money from that account to pay the workers”. The NDC has 15 permanent staff and according to the Chairman, a meeting was held with staff two months ago to address the issue. During that meeting, it was mentioned that the NDC was finding it difficult to pay the increases as proposed by the Communities Ministry from January. According to Ramgahan, staff were informed that if the Council had to pay the increases, it would have to reduce the workforce. There was a unilateral decision taken that the workers will work for a salary below the minimum wage but equal to what they were previously paid before the minimum wage was increased. Ramgahan said that if the NDC does not collect revenue

The letter sent to Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan by 52-74 Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC)

from property owners to allow it to be able to pay the retroactive increases to workers by December, money from its bank account will be utilised. However, the overseer said six staff members are being affected by the lack of funds. The NDC has so far collected in excess of $10 million in revenue but had budgeted to collect $13 million. According to Ramgahan, the NDC is still to receive its 2019 subvention from central Government. “I had requested a change in the work programme to purchase laterite and we are still awaiting an answer from the Ministry of Communities,”

he explained. The 52-74 NDC comprises of 21 villages, making it the largest NDC in the country. There are 10,515 house lots with landowners paying between $1200 and $2000 annually as property taxes. Some property owners pay $500 per year. Meanwhile, the NDC is reportedly not in a position to maintain drains and streets, which is part of its mandate. The Chairman has issued an appeal to the Communities Ministry for it to release the subvention to the NDC in time for the Council to be able to carry out its work programme before the end of the year.


uick action by Policemen stationed in Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) have led to the arrest of a well-known former taxi driver, who is presently on bail for a series of armed robbery charges. An arrest warrant was issued for 40-year-old Christopher Rampersaud after he was granted bail on multiple robbery charges, but failed to appear in court. When contacted on Thursday, Police Commander, Senior Superintendent Calvin Brutus told Guyana Times that Rampersaud was presently in custody and being questioned for other criminal acts that he allegedly committed while on bail. He confirmed that Rampersaud was arrested by ranks on Thursday morning after the Police received information about where he had been hiding. Fingers were pointed in his diection for two armed robberies that were committed in the Rose Hall, Berbice area recently.Meanwhile, another senior Police source in Berbice told this publication that Rampersaud was one of the trio accused of beating a watermelon vendor and robbing her at gunpoint at the woman’s Port Mourant, Corentyne home earlier this month. Reports are that on October 4 about 19:30h, three bandits, armed with a handgun, a cutlass and a crowbar, attacked 76-year-old Drupatee Haraul demanding cash and jewellery. Recalling the ordeal, the pensioner said the men approached and instructed her not to scream. “So, I asked them what they want and one of them tell me that dem is bandit. The one with the long thing lash me in the head,” Haraul said, explaining that blood began to run down her

Arrested: Christopher Rampersaud

face. It was then, she said, that one of the intruders snatched a cellular phone from her hand and demanded that she handed over cash and jewellery. Haraul said that she started to scream and one of the bandits ran to the upper flat of the building. The bandit confronted the elderly woman’s 36-yearold granddaughter as she was making her way down the stairs, having heard her grandmother’s screams. Neighbours responded to the woman’s screams, which led to the bandits fleeing, taking three cellular phones with them. On April 23 this year, Rampersaud was remanded to prison by Magistrate Renita Singh on a robbery under arms charge when he appeared before her at the Albion Magistrate’s Court. He was slapped with the charge which read that in the company of others on Saturday, March 16, 2019, at Bermine Scheme, New Amsterdam, and armed with a gun, he robbed Robin Busgith of one Toyota 192 valued at $1,000,000; one cellphone ($2000); G$3.7 million, and US$1500 – a total of $5,009,000. At that time, he was remanded until August 23, 2019. Initial reports stated that

Robin Busgith and his wife had with them a bag containing the $4 million in cash, along with the other items. As they were about to enter their premises, they were confronted by two persons armed with guns and dressed in school uniforms. The robbers demanded that they hand over all that was in their possession, including the keys to Busgith’s car. After escaping with the loot in the couple’s car, the bandits abandoned the vehicle at Number 56 Stanleytown, New Amsterdam, where it was subsequently found. On April 13, 2019, bout 22:00h, three masked men, two of whom were armed with guns and the third with a cutlass, stormed Indra’s Grocery and Beer Garden in the Canje Village, Berbice. During the ordeal, the men relieved some 20 customers of their cellphones, cash, jewellery as well as car keys. The bandits then proceeded to the business owners – Premchand and Taramattie Seelochand, who were beaten and forced to hand over all their valuables and an undisclosed sum of cash. After committing the act, the bandits escaped in a car belonging to one of the victims. The vehicle was recovered the following day in a community on the East Bank of Berbice. Less than a week after the robbery, Police received credible information pertaining to a suspect who was seen in Linden, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice), selling several cellphones. An intelligence operation led to the arrest of Christopher Rampersaud, who was said to be the mastermind behind the robbery and had reportedly confessed to the crime and three other armed robberies in that region.

12 NEWS CJIA conducts plane crash response training I friday, november 1, 2019 |

n an effort to better prepare for incidents of airplane crashes, some 300 personnel from various agencies participated in a “full-scale emergency exercise” at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport Corporation (CJIAC) Aerodrome on Wednesday evening. The exercise, which commenced at 18:01h and concluded at 19:37h, involved persons from key agencies such as CJIAC, the Guyana Defence Force (GDF), the Guyana Police Force (GPF), the Airport Fire Service, Customs and Immigration, Airport Security Unit, the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), the Diamond Diagnostic Centre, the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC), Airport Operators/ Airlines, the Civil Defence Commission (CDC) and Port Health. The exercise simulated an Aircraft Accident on Airfield based upon a prepared scenario. While emergency exercises are a requirement for the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), the last full-scale emergency

exercise was conducted on November 8, 2017. The Airport Operations Manager and Coordinator of the exercise, Alvin Majeed, related that “International Airports are required to conduct such exercises at least once every two years with objective being to test responses by all personnel involved, emergency plans and procedures and emergency equipment and communication systems”. Wednesday’s exercise scenario entailed an “aircraft crash” on landing with 55 persons on board, after which the various agencies were notified to respond to the accident. The Aerodrome Fire

Service was the first agency to respond. They extinguished the fire and rescued the aircraft occupants. The crash site area was cordoned off by the airport security officers (CJIAC and Special Constabulary Officers) with support from the Police, while Guyana Defence Force troops formed an outer cordon to protect the area. The rescued persons were assessed at a triage site by medical personnel and then transported to a care area equipped with medical supplies which served as a “mini- hospital” managed by doctors and other medical personnel. The most critical was

Pinktober grants available – GTT


fter a month-long calendar of activities through the GTT Pinktober initiative, the company makes a call to all NGOs to apply for money through the Pinktober Fund. According to a press statement from the company, the money is available to be disbursed in the form of grants to various non-governmental organisations (NGOs) across Guyana upon application to the company. Organisations requesting grants must fit within the basic guidelines set by the company, which include completed application form, most recent financial statement or audit, TIN certificate, quotations for products and services and summary of successfully completed projects (where applicable). The requests will then be reviewed and approved,

said Pinktober Coordinator, Diana Gittens. Gittens explained that the priority areas include cancer prevention and awareness/education, access to diagnosis, treatment and care (and aftercare), palliation and patient navigation. “Cancer patients in need of funds can indicate their interest to one of the NGO’s who would have accessed funds for cancer treatment and care,” Gittens stated. Names of organisations which would have benefited from these grants will be published. GTT has decided to disburse monies in the form of small, medium and large grants. The small grant will start at $50,000-$200,000, medium $200,000-$500,000 and the large grant from $500,000 to $1 million. “Grants can exceed $1

million if the scope of the project includes several priority areas and caters to the needs of populations across several communities. However, cancer-related organisations established for less than 2 years before applying for grants will be subject to increased monitoring and may be eligible for small and medium grants,” Gittens explained. Organisations can apply for grants through GTT by sending requests to PR Manager Jasmin Harris at and cancer foundations are encouraged to follow the necessary guidelines to acquire the grants. It is GTT’s hope that all affected will be able to access treatment and aftercare necessary to restore health. It is our intention that these funds will meet the people who need it most.

evacuated by GDF helicopter to Georgetown and others to the Diagnostic Centre at Diamond. A senior CJIAC staff member assumed the role of the ‘On-Scene Commander.’ The Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) was activated and representatives from the agen-

cies and the Emergency Committee members reported to the EOC to assist with the coordination of any request for resources and assist with decision-making. Volunteers from other agencies performed the role as casualties. This exercise comes on the heels of a Fly Jamaica

aircraft crash-landing at the CJIA, Timehri, on November 8, 2018 – an incident that left six persons injured and has since crippled the operations of the airline. The Boeing 757 flight crash-landed after encountering hydraulic issues. The flight had left the CJIA at about 02:10h for Toronto, but the pilot returned to the CJIA, where the aircraft crashed upon landing.The cash-strapped airline has since made all its workers redundant effective from March 1, 2019. Most of the fired former employees are also still awaiting payment of their salaries. Irate passengers are likewise still awaiting refunds from tickets that were booked. Those refunds are pegged at over $16 million.

