In an electrified atmosphere, pumped and ready for fete season, the King of Soca, Machel Montano, visited the University of Guyana (UG) Turkeyen Campus, where he told excited and screaming fans that this is his best visit to the country. His visit to the institution was made possible by the GTT.The soca genius was greeted by screaming fans and flashing lights as he took to the stage.The musician said he has never experienced Guyana in such a way, since he was treated to some Guyanese folklore music, which blew him away. This, he said, definitely makes his visit memorable and the best so far.Montano said he has been singing since the age of seven and became a professional musician at just nine years old.The now 43-year-old energetic performer shared that he believes cooperation isMachel Montano poses with a few staffers from the University of Guyanabetter than competition. While responding to a question, he said he does not have a favourite song to perform. “It’s not about the song, it’s about the audience,” he said that makes his performances special.Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Ivelaw Griffith said the University is proud to be partnering with HJ and the other promoters to make the show a success.“This is a symbol not only of the recognition our University pays to the arts, to music, to drama, to sculpture, it is also testimony of the recognition of our partnership with companies, great companies like GTT,” according to the Professor.Second Vice Chancellor, Paloma Mohamed expressed gratitude for the event, since funds will go towards to University’s music and arts division.“This event is of course in support of our artist and residence programme at the University of Guyana. It started about two years ago, a new initiative by the VC (Vice Chancellor)… so the funds from these tickets go towards supporting that initiative,” Mohamed explained.A number of tickets for the ‘RevelNation’ slated for this evening at the Guyana National Stadium were given away to special audience members, who not only seized the opportunity for a photo, but to dance with the performer.
The Golden Arrowhead fluttered in all its glory on Friday before thousands of Guyanese patrons gathered at the D’Urban Park in Georgetown to participate in the ceremonial flag-raising exercise that represented part of this country’s pre-Independence ceremony.The Golden Arrowhead being hoisted at the pre-Independence ceremonyThe event, Guyana’s historical 52 Independence Anniversary observance, was graced with the presence of President David Granger and First Lady Sandra Granger, along with several other ministers of the Government, members of the diplomatic corps, members of the disciplinary forces, students, and well-wishers.This year saw performances by over 2000 students, who participated in the various cultural dances of Guyana’s six peoples, decked in the colours of the flag to represent social cohesion.A section of the performers who danced to the various cultural musicMeanwhile, a march past was collectively conducted by the National Cadet Corps, Hope Secondary, Kuru-Kuru College, Mackenzie High School and several other institutions.The inclement weather could not prevent the performers from showcasing their cultural pieces, done much to the enjoyment of the crowd. Then, as the skies gradually cleared, the honoured members of the Guyana Defence Force took up their positions to hoist the national flag.
“Hot water” killing Frances Harlequin, also called ‘Blacky’, of Lot 38 Half Mile Wismar, Linden, was arraigned before Linden Magistrate Clive Nurse on Thursday for the murder of her 56-year-old uncle, Hilbert Scott, upon whom she allegedly threw hot water during an argument at their home.Facing a charge of murder, the 42-year-old unemployed Harlequin was remanded to prison on Thursday. The woman is suspected to be mentally ill.According to information received from the Police, Harlequin was initially charged with causing grievous bodily harm with intent, then attempted murder. She was charged with murder after Scott, a security guard succumbed to his injuries.The incident occurred at about 09:30hrs on June 16. Information from Police revealed that the two lived together but in different apartments in a flat, wooden and concrete structure. On June 16, the suspect reportedly lit a coal pot in her apartment, and the smoke started to affect Scott. While still alive in his hospital bed, Scott told investigators that he had gone over to his niece’s apartment to speak to her about the nuisance.Harlequin reportedly became annoyed and threw a pot of hot water from off the stove on her uncle, resulting in him contracting like injuries. Scott reportedly went to the Wismar Police Station immediately after, and reported the matter, and was later escorted for medical attention.Scot was seen and examined by a doctor at the Linden Hospital Complex (LHC), where he was treated and sent away. Shortly after Scott had made the report, the suspect reportedly also went to the said Police Station and reported that Scott had dealt her a cuff to her mouth during the incident, and she threw the water on him.She also was sent for medical attention, but reportedly never returned to the Police Station. Harlequin was arrested by Police on June 17 and placed into custody. On June 19, she was placed on self-bail, to appear in court on June 25.Scott was additionally charged for assault. It was reported that, on June 21, the victim started to feel unwell and was taken to the Linden Hospital Complex, where he was admitted with an infection reportedly caused by the burn injuries.On June 25, the suspect was charged with the offence of causing grievous bodily harm with intent to commit murder. The matter was called before Linden Magistrate Clive Nurse, but Harlequin did not appear.The magistrate ordered that she be summoned for court on July 9. Information from Police also revealed that while Scott was in the hospital, his condition worsened and he was transferred to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). He died at about 08:15h on July 2.A file was later completed and sent for legal advice, and a post-mortem was (PME) performed on the body of Scott by Government Pathologist Dr Nehaul Singh. According to the results of that PME, conducted at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) on July 4, the cause of Scott’s death had been Generalised Sepsis or ‘Septic’. It was also revealed that the deceased was HIV positive, and the hot water which was thrown on him caused his body organs to become infected. The body was later handed over to relatives for burial.