Skills Training and Resource Centre commissioned


$20 million Skills Training and Resource Centre was commissioned on Thursday at the St Francis Community Developers on the Corentyne, which will focus on agro-processing. The project is part of Saint Francis Flagship ventures in education, empowerment and sustainability. Funded by the Japanese Government, “Reforming Education, Skills and Capacity for Ultimate Empowerment”, Project RESCUE will assist atrisk youth, disadvantaged families and single-parent households to have a foundation for education and financial security through direct participation in life and skills training. The skills training centre will focus on job readiness, skills training, responsive education, job creation, development of by-products, sustainability for livelihood and small business develop-

ment. President of the St Francis Community Developers, Alex Foster explained that the need for the venture became visible and critical for the development of economic growth when Saint Francis expanded its mandate in the agricultural field. “The goal is to support the largest source of employment for residents in the Region by offering technical support, equipment, modern techniques to solve traditional challenges, opportunities for youth participation while offering other avenues of income through the creation of by-products. The biggest challenge at hand was the fact that residents did not have exposure to training opportunities to reverse present realities,” Foster said. Noting that emphasis is on agro-processing, Foster said the project would become the first and only ac-

cessible facility to residences as a model of what needs to be done in small business agro-processing. He boasted that St Francis is leading the country in terms of community development. Apart from the Japanese Government, Food for the Poor Guyana (FFTP), Guyana School of Agriculture, the FAO, the Agriculture Ministry and the Regional Democratic Council are partnering in the programme. FFTP has already provided most of the equipment and is expected to upgrade some of the equipment from domestic to commercial. Meanwhile, Second Secretary of the Embassy of Japan which operates out of Trinidad, Tohihide Kanaya, reemphasised the importance of partnering on projects and noted that they are more likely to have lasting benefits.



friday, november 1, 2019 |

Lymphatic Filariasis Elimination Research paper reveals Campaign launched emerging pests in rice sector P R esearch conducted by officers of the Guyana Livestock Development Authority (GLDA) into the Incidence of Emergence on insect pests of rice in Guyana has yielded significant results. The research paper, according to the Department of Public Information (DPI), was composed by Entomologists Viviane Baharally, Alana Peters and Jenarine Hardat and presented by Baharally on the first day of the Agricultural Research Conference being held at the Guyana School of Agriculture. An excerpt from their presentation alluded to the fact that rice productivity, as robust as it is, is still limited by the harmful effects of insect pests. Just earlier this year, rice farmers across Regions Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam) and Six (East BerbiceCorentyne) suffered losses from paddy bug infestation. The paper goes on to explain that while the contributing factor of this loss has been traced to paddy bugs, there needs to be more focus on the monitoring of the effects of other pests such as leaf miners, water weevils and caterpillars. Further, surveys conducted over the past two years have revealed plant hoppers, leaf folders and grasshoppers are occurring in large numbers across the rice-growing regions. The data collected in 2018 showed an increase in the presence of plant hopper in Regions Two, Three (Essequibo IslandsWest Demerara), Four (Demerara-Mahaica), Five (Mahaica-Berbice) and Six.

In her presentation, Baharally revealed that while there were instances of most of the pests, one pest stood out – the grasshopper. “A total of 104 samples were taken in the first season and 296 in the second season… there were several species of the grasshopper found… almost all the areas had high instances of the grasshopper”. The grasshopper damages the plant by shredding the leaf from the tip and squeezes the grain during the milk stage to get its content. Data collected in Burma, Mahaicony revealed a hundred-fold increase in numbers of the plant hopper over two seasons— the second crop of 2018 and the first crop of 2019. In Regions Four and Six, there was the presence of Leaf Folder; however, it was not continuous. Meanwhile, grasshoppers showed a presence in all the regions in 2018. Moving forward, extensive monitoring is recommended as a vital component of the Integrated Pest Management protocols uti-

lised to keep the threat of these pests under control. In August, 17 Region Six rice farmers were forced to dump their paddy after it was rejected by millers, since more than 35 per cent of it was damaged. In addition to the loss as a result of the paddy bug infestation, many farmers were faced with additional expenses for the current crop after having to pump water into their rice fields. The prolonged dry spell, coupled with difficulties encountered by the regional administration, caused some rice farmers to pump water as many as seven times during the crop, as compared to three times on an average per crop. The region was expected to produce an estimated two million bags of paddy this crop. However, former Rice Producers Association (RPA) Extension Officer, Ramlakhan Singh, says there will be a shortfall of 500,000 bags. This will be reflected in the amount of $1.5 billion on the record books.

ublic health authorities in Guyana are urging Guyanese to participate in the 2019 Lymphatic Filariasis Elimination Campaign, which will see officials distributing pills countrywide in an effort to bring an end to the disease. At the start of the campaign, themed “We share because we care”, the Pan American Health Organisation/World Health Organisation (PAHO/WHO) Country Representative, Dr William Adu-Krow commended the efforts of Guyana’s Public Health Ministry to arrest the spread of lymphatic filariasis. He noted that PAHO/ WHO remained committed to the country to not only eliminate filaria but also other infectious diseases posing health threats to citizens.

Schoolchildren among the attendees at the launch of the antifilaria initiative on Thursday

annual rounds of mass drug administration. During the launching ceremony at the Stabroek Market on Thursday, Public Health Minister Volda Lawrence explained that Guyana has made tremendous progress in the fight against lymphatic filariasis. She expressed gratitude for the continuous

Persons at the Public Health Ministry’s booth

Dr Adu-Krow noted that 85 per cent mass distribution of drugs was done in eight regions in the year 2019, noting that it was not done in two regions for specific reasons. He further highlighted that while the prevalence of lymphatic filariasis is down, they are seeking to eliminate the disease completely. Guyana has embraced the PAHO/WHO comprehensive strategy to tackle the disease and stop the spread of the infection through large-scale

support and commitment to Guyana’s health sector from the United States of America. She explained that this year, the treatment would be based on a height system. The Minister also expressed gratitude for the US$2 million that was given by the United States to eliminate the dreaded disease. Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Dr Karen BoyleCampbell, during brief remarks, stated that Guyana

was one of four countries in the region where lymphatic filariasis remained a major problem. Lymphatic filariasis is a mosquito-borne disease spread through the bite of mostly culex mosquitoes which deposits a tiny worm in the bloodstream which travels to the lymphatic system and causes extreme swelling in areas about the body. An infected person can carry the parasite for more than 20 years, before experiencing any form of swelling to their tissues when it will be already too late. As such, persons are being encouraged to take the pills during the countrywide mass distribution exercise, to ensure the disease is prevented. The triple-drug therapy initiative will shorten the number of years required to take filarial pills. This initiative refers to the use of three anti-filarial drugs and when taken, the drugs will kill or permanently sterilise adult worms. The drugs will also tackle scabies and hair lice. However, before the drugs are administered, persons will be measured and given the drugs according to their height. It was also noted that pregnant women, persons who are 90 centimetres tall and weigh 15 kilogram or less will not be given the drugs.

14 news

friday, november 1, 2019|

Body of farmer found Knife-toting bandits rob berbice Pensioners in backyard shed


60-year-old man, along with an elderly couple, have been left traumatised after two knife-toting bandits broke into their home and stole cash and other valuables before making good their escape. Jewan Sewsankar and the other two persons aged 86 and 87 were resting in their Mibicuri, Black Bush Polder, Corentyne, Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) home when the armed duo broke into the house in the wee hours of Tuesday morning. The bandits threatened the trio and demanded that they hand

over all of their money and jewellery. Sewsankar and the other two victims immediately complied, in fear for their lives, and handed over all of their valuables. Sewsankar was robbed of $20,000 and his cellular phone, while an undisclosed amount of cash and other items were stolen from the elderly couple. The two suspects then stormed out of the house with their loot. The elderly victims raised an alarm and Police were notified. Based on the description provided, the suspects were nabbed at

Belvedere, East Berbice, Corentyne. The items that the robbery victims had reported were stolen were recovered at the home in Belvedere, where the suspects were found. Police Commander of Region Six (East BerbiceCorentyne), Senior Superintendent Calvin Brutus, confirmed that as a result of the good work done by his ranks, the two men were arrested and are presently in Police custody. The two knife-toting bandits are scheduled to make their first court appearance today at the Whim Magistrate’s Court, East Berbice-Corentyne.

Bahamas continues to crossreference list of missing persons


inister of Social Services, F r a n k i e Campbell, says government officials are still cross referencing lists of missing persons following the passage of Hurricane Dorian nearly two months ago. Earlier this month, Campbell told Parliament that 1,208 people were missing, based on records in the Ministry of Social Services, and promised to release a list of those missing in the local newspapers. However, that process was halted by Health Minister Dr Duane Sands who said the police have responsibility for dealing with missing persons. “This is disappointingly slow, but I think it's very important to get it right,” said Sands, who weighed in on the matter on Wednesday. “We don't want to have a repeat of one number here another number here and so on and so forth.”