Charlestown drug bustFifty-eight-year-old Courtney Demonick on Friday appeared before Magistrate Sherdel Isaacs-Marcus and pleaded guilty to the possession of 89.23 kilograms of cannabis and 20 grams of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking.Some of the drugs that were found at the Charlestown, Georgetown houseDemonick of Lot 82 St Stephen Street, Charlestown, was taken into custody along with two others when his home was raided by Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU) ranks on Tuesday.He was also charged for having 1.5 kilograms of cannabis in his possession at his home.After the charges were read, the father of three admitted to possession and ownership of the drugs. Magistrate Isaacs-Marcus jailed him for four years and imposed a fine of $8.4 million.For the second charge, he was fined $50,000 and sentenced to one-year imprisonment. These sentences will run concurrently. Taking into consideration that Demonick cooperated fully with CANU during their investigation, the Magistrate deducted 12 months from his sentence.In a plea of mitigation, Demonick apologised to the court for his actions and said that he did the illegal act to support his children.“I have a little son, who is four and he suffers from bronchitis and I have to take care of him…I know it was a bad choice,” he told the Court.His co-accused 23-year-old Ebony Craig, of Lot 17 Lamaha Springs, Georgetown, had the charges withdrawn against her after Demonick admitted to the offences.According to CANU Prosecutor, Konyo Sandiford, Demonick’s home was under CANU radar for a lengthy period prior to the raid.However, she noted that ranks only invaded after they saw the accused placing black plastic bags into a minibus that was parked outside his home.The man was also allegedly seen placing several other bulky bags into a motorcar bearing registration numbers PPP 3008.The court was informed that CANU ranks intercepted Demonick and carried out a search in the same motorcar where 1.564 kilograms of marijuana were found.A warrant was also issued for a search to be carried out on his premises. The search unearthed 89.23 kilograms of cannabis and 20 grams of cocaine inside the kitchen and bedroom area.
The Guyana Teachers’ Union (GTU) is calling for armed security at schools to ensure that its members are protected against the criminals that seek to rob or harm them, as well as from unruly parents and students.General Secretary of the GTU, Coretta McDonald, on Thursday, told Guyana Times that the welfare of teachers in Guyana needs to be taken seriously by the Education Ministry and this includes the matter of their security in and out of the classrooms.“Security is a big thing in our schools. Our teachers suffer and our children suffer at times when we are too slow to react. We need to focus on the security of teachers too, not only catering for criminal events, but also for unruly parents and students and even unwanted guests who may want to harm or rob them in and around the school premises,” she stated.GTU’s General Secretary Coretta McDonaldShe explained that there have been too many situations lately where teachers and head teachers have been robbed and assaulted and that one of the surest ways to curb this growing trend is to ensure that more suitable individuals are contracted as security personnel at schools. These security guards should also be armed, the GTU General Secretary noted.According to the GTU General Secretary, the need for armed security at schools is growing and while patrols conducted by the Guyana Police Force are welcomed, this will not ensure the safety of teachers since persons who intend to harm them will simply wait until the Police have left before they act.McDonald highlighted the fact that many of the schools in Guyana do not have security officers during the day and for those schools which have security services, most of the guards are not suitable or “able-bodied”. This, she added, is as a result of the compensation package being offered to persons who accept such jobs.“We cannot get the people that we want to do the job because of the compensation that is offered to persons who may be interested in doing these jobs. Some of the folks at the schools are really old, some cannot see or hear properly. I am not discriminating, I am just saying that they may not be suitable for such jobs because physically they may not be able to do as much as one would expect,” she stated.The GTU official is urging that the Education Ministry review and revamp the policies that it has in place in relation to contracting guard services for schools.McDonald further explained that the Ministry must demand that the security services, which it has contracted to serve at its schools, send more professional guards and preferably ones that are armed so that teachers and students will feel and be much safer in and around their environments.She added too that given the current trend of crimes and assaults occurring in and around schools throughout the country, unless something is done to immediately address the issue, teachers will want to select where they teach and accept transfers easily. (Kristen Macklingam)
The rehabilitation of the Bartica Ferry Stelling has seen the completion of Phase One, and contractors mobilised their resources to enter the second phase just a couple of weeks ago.Bartica Mayor Gifford MarshallThis is according to the Mayor of Bartica, Gifford Marshall, who told Guyana Times that this project will improve the aesthetics of the township since it has been witnessing a growing number of tourists on a daily basis.It is also the primary entrance into the town via vessels and should be constructed to facilitate a large inflow of ferries and travellers.“Works are progressing nicely on the transport and harbour stelling. Hopefully, we should have that facility by the end of 2019. The first phase is completed and just two weeks ago, the second phase would have started,” said the Mayor.He added, “On completion, it would be a major project for us in a sense that it is the main entry point for us when you come in by boat so it would definitely boost our tourism. It will also enhance the outlook of Bartica because we have a number of tourists that would visit,” he added.Last year, an announcement was made that works on the docking area was pegged at $601 million. Phase One would have entailed the removal of a section of the stelling structure and the construction of a waiting room.The agenda would have also mentioned a complete demolition of the southern section of the stelling, where it would be replaced with greenheart piles.This publication understands that offices and stalls will be constructed in the future to boost economic activities.“There will also be some mini stalls and also some other facilities to better provide a service to the people,” he stated.The second phase of the project primarily involves the extension of the northern side of the stelling to increase safety for vehicles traversing the structure through the construction of a draw bridge.Back in 2016, the Transport and Harbour Department (T&HD) of the Public Infrastructure Ministry had undertaken rehabilitative works on various stellings and wharves across the country. These works were estimated to be in excess of $311 million.During that time, there was a complete reconstruction of the northern high ramp, the replacement of defective beams and planks on the Bartica docking area. Repairs were also done to the timber roof valley and the supervisor’s office, as well as the northern fender system. Forty-six piles were driven during these rehab works.
The Little Diamond roadway which was damaged by BK contracting firmResidents of Little Diamond East Bank Demerara have accused BK International of damaging the only access to their community; a bridge and the main roadway.BK International is presently constructing a sluice behind the community and as such, this has caused major destruction to the bridge and road as a result of workers transporting heavy-duty equipment.Works Chairman of the Little Diamond/Herstelling Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC), Wilfred Bassant in an interview with Guyana Times on Sunday said that the bridge to the new developing community was built some five years ago and was in perfect condition up until two months ago when BK began works in the area.“The destruction of this bridge and the road started two months ago. They brought in piles on a hauler truck and a few of the boards broke which they replaced with some old pieces of timber and continued fetching their equipment and materials via these heavy-duty trucks. And more and more the boards keep breaking,” he explained.Bassant said that over the last few weeks, the bridge continued to sink deeper and is in a deteriorating state. The NDC has written to the Public Infrastructure Ministry, the regional authorities and the Communities Minister and to date they are still to receive a response.He said the condition of the road “is like a mud dam” and residents are suffering greatly while noting that the contractor is unconscionable.“I was at home when I heard a cracking sound and when I came out, I noticed three more boards were broken as the workers were transporting sand across the bridge in one of those big sand trucks,” the NDC Chairman added.Residents are now fearful of using this bridge due to its condition and it is the only entrance and exit to the community.Residents are also fearful that in the case of an emergency, they will be left to suffer the consequences since a fire truck or ambulance cannot traverse that bridge in a hurry.“Nothing can come in here. We even afraid to walk over that bridge. We have children going to school and that bridge is in a terrible state and we have no other means of getting in or out of here. Taxis don’t even want to bring people in here, this is how bad it is,” Nandanie Singh, a resident, told Guyana Times on Monday.Further, Bassant pointed out that in some other areas where works are being done, the contractors take responsibility for maintenance of damaged roads and access ways. “We are saying if BK is using the bridge to fetch his heavy-duty equipment and materials then he should maintain it. When the contractor was doing works in Herstelling, they built their own access road without creating disruption to residents of Herstelling and that posed no problems for those residents so why can’t they do the same thing in here,” Bassant argued.He expressed hope that one of the Ministries respond soon to the NDC’s letter and offer some guidance and assistance on the way forward. Attempts to get a comment from the owner of BK International, Brian Tiwari, proved futile.The deteriorated bridge which serves as the only access to the Little Diamond community