According to Sands, he is not yet comfortable with the information accumulated by his ministry on autopsies done for victims of Hurricane Dorian and therefore, would not be releasing this information to the public at this time. “I would have given an undertaking that we were going to reveal the information as it relates to autopsy identifications and so on and so forth; even as of this morning I am not satisfied that the information that I've gotten from my ministry is adequate to be publicly released,” he said. “As for families seeking closure – we would like to be able to help them get closure but you can only get closure using the methods that are scientifically available and using international best practices. So if you talk about DNA, we are now investigating means of getting DNA data sooner than is conventionally available and when

you are talking about DNA analysis of bone or DNA analysis of soft tissue, the accuracy of that requires that that study be done by a reputable lab in a reputable environment and those results cross checked and validated. It's not something that you just snap your finger and it's done. We want closure as much as everyone else does and we are working very very hard to see to it that people get that closure.” On September 11, NEMA said 2,500 were reported missing following the storm. That dropped to 1,300 on September 12. During his address to the United Nations General Assembly on September 27, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis said the number of people still missing was about 600. However, the number to date now stands at 282, while the official death count from the storm is 67. (CMC)


he lifeless body of a 22-year-old farmer was found hanging from the roof of a shed at the back of the home that he shared with his parents and brother. Dead is Ricky Deen of Lot 3 Present Hope Village, East Bank Essequibo. Reports are that on Tuesday night, Deen had left his residence in the company of an older male friend to visit a liquor shop a short distance away from his house. He left at about 19:30h to return home Guyana Times was told that whenever Deen consumed alcohol, he was of the habit of breaking items in his home and as such, his family usually tries to avoid him when he was intoxicated. However, on Wednesday morning at about 05:00h, the now dead man’s mother, Rita

Sookram, said that as she was preparing breakfast, she noticed her son in the back of their yard hanging by a piece of cloth from the

a small injury to his left fist. Next to his body was a broken louver pane that had been shattered. His body was taken

rafter of the shed. She said that she immediately raised an alarm and Police were notified. According to investigators, when they arrived at that location, Deen was found hanging from a grey cloth and there was

to the Leonora Cottage Hospital, West Coast Demerara (WCD), where he was pronounced dead. His body is presently at the Ezekiel Funeral Parlour awaiting a PostMortem Examination (PME).

Brazil wildfires: Blaze advances across Pantanal wetlands

The wetlands are one of the most biodiverse regions in the world


50 kilometre-long (31 mile) wildfire is advancing across Brazil's Pantanal wetlands. The governor's office in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul said the fire was "bigger than anything seen before" in the region. At least 50,000 hectares of vegetation have already been destroyed. The area, located in the southern part of the country, is one of the most biodiverse regions in the world

and a popular tourist destination. The fire began on 25 October and is said to be advancing rapidly due to the combination of high temperatures and high winds. The governor's office said in a statement that the situation was "critical". It also warned that visibility in the area is poor. The governor has announced a 30-day moratorium on using fire for land clearance.

Firefighters are also using planes to tackle the fire from above. Over 8,000 fires have been recorded in the Pantanal until 30 October, up 462% on the same period last year. Brazil has had a large number of forest fires this year. Official figures show more than 167,000 forest fires were recorded from January until 30 October this year. (BBC)



friday, november 1, 2019 |

Facebook sued for age, gender US withholding $105 million in security aid for Lebanon – sources bias in financial services ads


S President Donald Trump’s administration is withholding $105 million in security aid for Lebanon, two US officials said on Thursday, two days after the resignation of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri. The State Department told Congress on Thursday that the White House budget office and National Security Council had decided to withhold the foreign military assistance, the two officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity. The officials did not say why the aid was blocked. One of the sources said the State Department did not give Congress a reason for the decision. The State Department declined to comment. The administration had sought approval for the assistance starting in May, arguing that it was crucial for Lebanon, an important

U.S. partner in the volatile Middle East, to be able to protect its borders. The aid included night vision goggles and weapons used in border security. But Washington has also repeatedly expressed concern over the growing role in the Beirut government of Hezbollah, the armed Shi’ite group backed by Iran and listed as a terrorist organization by the United States. Following Hariri’s resignation on Tuesday amid huge protests against the ruling elite, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urged Lebanon’s political leaders to help form a new government responsive to the needs of its people and called for an end to endemic corruption. One US official told Reuters he believed the security assistance was necessary for Lebanon, as it struggles with instability not just within its own government

but in a turbulent region and houses thousands of refugees from war in neighboring Syria. The official said it was especially important to strengthen Lebanon’s military, which he deemed one of the most capable institutions in the country now, largely because of support from Washington. The official said drawing aid away from Lebanon could pave the way for Russia to move in. Russia has expanded its influence in Syria since Trump announced he was withdrawing U.S. forces from the northeastern part of the country. Lebanon has been arguing with foreign donors over international aid for months. Before he resigned, Hariri failed to convince foreign donors to release $11 billion in assistance pledged at a Paris conference last year. (BBC)


acebook Inc was sued on Thursday in a proposed class action accusing it of discriminating against older and female users by withholding advertising for financial services such as bank accounts, insurance, investments and loans. According to the complaint filed in San Francisco federal court, Facebook persists in its willingness to let financial services advertisers “target” prospective customers by age and gender, despite a recent overhaul covering other kinds of ads. It said the Menlo Park, California-based social media company’s conduct violates that state’s civil rights law, exposing Facebook to billions of dollars in potential damages to users nationwide. “The internet is not a place where you can discriminate against people because of their age or gender, particularly in financial services opportunities,” Peter Romer-

Friedman, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said in an phone interview. “It would be like General Motors refusing to offer women or older people the same features on a car as men or younger people.” Facebook said it is reviewing the complaint. “Our policies have long prohibited discrimination and we’re proud of the strides we’re making in this area,” a spokeswoman said. The complaint was filed seven months after Facebook agreed to overhaul its targeted ad system, including for Instagram and Messenger, to settle lawsuits by civil rights groups that it let employers, landlords and lenders discriminate by age, gender and zip code when placing job, housing and credit ads. Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg said at the time that the changes would help protect Facebook users, and that “getting this right was deeply important to me and all of us at Facebook be-

cause inclusivity is a core value for our company.” While Facebook has begun implementing the changes, the complaint said it still allows financial services ads limiting such services to “people ages 24 to 40,” “men ages 20 and older,” and other comparable groups. Facebook is the world’s second-largest seller of online ads, and on Wednesday said around 2.8 billion people use at least one of its platforms each month. “We recognize that Facebook has taken significant steps to prevent discrimination in housing and jobs,” as well as credit ads, said Romer-Friedman, a lawyer at Outten & Golden. “The company can do a lot more.”Thursday’s complaint seeks damages for millions of Facebook users under California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act, which allows $4,000 of damages per violation. (Excerpt from Reuters)

Fierce clashes erupt between Syrian army, Turkish-led forces


eavy fighting between Syrian army troops and Turkish forces erupted near Ras alAin as Turkish-backed forces seized villages surrounding the border town. Turkish-backed rebels said there were intermittent clashes between the two militaries in recent days south of the town, which Turkey seized from Syrian Kurdish-led forces earlier this month. Al Jazeera’s Hashem Ahelbarra, reporting from the border town of Sanliurfa, said thousands of people were fleeing the fighting near Ras al-Ain and Tal Tamr towns. Turkish-backed Syrian opposition fighters - known as the Syrian National Army (SNA) - launched an offensive and took over areas previously under control of Kurdish fighters south of Ras al-Ain, he said. As fighting intensified, Syrian troops deployed reinforcements from Derbasiyah to Tal Tamr. “The SNA took over western parts of the town. People have had enough each time someone controls the area and ends up being worse than the previous armed group,” one Tal Tamr resident told Al Jazeera. “I am concerned for my children, this is why I am leaving. The Syrian army is on the frontline to stop the rebels’ offensive, but you never know.” On Thursday, American forces patrolled part of Syria’s border with Turkey in the first such

city of Afrin, under control of Turkey-backed rebel groups, witnesses said. The blast also wounded at least 30 people. The Turkish military helped by its Syrian rebel allies seized Afrin, a mainly Kurdish city, from the Kurdish YPG militia in March 2018 in a major offensive. Turkish forces have

A Turkish military truck carries tanks in Syria’s Kurdish area of Sanliurfa earlier this month

move since Washington withdrew troops from the area earlier this month, news reports said. Five armoured vehicles bearing US flags patrolled a strip of the frontier north of the town of Qahtaniyah, an

area they used to operate in before the United States announced its pullout. Meanwhile, at least eight people were killed on Thursday when a car bomb exploded in a busy market in the northwest Syrian

since carved out a buffer zone inside northern Syria that extends along most of the countries’ border. Videos posted on social media showed extensive damage to the market area with fires burning. Similar car blasts frequently hit crowded civilian areas in the mainly Arab-populated towns near

the border with Turkey under the control of Turkishbacked forces. Residents and rebels in the rebel-held northwest blame the YPG for the attacks. The Kurdish-led forces say they are engaged in a guerrilla campaign against Turkish forces but deny they target civilians. (Al Jazeera)


friday, november 1, 2019


Mexico will arrest kingpin’s son provided public not at risk – President


exico’s President said Monday his government still intends to arrest Ovidio Guzman, son of drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, once it can do so safely after the suspected trafficker’s forces waged gun battles with authorities in the north-western city of Culiacan. The younger Guzman was briefly detained on Thursday in Culiacan, in the state of Sinaloa. He was released after officials realized they were outmatched.