Camille’s Academy in collaboration with Action Invest Caribbean Incorporated, on Saturday hosted its inaugural fitness expo and health fair event, with the sole aim of fostering both physical and mental fitness among students so as to boost academic achievements.Managing Director of Camille’s Academy, Camille DeokieSome of the items on display at the fitness expoBeing the first of its kind, the event saw the attendance of members from the Guyana Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation (GABBFF), Soca sensation and fitness instructor, Vanilla among other persons.Representative and business coach of Action Invest, Keon Smith in speaking with Guyana Times, expounded that the partnership event takes on a more fun-oriented approach towards education and the schooling environment, but at the same time teaches students the importance of physical health.“What we’ve decided to do is to build a holistic schooling environment for the young and the future leaders of Guyana. This fitness expo is one of the first and its gonna be an annual event that we’re gonna use to showcase not only the fitness aspect of the students but also on display [are] their academic achievements…and is looking to create different ways to make education fun,” Smith asserted.Meanwhile, Managing Director of the institution, Camille Deokie in brief comments on the event, posited that improvements to oneself begin with a healthy lifestyle, and this is the backdrop for which the event is hosted.“A lot of studies would’ve revealed that once kids live healthier they will be smarter, so for me, directly and indirectly, will improve lives…it will even impact of academic results and people’s lifestyles in general and all the ambassadors today is basically with one mindset and that is if we really want to improve our results we have to go healthier” the Director asserted.Parents and students came out in numbers at the event, to enjoy organised activities including an official marching exercise, an award ceremony, a fitness competition which is built around the normal exercises covered in the subject of physical education (PE), all of which complemented the items on exhibition at the booths in the areas of cohesion, environmental health as well as tourism.
With Guyana recording one of the highest numbers of rape cases in the Caribbean, Director of Public Prosecutions, Shalimar Ali-Hack on Friday posited that people who sexually molest children suffer from mental illnesses.DPP, Shalimar Ali-HackThis statement was made at the American University of Peace’s Eight Convocation ceremony, which was held at Pegasus Hotel, Georgetown.“There are a lot of cases that come in especially sexual offences, and we are overwhelmed by the number of cases. Without any knowledge, it seems to me it is only natural that something is wrong with people to be interfering with children,” she said.Moreover, she added that with the number of rape cases that are on the rise in Guyana, psychologists are very much needed.“Your study is in demand and you will have a lot of work to do, I urge you to be fair and confidential, to be impartial in your application and in your handling of your clients”, she told the students.Ali-Hack also said that the issue of child molestation is not only happening in Guyana, but it is also evident around the world.“This is happening on a very regular basis throughout society, it cuts across all religions, class, creed, that you can think of. It has no borders, it has no boundaries”, she vocalised.Meanwhile, she said that the Guyanese society is always quick to jump to violent reactions, and it is only persons who dwell in our society that can attest to the fact.“I see fathers before me every day and it bothers me, people seem to have so much anger and they have no tolerance, and no patience and they are quick to jump to violent reactions… if you’re living in this society you would realise this”, she added.Nevertheless, the Director urged the new graduates to apply the knowledge they have acquired into the execution of their duties, now that they are about to venture out into the world of work.
A 30-year-old taxi driver who was hired to transport a 7-year-old girl from school but allegedly diverted to the Jubilee Resort and engaged in sexual activity with her was on Thursday arraigned before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts.Sattish Ramkellawan of Timehri, East Bank Demerara, the taxi driver, was not required to plead to the charge, particulars of which stated that between January 1, 2019 and February 12, 2019 at Timehri, East Bank Demerara, he engaged in sexual activity with a child under the age of 16.The matter was heard in-camera and members of the public and media were asked to exit the courtroom.According to reports, the accused was hired by the child’s parents to transport her home from school, but he allegedly diverted and took the child to the Jubilee Resort, where he allegedly sexually assaulted her.The traumatised child related to her parents what had transpired, and the matter was reported to the Police. The accused was subsequently arrested and charged for the offence.The accused was remanded to prison, and will make his next court appearance on January 13, 2020.