Lopez Obrador said the decision to free Ovidio Guzman halted the shootings and saved lives, and he would order another apprehension provided there is an arrest warrant for the operation and that the public is not put in danger. “People’s lives must be looked after,” he said.

Cartel gunmen are seen outside during clashes with federal forces following the detention of Ovidio Guzman, son of drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, in Culiacan, Sinaloa state, Mexico

Argentina sets floor under peso as reserves dwindle


rgentina’s central bank is setting a price floor under the volatile peso in hopes to avoid a sharp plunge in the currency after an opposition-won presidential election last Sunday shifted the country firmly back to the left. The peso edged up on Thursday to 59.68 per dollar, with the central bank offering US currency in the exchange market at a fixed 59.99 pesos per greenback, effectively putting a floor on the trade. Argentina’s markets have

been held in limbo following a general election on Sunday, as traders and investors await signals from President-elect Alberto Fernandez about the future direction of Latin America’s no. 3 economy. A spokesman for the center-left Peronist leader said he would travel to Mexico on Friday and return in the middle of the following week, his first trip overseas since being elected. Fernandez will face a full array of economic woes when he takes office in

December, including protecting reserves and dealing with a looming pile of debt amid complex negotiations with creditors and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Wednesday the United States expected him to uphold the country’s commitment to the terms of a $57 billion IMF loan programme agreed last year with conservative incumbent Mauricio Macri. (Excerpt from Reuters)

St Lucia yet to take definitive position on buggery laws


rime Minister Allen Chastanet says his Administration has so far not taken any “definitive decision” as it relates to the buggery laws in St Lucia. “That’s certainly something that is going to require a lot of dialogue and discussion,” Chastanet told reporters, even as he acknowledged that while the matter has become a global issue, there were many perspectives as to whether anti-buggery laws impede human rights. “This is something that we

are going to continue to review, but my Government does not have an official position on it as yet”. Chastanet dismissed suggestions that anti-buggery laws send the wrong message to the world and could affect the tourism industry, saying, “It hasn’t in the past”. “But as you will know, nobody has been arrested under that law in St Lucia. We are a Catholic society and I think every country is entitled to have its own po-

sitions, and therefore, this idea that everybody should be harmonised on these issues — we have seen countries which have gone and decriminalised buggery and have now reversed their position; we have seen other countries which have just remained constant,” he stated. Chastanet said there still needs to be a lot of discussion and debate in St Lucia before the country can move forward on the issue. (Excerpt from CMC)

Grenada seeking extradition of two people wanted for robbing credit union


renada is seeking the extradition of two St Vincent and the Grenadines nationals accused of staging a robbery at the Grenada Union of Teachers Credit Union in Carriacou earlier this month. “I can confirm that the two are on remand in St Vincent and an extradition hearing is scheduled to be heard in the magistrate court there, Grenada is seeking the return of the two,” said Christopher Nelson, the Director of Public Prosecution (DDP), adding, “We cannot say when they

will return but our argument is for the suspect to face trial in Grenada”. The men were arrested in St Vincent and the Grenadines last week Friday and investigators from Grenada travelled to Kingstown to assist with the investigations into the crime. The Police there had issued a wanted bulletin for the men soon after the October 11 robbery. They have since charged one person, believed to be the driver of the getaway vehicle with conspiracy. Meanwhile, Police have confirmed that two Vincentian

nationals have been deported where they are wanted for charges ranging from murder to money laundering. Police said Kamara Lampkin, 39, who was nabbed during a drug operation on October 21, is wanted on a murder charge and that the drug charges against him have been discontinued, while Xavique Williams, who was arrested during a joint operation on September 26, this year, pleaded guilty to two counts of money laundering. (CMC)

Mexicans were divided over the decision to free Guzman and widely sceptical over the Government’s ability to contain escalating violence, according to an Oct. 18-20 phone survey of 400 adults published on Monday by newspaper Reforma. It found that 49% of re-

spondents disagreed with the decision to release Guzman, while 45% agreed with it. The poll also showed 56% of respondents felt that organised crime was stronger than the Government, while one third took the opposite view. (Reuters)

ECLAC predicts 2% fall in Caribbean exports for 2019


he Economic Commission for Latin American and the Caribbean (ECLAC) predicts that exports from the region will fall 2.0 per cent in 2019 “due to the complex international context”. “The marked deceleration that international trade in goods has experienced this decade, and which has deepened since late 2018, will negatively affect Latin America and the Caribbean’s foreign trade performance in 2019,” said ECLAC in a new annual report released on Wednesday, at a press conference here, led by its Executive Secretary, Alicia Bárcena. According to the United Nations regional organisation, the value of regional exports and imports of goods is projected to drop -2.0 per cent and -3.0 per cent, respectively, “in a complex international context characterised by factors including the exacerbation of trade tensions, lower global demand, the growing substitution of imports with national production in

ECLAC Executive Secretary Alicia Bárcena (right) during the presentation of the report in Mexico City

some economies, the lower proportion of Chinese production that is bound for export, the retreat of global value chains, and the irruption of new technologies that impact on the very nature of trade”. In its report, “International Trade Outlook for Latin America and the Caribbean 2019,” ECLAC said that the region’s trade performance shows “significant heterogeneity by sub region,” with South America experiencing a -6.7 per cent contraction in the value of its shipments, “far steeper than the regional average”. “This reflects the economic

stagnation faced by the sub region – with growth projected at just 0.2 per cent in 2019, which negatively affects intraregional trade – and the heft that basic products have in its export basket, with prices for several of these having fallen,” ECLAC said. It estimated that only three South American countries (Argentina, Ecuador and Uruguay) will see the value of their shipments rise in 2019, driven by higher volume in their exports of basic products. (Excerpt from CMC)

Trinidad: Over 1000 rounds of ammo seized, 2 held


ver a thousand rounds of ammunition were seized and two persons arrested for possession of narcotics, during Operation Strike Back II exercises throughout the Port of Spain Division last night. In a statement, the Police service says on Wednesday, 30th October 2019, officers of the Port of Spain Division Task Force, Besson Street and Belmont Police Stations, along with officers of the Canine Unit, searched the Bath Street Plannings area. There, they found 160 grams of marijuana and 130 grams of cocaine. A 30-yearold Laventille man was arrested in connection with these finds. The officers then proceeded to the St Francois Valley Road Plannings, Belmont, where they executed a search warrant at an apartment. During a search of the premises, officers found 14.7 grams of cocaine. A male occupant of the home was arrested for the offence of possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking. An

1090 rounds of ammo seized during OSB2 in Port-of-Spain

additional 75 grams of marijuana was found during a further search of the surrounding areas. The Police service says several other road check searches were also carried out and a total of 25 field interviews conducted. A total combined weight of 239 grams of marijuana and 144.7 grams of cocaine was seized during yesterday’s exercises. Officers also conducted exer-

cises in the Maraval district, where based on intelligence, they searched a bushy area off Nicholas Street, Maraval. A total of 1090 rounds of ammunition was found and seized from that location. This included 1003 rounds of 7.62 ammunition, 46 rounds of 5.56 ammunition, 35 rounds of 40Cal ammunition and six rounds of 45Cal ammunition. (Excerpt from Trinidad Guardian)

friday, november 1, 2019


Around the World

Pakistan train fire: Karachi to Trump impeachment: House Rawalpindi service blaze kills dozens votes to formalise inquiry


t least 74 people have died after a train travelling between the Pakistani cities of Karachi and Rawalpindi caught fire in the middle of its journey. Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said the fire started when a gas cylinder, which passengers were using to cook breakfast on board, exploded. The huge blaze spread to at least three carriages. According to officials cited in local media, many victims died as they tried to jump off the moving, burning train. Another 40 people were injured. Officials say the number of victims may still rise. BBC Urdu’s Farhat Javed, who visited hospitals where victims are being treated, said many patients were too traumatised to speak.


Survivors were treated at nearby hospitals in the hours after the blaze

Survivor Shahid Imran told the BBC he realised a fire had broken out when he heard screaming. He pushed his wife out of a window and then jumped after her. Imran was slightly hurt in the fall from the moving train, but his wife suffered severe head injuries.

Another survivor told the BBC they pulled the emergency chain to get the train to stop, but it did not slow down. Doctors are treating people for burns, broken limbs and head injuries, our correspondent said. (Excerpt from BBC News)

ISIL confirms death of leader al-Baghdadi, names new Chief


he Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) armed group has confirmed the death of its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, announcing Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi alQurayshi as its new Chief. Abu Hamza al-Qurayshi, ISIL’s new spokesman, made the announcement on Thursday in an audio statement distributed by the group’s media arm, al-Furqan, days after a weekend raid by US forces that resulted in al-Baghdadi’s death. “We mourn you ... commander of the faithful,” he said, adding that ISIL’s legisla-

Under al-Baghdadi’s command, ISIL became one of the most brutal armed groups in modern history

tive and consultative body convened after the 48-yearold Iraqi-born chief’s death. “The Islamic State shura council convened immediately after confirming the martyrdom of Sheikh Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and the elders of the holy warriors agreed” on a replacement.

The audio also addressed the United States, saying: “Do not rejoice America. The new chosen one will make you forget the horror you have beholden ... and make the achievements of the Baghdadi days taste sweet”. (Excerpt from Al Jazeera)

Iran intervenes to prevent ousting of Iraqi Prime Minister – sources


ran has stepped in to prevent the ouster of Iraqi Prime Minister Abdel Abdul Mahdi by two of Iraq’s most influential figures amid weeks of anti-government demonstrations, sources close to both men told Reuters. Populist Shi’ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr demanded this week that Abdul Mahdi call an early election to quell

the biggest mass protests in Iraq since the US-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003. The demonstrations are fueled by anger at corruption and widespread economic hardship. Sadr had urged his main political rival Hadi al-Amiri, whose alliance of Iranbacked militias is the second-biggest political force in parliament, to help push out

Abdul Mahdi. But in a secret meeting in Baghdad on Wednesday, Qassem Soleimani, head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ elite Quds Force, intervened. Soleimani asked Amiri and his militia leaders to keep supporting Abdul Mahdi, according to five sources with knowledge of the meeting. (Excerpt from Reuters)

Ethiopia says 78 killed in protests against treatment of activist


t least 78 people were killed in protests in Ethiopia last week against the treatment of a highly influential activist and media entrepreneur, a spokeswoman for Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has said. Billene Seyoum told a news conference on Thursday that those killed had died in a “very senseless act of violence” in the Oromia and Harari regions, and in the eastern city

of Dire Dawa. Billene said 409 people had been arrested over the unrest, which erupted in the capital, Addis Ababa, and in Oromia on October 23 after Jawar Mohammed, a prominent activist and founder of the Oromia Media Network, accused security forces of trying to orchestrate an attack against him. Police denied his claim. She added that investiga-

tions were ongoing and both the death toll and number detained could rise. Abiy was meanwhile greeted with boos by at least 700 protesters during a visit to Ambo, a site of earlier violence located 100km (62 miles) west of Addis Ababa, three people who were present told Reuters news agency by phone. (Excerpt from Al Jazeera)

he US House of Representatives has passed a resolution to formally proceed with the impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump. The measure detailed how the inquiry will move into a more public phase and was not a vote on whether the President should be removed from office. It was the first test of support in the Democraticcontrolled House for the impeachment process. The White House condemned the vote, which passed along party lines. Only two Democrats— representing districts that Trump won handily in 2016 – voted against the resolution, along with all Republicans, for a total count of 232 in favour

and 196 against. The resolution also sets out due process rights for Trump’s lawyers under the congressional inquiry. The Republican President is accused of trying to pressure Ukraine into investigating unsubstantiated corruption claims against his political rival, Joe Biden, and his son who worked with Ukrainian gas company Burisma. Trump denies wrongdoing. After the vote, the White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement: “Speaker Pelosi and the Democrats have done nothing more than enshrine unacceptable violations of due process into House rules”. Republicans have criticised Democrats for the closed hearings – in which

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the impeachment inquiry last month

Republican lawmakers have also taken part. But Democrats insist they were needed to gather evidence ahead of the public stage of the investigation, and deny allegations they have been secretive. (Excerpt from BBC News)

5 men acquitted of gangraping teenager in Spain


court in Barcelona has acquitted five men accused of gang-raping a 14-year-old girl of the charge of sexual assault. The men were convicted and jailed for the lesser crime of sexual abuse. Under Spanish law, an offence can only be considered rape or sexual assault if physical force or intimidation is used. The court ruled they had not committed rape because the victim was in an “unconscious state” and they did not need to use violence. The decision comes despite Spain’s Supreme Court reversing a similar ruling earlier this year. There is also an ongoing review to the law. Six defendants were initially charged. The five who were convicted were sentenced to between 10 and 12 years in prison. A more serious conviction of sexual assault would

A protester in Malaga holds up a sign in support of the Manresa victim

have carried prison sentences of between 15 and 20 years. Women’s rights groups have reacted to the ruling with anger and dismay. The men were found guilty of abusing the girl during a drinking session known in Spanish as a botellón at a disused factory in Manresa, a town in the north-eastern region of Catalonia, in October 2016. The case became known as

the “Manada de Manresa” – Manresa Wolf Pack – for its similarities to another 2016 gang attack on a teenager which prompted widespread protests and an ongoing review of Spain’s rape laws. Prosecutors told the court the men took turns to attack the girl, who was under the influence of alcohol and drugs. (Excerpt from BBC News)

British election campaign kicks off on no-Brexit day


n the day Britain was supposed to have left the European Union, voters instead faced the start of an election campaign, with opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn pledging to overthrow a “rigged system” he said was run by billionaires and tax-dodgers. After failing to deliver Brexit by the October 31 deadline, Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the December 12 election to break what he cast as a political paralysis that had

thwarted Britain’s departure and undermined confidence in the economy. Opinion polls suggest the election is Johnson’s to lose. His Conservative Party is leading Labour by 15 to 17 percentage points, according to IpsosMORI and YouGov. Yet the overshadowing issue of Brexit, which has divided both major parties and their voters, could confound conventional calculations. While Brexit frames the election, with Labour pledging to hold a sec-

ond referendum on it, it is being fought by two of the most unconventional British politicians of recent years who offer starkly different visions for the world’s fifth-largest economy. In his first major speech of the campaign, Corbyn said the election was a once-in-a-generation chance to overthrow what he cast as a corrupt elite which profited by exploiting workers, lying to the public and polluting the environment. (Excerpt from Reuters)


friday, november 1, 2019



(March 21April 19)

TAURUS (April 20May 20)


GEMINI (May 21June 20)

CANCER (June 21July 22)


Calvin and Hobbes

Put more time and effort into personal changes that will make you look and feel your best. Address health issues and put a diet and exercise plan in play. If something is bothering you, discuss it and eliminate the problem. Being open and honest about your feelings will bring you closer to your personal goals. Romance is encouraged. Personal improvement should be your focus. You cannot please everyone, but you can be responsible for your own happiness. Take physical action and enjoy your day.

VIRGO (Aug. 23Sept. 22)

Let go of whatever isn’t working for you and surround yourself with what’s important. Join forces with someone who shares your interests, concerns and beliefs.


Think outside the box when it comes to new beginnings. You have to let go of the past to move forward. Cut out what is no longer working for you.

SCORPIO (Oct. 24Nov. 22)

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 23Dec. 21)

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22Jan. 19)


Make a move. Trust and believe in what you can offer and accomplish. Get together with people you work well with to finalize plans. Spend time with someone you love.

LEO (July 23Aug. 22)

(Sept. 23Oct. 23)


Make adjustments that will take the pressure off of you. Look at your options and consider the best way to go about improving your life. Personal gain is within reach.

LAst PUBLISHED puzzle AQUARIUS (Jan. 20Feb. 19)

PISCES (Feb. 20March 20)

Evaluate your current position and consider the changes you’d like to make. You have more control over what happens next than you realize. Choose to make a difference. Take care of business before you socialize. Protect yourself against negative publicity by not sharing information that is personal or that could easily be used against you. A low-key attitude is favored.

Use your charm and diplomacy if someone tries to stir up trouble. A calm and controlled attitude will put you in the driver’s seat and out of harm’s way. A change to the ways in which you handle people and personal matters will help you avoid complaints or criticism. Don’t get into a conversation with someone too rigid to meet you halfway. Set off on a new adventure. Travel and educational pursuits are favored, and spending more time with a loved one will bring you closer together. Your input and help will be appreciated.

friday, november 1, 2019


roundup: Curry breaks

hand in Warriors' loss R

times in all of 2018-19.

icky Rubio hit two of Phoenix’s five 3-pointers in a 21-0, first-quarter run Wednesday as the Suns ran away from Golden State 121-110 in San Francisco on a night when the Warriors lost Stephen Curry to a broken left hand. With the Warriors already down 83-54 in the fourth minute of the third period, Curry collided with Suns center Aron Baynes on a drive to the hoop and fell hard on his left arm. The two-time NBA Most Valuable Player was taken immediately to the locker room, and the Warriors later announced he had broken his hand in the incident. The Warriors have now endured major injuries to Kevin Durant (ruptured Achilles tendon), Klay Thompson (torn ACL) and Curry in their past six non-exhibition games, dating back to last spring’s NBA Finals. Durant left in the summer as a free agent, signing with the Brooklyn Nets. Baynes totaled 24 points and 13 rebounds while Saric (16 points), Rubio (14), Cameron Johnson (12) and Kelly Oubre Jr. (11) also scored in double figures for the Suns. Rookie Eric Paschall had 20 points to lead the Warriors, who fell to 0-2 at their new home, the Chase Center. Rockets 159, Wizards 158 James Harden scored 59 and hit a free throw with 2.4 seconds left to lift Houston to a wild win over host Washington. After Bradley Beal sank three free throws to tie it with 7.7 seconds left, Harden drove, got the foul call and made the first free throw. He missed the second, and Washington was unable to get off a shot. Harden was 18 of 32 from the field. Russell Westbrook had 17 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists, and Clint Capela added 21 points for the Rockets, who shot 53.4 percent from the field. Beal led the Wizards with 46 points on 14-of-20 shooting. Rookie Rui Hachimura had 23 points and Davis Bertans 21. Washington shot 62.6 percent from the field. Celtics 116, Bucks 105 Jayson Tatum had 25 points, including 11 during a third-quarter comeback, as host Boston overcame a 19-point deficit to beat Milwaukee and win its third game in four tries to open the season. Kemba Walker led all scorers with 32 points, Gordon Hayward had 21 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists, and Marcus Smart hit five 3-pointers and scored 19 for the Celtics, who played without swingman Jaylen Brown, scratched hours before the game with an illness. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 22 points and 14 rebounds, and Khris Middleton scored 26 for the Bucks, who have dropped two of four. Milwaukee hit just 15 of 24 at the free-throw line.

Raptors 125, Pistons 113 Pascal Siakam scored 30 points, grabbed five rebounds and added five assists as Toronto defeated visiting Detroit. It was the third 30-point game in five games this season for Siakam. Kyle Lowry added 20 points and eight assists for Toronto, Norman Powell and Serge Ibaka had 19 each, Fred VanVleet contributed 13 points and 11 assists, and OG Anunoby scored 13 points with eight rebounds. Andre Drummond had 21 points and 22 rebounds for the Pistons. Derrick Rose had 16 points and 10 assists, Langston Galloway added 17 points, and Markieff Morris had 16 points.

Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) helps up guard Stephen Curry (30) after an injury during the third quarter against the Phoenix Suns (USA Today)

Pacers 118, Nets 108 Domantas Sabonis scored 29 points, Jeremy Lamb added 25 points and Indiana picked up its first win of the season by pulling away in the fourth quarter to defeat host Brooklyn. The Pacers avoided their first 0-4 start since the 1988-89 season and did so on a night in which they lost center Myles Turner to a sprained right ankle late in the first quarter. Sabonis constantly dominated inside and finished a point shy of his career high set Oct. 31, 2018, against the New York Knicks. He shot 11 of 18 and scored 10 of his points in the fourth quarter when the Pacers outscored the Nets 28-25. Trail Blazers 102, Thunder 99 Damian Lillard scored 23 points, including three consecutive 3-pointers in a fourthquarter stretch, to lead visiting Portland past Oklahoma City. The Trail Blazers never led by more than nine points in a competitive game, but Lillard’s hot fourth quarter provided them just enough breathing room to hold off the Thunder. Portland closed its three-game road swing through Texas and Oklahoma 2-1, bookending a loss at San Antonio with victories over the Dallas Mavericks and Thunder. CJ McCollum capped a high-scoring road trip with his lowest output of the three games, 22 points. Chris Paul led the Thunder with 21 points.

Jazz 110, Clippers 96 Mike Conley scored 29 points and Donovan Mitchell added 24 to lead Utah past Los Angeles, which played without Kawhi Leonard and Paul George in Salt Lake City. Bojan Bogdanovic added 14 points and Rudy Gobert chipped in 13 to help the Jazz improve to 3-0 at home. Utah shot 11-for-24 (45.8 percent) from 3-point range. Thrust into the starting lineup instead of his usual sixth man role, Lou Williams scored 24 points to lead the Clippers. JaMychal Green added 23 points and Montrezl Harrell chipped in 10 off the bench. Los Angeles shot 47.6 percent from the field but ended up with 20 turnovers. Magic 95, Knicks 83 Nikola Vucevic scored 21 points as host Orlando overcame squandering a 13-point lead to record its fifth win in its last six meetings against New York. Vucevic shot 8 of 17 from the field and added 13 rebounds, two days removed from a nightmarish 1-for-13 performance in Orlando’s 104-95 setback to Toronto. Aaron Gordon collected 15 points and 11 rebounds, and Evan Fournier added 14 points for Orlando. Julius Randle had 16 points and 10 rebounds to pace the Knicks, who failed in their bid to win two in a row for the first time this season after managing the feat just three

76ers 117, Timberwolves 95 Joel Embiid scored 19 in 20 minutes before being ejected for a third-quarter brawl with Karl-Anthony Towns as host Philadelphia beat Minnesota. Embiid led six Philadelphia players in double figures. Tobias Harris scored 18 points, Furkan Korkmaz had 17 and Ben Simmons added 16. Al Horford scored 12 points and grabbed 16 rebounds and the Sixers improved to 4-0, joining only the San Antonio Spurs as the league’s undefeated teams. James Ennis had 11 rebounds off the bench for the Sixers, who last won their first four games during the 2000-01 season. Alan Wiggins led the Timberwolves with 19 points. Cavaliers 117, Bulls 111 Tristan Thompson scored a game-high 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, and Kevin Love finished with 17 points and 20 rebounds to lift host Cleveland past Chicago. Collin Sexton added 18 points and Jordan Clarkson 17 for the Cavaliers, who had six players score in double figures. Cleveland has alternated losses and wins through its first four games of the season. Lauri Markkanen and Zach LaVine scored 16 points to pace Chicago, which lost its third straight game. Hornets 118, Kings 111 Rookie PJ Washington recorded 23 points and eight rebounds, and Terry Rozier added 22 points as Charlotte won at Sacramento. Malik Monk added 18 points off the bench and Miles Bridges scored 17 as Charlotte snapped a three-game losing streak. Cody Zeller contributed 12 points and 15 rebounds, and Devonte’ Graham added 12 points and nine assists.Buddy Hield scored 23 points and Harrison Barnes added 22 for the Kings, who dropped to 0-5 for their worst start since dropping the first seven games of the 1990-91 season. Richaun Holmes recorded 17 points and nine rebounds, and De’Aaron Fox had 16 points and 10 assists. (Reuters)



friday, november 1, 2019

Players arrive ahead of Windies-Afghan Series


he last batch of West Indies players that left the Caribbean on Tuesday, have joined their teammates in India, ahead of the limited overs series against Afghanistan set to bowl off next week. Players and management of West Indies began leaving last Sunday for the tour that includes three T20 Internationals, three One Day Internationals and one Test, with the entire squad assembled in the northern India city of Lucknow. Test players, like off-spinning all-rounder Rahkeem Cornwall, will join the side later next month after representing his native Leeward Islands Hurricanes in the Regional Super50, with the Test set to bowl off on November 27. The Super50 runs from November 6 to December 1 in T&T and St Kitts. West Indies will face a tough challenge against the Afghans, especially with the series being played on the subcontinent of India.

Windies versus Afghanistan

The Caribbean side beat their hosts in their last meeting during the ICC World Cup in England earlier this year, but it was only the second time in six ODIs they had registered a win over their opponents. Afghanistan drew a three-match series in the Caribbean two years ago but then twice trounced the Windies during the ICC

World Cup qualifiers in Zimbabwe last year. However, West Indies have been more dominant in the T20 format, beating Afghanistan in three of four matches. The two sides have never met in a Test. Afghanistan was only awarded Test status two years ago and bagged their first win last month when they stunned Bangladesh in Chittagong. Afghanistan, meanwhile, has quietly assembled for the tour, with captain Rashid Khan being the last player to arrive from the United Arab Emirates on Tuesday. Team manager Mohammad Nazeem Jaar said the hosts were well pre­pared for the challenge presented by West Indies. “There has been a lot of change in the mentality of the team since the World Cup in July and we are hoping for a good series here,” he said. “West Indies have been a good side, but we are ready to challenge them on home turf. We had our cricket at Noida and then Dehradun, but Lucknow is altogether a different place.” Like West Indies, they have undergone a change of coach with former South Africa all-rounder Lance Klusener taking over after Phil Simmons stepped down following the World Cup. Ironically, Simmons, a former Test all-rounder, has now taken up the head

Rahkeem Cornwall battled against Virat Kohli in his first Test

coach role with the West Indies. The tourists will play a warm-up match

next Tuesday before facing Afghanistan in the opening ODI two days later. (CMC)

7th Brusches Under-18 Basketball Classic…

Guardians tackle Kwakwani tonight ꟷ Royals face Junior Kings H

aving posted wins in their opening matches in the seventh Brushes Under-18 Basketball Classic, the stage is set for this year’s semifinals to be held this evening (Friday) at the Mackenzie Sports Club (MSC) hard court. In game one, Kwakwani Ballers, who won their opening match against the Berbice Rose Hall Jammers last Saturday night, will take on Plaisance Guardians, who also won against Pepsi Sonics in last Sunday’s game

that began at 19:00hrs. The second semifinal will be contested from 21.00hrs, and would be between Linden sides: Victory Valley Royals, who knocked out Pacesetters of Georgetown, and Junior Kings. The Kings gained a walkover win after Bartica’s Wrangulars had failed to turn up on the opening night. In their opening game, Kwakwani Ballers scored a 69-64 win over the Rose Hall Jammers on the strength of Elijah David’s 16

points and Paul Sampson’s 10 points. The Jammers were led by the high-scoring Shamar France, who had a tournament-high 37 points all in vain, and Jamal Chisolm, who supported with 12 points. In Saturday’s other game, the Royals of Linden scored a 59-50 victory over Pacesetters of Georgetown, with Emmanuel La Rose netting 17 points and Leon Benjamin 13. For the losing side, Jamal Nicholas scored a gamehigh 21 points, while Zion Gray collected 16

points. Sunday’s lone encounter saw Plaisance Guardians being stopped by Pepsi Sonics 60-49, with Shaquawn Gill finishing with 23 points to lead his team to victory. He was supported by Nigel Bowen, who added 11; while for the Sonics, Jamal Booker notched up 12 points and Josiah Daniels got on the board with 7 points. The final game is set for Saturday at the same venue.

friday, november 1, 2019

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EBFA Under-11 League…

Riddim Squad, Vurlon Mills Academy to square off in final on Saturday


hey have, to date, both played undefeated, and have each duly earned the right to contest the final of the 4th edition of the East Bank Football Association (EBFA) Under-11 League sponsored by the USA-based Guyanese Ralph Green, which will be contested tomorrow at the GFF National Training Centre at Providence, EBD. Vurlon Mills Academy topped Group ‘A’, and then moved on to the semifinals, where they trounced Kuru-Kururu Warriors 5-0. Riddim Squad topped Group ‘B’, and then went on to take care of their semifinal opponents in last year’s champs, Timehri Panthers, whom they brushed aside 2-0. While the ‘Academy’

boys are exposed to consistent training on a weekly basis at the new Vurlon Mills Academy, the Riddim Squad boys have likewise been ‘doing their thing’ at the Mocha Ground, and fancy their chances of uplifting the championship trophy tomorrow. The respective coaches: Vurlon Mills, formerly of the Golden Jaguars team, and the wily Shawn Maloney, would no doubt have been putting in some extra work as they each seek to end the tournament on a high. One of these two teams would keep their un-

The Vurlon Mills Academy U-11 Team

spirituality & ASTROLOGY

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The Riddim Squad FC U-11 Team

Most Promising Player, Top Goal Scorer and Most Valuable Player, The Best Coach, and the Team receiving The Sportsmanship Award would each be presented with plaques. This tournament had commenced on Saturday September 14 last, with 12 teams placed into two groups. Group ‘A’ consisted of Vurlon Mills Academy, Timehri Panthers, Fruta Conquerors, Eagles FC of Stewartville, Diamond United and Samatta Point/ Kaneville.   Group ‘B’ consisted of Riddim Squad, KuruKururu Warriors, Swan FC, Friendship All Stars, Grove Hi Tech and Agricola Red Triangle.

Phil Simmons throws support behind West Indies Captains R

eturning West Indies coach Phil Simmons has backed his two captains' ability to get the most of their players, and suggested that Jason Holder will benefit from the decision to hand the white-ball reins to Kieron Pollard. Speaking to ESPNcricinfo, Simmons said that Pollard - who was appointed captain of the limited-overs teams in September despite not having played an ODI since 2016 - is capable of "leading from the front" with the bat. "It showed in the T20Is with India," Simmons said. "He took the reins and led in those. That's what I expect from him: that responsibility of being captain is going to make him want to always be on top of the runs and leading from the front. He is that kind of a leader - even though he asks you to do something, it is not something he wouldn't do or he wouldn't want to do." Pollard was the lead-

ing run-scorer in that series with scores of 58, 8* and 49, and Simmons said that he expected that form to continue. "I expect a lot of runs to come from him. Hopefully he doesn't get to bat where he's batting much because the top order should be performing now - they have been around for a while in both those two forms." And Simmons pointed to Pollard's career as evidence that he stands up whenever he is under pressure. "A lot of people write him off," Simmons said. "The pressure always makes him stand up. If you look at his career, every time he's under pressure he stands up and he shows 'look, I've had a blip, but I'm back'. "His experience in general, and not just the knowledge, but also his ability to involve all the players and his ability to give players challenges but at the same time be on their side - that natural leadership is there.

It is something that he will bring a lot to the team." Pollard takes over as ODI captain after a difficult World Cup, in which Holder's side won just two matches and finished ninth in the ten-team round-robin group stage. That disappointment led Cricket West Indies to set up a task force to revamp their selection process, which recommended replacing Holder as captain, but Simmons thinks that "relaxing a little bit more" in white-ball cricket will allow him to maintain his impressive Test match form. "It might be [beneficial] but that is something that he has got to answer that question," he said. "He's the No. 1 Test allrounder in the world, so he has shown that he has learned a lot in that format, and he is going to continue to lead this team." Holder was first appointed captain of the Test side back in 2015 at the age of 23, and Simmons said that his experience in the

Phil Simmons

role meant he could now afford to demand performances of his players. "With the experience he has now, he should be putting more pressure on a lot of the players to perform. So his role slightly changes, and he gets to relax in the other two formats because sometimes you could see that mind thinking on the field, and then when it comes to batting, the pressure is on. "Now with him relaxing a little bit more in the

other two formats, maybe you'll see a lot more coming from him in the Test matches." Pollard's first assignment as permanent skipper is a three-match ODI series against Afghanistan in India, followed by three T20Is. Holder will then lead the side in a one-off Test against the same opposition in Lucknow, before they play another whiteball series against India, which comprises three T20Is and three ODIs. (ESPN cricinfo)


friday, november 1, 2019


26-team PM Cup tourney bowls off today ꟷ Dyna’s outfitting umpires


he long-awaited bowl-off of the third edition of the annual Prime Minister’s Twenty20 Softball Cup (PM T20 Cup) tournament is set for today, Friday November 1, at eight venues across Georgetown. While players representing the 26 teams in the three categories would look bedazzling in their new and colourful uniforms, so too would be the match officials, thanks to Dyna’s Embroidery and Screen Prints. This entity, based at Austin Street Campbellville, has donated a quantity of branded tops to tournament organiser, Georgetown Softball Cricket League Inc (GSCL), and this donation will be used by the 26 umpires who will be standing in the international three-tier tournament over the next three days. Dyna’s Embroidery and Screen Prints is now in an elite club with local and overseas sponsors who have seen the tremendous benefits to be accrued in sponsoring this lucrative tournament. The other sponsors are HL Latino America of Panama, Regal Stationery and Computer Centre, Rajiv Gandhi University of Science and Technology, Chung’s Global, P and P Insurance Brokers, Ink Plus, KFC, Regal Sports, Elegance Jewellery and Pawn Shop, Banks Beer, I-Bet Supreme, Crown Mining Supplies, Bedessee Sporting G o o d s , Star Party Rentals, C y b e r Sports, and USA Cricket Zone. Among to-

Some match officials pose with their branded tops ahead of the Prime Minister’s T20 Softball Cup 3 tourney this weekend

day’s highly anticipated matches are: defending ‘Open’ champions Speed Boat opening their title defence against arch-rivals Regal All Stars at Queen’s College ground, and defending ‘Masters’ champions Regal Masters beginning their quest for a third consecutive title against Fishermen Masters at Everest.

A Ally and Sons 50-Mile Cycle Race confirmed for Sunday

Meanwhile, matches in the new category, the Legends category, will take place at Queen’s College ground and at the famous Georgetown Cricket Club ground at Bourda. Other venues being used are: the YMCA ground, Malteenoes Sports Club ground and Transport Sports Club ground on Thomas Lands; the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) ground at Base Camp Ayanganna, and the Demerara Cricket Club (DCC) ground in Queenstown. Each team will play three round-robin preliminary round matches with the hope of advancing to the semifinals on Saturday afternoon. Today will see two preliminary rounds of matches being played, beginning at 09:30 and 13:00h respectively. The final preliminary round match takes place on Saturday at 09:30h, while the grand finale takes place on Sunday at Everest from 09:30h. In all, a total of 49 matches will be played over the three days, including a lone female encounter on Sunday between Factory Price Divas and Superwoman XI.

DDL Topco Juices 1-Day Junior Chess Tournament set for this weekend

ꟷ free admission for all players

T Flying Ace Cycle Coach and organiser of this event, Randolph Roberts receiving the sponsorship cheque from a representative of A Ally & Sons Limited


xciting cycling action will continue in the Ancient County of Berbice on Sunday November 3, when the A. Ally and Sons General Stores 50-Mile road race pedals off. This event, organised by the Flying Ace Cycle Club (FACC) of New Amsterdam, will pedal off from the premises of this super store at Main and New Streets, New Amsterdam at 11:00h, and will proceed to the Nand Persaud Rice Complex at Number 36 village Corentyne before returning to the point of origin for the finish. Lucrative prizes are on offer for the first ten finishers and the first five novice riders. Eight prime prizes are also

up for the taking. This company was one of the leading sponsors of cycle racing a few years ago, but had taken a hiatus from the sport. Company CEO Fizal Ally will be on hand to send the riders on their way; and, along with family and staff, will be on hand for the presentation of prizes. Coordinator of this event is Randolph Roberts. With some of Guyana’s top cyclists due to conclude their tour of Cuba on November 3, some new faces will be aiming to take the top spot. Flying Ace’s very own Balram Narine will be eager to finish first, while Andre ‘Padlock’ Green and Andre Hicks would likewise be vying for the top spot.

he first of six junior chess tournaments planned by the Guyana Chess Federation (GCF) and sponsored by the Demerara Distillers Limited under its Topco Juices brand is set for tomorrow, Saturday November 2, at the National Aquatic Centre at Liliendaal, Greater Georgetown (lower East Coast) Registration starts at 9:00hrs at the same venue, and every player (male and female) would be admitted without charge. This tournament consists of 12 rounds. Each player will be allotted 10 minutes plus 5 seconds’ increment per round. The six junior tournaments will be staged by the GCF during November and December, 2019. The GCF, earlier this week, successfully clinched a renewed sponsorship package for the junior competitions with beverage giant DDL under its Topco Juices brand. DDL has committed $320,000 to the chess body to cover prizes for the six competitions, and DDL Marketing Director Sharda VeerenChand has been pleased to disclose the approval of this sponsorship. This company has previously played a dominant role in the sponsorship of tournaments, thus President of the GCF, Frankie Farley, has thanked DDL for its involvement in these tournaments and the important role the company has been playing in the development of local chess. “Your generous contribution will be instrumental in making our vision a reality, by helping to offset part of the cost associated with the implementation of the various planned initiatives,” Farley asserted. Players who are interested in participating in these tournaments are invited to contact Rashad on 658-3004, Davion on 656-4032, or Anthony on 613-2083, for more information.

friday, november 1, 2019


13th MACORP Open tees off tomorrow


ne of the most a n t i c i p a t e d tournaments will return to the Lusignan Golf Course this Saturday when the Machinery Corporation of Guyana Limited (MACORP) hosts its 13th annual Golf Open tournament. MACORP has been a pillar in the golfing fraternity, not only in lending a helping hand to upkeep the Lusignan Golf Course, but also in sponsoring regular tournaments. The MACORP Open has been a feature on the golf calendar for the past 13 years. It is played immediately after the Guyana Open, giving local golfers the opportunity to showcase their skills in a bid to redeem their prestige following the international Guyana Open tournament. This year’s MACORP Open will see competition in three flights, with prizes allocated for the top three players of each flight. In explaining why the company continues to support golf, MACORP CEO Guillermo Escarraga noted that the sport shares common values with the company. “We are excited, and we

MACORP CEO Guillermo Escarraga speaks

will continue the support of the Lusignan Golf Club, because golf is a sport that shares common values with our organisation. In golf, we have to be committed, respectful, responsible, and always do our best; and that’s how we conduct our business. That’s why our customers continue their preference for our company,” Escarraga explained. Alluding to MACORP’s involvement in refurbishment of the Lusignan course, which can now withstand heavy showers, Club President Aleem Hussain has praised MACORP

for its timeless support. “The golf course at Lusignan is now in the best condition it’s ever been in its existence, thanks to MACORP. These are things that they didn’t take lightly, these are decisions that were made by the company simply because they believe in where Guyana was going. “So my hat goes off to MACORP and the entire team, and I want to say, ‘Thank you’ to all of you who have helped us to grow to this level,” Hussain noted. When this tournament tees off at 12:30hrs, local

MACORP CEO Escarraga hands over the sponsorship cheque to LGC President Aleem Hussain

golfers will compete in flights 0-9, 10-19 and 20-36, the last of which would enable female and younger players to compete. Individual awards would include longest drive, and nearest to the pin. MACORP CEO Guillermo Escarraga detailed the brilliant array of prizes. “We have

trophies for first, second and third in each category. We have nearest to the pin, longest drive, and prizes for best net overall and best gross overall. Other than trophies, we have very good prizes for those who win, like the MACORP watch and other tokens. So we really want everybody to come

and participate and compete for these wonderful prizes,” Escarraga explained. More than 40 golfers are expected to participate in this MACORP Open tournament, which would be played on the 9-hole Lusignan Golf Course tomorrow, Saturday November 2. (Jemima Holmes)

Terrence Alli National Open…

Ninvalle excited to see boxing talents on show

By Jemima Holmes


eginning this evening, more than 50 Guyanese boxers will gather at the National Gymnasium on Mandela Avenue to participate in three nights of exciting competition in the Terrence Alli National Open Boxing Tournament. On the eve of this final tournament on the statutory calendar of the Guyana Boxing Association (GBA), Guyana Times Sport spoke exclusively with GBA president Steve Ninvalle about his expectations for the weekGuyana Boxing Association President end. “I don’t think that I need to urge fans to Steve Ninvalle come out, because it is to your detriment (not years. You’ve seen Keevin Allicock, you’ve seen Desmond Amsterdam, you’ve seen Colin Lewis; so to miss fights with any of these boxers participating is to miss a lot. The onus is on you. Do you want to miss it, or do you want not to miss it?” Those were the affirmations of Guyana Boxing Association president, Steve Ninvalle, as he spoke to the quality of boxers and competition that would be on show from tomorrow evening. When the first bell is sounded, the ensuing tournament will mark the commencement of this year’s Terrence Alli National Open, which will be used as a scouting exercise to identify Guyana’s team for the upcoming Caribbean Boxing Championships. Speaking on his expectations for this weekend, Ninvalle noted that the amateur crop of boxers are the ones to keep an eye out for. “All in all, we expect to have three nights of fistic fury. I think it’s the worst kept secret that, for action in boxing in Guyana, you have to look at the amateur ranks,” Ninvalle stated. The National Open has seen some great occurrences, but the return of Dennis ‘The Menace’ Thomas is probably the most anticipated one. GBA boss Ninvalle has declared his The final box was ticked when local boxers were excitement at seeing ‘The Menace’ weighed in on Thursday afternoon back in action after his 2016 accident. to do so). You will not be able to be a part of “Dennis is a classy history being created. fighter. I personally ex“I’m quite pleased with the level of de- pect a lot from him. He’s velopment that I’ve seen over the past three one of the most seasoned

campaigners that we have had in boxing. But apart from him, we have our crop of boxers that we’re hoping (would) lead us into the next Olympics,” the GBA president shared. The Guyana Defence Force has been ‘the authority’ at the Terrence Alli Open, winning for the past 18 years; but Ninvalle opined that the defending champions are in for some

ing a lot of good young fighters; and hopefully, we have the gym from Essequibo,” Ninvalle explained. Essentially, the GBA president expects the National Open to produce some exciting talents ahead of the Caribbean Championships. He revealed that Guyana is ac-

Bills of good health were handed out prior to the showdown

stiff competition this time. “GDF are the reigning champions, but I expect GDF to get a very tough time this year, as Forgotten Youth Foundation (FYF) have fortified themselves. Matter of fact, FYF will be having two boxers from overseas -of Guyanese parentage -- trying to find a place on the national team. “There’s the Pocket Rocket Gym; the Winston Pompey Gym, that has been produc-

tively seeking to retain its ‘bragging rights’. “We have written to the Director of Sports, by extension the Government of Guyana, asking for their assistance, because we don’t go out there and represent ourselves, we represent Guyana; and hopefully we’ll have the resources needed to send that team to Trinidad. We really need to have our full team there, so we can have something to brag about,” Ninvalle revealed. Ringside tickets for the Terrence Alli National Open are priced at $1000 each, while admission to the stands is priced at $500.

friday, november 1, 2019

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

13th MACORP Open tees off tomorrow Page 23

MACORP CEO Guillermo Escarraga, Miguel Oviedo, Angel Amaris and Jordi Pinol stand with LGC President Aleem Hussain and more company representatives

EBFA Under-11 League… Page 21

Riddim Squad, Vurlon Mills Academy to square off in final on Saturday GUYANA TIMES -, email:, NEWS HOTLINE: 231-8063 EDITORIAL: 223-7230, 223-7231, 231-0544, 225-7761 SPORT: SALES AND MARKETING: 231-8064 - - PRINTED AND PUBLISHED BY GUYANA TIMES INC.

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Guyana Times Friday November 1, 2019  

Guyana Times Friday November 1, 2019  

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